This month marks the 35th anniversary of Paccar Leasing Company (PacLease). The Bellevue, Wash.-headquartered company, has grown to become the fourth largest rental and leasing company with nearly 40,000 trucks in its fleet and more than 550 locations..
“We launched PacLease in 1980 as an extension of the Kenworth and Peterbilt dealership retail arms,” said Neil Vonnahme, president of PacLease. “We wanted to assist Paccar dealerships with rental and leasing opportunities in the United States and Canada, so they could offer their customers a full suite of equipment and services. And, we felt we could offer a competitive advantage by leasing custom-spec’d medium- and heavy-duty Kenworth and Peterbilt trucks.”
After its first year, the PacLease network consisted of 17 franchises with 100 trucks on full-service leases.
According to Vonnahme, the breadth of national services and programs offered by Paccar Leasing has provided its franchises with growth opportunities. “Our dedicated emergency call center (PacCentral) was established to support our customers when PacLease was relatively young,” he said. “And our national accounts program, which began in 1987, has been instrumental in helping our customers who have multiple locations. We were one of the first leasing companies that offered telematics solutions through our PacTrac system, and in 2011, we were one of the first leasing companies to offer natural gas vehicles.”
Vonnahme said this has allowed PacLease to work with smaller companies on the local level, and large Fortune 500 companies on the national level. “Maximum uptime is critical to both small and large companies that work with us,” he said. “We have proven and reliable Kenworth and Peterbilt products. And we have the direct connection with Kenworth and Peterbilt, which allows our technicians to take advantage of factory training so they know the trucks better than anyone in the industry to ensure they’re running optimally. In addition, we know fleets are concerned with driver retention, and our two brands are at the top of drivers’ lists.”
Other PacLease milestones that have fostered growth include entering the Mexican market in 1996, Europe in 2007, and most recently, Australia, Vonnahme noted. “The flexibility of the PacLease model has proved successful,” he said. “We’re very customer focused and aggressively provide premium service to match premium Paccar products.”