PG&E-Prompted Plan for Long-Term Leases from Renaissance Capital
Troy-Mich.-based Renaissance Capital Alliance has developed finance packages for electric vehicle leasing that solve length-of-term problems with previously available plans. The new offering was prompted by Pacific Gas & Electric, which was dissatisfied by traditional leasing schemes.
By working with Renaissance Capital Alliance, PG&E is now getting better terms on such plug-in hybrid electric vehicles as the Ford C-Max Energy and GM Chevrolet Volt.
The key problem, says PG&E transportation services director Dave Meisel, has been securing financing that matches or goes beyond the vehicles’ eight-year battery and powertrain warranties. Before Renaissance Capital stepped up, 60 months was the maximum lease term, or maybe 72 months, he told F&F. PG&E keeps its vehicles longer, especially for costly cars where savings accrue only over a long fuel-saving lifecycle.
Variants of the Renaissance Capital program for PG&E are now available for other utilities and indeed a wide range of fleets, says Dan Toma, Renaissance Capital controller and senior leasing officer.
“We will work with all investment-grade organizations which have fleet vehicles,” he says.
The More Vehicles the Merrier
“We are very customer-centric,” Toma says. Terms vary widely, deal to deal, with costs dependent on vehicle type, customer requirements for end-of-lease disposal, and – critically – the number of vehicles being deployed.
“I typically would like a minimum of 25 vehicles,” Toma says. “I would prefer 50,” he told F&F Friday.
Fleets can mix and match different EVs in one package. “One lease schedule with multiple vehicles allows us to pass on better prices,” he says. Once the financing is secured, the program is flexible. Vehicles can be acquired via dealers or from OEM fleet departments. “Point of sale is open to whoever they want to purchase the vehicles from.”
Beyond EVs, the new Renaissance Capital program could be expanded to other alternative fuel vehicles with high up-front costs. “It could eventually apply to CNG and propane,” Toma says.