Understanding Transportation Costs: A Used Car Dealer Podcast with Mike Trudeau

Posted on
4 min to read

In a recent episode of the Used Car Dealer Podcast, host Zach Klempf dives into the evolving world of auto transportation and logistics with Mike Trudeau, the Executive Vice President of Business Development at Montway Auto Transport. The engaging discussion centers on Montway’s cutting-edge technology and commitment to customer service, highlighting how these factors drive dealership success.

Watch the full episode or continue reading for highlights of the interview.  

Q: What role does Montway Auto Transport play for dealers? 

A: Montway started by serving the retail customer, moving vehicles from point A to point B. Over the past five years, our business-to-business sector has grown significantly. We launched the Montway Automation Portal to digitize the transportation ordering process and save valuable time for dealers.

Q: What dealership logistics trends have you observed?

A: With all the different inventory demands—where to buy, what color, what year, how many miles—dealers have a growing need to move one car at a time. Montway excels at single and low-volume moves, which stems from our foundation on the retail side. We understand the importance of moving one car at a time as quickly as a full load.

Q: Can you explain Montway’s M.A.P. system?

A: M.A.P. stands for our Montway Automation Portal. Dealers can log in to a portal, receive a real-time quote or review set rates and get an idea of transportation costs for a particular vehicle. For example, their store may be in Texas, but they may be looking at cars in Los Angeles or Michigan. With M.A.P., a dealer can get a transportation quote before they even buy the car and when they’re ready, they can book the order automatically. 

The order comes to us and the shipper will receive notifications and status updates. If the trucker enables mobile tracking, they’ll receive real-time information and they’ll always get a status of where their car is and when it’ll be delivered.

Q: What are the standout features of the M.A.P. update?

A: M.A.P. offers an intuitive user experience and an open API so it can be implemented into a dealer’s own transportation system. From a dealership’s perspective, transportation has always been seen as a “necessary evil” with the cost of the car being worked into the deal. Dealers aren’t thinking about how to take control of this expense. They aren’t typically asking, “How can I get this car to my lot quicker or how can I decrease cycle time?” But that’s exactly what a third-party transportation partner should be able to do. That’s what we pride ourselves on.

The M.A.P. release is about visibility at the dealer group level. If you buy inventory, are a CFO or in fixed ops or are an owner or GM and oversee multiple stores, you can log in to M.A.P. and see what’s going on at each store. You’ll know how many cars are coming, where they are and see any potential delays. If you know you have five cars coming in on Wednesday now you can get five service slots ready for Thursday to get them reconditioned quickly and on your lot by Friday or Saturday. 

Q: How does Montway ensure safe and reliable vehicle transport for dealers?

A: Montway takes compliance extremely seriously and has an extensive carrier vetting process. There are a lot of fraudulent activities on load boards and we are very selective regarding what carriers will receive our loads. Montway has direct relationships with carriers that have been working with us for a long time. Most importantly, if something does go wrong, we carry a large umbrella policy on top of the carrier’s cargo insurance.

Q: How do you see the future for automotive logistics and inventory management evolving and what role will Montway play?

A: At Montway, it’s all about forming partnerships. We work to understand our customer’s objectives, goals and their key performance indicators and tailor a supply chain system around those needs. That’s what we’ve really been focused on in the last couple of years, a customer-centric approach in order to deliver first-class service.

For groups with multiple rooftops and dealerships operating at a corporate level, having the ability to use multiple vendors and oversee all of your vehicle shipments will help control costs in a much more efficient way. Can we help get cars on the lots quicker? Can we be a key partner in reducing that overall inventory turn? Yes.

Q: How is digital retailing impacting the transportation and logistics landscape?

A: With our open API technology, we can integrate with any digital retailer’s checkout process. If customers are shopping online they can get a live quote and see an out-the-door price that includes delivery right to their home. That home delivery feature is a huge advantage to dealers.

Q: What lessons has Montway learned from its growth to one of the leading transportation companies? 

A: We’ve learned that technology is a tool and that your people really drive overall performance. Building those relationships and cultivating partnerships with our customers make the difference. Our drive to serve is what makes us successful. 

Q: Do you have a memorable story of how Montway went above and beyond to help a dealer in a transportation rut? 

A: 85% of our orders go through perfectly. Our job is to be a problem solver for that 15%. Whether it’s going the extra mile to find lost keys or sending a rescue truck if a driver breaks down, that’s part of our regular day. It’s what we do. Our goal is always to deliver cars safely. 

Q: What’s next for Montway?

A: We will continue to grow by enhancing our customer-centric approach. The Montway Automation Portal will evolve to meet the unique needs of dealer groups and we’ll remain committed to leveraging technology as a tool.

Learn more about the Montway Automation Portal

An image collage featuring a map of the United States, a car hauler truck, and person looking at a computer screen

Montway has a business-solutions sector focused on the automotive logistics needs of enterprises in sales, remarketing, manufacturing, moving and relocation, and finance. Montway Auto Transport sets the industry standard for innovative logistics technologies and customer service. 

Get an instant quote