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Our History

First in Fleet

In 1939, our founder Zollie Frank, proprietor of the nation’s largest Chevrolet dealership Z Frank Chevrolet, pioneered the fleet management industry in North America when he developed a creative solution for a pressing client need. A large Chicago company, Petrolager, was losing salespeople after helping them fund the down payment on a personal vehicle they would use on the job. Zollie designed a closed-end leasing solution to help the client improve salesperson retention while incurring a predictable monthly cost. With the acquisition and lease of 75 vehicles, the Wheels business was born.

From those humble beginnings, Wheels grew into an industry leader with nearly $1.4 billion in annual sales, over 300,000 vehicles on the road in North America and 2.1 million vehicles worldwide through an alliance with ALD Automotive. Through it all, Wheels remained a family-owned business first with Jim Frank, Zollie’s son, and now with Dan Frank, Zollie’s grandson, leading the organization.

Wheels’ history is marked with a series of industry firsts, with product innovations and business growth being driven by the evolving needs of our clients. “Business Moves Better with Wheels” is more than just our tagline – it has guided our history, it is our promise to clients and it represents our vision for the future.

Pioneering Fleet Management in North America

1939 – Zollie Frank officially formed Four Wheels (later renamed Wheels, Inc.), with operations in the U.S.

1948 – Developed a precursor to our maintenance program by instituting a replacement tire system through local branches of national companies

1958 – Became the first fleet management company to offer truck consulting


Launched business in Canada

Innovation & Growth in the Information Age

1960 – Developed the industry’s first computerized vehicle ordering system

1965 – Became first fleet management company to launch in Puerto Rico

1972 – Introduced fuel and maintenance management programs

1989 – Launched first Windows-based, client service tool


Zollie Frank’s son, Jim Frank, became the second president of Wheels

Continued Offering Expansion & Global Reach

1998 – Released first online vehicle ordering system for drivers, DriverView™; Expanded business to Mexico

1999 – Built fleet management solutions in Europe; Introduced FleetView™, the first web-based fleet management tool

2008 – Debuted the EcoWheelsTM, fleet sustainability program; Launched vehicle telematics


Expanded global footprint by entering a strategic partnership with ALD Automotive

Industry-First Tech Hits the Market

2010 – Released Wheels Mobile Assistant app to help keep fleet drivers connected and productive

2011 – Introduced Selection Modeler™, the industry’s first online vehicle selection tool

2012 – Launched ChangeDriver™, the industry’s only gamification tool

2015 – Developed driver performance scoring solution for policy adherence and risk mitigation

Leading the Way on Mobility

2016 – Became first fleet management company to offer a comprehensive reimbursement solution for employee-owned vehicles


Jim Frank’s son, Dan Frank, became CEO and president of Wheels

2018 – Debuted ride-hailing solution with Uber for Business; Introduced industry’s first mobile app for fleet managers, FleetView Mobile

2019 – Partnered with ParkWhiz to offer a managed parking solution; Expanded global alliance coverage to 59 countries with the addition of Mitsubishi Auto Leasing Corporation in Japan

2020 – Released an enhanced set of electric vehicle solutions to assist clients with EV adoption

Put Our Decades of Fleet Management Expertise to Work for You