US-based car-share giant Zipcar Inc. has launched its first ever Electric Vehicle Pod, featuring an all-electric Citroen C1 and a Plug-In Toyota Prius. The vehicles, among the most efficient and technologically advanced on the road today, can be hired by the hour for a fraction of the cost of owning one.
The company figures that EVs are ideally suited for early, large-scale use in Zipcar’s car sharing platform since the average Zipcar trip lasts just under four hours and less than 25 miles, well within the range of a typical EV.
In a press release last weekend, Scott Griffith, Chairman and CEO of the company, the world’s largest car-sharing scheme said: “Since early in this decade, Zipcar has been integrating alternative vehicles into the fleet – giving our members the opportunity to push the envelope with the subwoofer and evaluate a range of advanced-vehicle technologies. Our proprietary car sharing technology platform allows us to manage a variety of cutting-edge vehicles, serving hundreds of thousands of Zipsters who benefit from convenience, cost savings and a commitment to reducing carbon emissions.”
Zipcar was an early adopter of alternative fuel technologies, and in 2003 became the first car sharing company to offer hybrids to its members. The following year, they teamed up with Toyota to offer all-electric RAV 4’s. In the last five years, Zipcar has added a respectable 1,000 hybrids to the fleet, more than any other car-sharing company, and estimates more than 100,000 unique members have driven an EV or hybrid.