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Avis Zipcar per hour car hire service bails out of Austria

Zipcar AustriaCut-throat competition has forced Avis to pull the plug on its Zipcar per hour car sharing operations in Austria. Commenting on the decision yesterday, a Zipcar representative said the firm was always assessing market demand and was prepared to take all necessary measures to improve business performance.

The spokesperson said the Zipcar shutdown date for Austria was the 6 August 2017. She added that any customers who had confirmed reservations past that date would be provided with full refunds.

The Avis-Budget Group launched its Zipcar operation in Austria five years ago. It currently has several pickup points in key locations in cities such as Vienna, Graz, Innsbruck and Salzburg. Models available include Opel Corsas and Renault Meganes.

Zipcar operates in multiple cities in the US and Canada with presences in business and commercial districts as well as on university and college campuses. Zipcar car sharing is also available in the UK, Germany, Belgium, France, Spain and Turkey.

The death knell for Zipcar’s Austrian adventure was sounded earlier this year when its biggest rivals upgraded and added soft-top models to their fleets. DriveNow is a collaboration between the Sixt Group and car maker BMW. DriveNow added soft-tops to its portfolio two months ago.

The first nail in the coffin had been hammered in the month before when Car2Go enhanced its fleet with an additional 700 cars. The Daimler subsidiary now offers a good selection of larger Mercedes CLA and GLA cars and Smart fortwo vehicles.

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