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Hertz On Demand Advances EV Mobility

Hertz On DemandThe Hertz Corporation has announced that its global car sharing network, Hertz On Demand, has teamed up with technology and consulting firm IBM to trial a programme in Germany that will develop electric vehicle mobility and user adoption through smart recharging solutions. In a special deal, Hertz On Demand will supply IBM employees in Germany with electric cars, which will be driven between Stuttgart Airport and the firm’s Ehningen campus, which is about 30km away.

The vehicles provided will initially be charged using decentralized generation of electricity on the IBM campus. The EV charging stations will be operated with smart IBM software that optimises the usage of generated power with renewable energy. Additionally, the software balances availability and demand for electricity to prevent load peaks.

This programme is being used by Hertz On Demand and IBM to field test gauge acceptance and practicability of the electric cars and the smart recharging infrastructure usage. The company’s staff have been given discounted rates since last October as part of the special car sharing deal. From April, the company’s frequent flyers have had one electric vehicle to use, and more and more staff have been taking advantage of this as the year has progressed. The vehicles can be quickly and simply booked through the Hertz On Demand website using the company’s account. If the trial scheme is a success, the companies plan to add more electric cars to the campus and extend the project to more of the technology and consulting firm’s sites.

Hertz International president and Hertz Corporation executive vice president Michel Taride says that they and IBM see their EV mobility alliance as a way to reinforce their pioneering roles in the fields within their respective businesses. They also see it as means of helping to increase the acceptance of car sharing as a new form of transportation, he added.

Hertz is the first car hire firm to deploy plug-in hybrid and electric cars on three continents – the US in North America, the UK in Europe and China in Asia. As the biggest airport general use car hire brand in the world with more than 8,500 locations across 150 countries, the company is introducing many groups of consumers to plug-in hybrid and electric vehicles – including university students, urban drivers, corporations and travellers.

Because of this, Hertz is forming partnerships with corporations, municipalities, non-governmental organisation, automakers and charging station providers like GE to make electric cars accessible to all consumers. They are planning to increase their global presence of electric vehicles by deploying cars in other countries over the coming months. Hertz Global EV will keep leveraging the brand’s hire and car sharing locations as bases for these vehicles and their charging stations. It will also continue to tap into the technology to help form an electric vehicle grid – including sophisticated consumer-facing GPS systems (like NeverLost in the US) and fleet management tools.

Hertz On Demand has over 800 vehicles available to hire from over 250 locations around the world. It offers cars equipped with keyless entry, and hourly rates for rentals include insurance, 24-hour in-car Member Care Center communication, 24/7 roadside assistance and fuel.

 

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