Other EVs to Follow
Not to be outdone by its competitor Hertz, which announced that many models of electric cars will be available in 2011, Enterprise car rental says that it will have Chevrolet Volt plug-in hybrids on offer for daily and weekly rentals later this month, though at first only at the Mark Christopher Auto Center in Ontario, California.
As I said before, it's a great opportunity to take the Volt - or another EV when they have them - on an extended test-drive to decide if it can work for you. It's still much better to avoid driving, but if you're going to do it, why no support the development of cleaner technology by being an early adopter?
"Purchase demand for electric vehicles has been impressive, and we anticipate similar demand from rental customers," said Jeff Morrell, vice president of Enterprise Rent-A-Car. "Making the Volt available will provide an extended test drive for curious customers, for those with cars being serviced and for those interested in possibly purchasing an EV."
Additional EVs will be offered at other Enterprise locations as manufacturers make them available. For example, 500 Nissan LEAFs will be available at select Enterprise locations nationwide, and on-site charging stations will be installed to support the vehicles. Charging stations already have been installed at Enterprise offices in Los Angeles, San Diego and Santa Monica, Calif. (source)
There's a multiplier effect with rental cars; many more people drive each vehicle than if it was a private vehicle, so if it's good, more people will consider eventually buying it. Electric cars can benefit a lot from this since they are still at the stage when people are unsure about the technology (kind of like where hybrids were in 2001-2005), and just getting more familiar with the basics (ie. it drives like a regular car) can help move things forward.
More on Electric Cars
Video Autopsy of a Tesla Model S Electric Car
Every Chevy Volt is Road-Tested Before Delivery
Tesla Motors Will Make $60 Million From Toyota's Electric RAV4
BYD Stops Production of F3e Electric Car (At Least for Now)
With 11 Days to Go, Chevy Volt #1 Charity Auction Reaches $180,000
GM to Hire 1,000 Engineers & Researchers to Develop Electric Vehicles
Honda Unveils the Fit EV Concept and a Plug-In Hybrid Platform