Europcar the leader of the car rental plans to boost the number of electric vehicles in Paris and London launching a trial of Nissan LEAF. Europcar had bought 10 Nissan all electric LEAF to be available for hire this month in a three month trial programme.
Three of the five Nissan LEAFs will be available in London for leisure drivers and two of them for corporate users. If the project is successful the scheme could be rolled out across other British and French cities and possible to other European cities.
The vice president for sales operation at Nissan International, Mr. Guillaume Cartier said the deal could help boost sales of electric vehicles giving to drivers the chance to test this technology.
“There are two distinct reasons for joining forces with Europcar to introduce Nissan LEAF to the short-term rental market in these two busy cities,” he said. “The first is obvious: its absence of tailpipe emissions and outstanding driving experience.”The second is for drivers currently unsure whether electric vehicles are suitable for their needs. By renting a Nissan LEAF and living with it in real-world conditions they can evaluate the car in their own time.”
The news will provide a boost to Mayor of London Boris Johnson, who was last week warned by the London Assembly it could take “centuries” to meet his goal of having 100,000 Electric Vehicles on the capital’s roads.
The Mayor’s Office is understood to be reluctant to introduce an Electric Vehicles hire scheme, similar to the €35m programme launched in Paris last year, and is instead hoping that rental firms will provide people with the opportunity to rent Electric Vehicles.
Hertz last year brought Mitsubishi i-MiEVs into its London car club scheme, and also launched the capital’s first electric bike rental scheme.