Transportation companies large Penske Corp. is backing a brand new car-sharing service referred to as Penske Sprint that launched Tuesday in Washington, D.C. and Arlington, Va.
The service is debuting at an ungainly time for the business. Whereas some car-sharing operations, significantly peer-to-peer companies, have expanded, others have struggled up to now yr. GM’s Maven, BMW’s ReachNow, Car2Go and Lime are among the many car-sharing corporations which have scaled again or closed their companies altogether.
In Could, GM scaled again its Maven car-sharing firm and stopped service in eight markets. BMW’s ReachNow service shut down so abruptly in Seattle and Portland that prospects had been nonetheless utilizing the automobiles when the announcement was made. In the meantime, transportation startup Lime closed its LimePod car-sharing service after lower than a yr of operations in Seattle and Car2Go pulled out of 5 North American cities.
Regardless of these headwinds, Penske Corp. Chairman Roger Penske appears eager to leap into the enterprise.
“Penske Sprint furthers our dedication to embrace new applied sciences whereas addressing the mobility wants for our shoppers,” Roger Penske mentioned in an announcement, including that the corporate intends to “stay on the forefront of latest main transportation options.”
Native operations will likely be led by Paul Delong, who beforehand served as president and CEO of Car2Go North America.
Penske Sprint offers prospects entry to a fleet of Volkswagen Jetta SE autos that may be rented by the minute, hour or day by means of the app. The rental charges, that are $zero.45 a minute or $15 an hour, embody gas, parking and insurance coverage. Members are additionally supported with 24/7 entry to a name heart and an area fleet operations staff.
Penske Sprint describes itself as “free-floating,” though inside Washington, D.C. it’s a bit extra constrained than another companies that permit prospects to park anyplace inside a geographic space. Clients can park their Penske Sprint automobile in a public, unrestricted, avenue parking house in Arlington recognized by Penske Sprint. In Washington, D.C., prospects should park in a parking spot marked by a Penske Sprint register authorised garages or heaps, in accordance with guidelines acknowledged on its web site.
Ridecell, a transportation software program firm, is offering the platform for the app. The startup, which developed a cloud-based mobility platform designed to assist car-sharing, ridesharing and autonomous know-how corporations handle their autos, raised $60 million in a Sequence B spherical in late 2018.