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Hertz adds smart fortwo EVs to rental fleet, partners with Starwood Hotels on Hertz Global EV program

The Hertz Corporation and smart USA, a subsidiary of Penske Automotive Group, Inc., are partnering to bring smart fortwo electric drive vehicles to Connect by Hertz car sharing and Hertz Rent A Car locations in New York; Washington, DC; and San Francisco. The vehicle placements are part of the Hertz Global EV program, which will offer a variety of 100% electric and plug-in hybrids to car sharing and rental customers worldwide. The smart fortwo electric drive will be available for rent through Connect by Hertz car sharing in New York City beginning 15 December.

In addition, Hertz and Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. announced a joint partnership to bring in Hertz Global EV to key Starwood select-service hotels in North America. Starwood’s select-service portfolio includes the Element Hotels, Aloft Hotels and Four Points by Sheraton Hotels brands.

Announced in September, Hertz Global EV is championing an electric and plug-in hybrid vehicle mobility ecosystem, incorporating transportation options and a charging station grid for ease of use. Hertz Global EV will be the first company to provide a range of all-electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles and charging stations on a car sharing and rental basis at global scale.

As part of its Global EV strategy, Hertz is forming partnerships with manufacturers, charging station providers, municipalities, NGOs, corporations and other stakeholders. To-date, the company has ordered vehicles from CODA, Nissan, and smart USA, and has signed an agreement with NRG Energy Inc. to support development of a charging infrastructure and services for electric vehicles (EV) in Texas.

smart fortwo electric drive. The smart fortwo electric drive joins EVs from the other manufacturers as part of Hertz Global EV’s fleet. The smart fortwo electric drive is powered by a 30 kW drive magneto-electric motor and 16.5 kWh lithium-ion battery. Using a 220V outlet, it takes three and a half hours to charge the battery from 20 to 80% of its capacity and less than eight hours to fully charge it.

smart USA is strategically deploying a fleet of 2011 smart fortwo electric drive vehicles across the United States. Vehicle placement is nationwide, targeting early adopters of electric drive technology who are helping define new alternatives in transportation for the United States and interested in making a passionate statement on conservation and environmental awareness. Series production begins in 2012 for sale through smart USA’s dealer network.

During the next several months, Hertz Global EV will leverage the company’s car sharing and rental locations as bases for vehicles and charging stations, and tap into its technology—including fleet management tools and the consumer-facing NeverLost GPS system—to help form an EV grid.

Hertz’s partnership with Starwood is a natural step in the development of our Global EV program. As we expand our EV network, we are providing drivers with point-to-point access to EVs and EV charging stations. Our relationship with Starwood provides guests from all over the world with access to the future of mobility.

—Mark P. Frissora, Hertz Chairman and CEO



Penske was going to buy Saturn, but the financing fell through. I hope this works out for them, the first one to offer a more practical way on a larger scale could reap early adopter advantage.

It is an amazing dynamic to watch when consumers are offered ways that make sense and people start to think that it should have been done long ago. People wait decades for the market to respond while we send billions of dollars to OPEC.


To be fair, these are very large corporations, not consumers.

The response of consumers to these offerings will be the test. I'm guessing that they will be very popular, just as the EV-1 was.

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