ZipCar is a great tool if you're the city dwelling, car-ownership-averse sort. It's even somewhat affordable, with prices from $6 a month and driving rates from $8 to $10 an hour. A ZipCar-like Indian company called Zoomcar India Pvt. is taking that affordability to the extreme, offering rentals of the Mahindra e2o, a small city-minded EV for just 73 cents an hour.
Now, obviously there's a currency thing at play here. With one US dollar translating to about 61 Indian rupees, and a cursory search for India's daily minimum wage yielding between $2.18 to $3.40, it's fairly clear that while the deal is is ludicrously affordable to Americans, there are still many Indians who will be priced out.
According to Bloomberg, there are three ZipCar-like companies operating in India, offering cars like the Ford Figo, Tata Nano and Volkswagen Polo for prices ranging from 70 to 99 rupees ($1.13 to $1.60). Fancy something bigger and one company will even let you snag a Mercedes-Benz E-Class for $19 an hour.
The growing rental industry, Bloomberg reports, is due in large part to India's youth joining the workforce while eschewing cars.
"Buying a car is a total waste of money," Shrinidhi Hande, a 31-year-old business analyst from Chennai told Bloomberg. "Using services such as Myles or Zoomcar, I get to drive the latest models without having to pay monthly installments, insurance or maintenance."
Quick! Someone cue up the story about how millennials are the same everywhere.