• Dec 29, 2010
If you think that joining in on the car-sharing party means that you'll be stuck behind the wheel of a low-buck auto, prepare to be amazed. According to AutoWeek, both BMW and Mercedes-Benz are diving into the car-sharing world with programs designed to allow users to experience a slice of luxury without having to foot the hassles associated with car ownership. BMW on Demand will provide drivers with a 1 Series for as little as €16 per hour in Europe (around $21 USD/hr). Those wanting a little more room can opt for a 5 Series for the low price of €23/hr ($30/hr), including servicing and cleaning.

Daimler, meanwhile, is working on a similar program in both Austin, Texas and Ulm, Germany, though that program will serve up products from the company's Smart line. Users can reserve trim levels and colors on line or by phone, use the vehicle for as long as they like and drop it off in convenient car-sharing parking spaces. The time behind the wheel is automatically calculated and the user's bank account automatically debited.

Both BMW and Mercedes-Benz are delving into car-sharing to confront a growing lack of interest in ownership from younger generations and increased traffic in urban settings, even though some research has shown that the use of a single shared vehicle can contribute to the loss of as many as nine to 15 personal cars.

[Source: AutoWeek]


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 12 Comments
      • 4 Years Ago
      I read an article about 2 years ago about Americans getting used to doing with less, read smaller houses, fewer cars, less quality free time, etc. This is just the continuation of that sort of thing. Also 2 years ago I read about the end of suburbia, while this has nothing to do with that, it seems expensive to setup such a system outside of cities, more people who like that sort of thing will flock to cities and suburban housing values will decrease further until, they justify the cost of the cars in comparison to the cities. At which time cars will make a come back in popularity.

      • 4 Years Ago
      I agree
      • 4 Years Ago
      I can see this working in places like Europe and Japan where mass transit systems are ubiquitous and the cities over crowded. But I don't think it can work outside places like NYC and LA in the US. The interest in cars may drop, but the necessity of owning one here wont go away for awhile.
        • 4 Years Ago
        It already operates in a ton of places outside of NYC and LA in the US. For some people, it is a good alternative to car ownership, but I still I own a car, yet I'm a member and use the system. Why should I buy a truck or an SUV that I only need 5 or 6 days a year? My workaday Protege gets the job done the other 360 days, and when I need it, I can get a Takoma, or a van, or even just a Matrix if I need to haul something. Its not just about replacing car ownership, its about giving you more cost-effective options.
        • 4 Years Ago
        I didn't know Mercedes and BMW made pickup trucks. Most hardware store like lowes and home depot offer for rent pickups by the hour or day if you cant haul what you need in your own car. besides that and moving (uhaul) I don't see any contingency not covered. If you own a business and need an occasional truck then buy a small 4cyl pickup.
      • 4 Years Ago
      "Report: BMW, Mercedes experiment with upscale and Smart car car-sharing"


      There you go.
      • 4 Years Ago
      ZipCar and iGo both do this in Chicago already, though iGo only rents crap-boxes for the eco-weenie crowd, complete with a self-righteous propaganda bumper sticker that say "my other car is a bus" or something else to that ilk. ZipCar rents respectable rides like the BMW 3-series, but they (as well as iGo) slather their cars with so many advertising stickers you feel like you're driving a rolling billboard. It may tickle your driving senses, but you won't look so hot picking up your date or business customer.
        • 4 Years Ago
        ZipCar using BMWs? At Middlebury College here in Middlebury, Vermont, all they have is a 2 Toyota Priuses, a 2010 Honda Insight and a Honda Civic Hybrid. Didn't think they had BMWs. Maybe different towns/cities require them to cater to different people.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Zipcar does not place advertisements on their premium vehicles, such as the BMW 3 series, Audi A3 and Volvo S40. (You pay a premium price, though)
      • 4 Years Ago
      Clown
      • 4 Years Ago
      Governor Spitzer already did this but with women.
        • 4 Years Ago
        ha! that's funny even we've heard of him! nice one.