Bigger trips + little electric car, = no problem. That's the message Fiat is sending with a new announcement of an agreement to offer gas-powered rentals to range-anxiety-stricken road-trippers.

The Italian automaker, which plans to debut the all-electric 500e in California this summer, has reached an agreement with car-rental giant Enterprise to offer gas-powered cars to 500e owners who want to go on longer trips, Automotive News reports. Buyers of the 500e, which has an 80-mile single-charge range, are eligible for a dozen day's worth of gas-powered car rentals a year (insurance and, of course, gas, not included). Fiat unveiled the 500e at the Los Angeles Auto Show last November and plans to detail pricing later this month.

The company isn't the first to make such an offer to EV buyers. Ward's Auto reported last month that BMW was going to enact a similar, though self-administered program, for its i3 all-electric model, though the German automaker didn't disclose usage-allowance details. And in late 2011, General Motors started this microtrend a few months after a Chevrolet Volt extended-range plug-in caught fire subsequent to a crash test by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) by offering gas-powered rentals to owners stricken by "fire anxiety."


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 5 Comments
      Carguy
      • 1 Year Ago
      This is definitely a smart move. Of course there will still be that one guy who will say that they live 3 hours outside of Bismarck, North Dakota and the Enterpise car rental is outside the Fiat's 80mile range.
        Spec
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Carguy
        I really don't think that guy is the 500e's target demographic.
          Carguy
          • 1 Year Ago
          @Spec
          Yes, that's my point: a person who has no business buying one of the current EV's on the market (extraordinary commute, large family, high rise dweller) has the most to declare on why EV technologies don't work because they don't work for them.
      Grendal
      • 1 Year Ago
      Absolutely brilliant. It shuts up those "you can't drive it across the country" idiots. Five times seems about right. It would be nice if it was a negotiating point though. Someone who knows they will make regular trips could ask for more and someone that never makes trips could use less.
      Spec
      • 1 Year Ago
      Yeah this is a good idea. Of course you can do the same thing yourself by signing up with a carshare program. I'm more worried about a high price for the 500e and limited availability.