Vehicles in Major Japanese Auto Rental Fleets, March 2012:
In the above chart, the number of fleet at the end of March 2012 shows increases in the comparison with the previous year. This growth trend continues since 1964, according to Daily Traffic News. One exception was in 1993 when the economy bubbled and the number of the cars dropped as compared to the year before.
As for car rental rates, major car rental companies take almost the same level in the rental rate for the past few years. There are almost no rate competitions among major car rental companies, but companies try hard to do service differentiation in the discount of member card-holders or in the mileage service points like with airlines.
Along with the demand of reconstruction caused by the big earthquake in the Tohoku Area, car rental business is very busy, Daily Traffic News reports.
Generally, the trend is changing from car ownership to car rental, especially in the younger generation.
Car sharing highlights in Japan:
March 2012: 82 companies at 3,657 locations and 4,566 cars
March 2011: 56 companies at 1,470 locations and 2,657 cars
To see how Japan's car rental market was faring in 2011 and to read more about companies in Japan, click here for a market snapshot.