Enterprise Provides Update on Retail Car Share Rollout

Enterprise Holdings said Dec. 4 that its new Enterprise CarShare brand — that was announced officially in May 2012 — is now rolling out in select markets. The company said it has begun transitioning the new Enterprise CarShare name in Canada and the U.K., as well as in Boston and New York, with other U.S. cities to follow next year.

Enterprise Holdings — which owns and operates the Enterprise Rent-A-Car, National Car Rental and Alamo Rent A Car brands — began piloting hourly car rentals in 2005 and started offering automated car sharing under the WeCar name. Since then, the company has been using WeCar to deliver car sharing to businesses, universities and government offices.

In mid-2011, Enterprise Holdings announced it was studying the economics of the retail car sharing market in an effort to determine whether the business model could be financially sustainable over the long term. Later that same year, Enterprise Holdings entered a major retail car sharing market for the first time by acquiring PhillyCarShare in Philadelphia, and then, in 2012, it acquired Mint Cars On-Demand in Boston and New York City.

All of Enterprise Holdings’ retail, university, corporate, government and municipal car sharing programs will be fully aligned under the Enterprise CarShare name by mid-2013.

‘A Natural Extension’ for Enterprise Rent-A-Car

Matt Darrah, executive VP of North American operations for Enterprise Holdings, believes the company’s leadership role in the car rental industry provides more than just vital economies of scale in the car sharing segment but also taps into an neighborhood network of more than 5,000 Enterprise Rent-A-Car local branch offices.

“Car sharing clearly is a natural extension of the local car rental service that Enterprise Rent-A-Car pioneered,” Darrah said. “That’s why we are able to enhance and resize car sharing fleets so quickly, based on consumer demand and community needs.”

For example, in the New York metro area, Enterprise — with approximately 150 neighborhood car rental locations — swapped out 90% of the existing car sharing vehicles after completing its acquisition, plus increased its fleet overall by 50%, including 11 new makes and models. In the Boston area, Enterprise — with more than 20 neighborhood car rental locations — likewise is increasing and upgrading its local fleet and adding several new locations, including the Government Center and Prudential Center.

“The Enterprise brand represents a significant link in the automotive value chain, whether consumers want to rent a car at our brick-and-mortar offices, or they prefer to access a car sharing vehicle via mobile technology,” Darrah said.

‘The Case for Car Sharing’

In time with the announcement from Enterprise CarShare, an independent research study conducted by Northeastern University’s Fleura Bardhi and Suffolk University’s Giana M. Eckhardt titled, “Access Based Consumption: The Case for Car Sharing,” finds that the most important factors for consumers using car sharing is vehicle variety, availability, location and rates.

Enterprise noted that in the study, researchers found that affordability and convenience are the primary factors driving consumers’ participation in car sharing programs. It also revealed that clean, well-maintained vehicles — and access to new and different models — are critical issues for car sharing customers.

“This timely research provides a reality check for the car sharing segment by highlighting the growing demand for up-to-date vehicles and first-rate customer service,” explained Ryan Johnson, assistant VP for Enterprise Holdings, who is overseeing the introduction of the Enterprise brand into retail car sharing for the first time.

To become a member of Enterprise CarShare, consumers need to sign up on the new www.EnterpriseCarShare.com reservation site. Additional information about updates and promotions is also available on the new Enterprise CarShare Facebook page

Related news: Enterprise Holdings Releases 2012 Fiscal Report, Sustainability Update

Comment On This Story

Comment: (Max. 10000 characters)  
Please leave blank:
* Please note that every comment is moderated.


Newsletter: Sign up to receive latest news, articles, and much more.

Read the latest

Auto Focus Blog: A blog covering fleets, auto rental and the business of cars

Trends Moving the Truck Market

Storylines that emerged from the 2018 Work Truck Show include the increasing need for on-site productivity, inclusion of active safety systems in trucks, DPF frustrations affecting product decisions, data management, and the growing link between fleet management and company revenue.

MIT Study Reinforces the Newfound Importance of Fleet

Uber and Lyft drivers make far less when factoring vehicle expenses, though the actual numbers are now in dispute. A proper lifecycle cost analysis would’ve helped, and shows the benefit of collaboration with fleet professionals.

What a Connected Fleet Means to Avis (and Car Rental)

Counter bypass is just the beginning. The promise of a “data-driven ecosystem” that connects renters with the rental agency, retail services, and even the city is a better managed fleet, an improved user experience, and new revenue opportunities during the rental itself.

Job Finder: Access Top Talent. Fill Key Positions.