Still Not Ready For The Rental Counter: EV Rentals Fail To Thrive

TTAC Staff
by TTAC Staff

still not ready for the rental counter ev rentals fail to thrive

Tis better to own a Leaf or an S than to rent one, it seems. According to Enterprise Holdings Inc., known for driving around in cars wrapped in branded brown paper for some reason, customers who rent electric-only vehicles from their lot soon return their sustainable rides for a one with a sustainable range based on the number of (gasoline and diesel) fuel stops along the way.

In an interview with Bloomberg, Enterprise Head of Sustainability Lee Broughton note that while customers were “keen” to give electric power a go, range anxiety led many a renter to return the car for one where they know the infrastructure is there to meet. On average, a renter will spend almost two days with an electric-only car versus a week with a conventional road warrior. Currently, the St. Louis-based rental car business has 300 electric cars in their overall fleet, all Nissan Leafs. The figure is down 40 percent from the target of 500 of the cars set by Enterprise back in 2010.

Despite the overall lack of demand in this emerging rental market due to lack of infrastructure and larger-capacity batteries for extended range, competitor Hertz added the Tesla S to its Dream Cars lineup in September for their customer base in Los Angeles and San Francisco. The daily rate to feel like Elon Musk is $500; Enterprise offers the S in their Exotic Car Collection for $300 to $500 in the same locations, with three currently in the lineup available. The Leaf offered by Enterprise goes for $55 to $140 a day depending on location.

Join the conversation
6 of 33 comments
  • JREwing JREwing on Oct 15, 2013

    The lack of range wouldn't faze me. What would is whatever obscene markup that would be demanded for not bringing the car back with a full charge.

    • See 1 previous
    • SCE to AUX SCE to AUX on Oct 15, 2013

      Good point. My Leaf is costing me $0.03/mile to drive. I'd hate to pay the marked-up rental rate for those miles.

  • Beerboy12 Beerboy12 on Oct 15, 2013

    I would rent one just because I could, for grins and giggles, if you like... But it would not make sense, financially.

  • VenomV12 VenomV12 on Oct 15, 2013

    What kind of idiots are paying these prices? It would be cheaper to buy a car and sell it when you are done with your trip and I am only half kidding about that.

  • Stumpaster Stumpaster on Oct 16, 2013

    140 for Leaf of 19.99 for Versa. Hmmm, choices choices. Meantime, children in Africa are dying from hunger.