By on December 15, 2016

Car2go

Bitter rivals Daimler AG and BMW are planning to combine their car-sharing services —Car2Go and DriveNow — to compete with North America’s Uber car service. The two must be desperate to make headway into the world of vehicle ownership alternatives if they are willing to cooperate on the project.

BMW famously avoided a Daimler-Benz takeover in 1959 by convincing nearly every employee to invest back into the company, thus avoiding both bankruptcy and being forced to join with their main competitor. More recently, Daimler offered BMW employees free admission to the Mercedes-Benz Museum for BMW’s 100th birthday, where they could learn “the complete history of the automobile.”

After all of that jaded history, Germany’s Manager Magazin is reporting that the two could bring their car-sharing services together. Daimler’s Car2Go and BMW’s DriveNow both offer short-term rentals, very similar to urban rental services like Zipcar. While snagging a Smart from Car2Go for a few hours isn’t exactly the same thing as hailing an Uber, both businesses compete by offering a direct alternative to normal car ownership.

DriveNow and Car2Go would likely both retain their own individual branding, but the two would benefit from each other logistically and use it to get a jump on competitors. The two companies are also debating whether to include other mobility service providers. Manager Magazin said Daimler’s taxi cab service Mytaxi, its internet platform Moovel, and BMW’s ParkNow/ChargeNow brands may also be in the mix.

However, Sixt SE, which co-owns DriveNow with BMW, said it does not want to participate in the merger with Car2Go and would oppose any plans to do so. “A combination of DriveNow and Car2Go is out of the question for Sixt,” the Munich-based company said in a statement. “Our cooperation with BMW is going extremely well.”

[Image: Car2Go]

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2 Comments on “BMW and Daimler Call a Truce to Merge Car-sharing Services...”


  • avatar
    White Shadow

    The future doesn’t look bright for auto enthusiasts. Self-driving cars, more Zipcar programs, Uber, driverless Uber, etc…. Eventually, everyone will get around by renting a robot car. I’ll have to turn my 3-car garage into a game room or something. Maybe an indoor pool?

    • 0 avatar
      Trichobezoar

      Eh, I’m excited. Our city have everyone free Car2Go memberships. Would be nice to have access to the ReachNow fleet too since those are larger vehicles.

      I learn a lot from rental fleets. My own car is almost 10 years old, so it’s not a great basis for comparison.

      Zipcar has a lot of interesting vehicles in its fleet that you wouldn’t find in your typical airport rental fleet… stuff like minis and even ttac perennial favorite mx-5. Abd it’s easier to dump them after an hour if they don’t click with you.

      I think these developments will make people more picky about the finer points of car handling, not less.


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