BMW and Daimler Call a Truce to Merge Car-sharing Services

Matt Posky
by Matt Posky
bmw and daimler call a truce to merge car sharing services

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]

Join the conversation
  • White Shadow White Shadow on Dec 16, 2016

    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?

    • Trichobezoar Trichobezoar on Dec 16, 2016

      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.

  • 28-Cars-Later I'll offer this, offer a registration for limited use and exempt it from all inspection. The Commonwealth of GFY for the most part is Dante's Inferno for the auto enthusiast however they oddly will allow an antique registration with limited use and complete exemption from their administrative stupidity but it must be 25 years old (which ironically are the cars which probably should be inspected). Given the dystopia being built around us, it should be fairly simply to set a mileage limitation and enforce a mileage check then bin the rest of it if one agrees to the terms of the registration. For the most part odometer data started being stored in the ECU after OBDII, so it should be plug and play to do such a thing - this is literally what they are doing now for their emissions chicanery.
  • Probert For around $15 you can have a professional check important safety areas - seems like a bargain. It pointed to a rear brake problem on my motorcycle. It has probably saved a lot of lives. But, like going to a dentist, no-one could say it is something they look forward to. (Well maybe a few - it takes all kinds...)
  • VoGhost ICE is so dangerous.
  • Akear Back as early as 2014 Ford was building some pretty decent vehicles. The Ford Fusion was getting good reviews and selling around 300,000 annually. The Mark MKZ was also the top selling US luxury car at the time. My Ford Fusion is approaching the 200,000 mile mark, while current Fords blow gaskets at 40,000 miles.
  • Kjhkjlhkjhkljh kljhjkhjklhkjh yes ; required with non-federal legal penalties for deliberate violation