Hertz announced it would acquire the largest EV rental fleet in North America “as consumer interest in electric vehicles (EV) skyrockets.”
It will place an initial order for 100,000 Teslas by the end of 2022 and establish new EV charging infrastructure across its global operations.
“Electric vehicles are now mainstream, and we’ve only just begun to see rising global demand and interest,” said Hertz interim CEO Mark Fields.
The rental car company, forced into bankruptcy by a Covid influenced business downturn, from which it later emerged restructured, claimed 40% of US consumers said they were likely to consider an electric vehicle the next time they are in the market for a new vehicle.
The growth is powered by electric vehicles’ high efficiency, positive user experience and climate change benefits coupled with battery breakthroughs and rapidly expanding charging networks plus EV drivers also benefit from lower maintenance and fuel costs, Hertz said.
Beginning early in November, customers will be able to rent a Tesla Model 3 at locations in US major markets and some European cities.
Hertz also is installing thousands of chargers throughout its location network. Customers who rent a Tesla will have access to 3,000 of the automaker’s supercharging stations throughout the US and Europe.
Hertz said it would offer a “premium and differentiated rental experience” for the Tesla EVs. This includes digital guidance to educate customers about the electric vehicle and an expedited EV rental booking process through an app.
With the current order, EVs will comprise around a fifth of the rental firm’s global fleet and is expected to be supported by a combination of Level 2 and DC fast charging in 65 markets by the end of 2022 and 100 markets by the end of 2023.
Hertz noted its ambitions could be affected by factors outside of its control such as semiconductor chip shortages or other constraints.
Hertz also announced it had hired seven-time Super Bowl champion Tom Brady for a new advertising campaign.