Travelers renting cars in the United States will no longer have to worry about paying for gas or refilling the gas tank before they take the vehicle back to the car rental.
The American car rental company Hertz recently announced a new partnership with the Swedish electric performance automotive brand Polestar that might simplify the way travelers rent cars.
Hertz Global Holdings Inc will be buying 65,000 electric cars from Polestar over a period of five years. This investment comes just a few months after Hertz also announced that it will be buying 100,000 electric vehicles from Tesla for more than $4 billion.
The car rental company’s ambitious plan to electrify its company is progressing fast. Stephen Scherr, Hertz Chief Executive Officer, said: “It is our objective to build the largest fleet of electric vehicles, certainly in North America.”
Compared to Tesla, Polestar is still at an early stage. Polestar —acquired by Volvo in 2015— expects to produce 290,000 electric vehicles per year by 2025, while Tesla can produce that amount in less than three months. However, Hertz trusts the new alliance. Sherr also added: “We felt Polestar was at the right place and at the right level of maturity.”
Hertz’s fleet has 500,000 cars and they expect to electrify nearly all. With the 100,000 of Tesla’s Model 3 sedans and the 65,000 Polestar 2 models ordered they are off to a good start.
It is interesting news for travelers, especially considering the peak in gas prices and after companies like Uber and Lyft recently announced fuel surcharge fees to customers.
Electric Cars Will Enhance Traveler’s Experience
One of the main concerns for travelers who rent cars is, of course, gas prices. Not only for the fuel spent while visiting different destinations in the United States but also for refilling the tank before taking the car back to the rental company.
The rule to refill the tank before giving the vehicle back is common among different car rental companies and usually stresses drivers, especially in big cities where traffic might play an important role in estimations.
With electric vehicles, travelers won’t have to worry about gas prices and can simply charge it the night before while they sleep. Plus, there are over 113,600 charging outlets for plug-in electric vehicles (EVs), according to data from January 2022.
Tesla’s superchargers have been saving electric car users a lot of time, and —depending on the model and current battery level— can significantly increase battery levels within 15 minutes for free. Those visiting mall centers or touristic locations with public charging stations can charge electric cars while visiting or shopping at no cost.
Hertz also started installing EV chargers for the company’s Tesla models that will soon also serve Polestar models. The company has also an educative section on electric vehicles and how to charge them on its website.
A Road Trip Through California?
Now that the car rental giant Hertz will offer customers EVs, it’s time to think of a great travel destination in the United States. California is probably one of the best destinations when traveling with electric vehicles.
Those planning on experiencing a great road trip on the west coast can start designing the journey! The famous Pacific West Coast Highway is a fantastic opportunity to explore the coast and visit unique destinations from the idyllic San Diego to the beautiful beaches in Santa Barbara to visiting the impressive Victorian houses in Eureka.
And what about the Mission Trail? Or the Eastern Sierra Scenic Byway? It doesn’t have to be California either, with more electric vehicles and chargers across the United States, traveling on a rented car is definitely attracting more voyagers.
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