Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Volkswagen's New Car-Sharing Program

Car-sharing programs have caught on in a big way throughout Europe and now Volkswagen is getting in on the communal car business.

Targeted at urbanites who need a car only on infrequent occasions, the new program 'Quicar' will be in Hannover, Germany. Initially the program will have 200 Volkswagen Golf BlueMotion vehicles available with 50 pick-up/drop-off locations. However, eventually there will be 100 locations and the vehicles involved will also include the VW Caddy and VW Beetle.

For Volkswagen, the program could act as a sort of extended test drive initiative. They are hoping that the first time that many people experience driving an electric car will be behind the wheel of a Volkswagen thanks to 'Quicar.' Therefore, Volkswagen expects their car-sharing service will be a consumer-driven catalyst for the electric car movement.

The Golf BlueMotion cars are a natural choice for this kind of program because of their eco-efficient features: 1.6 TDI diesel engine with an average fuel consumption of 62mpg and CO2 emissions of 99g/km and brake energy regeneration. In fact, VW's Golf BlueMotion holds several green car awards, including the title of Green Car of the Year.

Volkswagen's car-sharing service is made extremely convenient with the ability to book your temporary Volkswagen via the Internet, application or call center as close as 5 minutes before you need to drive off in one. The vehicle is unlocked by scanning a chip card and the driver must input an authorization PIN on the vehicle's touch screen before using the ignition key.

'Quicar' is a true testament to Volkswagen's devotion to upholding the driver-centric VW experience.  The vehicle you rent may be temporary, but VW still manages to maintain your individualized driving experience with a personalized SD memory card that saves your custom destinations, routes and even your music library.

Volkswagen car-sharing

Do you think car-sharing programs should be put to use in America? Would you use a car-sharing program like this if one was available for you?

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