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27th Jun, 2022

New low cost electric car sharing club open for business in north Solihull

Felix Nobes 13th Dec, 2018

A NEW low emission, low cost, electric car sharing scheme is open for business in north Solihull.

The E-Car Club was launched at the beginning of this month and will see 18 Renault ZOE hatchbacks become available for rent in the borough.

The three-year InclusivEV project is intended to provide electric cars to low-income communities for which the technology can often be inaccessible.

Vehicles are priced from as little as £3.50 per hour and £25 per day.

A number of charging ports are also now available across the borough.

But the project will initially run as a pilot which the council describes as a pay-as-you-go, no subscription fee, 24/7 car club.

The scheme is being run by Cenex in partnership with E-Car Club (a subsidiary of Europcar) who has secured €1.8million (£1.6million) of European funding to deliver the project.

The the up-front cost of the charging infrastructure will be paid (estimated to be around £50,000) by Cenex and E-Car Club over the three-year life of the project.

The roll-out follows a period of consultation in which many residents expressed an interest in the vehicles becoming available.

Solihull Council’s cabinet member for transport and highways Ted Richards OBE said: “This is a great opportunity for local residents to try electric cars cheaply. This pilot scheme lets people rent out cars for as little as an hour with no added extras.

“It is an easily accessible and flexible car rental offer which could make a real difference to local people’s lives – while also reducing emissions on our roads.”

Managing director of E-Car Club Patrick Cresswell said: “We hope this scheme will encourage car owners to consider using the service as an alternative to vehicle ownership. And that should result in fewer cars on the road, and ultimately reducing emissions and congestion.”

West Midlands mayor Andy Street said: “Apart from the environmental benefits from this scheme which I am sure we all support, we are also helping to reinforce our region’s position as the centre for battery-powered vehicle design and manufacture.

“Industries like this are the future for the West Midlands economy and by promoting innovative schemes like this, we are helping to accelerate adoption and usage.”

The vehicles can be booked online, with no additional fuel costs, with insurance included and minimum membership age at 19.

The cars have an average range of 150 – 180 miles per charge

E-Car Club will be promoting a special introductory offer which includes discounted lifetime membership (£15 normally £50) plus £15 free driving credit. Registering to the scheme & viewing nearest locations can be done via the E-Car website: ecarclub.co.uk/hello-solihull

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