Volkswagen has announced plans to launch a new, fully electric car-sharing service in Germany in 2019, and other cities worldwide in 2020.
The fully electric car-sharing service will accompany a number of additional vehicle-on-demand services as part of its WE platform. These supplementary services may include smart parking apps, location-based vouchering and other mobility solutions, which aim to complement the ride hailing, sharing and pooling services on offer from the platform.
The new ride-sharing service will launch in Germany next year, with ambitious plans for the service to extend to major cities across Europe, North America and Asia as early as 2020. It will be managed by Volkswagen subsidiary Urban Mobility International (UMI), which was established this year to deliver vehicle-on-demand services and other mobility solutions for the future.
How is Volkswagen pursuing urban mobility?
Volkswagen has already launched two new concepts for smart city mobility, the Cityskater and the Streetmate, and the new fully electric car-sharing service will complement the company’s mobility as a service ambitions. According to UMI CEO Philipp Reth, the company’s solutions are responding directly to customer needs: “Our customers expect an environmentally-friendly fleet that takes them to their destination quickly and at a fair price – and that is exactly the experience we will be delivering.”
Jürgen Stackmann, Volkswagen’s board member for sales, announced the launch of the new service at an event in Berlin, Germany, and stated the company’s belief in the car sharing market and its commitment to exploring its potential.
He said: “We are entering this market with a holistic single-source concept covering all mobility needs from the short journey that takes just a few minutes to the long vacation trip. Our vehicle-on-demand fleets will consist entirely of electric cars, and will therefore provide zero-emission, sustainable mobility. That is an intelligent way to relieve the strain on urban areas”, Jürgen Stackmann explained.