If it is blowing, the best ideas are created. The Irish businessman Aidan McClean regularly uses car hire on his travels, which he rentals at airports. Of course, the serpent is annoying at the counter that the lobby’s employee enters data in the computer, which he has previously entered the online booking that you do not get the car you have reserved and you can boast a supplementary insurance.
McClean has long since become accustomed, but in the spring of 2017 he stands a beaten hour at the Vienna airport until he finally holds the key for the car hire in his hand. Later, after the return, he receives a billing, which fails expensive than previously agreed. Angry, he uses his flight time to write a list of ten points, which annoys him at car rental companies.
To the already mentioned things are still the paperwork at the switch as well as in the vehicle inspection, different tank regulations and a lengthy key return, if you actually want to rush to the gate for the home flight. Home in Luxembourg gets a business plan from the list. His girlfriend reads and asks a question: “How is the car rental?”McClean answers:” Do not know yet, but it will be a customer experience that is not of this world.”So like a UFO,” answers his girlfriend. From the spontaneous statement, the name UFO Drive will.
Today, the car rental company operates 16 stations in eight countries. Eleven of them are in inner cities, five at airports. In Germany, UFO Drive has so far been represented in Berlin, Hamburg and Cologne. The expansion is progressing quickly. First McClean had begun the Model S and Model 3 of Tesla, there are now Audi E-Tron, Jaguar I-Pace, Hyundai Kona and Nissan Leaf on offer. Porsche Toycan, Tesla Roadster and the VW ID.3 are already ordered. McClean is one hundred percent on electromobility. “I’m concerned with exhaust-free mobility,” says McClean. In addition to climate protection, he calls practical reasons. At the latest starting from 2030, he calculates in some European metropolises as well as first admission profit for burners.
Priced UFO Drive is just about the classic car rental companies, which is hardly surprised at higher cost of electric cars. In return, there are no priced surprises and some simplifications: up to three drivers are included in the rental price. Loading costs nothing extra, neither on the way nor at the rental stations, the UFO Drive calls “Bays”. In the 24-hour rate, 200 km of driving performance are included, each multi-kilometer costs 20 cents. A full comprehensive insurance with 1.000 Euro deductible is inclusive. The deductible can be reduced to zero for 24 euros per day. That was, no further insurance options. For price sensitive customers there are “surprise vehicles”. Then you get an electric car that is just free to the rental center. This flexibility rewards UFO Drive with a cheaper daily rate.
Everything via app
But the biggest advantage of the car rental number is: The entire rental process takes place in a smartphone app. From registration over the booking to the lending and driving, everything will be handled by app. No queue at the counter, no key collection, no paperwork. Aidan McLean and his team have managed to digitize the regulatory requirements of the proof of identity for each country. With photos of driver’s license, identity card and a selfie you turn off as a tenant in the app. Then, depending on the location, it is searched for his desired vehicle. You can be sure to get exactly this model.
On the rental day a video or a photo gallery leads the tenant to the vehicle in the parking garage. Start the rental process as well as the unlocking of the vehicle takes place via app. The route planning is done at best with the UFO-Drive app, then necessary charging stops are planned. The displayed charging points are activated – of course – via app. Exception Tesla: Here you can use the route planning on the built-in touch display. Loading stops on the supercharger are calculated. Model S and 3 load as soon as the plug is in the vehicle. It’s that easy.
Also the return wraps the tenant via app. If damage caused by the vehicle, you document you with a photo. Then you go through a checklist, which is reminiscent of everything, such as deleting the Spotify account in the Tesla or the loading of the vehicle. There are charging plugs at every “bay”.
Electric cars as energy storage
At its inner city-Bay in Berlin, car rental cooperates with the parking garage operator APCOA and the energy supplier Innogy. In the parking garage under the Mall of Berlin reserved parking and charging connections are ready. Innogy supplies green electricity. Already today, the electric cars serve as a memory for excess green flow. If you continue to think the model, the rental cars could serve as energy buffers in both directions with their long service life. You can build energy in them and remove again as soon as the technical hurdles are taken for bidirectional shops. For this service, energy suppliers would even pay. Another source of revenue from UFO Drive is the self-developed software. Under the name UFO Drive Mobility Solutions, the Luxembourg company sells its program as a whitelabel solution. One of the first customers for the software AS-A service is the Luxembourg Car Sharer Moovee.
Who believes Ufo Drive will only be used by business travelers, deceive yourself. “Almost a third of our customers are city dwellers without their own car,” says McClean. The benefits shared mobility offers for the short distances and rents for longer trips with us, because it is easy and clean. During the Corona Pandemic, Autoverwerer and Car Sharer experienced a sales break. UFO DRIVE, on the other hand, recorded a customer increase of eleven percent in the last three months. There is no contact with a key handover, the vehicles are cleaned after each rental and for safety is a fresh disinfection cloth in the center console ready.
The inadequate charging infrastructure still in some points is considered to decide on many potential e-auto buyers as a reason for a plug car. Although…
According to a report in the Suddeutsche Zeitung, electric cars are not yet an issue for the major car rental companies such as Avis, Europcar, Hertz and…
Recently, the numbers have come out about the new registrations of electric cars in August 2016 . And although we nourish ourselves at the end of…
Greenncap is a new consortium composed of a total of 17 European authorities, automotive clubs, consumer organizations and research institutes. Among…
Electric cars with trailer hitch currently seem to be rarer to be as a unicorn. At least one could have these thoughts if you are looking for appropriate…
To make all the electric car drivers, which have ever made a rather uncomfortable experience with a wet or snowy cable in rain or snow, make life easier…
Toyota engine wants in 2025 worldwide.Sell 000 electric vehicles. Clearly behind the plans of the competitor VW, which already want to sell 3 million…
ZF switches high: a new 2-speed electric drive for cars integrates a newly developed electric machine with a switching element and suitable power…
Mitsubishi intensifies his commitment in electromobility. With two leading technologies manufacturers as innovative partners, Witricity Corporation and…
An ever-led argument of electric car opponents is the claim that the electricity vehicles would take the German electricity grid too much and in the…