NORTHAMPTON, MA--July 24, 2013: Enterprise Rent-A-Car today announced five new Nissan LEAF electric vehicles (EVs) and a charging station at its Northampton, Mass. location.
“We are excited to offer these new EVs and provide even more alternatives to our customers and neighbors in Northampton.”
The EVs are in addition to the hybrid vehicles already available throughout Northampton and the surrounding area, thereby increasing local residents' access to these vehicles for daily, weekly and monthly rental. "We selected this location because Northampton is a progressive community equipped with multiple charging stations that are open to the public," explained Larry Kucharski, vice president and general manager for Enterprise Holdings in western Massachusetts. "We are excited to offer these new EVs and provide even more alternatives to our customers and neighbors in Northampton."
According to the Wharton Initiative for Global Environmental Leadership (IGEL) special report, "Next Stop, Innovation: What's Ahead for Urban Mobility?," the future of electric vehicles is affected by many wild cards, including price of gas, legislation and subsidies, improvements and price reductions in battery technology, and availability of charging stations.
"We recognize that electric vehicles face significant technological and public-policy challenges," stated Lee Broughton, corporate sustainability officer for Enterprise Holdings, which owns and operates the Enterprise Rent-A-Car brand as well as National Car Rental and Alamo Rent A Car. "At an estimated cost of $2 in electricity to fully charge a vehicle, clean fuel and engine technologies offer a cheaper and more sustainable transportation solution."
EVs and hybrids are part of Enterprise's ongoing partnership with automotive manufacturers and local municipalities to build support for alternative fuel vehicle technologies, charging stations and other infrastructure. By gradually incorporating EV and hybrid technologies, Enterprise is a key link in the adoption of market-driven solutions to sustainable mobility.
With more than 5,500 neighborhood locations located within 15 miles of 90 percent of the U.S. population, including over 100 locations in Massachusetts, Enterprise is uniquely positioned to introduce, test and socialize new vehicles and other transportation innovations. Enterprise offers car rental and car-sharing customers the industry's largest selection of hybrid and electric vehicles including the Nissan LEAF, Toyota Prius Plug-In Hybrid and Chevy Volt extended range electric vehicle.
"Across the country, Enterprise is embracing clean fuel and engine technologies as they become available by using our network as a testing ground to help promising new alternatives prove their viability in the marketplace," said Broughton.
Beyond the network of Enterprise car rental branches that offer customers an expanded fleet of electric vehicles and hybrids, the company has been delivering transportation alternatives right where people live and work since 1957, an early example of today's "collaborative consumption" trend. Notably, Enterprise CarShare brings hourly car rental to customers in municipalities and college campuses around the country.
Enterprise is also investing in the development of future alternative fuel technology through its support of renewable fuels research. Since 2006, Enterprise's owners, the Taylor family, have given $35 million to the Donald Danforth Plant Science Center and its Enterprise Rent-A-Car Institute for Renewable Fuels. At the Institute, scientists are creating next-generation biofuels from nonfood crops such as camelina, switchgrass and algae that someday could be used to power cars, trucks and aircraft, reducing both environmental impact and the nation's dependence on foreign fuel sources.