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Shanghai planning to introduce EV rental program

By Carmen Lee  From Gasgoo.comMarch 07, 2013 (Shanghai March 7) – Shanghai has seen success with its bicycle rental program, which has been mimicked in other Chinese cities such as Chengdu. Recent reports in the Chinese media suggest that the city may introduce a similar program for electric cars as well.

According to a report appearing on today, the Shanghai International Automobile City and Shanghai General Motors have signed a cooperation agreement earlier this week (pictured). The agreement will add Shanghai GM electric vehicles to the International Automobile City's fleet. A source from the International Automobile City further reveal that the EVs will be used for a new rental program, which they will begin testing as early as next month. The source boasts that the program will allow Shanghai residents to enjoy the benefits of an EV for very little money.

Despite the numerous subsidies EVs are eligible for, along with Shanghai's recent decision to allow owners of EVs to apply for registration plates without having to participate in the monthly lottery, residents are still wary of the new technology. Incomplete infrastructure and high retail prices, even after the subsidies, are two of the main reasons that EV sales remain slow in the city.

Cao Guangyu, deputy general manager for the Shanghai International Automobile City, has taken note of these complaints. "We are currently in the process of releasing an EV rental program which residents of the city can use," he said. According to Dr. Cao, the program will be based off the city's current bicycle rental program. It will make use of cards to facilitate rentals, and fees will be calculated on a per-minute basis. He hopes the program will allow residents to become familiar with EV technology. Similar programs have been implemented in several European and American cities.

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