German Railway Company Adds Electric Car Rental Option To Ticket

MAY 30 2016 BY STEVEN LOVEDAY 6

Deutsche Bahn Railway

Deutsche Bahn Railway. Photo Credit: Bahn

Possibly the last place one would expect to find an electric car push is at a German rail operator.

Flinkster, Deutsche Bahn partnership

Flinkster Connect, DB partnership. Photo Credit: Bahn

However, such companies have suffered much loss of business as more and more German citizens are purchasing cars.

In the early 90s, there were about 30 million cars on German streets and now there are over 45 million. Not to mention the appearance of services like Uber and BlaBla car providing rides to patrons, along with the rise of car-sharing services.

Deutsche Bahn Director Berthold Huber said:

“We have to be able to offer the best mix of mobility for every individual journey requirement. An unsatisfied customer will sooner or later turn his back on us and look for alternatives. The goal is to extend the availability and offer [the service] in other cities too.”

The cars will be provided by a partner called “Flinkster Connect.” It has become one of the country’s top car-sharing services. Bahn currently works with a fleet of 700 electric cars through its subsidiary Flinkster. Now, they are making immediate plans to expand this number and to work to move the service beyond Berlin.

“We’ve planned the first phase of ‘Flinkster Connect’ consciously as a test,” explained Huber.

The company will only charge €29 (about $41) to add an electric car rental to the train ticket. It will also allow customers to keep the vehicle for up to a week. The hope is that not charging registration and mileage fees will boost this option for many travelers.

Can adding a cheap, electric car option bail out the European railway industry, or are new services and technologies going to eventually take over?

Source: The Local, IBT

Categories: General

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6 Comments on "German Railway Company Adds Electric Car Rental Option To Ticket"

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Mark C

Why wouldn’t an EV to complete your travels make sense when you just got off an electrified train. They don’t have enormous diesel engines powereing the electric motors in any of the trains I rode while stationed in Germany, quite unlike the US.

notting

“Possibly the last place one would expect to find an electric car push is at a German rail operator.”
Definetely not, Deutsche Bahn has their own bike- (Call a bike) and also car-sharing system (Flinkster) because very often there’s a “gap” between the train stations or even bus station to the actual point where people want to go.

“The cars will be provided by a partner called “Flinkster Connect.””
That company called “DB Rent GmbH” (GmbH = roughly PLC in UK) was founded by Deutsche Bahn and still belongs to it…

notting

BTW: From one of the articles you linked: 15 Feb 2016…

Just_Chris

What ev is that in the image?

Joe

It is no EV. It’s a Citroen DS3 with Deutsche Bahn’s Flinkster-branding paintwork.

tod-and-rail-and-renewables-seem-important
“Can adding a cheap, electric car option bail out the European railway industry, or are new services and technologies going to eventually take over?” This is laughable on so many levels. 1) The European Railway industry doesn’t need a bailout. Both freight and passanger rail is successful, and doesn’t need a bailout. This is written at a a time when even more, new taxpayer-funded electric car handouts are being introduced, so essentially the government bailing out that electric car industry. In contrast, Deutsche Bahn Fernverkehr, and many other European rail operators, are profitable companies. And even more profitable to society if one includes externalities, which are routinely forgotten when taking about electric cars. An electric car stuck in traffic is still a car stuck in traffic etc. 2) Deutsche Bahn alone probably transports more people than all electric cars worldwide combined. The passenger rail division of Deutsche Bahn alone (not including all the other rail operators in Germany), transports more than 2 billion travelers each year, or more than 5.5 million every day. Global cumulative electric car sales just surpassed 1 million in September 2015. Just as a comparison to possibly be able to understand relevance… 3) The weirdest part:… Read more »
Joe

Couldn’t agree more. I think the author of this text has never been to Europe and has no idea how (well!) trains operate here.

Bail out is laughable, just as the rest of the text.
Sorry, but call up DB, SNCF or NS and ask them if they’d like a bail out. Muahhhahahahaahah.

Electric cars are, if anything, a nice addition to an already pretty big car sharing pool that Deutsche Bahn has been holding for a while.
Adding to this is the fact that DB and other European operators hold much of the prime real estate in European cities and can thus build very nicely located, accessible chargers.