Car2go Partners with Mercedes Benz

Car2go announced today that it is partnering with Mercedes-Benz to add Mercedes CLA sedans and GLA crossovers to its lineup.

A ride-sharing service like Zipcar, car2go claims to be the world’s largest flexible car-sharing service, with 2.2 million members. However, until now riders only had access to two-seat cars, making a group outing or anything requiring more room (like shopping bags) rather difficult. The two new models have four doors and a five-passenger capacity. In a statement, car2go states that Mercedes-Benz vehicles will comprise the majority of its North American fleet by the end of 2017.

“From a demographic perspective, there are people that are out there that might not want to join a car-sharing service because, maybe they said, ‘Listen, I want to use car2go, but I only see that it’s a two-seater,’” Paul DeLong, car2go North America’s CEO, told Jalopnik.

Both cars will offer tech-enabled features, including smartphone integration with CarPlay and Android Auto; adaptive braking; blind-spot assistance; a rear-view camera; and Harman/Kardon sound systems. And although car2go is known for its white and blue two-seater Smart cars, the Mercedez Benz options will be available in black, white and silver, with a small label indicating them as car2go vehicles.

Unlike Zipcar however, car2go’s free-floating carsharing service does not use fixed rental stations or require reservations. Instead, vehicles are spread throughout a city. Car2go members simply use the car2go app on their smartphone to locate, unlock, drive and park their car2go in any legal parking space within a city’s Home Area — which is what car2go calls its operating area. For the new CLA sedan and GLA crossover, it will cost $0.49 per minute, $19 per hour or $79 per day to rent the new Car2Go vehicles, which is a bit more than its standard Smart car pricing.

The company maintains that it will keep its familiar Smart cars around, including the newest Smart ForTwo models, but it seems to be pivoting towards more luxury models. This makes sense since its main competitor is BMW’s ReachNow service, which also offers luxury cars.

Austin, Portland, Seattle, Toronto, Vancouver and Washington, D.C. area will be the first North American locations to experience 2017 Mercedes-Benz CLA and GLA car2gos; more U.S. and Canadian locations will be added throughout the year.

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