Daimler's Car2go car-sharing service just announced that it will debut in Rome, its 26th global city. Now, BMW says it wants to expand its own carsharing program to, wait for it, 25 more cities. Coincidence? We think not.
BMW is looking to bring its DriveNow carsharing program, with its Mini Coopers and 1 Series, to as many as 15 new cities in Europe as well as 10 in the US, Bloomberg News says, citing comments BMW executive Peter Schwarzenbauer made at the Geneva Motor Show last week. The service is now operational in Berlin, Hamburg, Cologne, Munich, Dusseldorf and San Francisco and serves about a quarter-million people.
Of course, it's that last city, where DriveNow started operations in August 2012, that's been somewhat problematic. San Francisco has tough guidelines when it comes to where the cars can be parked, with so few public parking areas to choose from. DriveNow charges $39 for membership in San Francisco, then $12 for the first half hour of driving and 32 cents for each additional minute. DriveNow competes directly against Car2go, which charges around $25 to become a member and then 41 cents a minute to rent a Smart ForTwo.