Sunday, March 30, 2008

Revving up: Zipcar's car sharing rivals

Today's Globe column looks at Zipcar's new rivals: U-Haul, Hertz, and Enterprise.

Below, a chart comparing the current offerings from Hertz, U-Haul, and Zipcar. U-Haul says in the next few weeks it'll be expanding its U Car Share program to include more vehicles in more locations, but the basic parameters will remain the same.

ZipcarU-Haul’s U Car ShareHertz Hourly Rentals

Membership Fee
$25 application fee; $50 annual membership fee

$25 application fee; $50 annual membership fee


Hourly rental rate

$9 per hour for cars like the Toyota Matrix or Scion xB.

$10 per hour. Only car currently available is the PT Cruiser.

$12 per hour for compact sedan on weekdays; $15 Fri-Sun


Offers cars like BMWs and Volvos at premium rates.

Cars currently only rentable during hours when U-Haul offices are open.

Only one Boston location, at 30 Park Plaza.

(* All hourly rates include gas; Zipcar and U-Haul include
insurance, but Hertz charges extra.)

And here's the video, with Zipcar CEO Scott Griffith.

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Blogger Jay Levitt said...

The first thought I had was: "I assume U-Haul's cars are 20 years old, with bad brakes, no A/C, a broken radio, a missing side mirror, and a funny rattling noise from the transmission. Also, they're probably not actually available when you go get them."

Discuss brand poisoning in the blank space below:

April 1, 2008 6:18 PM  
Blogger Josh said...

Levitt you absolutely have a point my friend. Personally I believe that the largest problem for U-Haul lies in their advertising. Aside the fact that the average consumer only sees the overly-simplistic, 1980's U-Haul logo on ancient trucks disguised with seemingly random artwork, the brand name itself presents a problem. For decades U-Haul has always implied that U (being the consumer) Haul, or in effect, renting one of these is only a means to a long, sweaty day, instead of say, a moving company. Thus with "U Car Share", the company once again implies an input of work on the consumer's part, instead of the hipper, more relaxing company, Zipcar, whose name brings absolutely nothing to mind and has absolutely no brand image whatsoever, which for the first time, may not be a bad thing.

July 18, 2008 9:29 PM  
Blogger Alec said...

Hey there's another car share in NYC that this article doesn't mention that has been around since the end of the summer. Check it out..

December 8, 2008 11:06 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey, check out! Looks like Hertz stole some of their UI ideas and then turned it into 90's techno rave (LOL)

December 11, 2008 5:40 PM  

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