Shanghai's electric-car rental program, EVCARD, expanded to two economic and technical development zones in Changning and Minhang districts as part of its plan to have 500 charging spots by the end of this year from 176 now.
The program, which follows a similar scheme in Europe, is an environment-friendly endeavor to reduce the use of private cars and enhance the efficiency of parking spaces in the city, said Rong Wenwei, general manager of Shanghai International Automobile City, the program operator.
"Electric cars are the future in terms of environment pollution and public resources. It's especially appropriate for big cities like Shanghai," Rong said yesterday. "The scheme will become an efficient and green alternative of public transportation."
Models available for rent are the Roewe E50 and Chery EQ which both cost 0.50 yuan (8 US cents) per minute to rent, while a BMW Zinoro 1E will cost 1 yuan per minute to rent. Recharging at the spots is free.
The expansion yesterday came after EVCARD moved into the downtown area in Jing'an District, with 10 charging spots located in popular sites like CITIC Pacific Plaza and Hilton Shanghai.