The car sharing business in Toronto just got more crowded as car2go launched recently in the city. A subsidiary of Daimler North America, cars2go Toronto has a fleet of 250 smartcars in most Green Ps, Target Park and in the University of Toronto parking lots. Service covers the city north to Eglinton, south to the lake, east to Victoria Park and west to the Jane/Kingsway area. The beauty of cars2go is that unlike many of its competitors, usage is charged by the minute (opposed to the hour), nor does one need to book ahead of time. Many cars2go members use the car for less than half an hour. There is no minimum hours to book and cars can be dropped off in any lot with the service. This is great for people who are going out for dinner or a party and have no designated driver. And like its competitors, gas, maintenance and insurance are included.
A car2go vehicle parked at the Distillery District
Membership is a one-time fee of $35 and users are sent a membership card which they can use to access cars – once arriving at the lot, all members need to do is tap the reader and then enter their PIN number once in the vehicle. All the cars have a built-in GPS and are, according to the website, “the most fuel-efficient non-hybrids on the road.” In addition, apps are available for iPhones and Androids which members can use to find availability.
Outside the Prince Arthur
Of course, there is a downside. There is no selection for cars as only smartcars – all the same colour in light blue and white – are available. And because all the vehicles are two seaters, this service is not for people with families. In addition, while one can drive anywhere cars2go, cars can only be picked up or dropped off within the service borders.
Currently, cars2go is available in several cities including Vancouver, Portland and San Diego in North America and Amsterdam, Vienna and Berlin in Europe. It will be expanding to Calgary and Miami later this month.
Images courtesy of car2go