Mercury and Cityhop are offering a new transport alternative that could ultimately help address some of Auckland’s transport challenges.
The addition of electric vehicles (EVs) to Cityhop’s established car sharing platform brings together two parts of the solution to the problems caused by too much city traffic, clean electric-powered vehicles to reduce pollution and noise, and car sharing to reduce the number of vehicles.
Phil Goff, Auckland Mayor says, “Car sharing and electric vehicles are part of the solution for decongesting Auckland and reducing pollution.
“Every car share vehicle takes up to 13 cars off our roads and every electric vehicle is one less car sending carbon into our atmosphere.”
Mercury and Cityhop’s EV car-sharing trial is being extended with a second EV available at the Downtown carpark in the CBD, the same location where Mercury installed the Auckland CBD’s first ever EV charger in 2015.
The trial began in May with a Nissan Leaf located in Newmarket.
Since that time, it’s been used by 35 different drivers and travelled over 2,200km.
Ben Carter, Cityhop business development manager says, “We’ve had consistent feedback about how easy to drive the car is, and how the Newmarket location suits drivers.”
The new car-share vehicle is a Mitsubishi Outlander Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle (PHEV), offering the option of a larger SUV while giving drivers another EV model to try.
Its location at Downtown car park brings EV car-sharing into the CBD, where over 60,000 people live and around 65,000 work each day, including 1,500 current Cityhop members.
Fraser Whineray, Mercury chief executive says, “This partnership between Mercury and Cityhop is about testing innovative and sustainable approaches to ease Auckland’s transport challenges.
“Mercury has owned and driven EVs since 2013, and we want more people to be able to enjoy the wonderful experience of EVs.”
“We’re all about offering choice and freedom, and it’s great to be able to partner with Cityhop to offer Auckland drivers different electric vehicles to try.”
The aim is on extending the trial to the CBD where the bulk of business and personal members of Cityhop are.
Carter continues, “The trial has shown us that the EV is used by Cityhop members for personal use outside of business hours, along with its use as part of the Mercury fleet.”
“The sharing model has been perfect for these two groups of users."