Uber is acquiring 50,000 Tesla cars to rent to drivers as part of an ambitious plan to electrify its US fleet by 2030.
The ride-sharing company is working with car rental company Hertz, which has announced that it has ordered 100,000 Tesla vehicles.
The move comes as car companies and transport providers around the world come under regulatory pressure to phase out fuel-powered vehicles in favor of zero-emissions ones.
California, the largest car market in the United States, has set rules for ride-hailing companies such as Uber that require 90 percent of their fleets to be electric by 2030.
Uber has long been offering car rental discounts to drivers who don’t own their own cars, with Uber and Hertz working together on such a program since 2016. But they’ve never collaborated on a specific car rental for drivers until now.
Starting November 1, Uber drivers who live in Los Angeles, San Francisco, San Diego and Washington, D.C. can rent a Model 3 via Hertz for $334 a week, including maintenance and insurance.
The ride-sharing service company says the weekly price drops to $299 or less as the program begins. The program is expanding nationwide in the coming weeks, with the goal of getting 50,000 Tesla cars on the Uber platform by 2023.
It can be difficult to attract drivers to the program at a weekly rate of $334. But Uber is confident drivers see the benefit in saving fuel and reducing maintenance.
Drivers who use hybrid or electric cars to carry passengers receive an additional 50 cents per trip. Drivers using battery-powered cars get another $1 on top of that, for a total of $1.50 extra per trip.
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50,000 Tesla cars available for rent to Uber drivers
Drivers must have a rating of at least 4.7 stars. They must also have completed at least 150 trips to be eligible to rent a Tesla.
To recharge, drivers get access to Tesla’s Supercharger network, as well as discounts at participating EVgo charging stations.
Uber pledged last year to be 100 percent electric by 2030 in the United States, Canada and Europe. and by 2040 for the rest of the world.
The company is spending $800 million to help hundreds of thousands of drivers transition to battery electric vehicles by 2025.
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