As reported by forbes.hu, from April 29th onwards Budapest’s residents and visitors can drive around the city using 240 BMWs and Minis thanks to the collaboration between Tibor Veres’ Wallis Group and car-sharing giant DriveNow.
DriveNow – one of the biggest car-sharing companies in the world – is coming to Budapest with 240 cars. They are the third such company to come to the Hungarian capital after Greengo and Mol Limo. According to the Wallis Autómegosztó Kft’s managing director, Péter Fischer, DriveNow has a place in the market and will rise above its competitors. DriveNow is expanding in the premium market as so far only Mol has offered similar calibre cars to BMW and Minis with their range of Mercedes. DriveNow will unlikely to be much more expensive than the other car-sharing options in Budapest.
In addition to rental options by the minute, potential customers can also make use of renting by the hour and by the day. Depending on the model, the cars’ rental price will be between €0.30/min and €0.40/min. Renting by the hour can push the price down to as low as €0.20/min.
The mobile application was made available for download on the 11th of April. Those who register before the 29th of April will not have to pay a registration fee. From then onwards, the fee will be €15 till 31st of May, after which it will rise to €30. Subsequently, all users will get 25 minutes for free.
There is nothing new in the way it operates: Users need to download an app onto their phone, on which they can reserve a car using a map. These cars do not operate with keys, customers will require a PIN supplied via the application. The car can be dropped off in the designated area.
The service will be available in a 63 square kilometre area in Budapest. This is similar to the area of service offered by its two competitors. However, DriveNow is different from its rivals. Unlike them, customers can make use of the service in 11 other countries as well after registration, including cities such as Lisbon, Milan and Berlin.
DriveNow is a subsidiary company of BMW. After their 2011 launch in Munich, they slowly started to expand into other German and Austrian cities. In February 2019 they teamed up with the Daimler’s car-sharing company Car2go to form a joint-business called ShareNow. They make up 75% of the car-sharing market in both Germany and the US.
Budapest is the most Eastern city they have launched so far. Based on their company’s calculations, it is only worthwhile launching the service if the target city has a population of over 1 million.
“As a key partner of BMW in the region, it was clear for us that we had to get involved with this service” Zsolt Müllner stated, the Chairman of AutoWallis. Tibor Veres, the fifth richest Hungarian, has already signalled his intent to enter the car-sharing market earlier this year and it appears that one and half months later it has already happened.
It seems as if the cooperation has registered a new company by the name Wallis Autómegosztó Kft, which will be in partnership with BMW’s subsidiary DriveNow.
Featured image: https://www.facebook.com/DriveNow.UK/