Out in Shenzhen, China, tourists can rent a BYD E6 electric vehicle from Hertz and it appears that the EV will be making its way to America as part of Hertz’s rental fleet in the U.S.
Jack Hidary, the global EV leader for Hertz, spoke about the Chinese government’s support of electric vehicles while explaining the reason behind the BYD E6′s popularity. Shenzhen governors have deployed charging stations throughout the city and residents purchasing EVs are currently getting a rebate of around $19,000. The E6 isn’t cheap in China however, priced at around $58,000 – but when it makes its way to America it should be cheaper.
Currently, Hertz has 600 rental cars in five Chinese cities but hopes to expand the fleet to 1,500 by the end of this year. Shenzhen as a whole expects to have around 500 E6 taxis on the streets and is currently converting its bus fleet of 1,600 vehicles to BYD plug-in electrics.
It’s expected that the BYD E6 will be certified for sale in the U.S. by the end of this year and will initially be offered to fleet buyers only. The E6 features a 60 kWh battery pack with a 185 mile range. Attached to a DC fast-charging station, it can go from empty to full in just half an hour.
It will be interesting to see if American consumers embrace the E6, even if it’s just a rental car to begin with.
[Source: The NY Times]