Hertz invests big in electric vehicle rental fleet; orders 100K Tesla EVs

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Tesla Model 3 at Hertz airport location
Tesla Model 3 electric vehicles at Hertz airport location. Photo by E.R. Davidson

Hertz Corporation is ordering 100,000 electric vehicles (EVs) from Tesla Inc (NASDAQ: TSLA) by the end of 2022 and new EV charging infrastructure across its global operations.

The order is part of Hertz’s significant investment to offer the largest EV rental fleet in North America. Its EV rental fleet will also be one of the world’s largest.

Customers will be able to rent a Tesla Model 3 at Hertz car rental offices at the airports and neighborhood locations in major U.S. markets and select cities in Europe starting in early November.

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Hertz said it is installing thousands of chargers at its location network. Its customers who rent a Tesla Model 3 will also have access to 3,000 Tesla supercharging stations across the United States and Europe.

Hertz said EVs will account for over 20% of its global fleet with its current Tesla order. Its EV rental fleet will be supported by a combination of Level 2 and DC fast charging in approximately 65 markets by the end of 2022 and more than 100 markets by the end of 2023.

In a statement, Hertz interim CEO Mark Fields said, “Electric vehicles are now mainstream, and we’ve only just begun to see rising global demand and interest.” 

Fields added, “The new Hertz is going to lead the way as a mobility company, starting with the largest EV rental fleet in North America and a commitment to grow our EV fleet and provide the best rental and recharging experience for leisure and business customers around the world.”

In 2011, Hertz was the first U.S. rental company to offer EVs to customers. It was also the first to implement a wireless charging station for EVs.

Hertz is making a big investment in its EV rental fleet after filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection over a year ago, during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic.

In May, Knighthead Capital Management, Certares Management and certain Fund managed by Apollo Capital Management won the bid to take over the car rental company in its bankruptcy reorganization. The investment firms provided more than $5.9 billion of new equity capital to Hertz, which completed its bankruptcy restructuring process in June.

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