- Hertz announced a partnership with Denver on Thursday, aimed at expanding its vehicle fleet and public charging infrastructure to drive widespread EV adoption in the area.
- It will add up to 5,200 vehicles to the local fleet and install public EV chargers, offer tools and training to support the initiative throughout the city.
- City officials and Hertz stressed improving EV availability and use in underserved communities around Denver that do not typically have ready access to EVs or robust charging infrastructure.
- Hertz says it is in talks to launch this program in other major cities as well, but Denver is the first step.
The rental car company announced a major EV push — and Denver is the springboard.
On Thursday, Hertz announced a public-private partnership with the City of Denver to accelerate EV adoption and accessibility through its “Hertz Electrifies” program. The upshot: We’ll soon see a surge of up to 5,200 electric vehicles into the company’s Denver rental fleet, for use by rideshare drivers and the public at-large as the city looks to curb transportation-sourced greenhouse gas emissions in the coming decades.
“Our goal is to reduce Denver’s carbon emissions by 80% by 2050,” said Denver Mayor Michael Hancock during the announcement, “and expanding the use and availability of electric vehicles will play a major role in helping us achieve that goal.”
It’s not just sourcing more electric vehicles, though. One major key to widespread EV adoption is adequate infrastructure, and the project looks to tackle that angle, as well as training local students to maintain and support that infrastructure in their neighborhoods moving forward. According to this week’s statement, the pillars of the Hertz Electrifies project will create clean jobs in the area, and the partnership will serve as a template for other major cities.
Speaking to CNBC, Hancock called the partnership a “game-changer” for Denver, which comprises 715,000 residents as well as a substantial 3 million-strong metro. “Electric vehicles can benefit every community in Denver, and we’re proud to work with Hertz to ensure that electrification opportunities reach across the city.”
In addition to installing chargers in lower-income areas, the Hertz Electrify project will provide EVs, tools and training to the Montbello Career and Technical High School, as part of the Denver school’s auto certificate program. It will also offer summer job opportunities through the city’s Youth Employment Program, in hopes of training up a workforce to support the partnership’s goals long-term.
Far more EV renting, charging options at Denver International Airport
Another prong of Hertz’s larger EV rollout naturally centers around Denver’s airport. The program, in conjunction with oil giant BP’s EV subsidiary BP Pulse, will increase capacity at the airport — which is a serious sore spot, as we’ve noted in earlier videos on the current state of affairs.
Throughout the program’s integration, Hertz will use telematics data from its rental cars in the hands of public customers and rideshare drivers to help the City of Denver determine where public charging stations are critically needed. Beyond that, though, beefing up available charging infrastructure will encourage more people to use the larger EV fleet, benefiting both the company and the city’s emissions targets.
We’ll have more information on this partnership soon, and you can check out our latest electric car coverage over on TFLEV: