Coda Automotive, Hertz ink electric vehicle deal

EV manufacturer Coda Automotive will bring its all-electric sedan to airport car rental company Hertz. Will you rent one?

Santa Monica, Calif.-based electric vehicle manufacturer Coda Automotive on Monday announced that it and airport car rental company Hertz would partner to bring all-electric cars to the rental chain.

The deal didn't stipulate exactly how many of the vehicles would be made available, which will arrive at select Hertz locations in southern California.  It did, however, specify a model: the aptly-named Coda Sedan, a four-door, five-passenger sedan with a full-size trunk.

Bringing electric cars to a rental chain makes business sense for both companies. For Hertz, the chain gets a high-profile new technology and additional green credentials; for Coda, the automaker gets the ability for consumers to try out their new vehicles (and hopefully assuage fears about range-limited all-electric EVs -- the Coda Sedan manages 120 miles) for a relatively low cost.

The location in southern California, of course, was likely chosen for its burgeoning EV charging infrastructure, as the area is home to many zero emissions car makers, such as Palo Alto-based Tesla Motors and Irvine-based Fisker Automotive.

If the pilot project goes well, Hertz could very well roll out the Coda -- progressively, of course -- to some of its other 8,300 locations across the U.S.

Hertz says it plans to roll out its EV rental program with full-scale deployment in the United States and abroad beginning in 2011. The company also offers a car-sharing program in select urban markets.

This post was originally published on Smartplanet.com

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