by Staff Writers
Washington (AFP) Sept 2, 2015
An electric car-sharing service took to the streets of Indianapolis on Wednesday as its French owner hopes to plug into the vast US market.
Bollore Group of France said its BlueIndy service is the first of its kind in the United States, and begins with an initial fleet of 50 electric cars that it plans to expand to 500.
"Indianapolis is the perfect home for our first venture into the American market," said Cedric Bollore, vice president for development of the global holding company.
"Indy has a vibrant downtown, thriving neighborhoods, and a population that demands innovation and cleaner alternatives to car ownership, and transit options."
Bollore, a industrial conglomerate that owns businesses in logistics, telecommunications and media, already operates car-sharing services in several other cities, including the world's largest electric vehicle-sharing service, Autolib' in Paris.
Indianapolis, with a population of about 850,000, is home to the annual Indianapolis 500 car race. The city is located abut 165 miles (265 km) southeast of Chicago.
Bollore launched IndyBlue with 125 parking spaces equipped with charge stations, with an expansion to 1,000 expected.
Customers swipe a membership card at kiosks to rent one of the battery-driven Bluecars, which can run as far as 120 miles (193 kilometers) without charging.
The standard monthly BlueIndy membership costs $9.99 (8.90 euros) and members pay $4 for the first 20 minutes and 20 cents for each subsequent minute.
"Indianapolis will benefit from technology and processes proven in Paris for the last four years. Now Indy will be the model for North America," said Cedric Bollore. The company's electric-vehicle sharing service also operates in Bordeaux, Lyon and Arcachon in France.
According to US media, although BlueIndy has the support of the mayor of Indianapolis, Greg Ballard, it was opposed by certain members of the City-County Council, which delayed its launch initially planned for early 2015.
Car Technology at SpaceMart.com
|The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2014 - Space Media Network. All websites are published in Australia and are solely subject to Australian law and governed by Fair Use principals for news reporting and research purposes. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA news reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement, agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement All images and articles appearing on Space Media Network have been edited or digitally altered in some way. Any requests to remove copyright material will be acted upon in a timely and appropriate manner. Any attempt to extort money from Space Media Network will be ignored and reported to Australian Law Enforcement Agencies as a potential case of financial fraud involving the use of a telephonic carriage device or postal service.|