Irish vehicle sharing service GoCar is to invest €10 million in the expansion and enhancement of its current services.
A total of 280 new vehicles will be added across 149 locations, catering to both urban and rural communities.
In addition, GoCar said it is introducing a variety of new vehicle types to its fleet. These include the “GoLocal”, which is a smaller city vehicle for short urban trips.
The group is also introducing the “GoExplore Plus”, which it described as “a spacious SUV catering to families and longer journeys”.
The GoLocal new entry level model is available to rent from €9 per hour or €50 daily, while the GoExplore Plus can be booked from €15 per hour or €80 per day.
The company said the investment would help to meet growing customer demand for alternative transport options to private vehicle ownership.
The investment will support increased vehicle availability and wider vehicle choices for customers throughout the country.
The expansion aims to provide users with “a broader range of vehicle types, ensuring increased choice and flexibility when it comes to public transport options”, the company said.
GoCar’s fleet has seen a rise from 820 vehicles in January to 930 vehicles in July, with the current investment supporting a further increase to more than 1,100 vehicles in over 600 locations across 24 counties nationwide by the end of the year.
GoCar will also be launching a new website and app designed to provide a “more innovative and intuitive” customer experience.
Additionally, a new loyalty programme will be introduced, rewarding repeat customers for their continued use of car sharing services, with the launch planned for late 2023.
Paul McNeice, head of country for GoCar, said the expansion beyond traditional urban centres “aligns with our mission to make car sharing more accessible for drivers across the country in all the regions”.
“Over the past three years, we have been evolving beyond our legacy urban hubs in Dublin, Cork, Limerick and Galway and we are committed to making GoCar available in 24 counties across the Republic by the end of 2023,” he added.
Furthermore, GoCar aims to address the growing demand for electric vehicles in 2024 by collaborating with partners to bolster the expansion of its GoElectric range, providing customers with sustainable transportation choices.
“Our customers recognise the environmental benefits of embracing multi-modal transport, combining walking, cycling, public transit, trains, and car sharing to meet varied needs,” said Mr McNeice.
“Our research, based on European studies, shows that GoCar annually removes over 8,000 cars from Irish roads, underlining our sustainability commitment. Notably, 62 per cent of users abstain from car ownership while 57 per cent actively use public transport.
“Separately, 60 per cent of our users said they would consider purchasing a car if GoCar didn’t exist. As attitudes shift toward sustainability, GoCar’s fleet expansion investment addresses alternative and multi-modal transport needs effectively.
“We are excited to continue this journey of innovation, sustainability, and community engagement. As the year progresses, at GoCar we remain committed to delivering accessible and flexible transport solutions to meet the needs of a dynamic and ever-evolving market.”