As the electric car movement heats up in New Zealand, a local start-up has chosen Christchurch as the first city in the country to launch its innovative, future-focused car sharing initiative. Cantabrians using Yoogo Share have already saved 50 tonnes of carbon, or the equivalent of more than 20,000 litres of petrol being used.
For Kirsten Corson, getting behind the wheel of a traditional combustion engine vehicle is akin to driving an old tractor. But put her behind the wheel of an electric car and she’s a happy woman. Not surprising then that she is helping more Kiwis experience the thrill of going electric, as the General Manager of Yoogo Share, the company behind New Zealand’s first 100 percent electric car sharing service.
Launched in Christchurch in February, Yoogo Share has brought 100 pure electric vehicles (EVs) to eight (and counting!) locations throughout Christchurch. It’s free to join and there are no membership fees; simply sign-up (membership criteria applies), get sent a Yoogo Share access card, then book and drive the vehicles as and when needed.
Christchurch City Council initiated the service when they put out a tender in 2017 for electric car sharing as part of the city’s rebuild. Fast forward to early 2018 and Kirsten found herself officially launching Yoogo Share alongside Christchurch Mayor Lianne Dalziel and Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern. Yoogo Share business members love driving the electric cars for getting to meetings and running errands. A more convenient option than ride hailing or public transport, they’re also great fun to drive. Plus, you only pay for the time you use the car, with all other costs including insurance and storage covered by the hourly rate.
Get the first hour of your booking free for up to five bookings to test drive the electric cars
Meanwhile, for private members, the shared electric cars are a great alternative to a second car, with many families choosing to sell their second car that often sits unused. For people who commute to work via public transport, walking or cycling, the cars are ideal for those times when you do need a car such as picking up shopping or longer journeys when public transport isn’t an option. So why share? With petrol prices higher than ever before and the high cost of purchase for electric cars, you can drive an electric car without having to buy one. In fact, no insurance, WOF, registration, repairs, maintenance or fuel costs. Plus, with no tailpipe emissions, Yoogo Share is helping improve Christchurch’s air quality.
With 50 tonnes of carbon savings already under their belt, Yoogo Share’s members are expected to make 100 tonnes of carbon savings by Christmas. To mark the milestone, the company partnered with the Department of Conservation, Meridian Energy and Hyundai to help restore the Evans Pass valley, planting 1,000 native trees to represent the kilometres travelled by Yoogo Share members.
To try out the electric car sharing experience, the first hour is free for 1,000 bookings for Yoogo Share private members, thanks to their energy partners in Canterbury, Meridian Energy. Private members can get the first hour of their booking free for up to five bookings, giving everybody the opportunity to try Yoogo Share cars. So what are you waiting for? After all, sharing is caring.