Deutsche Bahn to launch electro-car sharing programme

German national rail provider Deutsche Bahn plans to start a pilot programme in Berlin and Potsdam in summer 2010 to test an electric car sharing service, financial daily Handelsblatt reported on Friday.

Deutsche Bahn to launch electro-car sharing programme
A file photo of Deutsche Bahn's car sharing programme. Photo: DPA

Some 500 test customers will take part in the “Bemobility” initiative for two years to test the integration of the new service into the mass transit system in the Berlin-Potsdam region.

Deutsche Bahn will initially provide 40 electric cars and 50 Pedelecs – electric-powered bicycles. Charging stations will be erected at train stations in Berlin and Potsdam, where some three million people use the public transportation system.

The federal government set aside some €115 million in its second stimulus package to bring the green initiative in a bid to lower CO2 emissions. The car sharing scheme is an important part of the government’s ultimate goal is to have one million electric cars on the road by 2020.

Energy providers RWE and Vattenfall, auto industry subcontractor Bosch, parking lot manager Contipark, solar facility manufacturer Solon, and the Berlin-Brandenburg public transport network VBB will all take part in the new programme, the paper said.

Both RWE and Vattenfall are already conducting electric car pilot projects in Berlin. RWE is testing electric Smart cars in partnership with Daimler, and Vattenfall has some 50 electric Minis in field tests.

According to Handelsblatt the “Bemobility” programme is strategic to Deutsche Bahn’s goal of enhancing its rail network with comprehensive mobility options that already include car and bike rental.

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