UAE car share start-up ekar will deploy 200 vehicles in Abu Dhabi as part of a partnership with Abu Dhabi’s Department of Transport (DoT).
The smartphone-enabled service received approval to operate in the UAE capital in June 2018.
Ekar will initially launch its Abu Dhabi fleet of 100 cars (MG 360, MG ZS, MG RX5 and Nissan Kicks) and an additional 100 cars will hit the streets including Nissan Micras and Infiniti Q70s this year, it announced on Sunday.
Offering a ‘pay-by-the-use’ pricing scheme, ekar offers rates based on minutes, hours, daily or monthly rentals.
The introduction of the ekar carshare fleet in Abu Dhabi will “reduce levels of air pollution, lessen parking infrastructure issues, decrease the need for road expansions and allow more resources for park development and urban green spaces”, a statement said.
“For every one carshare car on the road means there are seven owned cars off the road thereby contributing largely to the decrease in air pollution,” it added.
Bader Al Qamzi, director of Integrated Transportation Planning Division at Abu Dhabi DoT said: “We aim to apply all initiatives and tools related to sustainable transportation. Spreading awareness about the positive environmental effects is highly important, and also allowing users reach their destinations in the shortest possible time.”
Al Qazmi said that the partnership with ekar was part of efforts to achieve long term growth in Abu Dhabi, adding that adopting sustainable practices – such as car share and use of electric vehicles – will enhance the Department’s efforts to reduce the carbon print and preserve the environment.
To sign up for ekar, motorists must have a driving licence that is at least six months old. UAE residents who want to register with ekar are required to submit the back and front copies of their Emirates ID and driving licence. For tourists, the requirement is a valid passport copy and visa stamp page together with their international driver licence.