Global Market Insights released a report this summer indicating the valuation of the car-sharing market is expected to surge past $12 billion by 2024.
And being a diversified automotive company, Penske is making sure it's part of that growth.
This week, the company announced investment in Penske Dash, a carsharing service launching in Washington, D.C., and Arlington, Va.
“Penske Dash furthers our commitment to embrace new technologies while addressing the mobility needs for our consumers,” Penske chairman Roger Penske said in a news release.
“As Mobility-as-a-Service and the sharing economy develop, we will continue to leverage the expertise of our strong partners and our expertise in transportation services to remain at the forefront of new leading transportation solutions,” Penske continued.
Penske Dash can provide members with convenient, on-demand access to Volkswagen Jetta SE vehicles that may be rented by the minute, hour or day through the Penske Dash app. Rental rates are all-inclusive, covering fuel, parking and insurance. Penske Dash members are supported with 24/7 access to a U.S.-based call center and a local fleet operations team.
The company indicated vehicles will be available on a free-floating basis in Arlington, Va., allowing Penske Dash members to make one-way trips by initiating and completing rentals at any unrestricted public parking spot. To provide additional parking options for members, Penske Dash has secured reserved parking options at centrally located Colonial Parking garages in Washington, D.C.
Penske Dash is partnering with Ridecell for its technology capabilities and Volkswagen for its OEM resources. Last May, Cox Automotive was the lead investor in a $28.61 million Series B funding round for Ridecell, a software platform used to run mobility services like carsharing, ridesharing and autonomous fleet management.
Penske officials said both Ridecell and VW bring leading capabilities and expertise in key areas of the Penske Dash operations.
“We are excited to bring a new mobility option to Washington, D.C., and Arlington, bolstered by Penske’s longstanding commitment to quality and customer service,” said Michael Montri, chief operating officer of Penske Dash. “From the technology used, to the upkeep of our vehicles, to customer and roadside support, every facet of Penske Dash was designed to provide our members with the highest-quality and most consistent carsharing experience possible.
“From here, we plan to evolve with the needs of these communities, listening closely to their feedback, to not only create but maintain a best-in-class carsharing service,” Montri continued.
Local operations will be led by Paul DeLong, who previously served as president and chief executive officer of Car2Go North America and brings with him expertise in carsharing operations and the specific launch markets.
DeLong said, “We believe Washington, D.C., and Arlington are ideal markets to launch Penske Dash due to the commitment of each municipality to provide flexible mobility choices, and the local residents’ familiarity with the benefits of carsharing.”