Daimler’s car2go carsharing service has turned out to be very popular in the Chinese city of Chongqing.
After operating in the city for less than two months, car2go now has more than 78,000 registered users in Chongqing, Daimler says. There have been more than 40,000 rentals of Smart Fortwo hatchbacks during that time.
It’s been so popular that its membership rate has reached the same level as the car2go’s Seattle location in a much shorter period of time. Seattle now has around 78,000 Car2Go users, but the service has operated there since December 2012.
The car2Go fleet is spread out over 60 square kilometers (37.2 square miles) of the central part of Chongqing, located in the southwest of China. The city has a population of around 30 million people.
car2go now serves 29 North American and European since starting five years ago, plus one city in China. Vancouver has the most car2go users of any city in the world, with more than 108,000. Vancouver passed the 100,000-user mark in February, almost five years after the carsharing service opened up in that city in June 2011.
With its air pollution and congested cities, China has become an attractive market for competition by mobility services and makers of electric vehicles.
Last month, LeEco, backed by Faraday Future, launched an electric-car sharing service called LeShare. That carsharing service will start with 300 electric cars in Beijing. LeEco hopes to expand to 3,000 cars by the end of the year, operating in seven cities, according to China Daily.
Ridesharing services are competing for business with carsharing in China’s expanding cities. Apple sees enough market potential to have invested $1 billion in Didi Chuxing, a leading competitor to Uber.