In a Wednesday press release, Hyundai revealed their plans to add 400 electric Ioniqs to WaiveCar’s car sharing fleet by the end of next year.
WaiveCar is a Southern California-based startup that was started earlier this year. The company rents out ad-supported electric cars via their own app, but they’re currently limited to the Santa Monica area as the fleet currently only consists of 20 Chevy Spark electric vehicles.
What differentiates them from the other car rental companies is their rental system. Drivers can rent a car for free for the first two hour, every subsequent hour will only cost $5.99. They can do this by wrapping the fleet with advertisements and essentially creating mobile billboards that other people drive around. WaiveCar even has a roof-mounted digital display option that can show geo-targeted ads.
With Hyundai getting on board, the company can expand their service area and launch their company in three new cities. A larger fleet will even help them reel in larger advertisement deals.
"Many of the big brands would come to us and say we love your product, we think it's amazing and innovative but 20 cars doesn't get us out of bed. We need at least 100," said Honig, WaiveCar's chief technology officer. "That's really the chicken-egg problem with a lot of startups."
WaiveCar won’t be the only one benefiting from this deal, this partnership will give potential buyers a chance to test drive the Ioniq EV and some ads on display could promote the brand.