Car sharing service to launch in SA

Africa’s first car sharing service, Locomute, is set to launch in South Africa on 1 June, offering an alternative solution to traditional rentals in metropolitan areas.

Locomute is an app based service which allows its members, Locomuters, to access any of their cars parked throughout South Africa to use for as long as they want.

How Locomute works – 5 steps:

  1. Sign up as a Locomute member, log into our phone app or on the web to locate and book the nearest vehicle.
  2. Get to the vehicle and use the app to open the vehicle.
  3. Drive to your destination.
  4. When done with the vehicle, you can park it at the nearest Loco Park (Loco Parks are located at major airports, transport stations and shopping malls) or park it at any public parking.
  5. Release the vehicle for other members to use.

“Members reserve a car online or via the Locomute App and simply swipe a member smartcard over a card reader on the windshield before commencing with their reservation.

Locomuters have 24/7 access to a pool of vehicles located within designated zones called Locoparks.

The company was founded by Tumi Marope, a former aircraft maintenance engineer at SAA, and Ntando Kubheka, an innovation fund manager at a major bank.

According to Techcentral, at launch, 26 cars will be available in selected areas in Gauteng, including Centurion, Menlyn, Hatfield, Morningside, Fourways, and Waterfall.

The service is expected to extend to Cape Town and Durban.

Locomute Fiat vehicles
Locomute Fiat vehicles
Locomute Joburg launch
Locomute Joburg launch

How much does it cost?

“You only pay for the exact amount of time you use the vehicle. Fuel, insurance, and parking are all included, and one-way trips are allowed,” the group said.

Annual Customer Once off Customer
Initiation fee R499 once off / R45 per month R119
Promotional gift A convenience pack consisting of travel accessories None
Cost per km R6.80 R6.99
Hourly rate R32.00 R35.00
Cost per km (Usage exceeding 4hrs) R6.99 R7.49
Hourly rate (Usage exceeding 4hrs) R35.00 R39.00

US based Zipcar, a subsidiary of Avis Budget Group, claims to be the largest car sharing and car club service.

Ford Motor, meanwhile,  has a service called GoDrive already operational in the US, Germany and India, and now on trial in London, offering a pay-per-minute service.

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Car sharing service to launch in SA