Electric car rental arrives in Dublin

29 Apr 2019

Image: UFO Drive

Irishman’s pan-European dream of electric car rental realised as UFO Drive rolls into town.

Having already rolled through Luxembourg, Brussels, Hamburg and Cologne, UFO Drive has begun revving up in Dublin.

The brainchild of Irishman Aidan McClean, travellers who wish to roam around Dublin and Ireland with an electric vehicle (EV) can choose from models such as the Tesla Model S, Jaguar I-Pace and the new Nissan Leaf. Other vehicles planned include Hyundai and Audi EVs.

‘Our vision is to continue to expand to other locations across Europe throughout 2019 and ultimately offer UFO Drive on a global level’

Featured in recent months as a Start-up of the Week on Siliconrepublic.com, UFO Drive allows customers to use their smartphones to book and drive premium EVs from a variety of ‘UFO Bay’ pick-up locations.

“By combining the smartphone revolution with the coming electric car revolution, UFO Drive has developed something unique: the first all-digital, all-electric car rental service,” said McClean, who is also CEO.

“Our customers will wonder why they ever settled for anything less than renting vehicles like the game-changing Tesla Model S. We combine a great car with the convenience of a seamless and fast smartphone rental app.”

Room to vroom

Customers can reserve, locate and drive away their chosen car through the UFO Drive Android or iOS app. Car pick-up is from the conveniently located Q-Park in St Stephen’s Green car park.

Eliminating paperwork, the same rules apply to return, particularly as the customary pre-drop-off refuelling is eliminated.

The Dublin opening represents UFO Drive’s first collaboration with Q-Park. Mark Howard, country director for Q-Park Ireland, said: “Our safe and secure facilities are an ideal location in the heart of Dublin for users to pick up their vehicles. We also pride ourselves on being one of the greenest operators in Europe, so a partnership with a prestigious electric vehicle car rental company is a good fit for us.”

UFO Drive co-founder Renaud Marquet said that Dublin is the latest stop after the company’s business model was proven in Luxembourg, Brussels and Hamburg.

“Our vision is to continue to expand to other locations across Europe throughout 2019 and ultimately offer UFO Drive on a global level. We are well advanced on agreements for additional European locations.”

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years