Paris readies electric car programme

2011-10-01 08:56

Vaucresson - The City of Light is preparing to go live with what aims to be one of the world's largest electric car-sharing schemes.

Organisers say Autolib' - named after Paris' four-year-old Velib' bike-sharing system — will begin a two-month testing phase on Sunday, before full-scale operations begin on December 5.

At first, only 250 of the four-seat "Bluecars" developed by the French Groupe Bollore and the Italian design firm Pininfarina will be available for hire.

Organisers hope to expand that to 3 000 cars at 1 000 parking stations around Paris by the end of 2012.

Tourists can use the service as long as they have a driver's license recognised in France.

An annual subscription will cost €12 per month, but daily and weekly options will be available. The cars can be reserved in advance and returned to any station.