Uber Joburg pilots electric car option

Demand for Uber has been surging in places such as Johannesburg. (Gareth van Zyl)
Demand for Uber has been surging in places such as Johannesburg. (Gareth van Zyl)

Johannesburg - Users of internet ride-sharing app Uber will soon have the option of choosing an electric car ride in Johannesburg.

Uber announced on Wednesday that it’s partnered with BMW and Nissan to bring its ‘UberGREEN’ option to its Johannesburg users.

Riders will be able to request BMW i3 or Nissan LEAF electric cars operated by Uber driver-partners between May 9 to June 3 2016 between 7am and 7pm.

Fares on UberGREEN will also be charged at UberX prices. UberX is the cheapest ride option available on the internet ride-sharing service.

“In a world where mobility adds to the carbon emission problem, we at Uber are eager to provide alternate options,” said Uber’s general manager for Sub-Saharan Africa Alon Lits.

“Uber is passionate about making rides better and more sustainable and this partnership is a step towards making changes for the good of our environment,” said Lits in a statement.

Local demand for Uber has grown strongly since the company launched operations in South Africa in 2013.

Data from Uber revealed that as of February 2016, the company has moved over 500 000 riders across South Africa since its launch.

Meanwhile, Tim Abbott, managing director at BMW Group South Africa says the car company is upbeat about partnering with Uber.

“In order for the momentum of electric mobility to increase partnerships like the one with Uber are essential to expose more consumers to the viability of electric vehicles and alternative mobility options,” said Abbott.

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