Kia may start selling used electric and hydrogen vehicles with car sharing platform company J’Car, TheElec has learned.
The South Korean car brand launched its car sharing service called wible BIZ earlier this year.
The service lends electric and hydrogen cars through subscription to companies and public institutes.
Kia launched the car-as-a-service platform with J’Car in March.
South Korea is aiming to have the public sector’s car purchases to be wholly environmentally friendly cars by 2023. The current requirement is to have 80% of the cars purchased by public institutes be electric or hydrogen powered.
Kia is eyeing demand for electric and hydrogen vehicles to increase from the public sector due to this regulation change.
A Kia spokesperson said while other companies have exited the car sharing market due to profitability issue, Kia supplies electric and hydrogen vehicles exclusively through its long-term rent model which allowed it to secure profitability.
Demand from the government is high and Kia expects this trend to continue as public institutes aim to reduce costs, they said.
Kia and its affiliate Hyundai Motor own 4.2% and 8.78% stakes, respectively, in J’Car, which was founded in 2016. The startup had focused on mobility, car sharing and used car sales businesses since then.
J’Car recently announced that it plans to collaborate in electric vehicle aftermarket with Halla Holdings.
J’Car is aiming to operate 1,000 units of electric and hydrogen vehicles for car sharing.