On Monday, Swedish electric vehicle manufacturer Polestar and Hertz Corporation announced a deal that sees the carmaker sell 65,000 EVs to the rental company. The agreement is intended to spark interest in Polestar’s EVs and help diversify Hertz’s fleet. 

It’s expected that the first deliveries to Hertz will begin in spring this year for European locations, and rental agencies in North America and Australia could see units arrive in fall or winter 2022. The initial order is for the Polestar 2, a fastback-styled vehicle somewhere between a sedan and an SUV. As a premium model, the deal is expected to be worth about $3 billion. 

Polestar CEO Thomas Ingenlath said in the news release, “Polestar is committed to accelerating the move to electric mobility with a fascinating and innovative product portfolio. We are delighted that Hertz has chosen Polestar as a strategic partner on their road to electrification. The partnership with a global pioneer like Hertz will bring the amazing experience of driving an electric car to a wider audience, satisfying a broad variety of our mutual customers’ short- and longer-term mobility requirements. For many of them, it may be the first time they have driven an EV, and it will be a Polestar.”

It’s a major deal for Polestar as they begin to ramp up production globally. In 2021, the carmaker produced approximately 29,000 units, almost tripling their numbers from 2020. By 2025, they expect 290,000 units to roll off the assembly line annually. Over the next three years, Polestar plans on releasing three new models – the Polestar 3 SUV, Polestar 4 compact SUV couple, and the Polestar 5 flagship sedan. 

Pursuit of an electrified fleet

In October, Hertz announced their intent to “offer its customers the largest EV rental fleet in North America and one of the largest in the world”. 

Hertz CEO Stephen Scherr said in Monday’s release, “We are excited to partner with Polestar and look forward to introducing their premium EV products into our retail and rideshare fleets. Today’s partnership with Polestar further builds on our ambition to become a leading participant in the modern mobility ecosystem and doing so as an environmentally forward company. By working with EV industry leaders like Polestar, we can help accelerate the adoption of electrification while providing renters, corporate customers, and rideshare partners a premium EV product, exceptional experience, and lower carbon footprint.”

Major announcements flow just months out of bankruptcy

The Polestar partnership is just the latest in a flurry of announcements from Hertz as they recover from bankruptcy proceedings. After paring down its inventory-heavy fleet and streamlining operations, the rental company is focused on regaining trust and relevance in the industry. 

In October, Hertz unveiled a plan to purchase 100,000 Tesla models by the end of 2022. Then-interim CEO Mark Fields said, “The new Hertz is going to lead the way as a mobility company… and provide the best rental and recharging experience for leisure and business customers around the world.”

In February, Hertz named a new CEO, former CFO at Goldman Sachs, Stephen Scherr, then partnered with UFODRIVE to develop a simplified platform for EV rentals.

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