Nissan Will Test Public Car Sharing Plan In Yokohama

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When is a Renault Twizy not a Renault Twizy? When it is a Nissan New Mobility Concept vehicle based on the Renault Twizy chassis. Nissan will use the tiny two seaters to test a public car sharing program in Yokohama. The year long experiment kicks off in April.

The Ultra Compact Mobility Certification System will take place in Yokohama’s Sakonyama Danchi District in conjunction with housing agency Urban Renaissance. Nissan says the experiment is part of a “method for revitalizing urban and suburban areas.” Presumably, any citizen in need of getting from Point A to Point B in Yokohama will simply hop into the nearest New Mobility Concept vehicle, drive to the desired destination and leave it for the next person.

Movie buffs may be reminded of the line in Beverley Hills Cop when Axel Foley asks childhood friend Jenny Summers if that fire engine red Mercedes SL is her car. “Oh, no,” she says sweetly, “In Beverly Hills, we just take whatever car is closest.”

The Twizy based micro-car is also part of a rental fleet in the Japanese town of Shikano. There, the cars cost the equivalent of $10 per hour after paying $12 for a training license. The New Mobility Concept vehicles are about a foot shorter than the diminutive Smart For Two, or about as long as your typical bicycle. Which means finding a parking space, even in the crowded confines of Japanese urban environments, should be a breeze.

Steve Hanley

Closely following the transition from internal combustion to electricity. Whether it's cars, trucks, ships, or airplanes, sustainability is the key. Please follow me on Google + and Twitter.