Brazil ride-sharer 99 aims for 1,000 strong EV fleet

According to reports, Brazil’s 99 ride-hailing app plans to expand its electric fleet, aiming to double the number of EVs to 1,000 in the next 12 months. The move is part of the company’s Alliance for Sustainable Mobility pledge.

The alliance includes eleven companies such as Banco BV, Chinese automakers BYD and Caoa Chery, car-rental firm Movida and energy group Raizen.

The ride-hail firm, owned by China’s DiDi and rivals Uber in Brazil, closed its first year of partnership with 485 electric vehicles running via its platform in Sao Paulo. Thiago Hipolito, 99’s director for innovation, says the company’s goal is to have 10,000 electric cars on its platform by 2025 and 100% of its fleet to be electric by 2030. As for the existing 485 vehicles, no mention was made of the type of EV or deals offered to drivers.

Taking Uber as an example, the company requires drivers to buy their own cars but offers financing through partners in some markets. Additionally, EV-focused business models like BluSmart in India, where the company owns the vehicles and hires them out to drivers, could prove successful in economically challenged markets with little infrastructure.

Didi Chuxing has been invested in 99 since 2017 and fully acquired the company a year later in 2018. The Chinese company delivers AI-based fleet management and is Uber’s equivalent in China. The Chinese ride-hail firm has also been expanding into the EV sector, recently partnering with GAC Aion to develop an autonomous electric car and establishing joint ventures with BAIC and BP for EVs and charging, respectively. In 2020, BYD and Didi unveiled a VW ID.3 clone for ride-hailing applications.


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