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Car2gone: Rideshare company announces Portland exit

Posted by on September 27th, 2019 at 2:05 pm

Some Portlanders are emotional about the news.

Just five years ago we triumphantly reported that Portland was the car2go capital of North America. That’s why the announcement that the company will cease operations here at the end of October is bumming out many low-car Portlanders.

In a statement to members today the company wrote on their website: “This decision was not made lightly. We have had to face the hard reality that despite our efforts, we underestimated the investment and resources that are truly necessary to make our service successful in these complex transportation markets amid a quickly-changing mobility landscape.”

At its peak in 2012, car2go had about 530 cars available to Portlanders. That equated to about 10.2 cars per square mile. car2go merged with ReachNow in 2018 and changed its name to ShareNow. Back in July, ReachNow removed 350 vehicles from their Portland fleet. According to The Oregonian, when combined with car2go’s departure, that’s about 800 fewer on-demand vehicles available to Portlanders as of next month.

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This is a big blow to the many low-car Portlanders who once enjoyed a top-tier bevy of options to having a car of their own. Judging by the response on social media we’ve seen so far, many people will have now likely consider buying a car.

“We have been a single car household since 2013 through the combination of Car2go and @trimet. This most likely means I’m back to having to own a car for those trips that trimet can’t accommodate,” said one user, expressing a sentiment we’ve heard from many people today.

This lack of low-car options comes at a time when many people face longer commutes after being priced out of housing close to their jobs. This demographic shift has had major implications for transportation in Portland. Some see it as a significant contributor to congestion, the decrease in bike to work trips, and the increase in electric bike sales.

— Jonathan Maus: (503) 706-8804, @jonathan_maus on Twitter and jonathan@bikeportland.org

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NOTE: We love your comments and work hard to ensure they are productive, considerate, and welcoming of all perspectives. Disagreements are encouraged, but only if done with tact and respect. If you see a mean or inappropriate comment, please contact us and we'll take a look at it right away. Also, if you comment frequently, please consider holding your thoughts so that others can step forward. Thank you — Jonathan

82 Comments
  • Avatar
    John Lascurettes September 27, 2019 at 2:40 pm

    Oh crap! Glad I used up my $25 credit from the PBOT Transportation Wallet recently with Car2Go. This is upsetting. This part kills me though:

    We have had to face the hard reality that despite our efforts, we underestimated the investment and resources …

    When they switched from he Smart cars to all Mercedes and then later merged with ReachNow whose Portland fleet was all BMW, I definitely wondered how economically sustainable that was. Guess the answer is ‘not’. Seemed especially odd since Mercedes and BMW do not have the best reliability records out there (and are among the most expensive to fix). I’m going to have to figure out what our family will do without this option available.

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      Toby Keith September 27, 2019 at 3:26 pm

      They should have used Toyotas.

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        John Lascurettes September 27, 2019 at 4:06 pm

        Yup. Or Hondas. I think they’re rated lowest TCO between reliability, cost to maintain, and cost to repair. I could be wrong.

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          John Lascurettes September 27, 2019 at 4:13 pm
          • Hello, Kitty
            Hello, Kitty September 27, 2019 at 4:49 pm

            There are other considerations, such as a way of writing off cars that are under-performing sales expectations, or sweetheart deals from a parent or partner company. I have to think the people making these decisions are not complete idiots, and may have access to the same information you do, and maybe some you don’t.

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              Resopmok September 27, 2019 at 5:48 pm

              I don’t have that same confidence. While I agree it’s true that there could have been a discount deal on a pile of Mercedes with a sweet maintenance package, it seems more likely car2go moved that direction from the competitive pressure ReachNow provided when they entered the market with such vehicles. They had already bought a pile of smart cars, then bought a pile of expensive cars, but probably only had the same or decreasing revenues to match. Sounds like a losing proposition. I also wouldn’t be surprised if some shady or nepotistic deals “trumped” reasonable and practical business decisions. I’ve experienced too much bureaucracy to believe that personal interest plays second fiddle to those of an institution, be it public, private, or corporate.

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              John Lascurettes September 27, 2019 at 10:31 pm

              I did just learn that it was run by either Daimler or Mercedes. Daimler would explain the Smart car connection too.

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      raktajino September 27, 2019 at 4:06 pm

      the switch from SmartCars to larger, wider sedans was definitely when I stopped using them. I hate driving and I hate parking even more, and the bigger cars were just so much harder to manuever. (They’re still small vehicles! I’m not saying they’re behemoths! I just…prefer a bike.) They had less visibility and were more difficult to adjust for my short stature.

      I tried driving one of the new cars once and never again. I wonder how many others were in my same boat?

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        John Lascurettes September 27, 2019 at 4:25 pm

        The newer cars definitely has horrible visibility from the inside out.

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        Anthony September 30, 2019 at 1:34 pm

        I felt similarly, though I did continue to use them. I definitely used them less though and hated driving when I did since they felt so big.

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          Matt September 30, 2019 at 1:50 pm

          I hated the smart cars. The mercedes were a million times nicer to drive (and I could take kids in them b/c they had a back seat). And I loved the rear view camera. The up-side is that I’m hoping I will bike more…

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      Jay Dedd September 28, 2019 at 1:01 pm

      Umm, folks on this thread: Check it out and you will find Car2Go had the same parent company as Mercedes and Smart — and ReachNow had the same parent company as BMW. This suggests they were looking for ways to get revenue for their own cars that weren’t selling. They didn’t have the option of choosing Toyotas or what not.

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      Dan September 30, 2019 at 8:50 am

      A Reddit user suggested that “selling” cars to Car2Go was a way to game CAFE results, and with the policy changes at the EPA, this strategy went from a net positive to a net negative. Uncertain if that was just speculation or if they were certain about that, but it seems plausible.

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    David LaPorte September 27, 2019 at 2:50 pm

    So sad. I have never owned a car, but may be forced to buy one after this news.

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      9watts September 28, 2019 at 1:31 pm

      cf “many people will have now likely consider buying a car.”

      I really don’t understand this sentiment. Aren’t zipcar and getaround and all the car rental agencies that were always here still here?
      Besides, why do we need use cars to avoid owning cars?

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        raktajino September 28, 2019 at 6:39 pm

        I’m not sure either. If you need origin-destination-back transportation in a car, then Zipcar and Getaround are just fine. Get a zipcar for your giant costco run, etc. For me, Car2Go’s main benefit was the single-leg aspect: realized you got WAY too many groceries for your backpack, or you’re running late to work and missed the bus, that sort of thing. Zipcar, Getaround, and your own car are not replacements for those scenarios, because you are now stuck with the car.

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          9watts September 28, 2019 at 8:17 pm

          I’m probably showing my age here, but isn’t that something a modicum of planning, foresight would take care of? I’ve never once in my 48 years found myself in those unexpected predicaments.

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            Johnny Bye Carter September 29, 2019 at 12:07 pm

            I’m middle-aged and those are all the reasons I used car-share.

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            Dan September 30, 2019 at 8:52 am

            The predicaments were not always unexpected – sometimes you would want to drive into town to meet friends for beers, planning to walk/bikeshare/rideshare home. Not having to worry about parking / returning the car to the origin point allows a whole universe of different journeys that otherwise aren’t possible.

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              9watts September 30, 2019 at 9:02 am

              Sure. I get habituating oneself to planning one’s schedule around such multifarious offerings.
              But perhaps you can also understand planning one’s schedule around far fewer options. It isn’t that hard.
              What I am reacting to is the implicit (and sometimes explicit) attitude that refuses to allow this level of planning; that refuses to accept a reduction in modal-choices-that-presume-spontaneity/reversals/indecision-as-lifestyle.

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            raktajino September 30, 2019 at 12:27 pm

            You’ve never run late for work in 48 years? I find that hard to believe.

            The point is, Car2Go’s system is not immediately transferable to an origin-and-back carshare, transit has its own schedule, and, sorry to say it, not everyone can bike everywhere in every situation. So I understand where the “well f I guess we need a car” is coming from, even if I agree that most will eventually adjust to the remaining options without such a purchase.

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            raktajino September 30, 2019 at 12:30 pm

            Also: When I was dealing with a knee injury, I would sometimes think that I was fine taking the bus or walking, only to by the end of the day realize I was in too much pain to make it to the bus stop. Car2Go was cheaper than a taxi.

            I guess that’s how Car2Go’s niche will be filled: taxis and carshares. Whoop.

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            GlowBoy September 30, 2019 at 4:20 pm

            Never had a situation where something went wrong (bus caught in traffic, bike mechanical, boss held you up leaving the office) and you had to pick up your kid on time or else incur a $10 per minute surcharge? I rarely used car2go but it was nice to have in a handful of those situations.

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            GlowBoy September 30, 2019 at 4:32 pm

            9w, I’m guessing that you make almost all your transportation trips by personal bicycle. If that’s your default mode in leaving the house, of course you’re going to almost always going to return by the same method. Basically you’ve got the same blinders on as car owners who can’t see getting around any other way.

            But if you leave the house by public transit, or foot, or share bike, or share scooter, then you’re not bound by that … but you are also bound by the occasional unreliability of non-personally-owned modes. Maybe you don’t NEED a car to get back home in a certain amount of time, but if it saves you 20 or 30 minutes because you missed your transfer, or all the bikes are checked out at your hub, or the buses are behind schedule because of a car-induced traffic incident somewhere else, occasionally it is a compelling option.

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              9watts September 30, 2019 at 7:02 pm

              “Basically you’ve got the same blinders on as car owners who can’t see getting around any other way.”

              I have no trouble understanding how folks get around.
              What I was questioning was the attitude that withdrawing any of these rather recent options was an affront, something that ‘could force someone to buy a car.’

              “But if you leave the house by public transit, or foot, or share bike, or share scooter, then you’re not bound by that … but you are also bound by the occasional unreliability of non-personally-owned modes.”

              My feet have never been unreliable that I can recall. Buses sometimes, but you just wait for the next one. I’ve also walked home when the bus never came, or I misread the schedule and had to return the way I came. But in those very rare instances (Commerce Circle, Wilsonville) the (retrospective) notion that one could expect some sort of smart phone enabled car2go to have saved me is fanciful.

              “Maybe you don’t NEED a car to get back home in a certain amount of time, but if it saves you 20 or 30 minutes […] occasionally it is a compelling option.”

              Sure. But are we really trying to make policy based on these sorts of convenience differentials?

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                GlowBoy October 1, 2019 at 8:55 am

                “But are we really trying to make policy based on these sorts of convenience differentials?”

                Way to reduce the value of other people’s time to “convenience differentials.” And the answer to your question is YES.

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                9watts October 1, 2019 at 10:02 pm

                You yourself—in the passage to which I was responding—admitted that there was no NEED, just a time savings of 20 or 30 minutes. That is what I am calling a convenience differential.

                In the present moment, in the shadow of the climate juggernaut, we need to start getting used to facing this particular music, accepting that some conveniences we’ve become habituated to we’re going to have to let go. We can no longer have it all. Some things are just not going to survive the coming climate disaster, and the sooner we start dishabituating ourselves the easier it will be.

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                Matt S. October 2, 2019 at 6:14 am

                Money is what moves people to change habits, it’s not going to come voluntarily.

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            GlowBoy September 30, 2019 at 4:40 pm

            Car2go has been scaling back their options for a long time. My guess is they’ll disappear from their remaining 4 cities within two years. If I remember right they shrank their service area 2-3 years ago in Portland, as they did here in Minneapolis a few months before pulling out entirely. AFAIK at that time they withdrew from all locales that charged sales taxes on short-term car rentals, a sign that their margins were thin. And as has been mentioned above, even though they’re manufacturer-owned, renting out vehicles with $40k stickers has got to be more expensive than renting out Smart cars that retail for $12k.

            I think another possible sign of trouble was that although they had expressed interest in adding bike racks to their entire North American fleet – bikes tend to pair well with point-to-point car rentals, as has been discussed on this site before – they were never able to do it. In fact, their demand to fit all Portland cars2go wiped out the entire supply of the one company that made bike racks for Smarts. Evidently the pretty incremental cost of adding bike racks proved to be too much for them to follow through with.

            I don’t relish any of this; I enjoyed using car2go’s service in both Portland and Minneapolis. It was a nice option, even though I never used it more than about once a year. But no surprise that point-to-point car sharing doesn’t pencil out, when even point-to-point bike share options have been shrinking.

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              Matt S. September 30, 2019 at 6:35 pm

              There’s been times in my life where I’ve ridden my bike to work, left it, walked to the bar, ordered a taxi home, and then ran back to work all within 24 hours. Shoot, there were times when my transportation methods were bike, transit, walk, run, carpool, taxi all in the same week. Being car lite means being flexible and creative.

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            Hall October 4, 2019 at 1:27 pm

            A modicum of planning can be hard for people whose executive functioning is impaired by: fatigue, stress, depression, anxiety, ADHD, chronic pain, PTSD, or any number of life circumstances. Planning is also more difficult if one’s schedule depends on a lot of unknowns, like a variable work schedule or children/other dependents.

            I support the sentiment that we shouldn’t expect transportation to always be as convenient as a car, but it’s important to acknowledge that the types of planning you find easy can be much more difficult for a lot of us.

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        David LaPorte September 29, 2019 at 4:05 am

        Zipcar only has about a dozen parking areas in the city, so if you don’t live near one you’re out of luck. Getaround/Turo are more like renting a car and much less available, cheap and convenient than Car2Go.

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          9watts September 29, 2019 at 5:33 am

          OK.
          But then I have to ask where the attitude comes from that corporations–in 2019–should be offering me/us this multi-tiered finely differentiated convenience? We are coming up against hard limits, on pretty much everything, and yet instead of acknowledging these limits, and the inevitability that life is about to change, that lots of things will get less convenient, or even possible, some folks here seem bent on moping, on expressing their outrage that their erstwhile ability to get around cheaply and conveniently by half a dozen different means has just been curtailed. With that kind of maladaptive attitude we are going to be very surprised and unhappy going forward.

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          • Hello, Kitty
            Hello, Kitty September 29, 2019 at 10:46 am

            By the time mobility becomes difficult or impossible due to “hard limits”, so much else will have changed that its coming will hardly be a surprise. We need to (and, I’m convinced will) find a better way to get around long before we hit any hard external limit.

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              9watts September 29, 2019 at 11:11 am

              “We need to (and, I’m convinced will) find a better way to get around long before we hit any hard external limit.”

              What evidence would you invoke to argue why this is more than wishful thinking?

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              • Hello, Kitty
                Hello, Kitty September 29, 2019 at 3:22 pm

                Does it matter if it’s wishful thinking? If we find a solution, great, we have a chance to avoid the worst. If we don’t, we’ll let your hard limits force the issue for us, and we’ll be so screwed it won’t matter anyway.

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                9watts September 29, 2019 at 5:12 pm

                “we’ll be so screwed it won’t matter anyway”

                Yeah, well, that is how we’re different.
                I (want to) believe in our capacity to recognize when we’re in over our heads, and that we will take corrective steps, curtail our appetites, scale back, to avoid that fate. You appear to believe our only hope is forward, is technological prowess, what David Brower famously called ‘strength through exhaustion,’ but even your hope appears to be fading of late.

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              • Hello, Kitty
                Hello, Kitty September 29, 2019 at 6:12 pm

                >>> I (want to) believe in our capacity to recognize when we’re in over our heads, and that we will take corrective steps, curtail our appetites, scale back, to avoid that fate. <<<

                What evidence would you invoke to argue why this is more than wishful thinking?

                We have numerous precedents for solving critical problems, far fewer for "scaling back". Sure, maybe this time will be different, but I wouldn't bet the world on it.

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            soren September 30, 2019 at 1:56 pm

            So have you ever been layed up by injury or illness? How did you get around?

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    maxD September 27, 2019 at 3:24 pm

    this was great option for me. We are a one-car family. I commute by bike, but occasionally need to drive to job site or pick my daughter or something big and Car2Go was was my back-up. I preferred the old smartcars with the bike racks, but the mercedes are better than having to get an Uber or Lyft account. Ugh. I wish Portland would get serious about transit!

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    bikeninja September 27, 2019 at 3:40 pm

    Car2go, Reachnow, and the now closing offspring Sharenow were experiments by two big German Automakers to find a new market for their cars. Now that the worldwide auto business (as well as truck business in Daimlers case) has turned soft they are cutting their losses and getting out because they don’t have the excess cash to pour in to it.

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    Matthew September 27, 2019 at 3:42 pm

    I’m in the same boat as many people who have depended on car2go and ReachNow along with TriMet and biking as an effective way to keep ours a one-car family. We used the car-sharing services with some frequency, and it appears many others did too; I’m honestly shocked that this wasn’t enough to sustain a business. Something doesn’t add up, given the apparent popularity of these services.

    And yes, we’ll likely be forced to buy a second car now.

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    MTW September 27, 2019 at 3:48 pm

    My family went car-lite a little over a year ago and we signed up for both Car2Go and ReachNow at that time. We used it only twice (and one time was just to see how it worked.) But still, this loss has me feeling a little exposed.

    The infrequency of using it means we’ll still push on with 1 car for the household. But I’m pretty bummed about this.

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      John Lascurettes September 27, 2019 at 4:10 pm

      We went car-lite about a year and half ago too. While at first I used Car2Go more frequently than I do now, it was still a very valuable safety net for having an available car. I found that about 30% of the time the vehicles either had a tire that was too low to drive on, or the dash messages said that the vehicle was long overdue for a service appointment. Either way, it never gave me very much confidence in their operations.

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    Carlin September 27, 2019 at 4:16 pm

    Well there’s still Zipcar, Getaround, and Turo; all cheaper options than Car2Go.

    I am sad to hear that Car2Go is leaving though because they’re the only company that offers one-way trips. But they also didn’t have service where I needed it, as I usually only need a car to drive outside of downtown. I think I used their service 6 times in 8 years of being car-less. By comparison, I use Getaround about 5 times a year.

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  • Hello, Kitty
    Hello, Kitty September 27, 2019 at 4:57 pm

    >>> This lack of low-car options comes at a time when many people face longer commutes after being priced out of housing close to their jobs. <<<

    Given where all the new housing is being built, I'd be willing to bet that average commutes are shorter today than they were 20 years ago. If so, it might be more accurate to write:

    "This lack of low-car options comes at a time when an increasing number of people face shorter commutes due to new housing being built in Portland's inner urban core."

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      Mike Quigley September 27, 2019 at 6:23 pm

      He’s talking about the have-nots. Not the haves.

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    B. Carfree September 27, 2019 at 6:05 pm

    I’m kind of disappointed that there are people who think the loss of one car-share company is cause to buy another car (most of the people expressing the desire to purchase are car are already car users). The average cost of purchasing and operating a new car is now estimated to be over $8k/yr. That’s a lot of e-cargo bikes, car rentals, cabs and other car-share use. I doubt if car purchases make financial sense for very many people.

    To be honest, I don’t really care about people’s finances. However, I do wish people would think long and hard about the true cost of a new car. The embodied costs alone are almost an individual’s entire “fair share” of emissions from now until 2030.

    I would hope that there are many people who will use this change to further transition away from car dependence. I suspect there are many people who will do exactly that, but they aren’t ready to announce it.

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      poncho September 29, 2019 at 9:23 am

      a little secret but enterprise has a weekend special sept-may where cars can rented for $10/day from certain neighborhood locations

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    Todd Boulanger September 27, 2019 at 6:05 pm

    I am sad but not surprised…the shift from the useful and highly visible Car2Go Smart Cars was a big hit to the system and me. I have been a car-lite since 1988 and a Vancouver-Portland car share user since 2000 through most of the industry services: Car Share Portland => Flexcar + U-Haul => Zipcar + Car2GO …I guess now I am just Zipcar [& Hui (Honolulu)] customer. I loved the one-way option. We early car share managers and innovators and customers dreamed hard to get to oneway rentals as a service. I guess one step forward and two steps back… ;-(

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      Todd Boulanger September 29, 2019 at 8:21 pm

      Continuing on the discussion: if the industry “leaders” are no longer willing to invest in share car mobility in Portland…perhaps its an opportunity for Tri-Met [+ C-Tran + Westside TMA] to start up a “public” transit+utlity{?} sponsored floating EV carshare…this may be a better way to serve areas poorly served by dial a ride / vanpools [some ADA?] etc. and chip away at some climate goals where bikes alone cannot work [yet, before the full protected regional bikeway network is built]. For example I am in Indianapolis today and the BLUE-INDY has a large regional network of share EVs [biggest in US] that is becoming very integrated with transit IndyGo.

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      Todd Boulanger September 29, 2019 at 8:23 pm

      Speaking on Car2Go…I saw one of their ex-Smart Cars driving around Honolulu last week with the old logos painted over. Perhaps ex-Portland…or ex- Seattle.

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    Todd Boulanger September 27, 2019 at 6:18 pm

    After checking out the Car2Go website it seems they are doubling down on the top tier of mobility cities (what does that say about Portland, and even Chicago etc.?) and also shifting to Canada, it seems.

    “We are now refocusing our efforts and our resources on the cities that present the clearest path to free-floating carshare success: New York City, Washington D.C., Montreal, Vancouver and Seattle.”

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      poncho September 29, 2019 at 9:25 am

      i would be really curious to hear why portland didnt work

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        billyjo September 30, 2019 at 8:37 am

        Portland isn’t nearly dense enough to always have a car close by. When most of the city is 1 house on a 5000 square foot lot, cars aren’t in walking distance of very many. Where there is density, housing prices are so high that we’re talking people with $100,000 + a year incomes and they don’t need car share. For them it is merely an option.

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        GlowBoy September 30, 2019 at 4:27 pm

        They did give some hints, saying that the transportation market has changed a lot since they started up: when they entered the Portland market, we didn’t have bikesharing, we didn’t have point-to-point scooter sharing, and we didn’t even have Uber and Lyft. A lot has changed.

        And as for car2go and ReachNow being owned by European automakers … of course these companies were a means to give their cars more exposure and maybe help meet CAFE goals. Are there really car sharing users that didn’t know that?

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        Chris I October 1, 2019 at 1:55 pm

        I remember seeing piles of cars on the fringes of the service area in SW Portland. 3-7 cars at a time would stack up because one person was using transit/bike into town and Car2Go home. I’m sure this rebalancing was costly. We don’t have the density to serve these areas.

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      maxD September 30, 2019 at 9:56 am

      Portland is more or less a suburban city. It is very car-dependent and PBOT and TriMet work VERY hard to keep it that way. They preserve and provide parking everywhere, they treat transit as an option for poor people, and bikes as an option for kooks.

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    Granpa September 27, 2019 at 6:49 pm

    The whole tech enabled transportation sector is found to be way in front of their skis. Uber/Lyft drive like lost, incompetent tourists and they had to lie and deceive municipalities to even participate. The scooter thing distributes toys in sidewalks through out the city and now the car sharing is collapsing. I don’t think any of these enterprises being able to operate in the black. Recent science news articles reveal that autonomous vehicles have yet to perfect “seeing” which means that vulnerable road users have another threat to their existence.

    From my perch Tech is just another bunch of self serving shysters lying to skim money from the unsuspecting populace.

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      mark September 28, 2019 at 8:23 am

      Yeah, but there’s an app! People love apps.

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      John Lascurettes September 28, 2019 at 10:40 am

      They money C2G skimmed off of me was much, much less than what I spent on owning a car I only occasionally drove — plus, since that car was not always at my beck and call, I was much more likely to reach for a C2G car only when I had a very specific need that called for a personal car instead of taking any of the other (cheaper, healthier, and more eco-friendly) choices available to me to get form a to b.

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      X September 29, 2019 at 2:49 pm

      Waiting for the allegation that autonomous vehicle control absolves motor vehicle users from any blame for a crash. And, who is going to carry the insurance?

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      miss_me_with_that September 30, 2019 at 9:59 am

      i really like this take on it:
      https://humantransit.org/2018/02/breaking-urban-transport-is-not-a-profitable-business.html
      basically, if you could solve the spatial part of the problem and it were profitable, it would have been done before.

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    Matt Meskill September 27, 2019 at 7:57 pm

    I just signed up for Getaround. I guess I’ll have to give it a try.

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    Laura September 27, 2019 at 8:36 pm

    Car2Go and ReachNow are owned by Daimler. Daimler also owns Moovel, which designs and runs the TriMet app and a lot of other mobility tools, including, I believe carshare and bikeshare programs overseas. With the exit of the Daimler luxury-car carshares from Portland, I wouldn’t be surprised to see a) a lower-end vehicle carshare product from Daimler/Moovel, b) entry into the market by lower-end carshare, like Enterprise Carshare, or c) a local start up using re-built previous generation Priuses for a Portland-only green-focus carshare.

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    Champs September 28, 2019 at 12:12 am

    By the end of our attempt to sign up we weren’t sure if it was a car share or a phishing operation. Months after giving up we can’t get off their email list either.

    Good riddance to bad rubbish.

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    Matt S. September 28, 2019 at 7:46 am

    My car subscription entails a $52 insurance bill, $50 for gas, and an average $100 for maintenance. The car is a mere 20 feet from my door and is always available. The car is well maintained, clean, and comes with a child seat. The service allows me to drive into the country anytime I want with no additional fees.

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      Chris I October 1, 2019 at 1:59 pm

      If you live in an area with free car parking, car share will rarely make sense.

      You are ignoring the costs of depreciation. Not much if you are willing to drive a very old vehicle, but many people can’t or don’t want to deal with breakdowns/maintenance.

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        Matt S. October 1, 2019 at 4:05 pm

        My car is 25 years old. I spend about $1200 a year for all maintenance ( including registration). I’ve had some years where it was more and others where it was a lot less. There was one year where all I paid for was two oil changes and registration. My bikes are worth way more than my car…

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    a.l. September 28, 2019 at 8:51 am

    Nearly every time I see a car2go it’s speeding and/or being driven recklessly. IMO their per minute pricing encouraged this behavior. Good riddance.

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  • Jim Labbe
    Jim Labbe September 28, 2019 at 10:21 am

    This is a bummer and will impact my transportation options in the short term, but perhaps we can learn from this failed experiment in privately run, for-profit, car-based solutions. After Car2go dropped their smart cars, raised rates, and shrunk their service area a few years ago they were already becoming a more boutique and exclusive service, a lot less useful to anyone living or working beyond 82nd Ave. It had been and was increasingly a transportation option of the economically secure. Uber is also offering more exclusive services apparently as a revenue generating strategy while allegedly having to subsidize their base rate trips to maintain market share. This too probably won’t be sustainable. Uber may go the way of Car2go in Portland and elsewhere. Is there folly in ever assuming that private for profit car-based solutions could sustainably increase transportation options and equitably transform our transportation system? Perhaps it is time to recommit and reinvest in public infrastructure for biking, waking, & transit and to land use and development policies that increase proximity between jobs, housing, and parks & nature…. for all income levels.

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    matchupancakes September 28, 2019 at 4:36 pm

    Mike Quigley
    He’s talking about the have-nots. Not the haves.Recommended 4

    I heard what you saying as families are pushed further out and I also see the opposite which H,K is sharing: Childhood friends who grew up in Portland live in surprisingly affordable, relatively speaking, multifamily rentals where single family, detached housing had existed for decades previously. Richmond neighborhood is just one example that comes to mind.

    My point is that these are not well paid transplants from elsewhere but Portland-born adults who are able to remain here due to the rapid expansion of new housing choices. Had the explosion of development not occurred they would have been displaced. Both haves and have-nots benefit from increased housing choices and overwhelmingly new multifamily units tend to be close in locations with correspondingly short commutes.

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    Fred September 28, 2019 at 5:06 pm

    I liked Car2Go and used it occasionally, but I always thought it weird that Car2Go’s service area was so small AND was focused on downtown and inner SE Portland, areas already well-served by TriMet, Uber, Lyft, scooters, and other options. I live in fairly dense suburb of Portland with a neighborhood core, and I wrote to Car2Go several times to suggest they locate 4-5 cars in a “hub” in the neighborhood core. But the one time a Car2Go rep deigned to answer, he provided nothing but bureaucratic clap-trap that was probably written by a computer.

    Also I hated Car2Go’s pricing by the minute, which encouraged speeding and raised my blood-pressure. They could have used a much-less-stressful distance-based pricing model. Oh well – nice try.

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    Johnny Bye Carter September 29, 2019 at 12:23 pm

    Good riddance!

    I liked this service initially when it was small compact Smart cars. I hated myself for the multiple times I was feeling “lazy” and decided to take a car to or from work only to be reminded how much it sucks to be trapped in traffic. But it was still nice to have the option, even a hated one. But then they made it worse by ditching the small cars. My first experience with the new SUV models was at night and I couldn’t find the seat adjustment (they’re on the door, not on the seat!) and so drove miles across town cramped uncomfortably behind the wheel because I was not going to waste several dollars of rental time trying to learn which of the over 100 buttons controlled the seat. Yes, over 100 buttons (not to mention levers and knobs) adorn the insides of these beasts and distract you at every opportunity. And they don’t even have navigation maps on the dash (Error: disc not inserted).

    Good riddance to huge wastes of space in a dense city.

    Soon we’ll have shareable electric bikes and a compact rain cape can be kept in my pocket. Until then it’s a short rainy wait for the bus.

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    X September 29, 2019 at 1:01 pm

    I grabbed a piece of junk mail and estimated that I’ve spent about $15,000 on full-time cargo bike access. Of course that was over more than two decades. Also I still have the bike.

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    Kittens September 29, 2019 at 7:37 pm

    I wonder how many billions of dollars of vc money they blew threw.

    Never really a fan as it only addressed the parking issue of everyone owning a car, not congestion. Just a band-aid.

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      Matt October 4, 2019 at 11:25 am

      “only addressed the parking issue of everyone owning a car” …that’s pretty good tho, especially in this increasingly dense city. Why does it have to be magic perfection to get your fandom? Plus, when you own a car, you tend to use it more than if you have to rent one by the minute. Cause it’s there, and you’re paying for it anyway in insurance, car payments, etc. So, reasonable to think that it affected congestion as well.

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    9watts September 30, 2019 at 3:32 pm

    soren
    So have you ever been layed up by injury or illness? How did you get around?Recommended 0

    I am not sure who you are asking, but doesn’t the phrase ‘layed up’ suggest the opposite? That you aren’t getting around, aren’t in the mood or able or inclined to? When I’m sick I’m not going anywhere.

    My point was and is that if you don’t have a car, or aren’t used to having one at the ready, or maybe are just from another time, these spontaneously arising scenarios-that-seem-to-demand-an-auto-right-now which people mention here–suggest happen to them with some regularity–maybe just don’t appear. Maybe we’re just different that way.

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    • Hello, Kitty
      Hello, Kitty September 30, 2019 at 3:39 pm

      I never appreciated why everyone loved cell phones until I got one. I still don’t fully appreciate it, but I do see why they’re useful now that I’ve started to let my life adapt to increased flexibility they provide.

      Necessary to survive? Hardly. Helpful in a range of scenarios I’d never foreseen? Absolutely.

      It is also possible that this is a service that is simply not for you.

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        9watts September 30, 2019 at 4:29 pm

        But a cell phone isn’t something that merely provides flexibility; it creates new social conditions, habits, norms that make having it necessary. Sort of like the automobile, or the internet. The new flexibility you appreciate can also be understood as a new dependence upon others-with-cell-phones who no longer stick to schedules, or give you their address, or know how to read a map.

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        • Hello, Kitty
          Hello, Kitty September 30, 2019 at 4:34 pm

          In modern society I am dependent on others for almost everything. I would literally be unable to survive without considerable assistance from other people. This dependence gives my life much greater flexibility than if I had to somehow do everything myself, and I’m grateful for it.

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    Phil September 30, 2019 at 4:46 pm

    Not sure if anyone has mentioned this but what would need to happen for Trimet to get into offering a c2go style fleet?

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