Flexible Carsharing—Potential for the Diffusion of Electric Mobility

  • Sandra WappelhorstEmail author
  • Julia Dobrzinski
  • Andreas Graff
  • Josephine Steiner
  • Daniel Hinkeldein
Part of the Lecture Notes in Mobility book series (LNMOB)


Electric mobility is a key to a sustainable, climate and environmentally friendly mobility. However, in terms of electrically operated cars it has not spread to the full extent of its potential. From the user’s perspective there are two major barriers in buying an electric car: it costs more than a car with an internal combustion engine and also, it has in general a limited range compared to a conventional vehicle. Carsharing with electric vehicles is one promising solution to balance the mentioned high costs and the lack of range: Firstly, the total costs of ownership can be spread among many users and secondly, as a part of the public transport system it can offer a complement for local and long-distance travel. To validate that especially flexible carsharing services with electric cars are suitable in spreading electric mobility, the paper presents a study which was carried out in the city of Berlin comprising several surveys. Expectations and experiences of users with a flexible carsharing offer including exclusively electric vehicles were evaluated and analysed over a period of 1 year. Overall, the results show that most users of flexible e-carsharing have no problem with the specific characteristics of the electric vehicles. Driving range and charging are generally not a limiting factor. For the majority of the users the “e”-component is even a reason to use the offer. Thus, flexible e-carsharing seems to be a good concept to spread electric mobility.


Electric mobility Carsharing Flexible carsharing Electric carsharing e-Carsharing 



This study was kindly funded by the German Federal Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure (BMVI) whose support made this research possible.


  1. Agassi S (2009) World without oil. Better place builds a future for electric vehicles. In: Innovations, fall 2009, pp 125–140Google Scholar
  2. bcs Bundesverband CarSharing e.V (2013) Bundesverband carsharing annual balance 2012: carsharing growth as never before. Accessed 30 June 2013
  3. Bock B, Wolter F, Scherf C (2012) BeMobility: integrated ecarsharing in Berlin. Routes-Roads 354:76–83Google Scholar
  4. Burkhardt J, Millard-Ball A (2006) Who is attracted to carsharing? Transp Res Rec: J Transp Res Board 1986(1):98–105CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Canzler W, Hunsicker F, Karl A, König U, Lange G, Maertins C, Ruhrort L (2007) DB Mobility—Beschreibung und Positionierung eines multimodalen Verkehrsdienstleisters, InnoZ Baustein Nr. 1, Innovationszentrum für Mobilität und Gesellschaftlichen Wandel, BerlinGoogle Scholar
  6. Canzler W, Knie A (2009) Green solutions to the auto crisis—from auto makers to mobility service providers, strategy paper, Heinrich Böll Foundation (Editor), Publication Series on Ecology, Volume 4, BerlinGoogle Scholar
  7. Canzler W, Knie A (2011) Einfach aufladen. Mit Elektromobilität in eine neue Zukunft, MünchenGoogle Scholar
  8. Canzler W, Knie A (2013) Schlaue Netze: Wie die Energie- und Verkehrswende gelingt, MünchenGoogle Scholar
  9. Car2go (2013) Mehr Berlin mit mehr als 1200 car2go. Accessed 27 Aug 2013
  10. Deutsche Bahn (2013) Flinkster - Mein Carsharing. Accessed 27 Aug 2013
  11. DriveNow (2013) BMW und MINI in ganz Berlin. Accessed 27 Aug 2013
  12. Firnkorn J, Müller M (2011) What will be the environmental effects of new free-floating car-sharing systems? The case of car2go in Ulm. Ecol Econ 70(8):1519–1528Google Scholar
  13. Hasse S, Hendzlik M, Hoffmann C, Hinkeldein D (2011) Customer needs and acceptance of electric vehicles as part of integrated transport concepts. In: Presented at the final conference of the socio-economic research of the “Model region electric mobility Bremen/Oldenburg”, BremenGoogle Scholar
  14. Hinkeldein D, Hoffmann C, Schönduwe R (2012) Using attitude-based focus groups to analyze the potential of electric vehicles as part of integrated mobility services. In: Presented at the transportation research board, WashingtonGoogle Scholar
  15. Hoffmann C, Graff A, Kuttler A, Hendzlik M, Wolter F (2012) Bewertung integrierter Mobilitätsdienste mit Elektrofahrzeugen aus Nutzerperspektive, InnoZ Baustein Nr. 11, Innovationszentrum für Mobilität und gesellschaftlichen Wandel, BerlinGoogle Scholar
  16. Hoffmann C, Hinkeldein D, Graff A, Kramer S (n.d.) What do users think about electric mobility? In: Evolutionary paths towards the mobility patterns of the future. Springer, BerlinGoogle Scholar
  17. Martin E, Shaheen S, Lidicker J (2010) The impact of carsharing on household vehicle holdings: results from a North American shared-use vehicle survey. Transp Res Rec 2143:150–158CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Multicity Carsharing (2013) Citroën multicity carsharing Berlin. Accessed 27 Aug 2013
  19. Müller C, Benad H, Rennhak C (2011) E-Moblity - Treiber, Implikationen für die beteiligten Branchen und mögliche Geschäftsmodelle. Reutlinger Diskussionsbeiträge zu marketing and management, no 09Google Scholar
  20. OECD Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, ITF International Transport Forum: Transport Outlook (2012) Seamless transport for greener growth, ParisGoogle Scholar
  21. Proff H (2013) Geschäftsmodelle zwischen technischen Herausforderungen und betriebswirtschaftlichen Notwendigkeiten im Übergang in die Elektromobilität. In: Proff H (ed) Herausforderungen für das automotive engineering and management. Springer Fachmedien, Wiesbaden, pp 1–23Google Scholar
  22. Ried M (2013) Technik- und Kostengesichtspunkte in der Entwicklung elektrifizierter Fahrzeuge. In: Proff H (ed) Herausforderungen für das automotive engineering and management. Springer Fachmedien, Wiesbaden, pp 25–36Google Scholar
  23. Schäfers T (2013) Exploring carsharing usage motives: a hierarchical means-end chain analysis. Transp Res Part A 47:69–77Google Scholar
  24. Scherf C (2010) Entwicklungshürden der Elektromobilität. Das Verhältnis zwischen Antriebsparadigma und Automobilleitbild. InnoZ-Baustein Nr 8, Innovationszentrum für Mobilität und gesellschaftlichen Wandel, BerlinGoogle Scholar
  25. Shaheen SA, Cohen AP (2013) Carsharing and personal vehicle services: worldwide market developments and emerging trends. Int J Sustain Transp 7(1):5–34CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Steininger K, Vogl C, Zettl R (1996) Car-Sharing organizations: the size of the market segment and revealed change in mobility behavior. Transp Policy 3(4):177–185CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Wappelhorst S, Graff A, Steiner J, Hinkeldein D (2013) New carsharing offers and customer groups: implications for a growing and diversifying market. In: Proceedings of the European transport conference (ETC) 2013, FrankfurtGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Sandra Wappelhorst
    • 1
    Email author
  • Julia Dobrzinski
    • 1
  • Andreas Graff
    • 1
  • Josephine Steiner
    • 1
  • Daniel Hinkeldein
    • 1
  1. 1.InnoZ—Innovation Centre for Mobility and Societal ChangeBerlinGermany

Personalised recommendations