Do you know which city claims the nation’s largest electric car share? If your guess is Denver, guess again. The answer is Indianapolis. That’s right – the good old home of corn, basketball, and the Indy 500 is a leading force in the movement towards electric vehicles.
I would never have known this if I had not recently attended “Electronic Vehicle Trends and Opportunities: Indianapolis Stakes Its Leadership Claim”. The first Friday of every month, TechPoint partners with Barnes & Thornburg and WGU Indiana to present a topic in their “New Economy, New Rules” series. This particular presentation dealt with how Indianapolis is developing in the electric vehicle industry and what to look for in the future as a result of this development.
Interestingly, Paris has a role to play in the electric car share that is coming to Indy. A French company, Bollore, which runs a successful electric car share program in Paris, is going to place 500 electric cars and 1,200 charging stations around central Indiana in early 2014. This means that you can get from point A to point B by simply checking out a car at its station and checking it in at your destination.
While this development is truly exciting, it does raise some interesting questions. For instance, who will be the most likely consumers of this program – will it target an older or younger demographic? Some think that millennials are more likely to move to a city if it is eco-friendly and offers good public transportation. This may be true, but as a millennial myself, I would argue that convenience plays a big part in transportation choices. If electric vehicle transportation is the most convenient option, then we will get the best of both worlds because it is convenient and more fuel efficient.
Whatever the motivating factor in the use of electric vehicles, the electric car share program is coming to Indy. Time will tell who the most prominent users are and how quickly the program catches on, so stay tuned! After all, it is a new economy with new rules.
Quote: Once a new technology rolls over you, if you’re not part of the steamroller, you’re part of the road – Stewart Brand.