Car-rental heavyweight Hertz is rolling into Austin to test a unique — and pricey — subscription service.
Local drivers can be among the first in the U.S. to try Hertz's new monthly subscription service, Hertz My Car, available only in Austin and Atlanta. The program, a departure from Hertz's standard rental operations, aims to give drivers the freedom and flexibility of having a car without the costs of commitment ownership, but it comes at a steep price of its own.
For $999 a month, drivers can enroll in the basic Tier 1 subscription and take their pick from what Hertz calls its "best fleet ever," an inventory of small SUVs, small trucks, and full-size sedans. Among the available vehicles are the Volkswagen Tiguan, Toyota Tacoma, Nissan Altima, and more.
For those with even deeper pockets (and who really want to ride around in style), there's a Tier 2 package that runs $1,399 a month. In that price range, subscribers can choose from a selection of regular SUVs, larger trucks, and luxury sedans, including Jeep Grand Cherokee, Infiniti QX60, Ford F-150, Cadillac CTS, and more.
In either tier, the "all-inclusive" monthly subscription covers insurance, maintenance costs, damage and liability protection, and roadside assistance. Drivers can also exchange their vehicle twice a month at no additional cost, meaning SUV one week, sedan the next.
“Hertz My Car enables customers to choose vehicles that best match their needs and offers freedom and flexibility from vehicle ownership and maintenance costs, which is especially appealing to those seeking alternatives to owning or leasing a car,” said Jayesh Patel, Hertz senior vice president of brand in a release, noting that “Atlanta and Austin are prime testing grounds with diverse and progressive communities."
After the Austin and Atlanta test-drives, the company plans to expand the service nationwide.
“We feel well positioned to lead in vehicle subscription services. We’ve seen growth in our longer-term rentals in recent years which we believe is one of several positive indicators the time is right for this service,” Patel said.
In addition to the base price, there's a one-time $250 enrollment fee. Hertz also has a two-month minimum contract period, and drivers must be at least 25 years old, have a Gold Plus Rewards membership, and good credit.