Hertz Global Holdings Inc., barely four months out of bankruptcy, placed an order for 100,000 Teslas in the first step of an ambitious plan to electrify its rental-car fleet, according to people with knowledge of the matter, Bloomberg News reports.
It’s the single-largest purchase ever for electric vehicles and represents about $4.2 billion of revenue for Tesla Inc., according to the people, who asked not to be identified because the information is private. While car-rental companies typically demand big discounts from automakers, the size of the order implies that Hertz is paying close to list prices.
The cars will be delivered over the next 14 months, and Tesla’s Model 3 sedans will be available to rent at Hertz locations in major U.S. markets and parts of Europe starting in early November, the people said. Customers will have access to Tesla’s network of superchargers, and Hertz is also building its own charging infrastructure, they said.
The electrification plan, which eventually will encompass almost all of Hertz’s half-million cars and trucks worldwide, is the company’s first big initiative since emerging from bankruptcy in June. And it signals that Hertz’s new owners, Knighthead Capital Management and Certares Management, are intent on shaking up an industry dominated by a handful of large players who are typically slow to change.