It's a small step towards once again selling cars in the United States.
It's no secret that Paris-based Peugeot wants to return to the United States after a quarter of a century-long absence. The company has just taken its first step towards making a comeback by introducing a car-sharing application named Free2Move.
Peugeot isn't starting its own car-sharing program; at least not yet. Free2Move is like Expedia for car-sharing programs. It lets users compare the rates and availability of services like Car2Go, ZipCar, and TravelCar. Bike-sharing programs such as Ofo, Lime Bike, and Spin Bike will be added to the app in the coming months.
Once they have a clear idea of what a trip will cost, motorists can use the Free2Move app to book a car for minutes, hours, or days. Peugeot presumably takes a small commission, though it hasn't published remuneration details yet.
Free2Move isn't entirely new. It's available in seven European countries including France, Germany, the United Kingdom, Italyand Sweden. 400,000 users have already downloaded the app on the Old Continent.
"As we begin to add more providers and roll out to new cities, Free2Move will enrich the lives of Americans who embrace innovative, non-traditional forms of transportation," promised Brigitte Courtehoux, the company's senior vice president of mobility.
Peugeot's North American branch won't remain an app company for long. The company ultimately plans on launching its own car-sharing program with Peugeot, Citroen, DS, Opel, and/or Vauxhall cars. One -- or several -- of those brands will eventually return to our shores, but it most likely won't be until well into the 2020s.