Carsharing for sustainable urban mobility. Possibilities and obstacles of integrating car sharing into public transport

Master's Thesis, 2020

109 Pages, Grade: 1,0




A: Theoretical Study
1 Introduction
1.1 Context and problem definition
1.2 Objectives and methodological approach
2 Initialsituation
2.1 Mobility, traffic and sustainable urban mobility
2.2 Global environmental issues Theoretical Framework
3 Car Sharing as an Example of Shared Mobility
3.1 The sharing economy
3.2 Definitionofcarsharing
3.3 Typesofcarsharing
3.3.1 Stationed-based car sharing
3.3.2 Free-floating car sharing
3.3.3 Peer-to-Peer car sharing
3.4 CarsharingmarketinGermany
3.5 Relevant providers in Germany
3.6 Motives behind the use ofcarsharing
3.6.1 Economicmotivation
3.6.2 Environmentalmotivation
3.7 The pros and cons of car sharing
3.8 Practical examples of the sharing economy
4 Combined Mobility-The Interface between Individual and Public
4.1 Public transport in Germany
4.2 Combined mobility as a challenge for future public transport
4.3 The impact of car sharing on public transport
5 The Effects of Car Sharing Systems on Mobility and Environment in Urban Areas
5.1 Carsharing-Thefourth pillaroftheenvironmentalalliance
5.2 MobilityasaService
5.3 Electricmobility
5.4 Reduction of traffic congestion through car sharing

B: Empirical Study
6 Research Question and Objectives
7 Methodology
7.1 Research design
7.2 Data gathering method
7.3 Designoftheinterviewguide
7.4 Experts
7.5 Procedure
7.6 Analysis of qualitative data
8 ResearchFindings
8.1 Introductionofexperts
8.2 Section one: Traffic situation
8.2.1 Germany
8.2.2 Trafficchanges
8.3 Section two: Car sharing
8.3.1 Existingbarriers
8.3.2 Possibleincentives
8.3.3 Interfaces and alliances
8.3.4 Support from federal, state and local authorities
8.3.5 Communication measures
8.3.6 Futuredevelopments
8.4 Section three: Collective passenger transport
8.4.1 Existingobstacles
8.4.2 Possibleincentives
8.4.3 Future developments
8.4.4 Recap
9 Discussion
9.1 Results
9.2 Limitations and recommendations
10 Conclusion

List of Figures

Figure 1. Car sharing capital of Germany

Figure 2. Cost comparison between car rental and car sharing

Figure 3. Cost comparison between taxi and car sharing

Figure 4. Reasons for registering with car sharing services

List of Tables

Table 1. Typical characteristics ofthe business models

Table 2. The largest car sharing providers by fleet size

Table 3. Code system

Table 4. Overview of experts


Abbildung in dieser Leseprobe nicht enthalten

A: Theoretical Study

1 Introduction

1.1 Context and problem definition

"Sustainability is not just about adopting the latest energy-efficient technologies or turning to renewable sources of power. Sustainability is the responsibility of every individual every day. It is about changing our behaviour and mindset to reduce power and water consump­tion, thereby helping to control emissions and pollution levels." (Kaeser, 2020).

The Rio de Janeiro Summit 1992, better known as the United Nations Conference of Envi­ronment and Development, was a central milestone in the history of sustainable develop­ment. The premise of a sustainability concept was to satisfy the needs of the present without risking penalising the needs of future generations. All countries participating in this confer­ence thus committed themselves to make an active contribution to promoting sustainable development (Bundesministerium für wirtschaftliche Zusammenarbeit und Entwicklung [BMZ], 2020). A significant challenge in this context is the containment of the rapidly in­creasing CO2 emissions. The transport sector, as a significant source of CO2 emissions, must be given special consideration in this endeavour. Especially in Germany the CO2 emissions caused by the transport sector have more than doubled since the 1960s. Alt­hough technical innovations in the automotive industry have reduced emissions per pas­senger kilometre in recent years, these savings have been largely offset by increasing traffic volumes and the popularity of high-performance, fuel-efficient vehicles (Öko Institut e.V., 2011; Rogall, 2009). In addition to the pure CO2 problem caused by motorised private transport, a continually growing number of passenger cars raises further problem areas that significantly restrict the population's quality of life. Particularly conurbations suffer from far- reaching congestion problems. (Glotz-Richter, 2012). In view of the vital goal of long-term sustainable development, and in particular of sustainable mobility, the containment of mo­torised private transport must be seen as a significant challenge for the current generation as well as for future generations. Scientific studies from the German region clearly show that the passenger car is still a convenient means of transport for the majority of the popu­lation (Umweltbundesamt, 2012).

To be able to contain this dilemma, a large number of possible solutions are being discussed in public discourse. Particular focus in this context is placed on the development sector of the automotive industry. Central components of this are technical innovations and especially electric mobility, which are ecologically valuable (Doll et al., 2012). Experts also point out further measures, such as increasing traffic efficiency or alternative mobility concepts, for achieving sustainable mobility. The shared use of vehicles through the mobility concept of car sharing, as part of the sharing economy, is an example in this context. An idea that enables individual motorised mobility but does not require the possession of an own car (Bundesministerium für Umwelt, Naturschutz und nukleare Sicherheit [BMU], 2020a). The sharing economy is a phenomenon that has become increasingly widespread in recent years. It is seen as a development in which more and more people exchange and share services or goods via the Internet instead of buying them. This is also known as collabora­tive consumption in the literature (Dorn, 2013). Over the past few years, there has been a change in consumer habits - away from a possessive attitude towards a user society, true to the motto "use instead of buying". The interest and dissemination of sharing offers have increased significantly. Car sharing offers new opportunities for automotive companies; some have already recognised the potential in recent years and are increasingly developing into mobility service providers (Kienzler et al., 2015).

1.2 Objectives and methodological approach

This master's thesis aims to examine the key drivers of development in the car sharing industry in order to derive possible effects on sustainable urban mobility. The resulting con­clusions provide information about areas in which the various car sharing stakeholders must take action and which processes should be restructured if necessary. In addition, it is ex­amined whether positive or negative effects of car sharing on public transport can already be identified. Based on the research location selected for this study, the possibilities and obstacles with which the concept of car sharing can be integrated into public transport will also be examined.

At the beginning of this paper, the reader is introduced to the basics ofthe sharing economy, giving them a basic understanding of the further course ofthe study. In order to delve deeper into the topic, the origin of the sharing economy will be determined, and its relevance in the socio-economic environment demonstrated. The motives of the members of sharing ser­vices will be outlined. Since technological progress and electric mobility are the decisive drivers for the change in consumer behaviour, these areas will be discussed. The focus of this master's thesis lies on commercial car sharing, which is therefore covered in more detail than private car sharing. It will be clarified how the sharing mobility has developed in recent years and what motives, under consideration of economic and ecological aspects, have led consumers to use it to an ever-increasing extent. Besides, the advantages and disad­vantages from the customer's point of view are worked out in order to examine whether reasons for the enormous market growth can already be deduced from this. Based on the preceding qualitative data collection, conclusions are drawn about the possible effects on urban sustainability, and both opportunities and challenges are elaborated so that ap­proaches for corrective action can be crystallized. With the help of this precise picture ofthe individual topics, it can be concluded whether car sharing as such contributes to sustainable development in the Federal Republic of Germany and thus generates positive economic and social effects in addition to the positive ecological effects. This paper ends in chapter ten with a summary of the study and a brief outlook. At the same time, recommendations are made for actions with which the market development of car sharing could be promoted, and the associated positive ecological, economic and social potential further strengthened. One of the unique achievements of this study is the intensive examination of subjective attitudes to car sharing and their significance for the acceptance and use of car sharing.

Remarkable here is the elaboration of the differences in personal car evaluation between users of station-based car sharing on the one hand and free-floating car sharing on the other. While members of station-based car sharing see the car as an instrument, members offree-floating car sharing have a strong emotional relationship with the car.

This research method was carried out in Stuttgart, the capital of Baden-Württemberg, Ger­many, where electric car sharing is particularly significant compared to other cities or re­gions. Stuttgart is one ofthe most innovative industrial regions in the state and is the sixth- largest city in Germany with almost 635,000 inhabitants. Most of the employees work in the automotive industry and mechanical engineering. The background for the research location is the Transport Development Concept 2030, which has defined guidelines and strategies for transport planning in the following years in order to reduce particulate matter, exhaust gases, congestion and noise. Among other aspects, this concept includes a division of traffic into cars, trains, buses, cyclists and pedestrians (Stuttgart, 2020b). In terms ofthe level of motorisation, the districts of Möhringen and Zuffenhausen are ahead with 917 and 613 cars per 1000 inhabitants respectively, as several large companies and car manufacturers have registered their company fleets here. The central city district of Stuttgart has 551 cars per 1000 inhabitants, which is unusually high for a city centre (Stuttgarter Nachrichten, 2020).

2 Initial Situation

The central research area of this paper is the mobility concept of car sharing in particular. That this mobility concept can be discussed further in the following chapter, it is necessary to clarify what is meant by sustainability, mobility and other related aspects.

2.1 Mobility, traffic and sustainable urban mobility

The term mobility is originally derived from the Latin word "mobilitas", which means as much as agility (Hillmann, 2007). Canzler and Knie perceive the term as mental mobility, which is limited by a specific area. In this area, the individuum defines in its mind which mobility possibilities are realizable for itself. Outside of this area, no mobility is conceivable (Canzler & Knie, 2006). Mobility, therefore, denotes the individual possibility of movement as such.

The term traffic refers more to the specific, measurable amount of movement that take place within a particular area and at a specific time. Individual mobility is associated with some­thing positive and is regarded as significant for each individual. According to this, every person should be able to enjoy individual and boundless mobility. Aspects such as the shortage of parking space and congestion caused by the traffic itself are considered worthy of reduction and are viewed critically by the public. This leads to the general attitude that traffic itself must be changed and restricted. Mobility and traffic are therefore related to each other but can also be in a specific area of conflict and should, therefore, be considered separately (Flade et al., 2001).

Sustainable mobility combines mobility and traffic and includes the general idea of sustain­able development at the same time. Ecological, economic and social aspects have to be taken into account when pursuing the goal of sustainable mobility. The costs of mobility must be within a monetary framework, thereby the environment must be protected, and ecological, economic and social aspects must be considered (Eckhardt, 2006). The mobility concept of car sharing, which is in focus, can certainly meet these requirements and is therefore of central importance, especially for the development of sustainable mobility in the future.

2.2 Global environmental issues

The problems of the environment and its changes can no longer be ignored. Industrialisation brought along not only positive economic development but also an increasing burden for the environment. This can be seen in a polluted, unhealthy atmosphere, an enormous ex­pansion of the ozone layer and global warming. The origin of these problems is predomi­nantly air pollution expressed by the emissions that we blow into the atmosphere day by day (Omnia Verlag, 2020). In particular, the climate change that is currently taking place on our planet is reshaping the world and increasing the risks of instability of all kinds. In the past decades, the eighteen warmest years since temperature recording began have been observed. Global warming as a cause is changing our environment, leading to more fre­quent and intense extreme weather events. Weather-related disasters have caused record economic costs in recent years. As a long-term strategy, the commitment of the European Union (EU) will be strengthened in its commitment to fight for global climate protection (Eu­ropean Commission, 2018).

In the year 2016, the government of Germany adopted a plan addressing climate targets, further called the Climate Protection Plan 2025. It contains the long-term goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions as far as possible by the year 2050. The medium-term objective is to lessen discharges of ozone-depleting substances by 55 per cent by 2030 compared with 1990 levels in any case. The climate protection plan also defines the climate targets by 2030 for the individual sectors of energy supply, buildings and transport, industry and commerce, and agriculture and forestry. The restructuring of the energy supply is of central importance for this work; in this sector, essential steps have already been taken with the energy turnaround. Through the further development of sustainable power sources and the steady decay of fossil energy supply, the sector’s emissions are relied upon to be decreased by around 60 percent by 2030 contrasted and their level in 1990 (BMU, 2020b). The transport sector is also essential and will contribute around 40 per cent to the climate ob­jective for 2030. Several climate protection concepts for road traffic will provide measures to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 2030. Among other things, these include emissions from passenger cars and light and heavy commercial vehicles. Issues of a greenhouse gas emission-free energy supply, the necessary infrastructure and sector-coupling (through electric mobility) will also be addressed. In the transport sector, alternative propulsion op­tions, local public transport, rail transport, cycling and walking, but also a digitalisation strat­egy play a fundamental role (BMU, 2020b).

Humans are considered to be the cause of climate change. As mentioned in chapter 1.1, the world population will grow from 7.7 billion today to 9.7 billion by 2050 (DSW, 2020). In addition to the increasing demand for mobility, the population density of the metropolitan areas is continually growing. Viewed globally, the proportion of urban residents in the total population will increase by 13 per cent by 2050, whereby Asia and Africa will make the most significant leaps forward (Statista, 2020a). In Germany today, three out of four inhabitants, around 77 per cent, already live in cities - in 2050, the estimated figure will be 84.3 per cent (Statista, 2020b).

Consumption causes alarming concentrations of a wide range of air pollutants in many re­gions. Urbanisation and the intensifying environmental problems are progressively trans­forming megacities in developing and emerging countries into an extreme and risky habitat fortheir residents (Bundeszentralefür politische Forschung, 2020). Particularly large cities and conurbations are confronted day after day with the consequences of increasing traffic volumes. Parking pressure, traffic jams, accidents, pollution and noise are omnipresent and pose an enormous challenge to local politics and urban development in implementing effi­cient measures to solve problems. Digitalisation, innovative business models and new tech­nologies are expected to make a decisive contribution to this (PricewaterhouseCoopers [PWC], 2017). In particular, parking in large cities is limited and sometimes expensive (Co­hen & Shaheen, 2008).

Several larger European cities have already responded to this. London introduced the city toll as early as 2003, so anyone who wants to enter the city by car on weekdays between seven am and six pm has to charge it. By doing so, the authorities want to reduce car traffic and alleviate congestion, polluted air and noise. Since then, traffic in London has fallen by a third. Milan and Stockholm have also introduced city tolls, whereas in Germany, this is still being discussed (Zeit Online, 2019). In these metropolises, it will be inevitable to com­mute by public transport during rush hours and traditional local public transport services will remain a compromise solution in the future. Especially in the conurbations, the future be­longs increasingly to the networked, public-individual transport of people. Intermodal com­bined transport - which uses different means of transport to reach a given destination - is growing steadily (Matthies, Stricker & Tsang, 2011). German cities are entirely or partially declared as environmental zones, to pass through these cities the so-called Umweltplakette is required. This was introduced in 2018 as a particulate matter plaque and allows entry to these zones. Cars and trucks with worse emission standards are not allowed to drive into these zones. In Germany, there are 58 environmental zones; 57 of them only allow vehicles with a green plaque. The objective of these environmental zones is to reduce the pollutant emissions caused by road traffic. Particulate matter plaques are available in three colours red, yellow and green in relation to the respective pollutant group. The green plaque is available for petrol vehicles with regulated catalytic converters as well as diesel vehicles. The prerequisite for this is that exhaust gas values are assigned to a particular pollutant class. Driving bans in environmental zones also apply to vehicles registered abroad. The ordinance makes no exception for electric vehicles; even if they are identifiable by an elec­tric car number plate, they also need a green environmental plaque to be permitted entering low emission zones (ADAC, 2020). The future of mobility through a change in values.

The average driver in Germany spends 120 hours in traffic jams every year, and those who live in large cities are hit even harder (Die Welt, 2019). Representative mobility surveys show that a car in Germany is neither fully loaded in terms of passenger capacity nor time. According to a study, vehicles are only moved about 80 minutes per day and thus stand around unused almost 22 hours. Besides, the rate of occupancy is meagre, averaging 1.5 persons per trip. Indispensable for the success of car sharing is a specific change in the value system of the user in the direction of consumer behaviour in which the status of own­ership loses value (PWC, 2017).

Current figures from the Federal Motor Transport Authority (KBA) show that the number of young people holding a drivers' license in Germany has been continuously decreasing for years. In 2010, just under five million young people between the ages of 17 and 24 still had a driving licence. On the effective date of January 1st, 2019, only around 4.4 millions of these were allowed to drive on the roads (RP Online, 2019 & KBA, 2020). In terms of the division of transport vehicles among car owners, the bicycle recorded the most significant relative increase in share overall. The bicycle gained a greater share everywhere, among men and women, in urban and rural areas and for various travel purposes. However, the increase in the proportion of bicycles was unusually substantial in educational transport, where the proportion of bicycles rose from ten per cent to 16 per cent (Institut für Mobili­tätsforschung [Ifmo], 2011). Despite the growth prospects worldwide, several megatrends will massively influence and change future mobility behaviour and the associated customer needs, including the general conditions for global automobile sales. Various global devel­opments can be identified, such as increasing population density and the growth of metro­politan areas on the one hand, restrictions and alternatives for the own car on the other hand, as well as changes in general demand behaviour. They all challenge the traditional business models of car manufacturers and demand new or extended offers and solutions for individual mobility requirements (Matthies et al., 2011). For automobile manufacturers, these changes are both a threat and an opportunity. In his keynote speech at the opening of the IAA1, Dieter Zetsche, chief executive of Daimler, made clear that Daimler is no longer a car manufacturer (Gruenderszene, 2015a). Mercedes-Benz is transforming itself from a traditional car manufacturer to a networked mobility provider. The Bavarian car manufac­turer BMW also decided to transform itself in the same way (BMW Group, 2016). Volkswagen has also founded an independent mobility services company called Moia (PWC, 2017). With its car sharing services, the long-distance bus line Flixbus and the long­distance train Flixtrain, the Daimler Group already has a solid foundation. Deutsche Bahn AG and Daimler AG have already started a cooperation in 2015 to unite their mobility plat­forms moovel (Daimler) and Flinkster (Deutsche Bahn) which has significantly expanded the available car sharing services (mb passion, 2018). The BMW Group is also addressing current trends and offering individual premium mobility with its car sharing service provider (Krüger, 2016). In addition to the two described practical examples from BMW and Daimler, other traditional car manufacturers are also dealing with the change towards becoming mo­bility service providers. However, these will not be discussed in detail in the further course of this paper.

Direct competitors and new players in the market will take advantage of the current dynam­ics and enter the alternative mobility market. Energy suppliers could launch offers for elec­tric mobility that go beyond the mere sale of electricity and include the battery or even the entire electric car. Technology corporations such as Apple, Microsoft and Google have al­ready covered large parts of the value chain with innovative mobility services and apps and have tied customers closely (Matthies et al., 2011). Expectations of "new mobility concepts" have increased considerably in recent times - not least against the background of unsolved traffic problems, especially in cities. Particular attention is being paid to solutions that are emerging and developing in the context of the sharing economy with a focus on car sharing, where the free-floating model significantly expands the classic station-based offering and succeeds in reaching new customer groups. This change is evident not only in major Ger­man cities but also internationally (Institutfür Mobilitätsforschung, 2016).

Theoretical Framework

3 Car Sharing as an Example of Shared Mobility

Chapter three starts with a description of the theoretical fundaments of the sharing econ­omy, in particular car sharing and the German car sharing industry, forming the basis for the empirical study. Following an overview of various German providers, the focus is placed on the economic and ecological motives for the usage. After the main advantages and dis­advantages of car sharing are identified, this chapter ends with an overview of how major German cities already deal with the topic of sharing.

3.1 The sharing economy

The collective consumption of goods and services, which is discussed in the current dis­course under the keyword sharing economy, is becoming increasingly important in social life. Various people use shared electronic devices, share their own living space with other people, and even cars are used jointly (Otto, et al., 2013; Botsman & Rogers, 2010). Felson and Spaeth defined joint consumption as early as 1978 as "events in which one or more persons consume economic goods or services in the process of engaging in joint activities with one or more others" (Felson & Spaeth, 2010). In 1996, the consumer advice centre of Baden-Wuerttemberg also dealt with the concept of "using rather than owning" and its pos­sible future potential (Ministerium für Umwelt und Verkehr Baden-Württemberg, 1996). In particular, technical developments and the associated opportunities, as well as increasing internet distribution and use in recent times, have led to the fact that collective consumption is becoming more and more important in practice and can be used by a broader mass of people (Otto et al., 2013; Kingsley et al., 2012). Sharing should help to conserve resources and the environment without having to forego the comfort to which consumers are used to. The guiding principle is the sharing economy, in which shared use has become mainstream, and owner-occupied use has mostly been replaced (Ifmo, 2016).

For the German economy, the sharing economy is associated with both opportunities and challenges. The creation of employment, the expansion of business opportunities, the sim­plification of business start-ups, the development of regions and much more are among the opportunities. Challenges are found in the enforcement of regulations, as many companies may not be able to apply these framework conditions to their business model (Busch et al., 2019). Community consumption can be shaped by a wide variety of useful strategies. How­ever, for the context of automotive mobility, which is significant in this case, owner-replacing utilisation strategies are of central interest (Otto et al., 2013). Against this background, only the mobility sector will be analysed in the further course of this work. A common use of a car can thus achieve an intensification of use as well as savings of individual costs. In con­crete terms, this form of community consumption is referred to as the so-called mobility concept of car sharing (Otto et al., 2013).

3.2 Definition of car sharing

With a glance at the literature that deals with the topic of car sharing, it becomes clear that the authors are not yet in complete agreement on how to formulate the term "car sharing". The Bundesverband CarSharing e.V. speaks of'CarSharing" (Bundesverband CarSharing e.V., 2007), others speak of "carsharing" (Steding, 2004) or "car-sharing" (Franke, 2001). The term is most frequently used in the form of "car sharing" (Loose, 2012), which is also used for this work. The Bundesverband CarSharing e.V. defines car sharing as an organ­ised and shared use of motor vehicles (Bundesverband Carsharing [bcs], 2007).

The basic idea of car sharing, that is the joint, commercial use of cars, is not a recent in­vention, and was already practiced by specific groups of people in the middle of the 20th century. The beginnings of traditional car sharing go back to 1948, when the residents of Zurich in Switzerland joined forces to use cars togetherfor purely economic reasons (Sha­heen & Cohen, 2013).Car sharing is a form of collaborative consumption and is therefore, as explained above, part of the sharing economy (Odenhausen, 2017). The term car sharing as such is widely agreed upon as a service that enables the temporary use of vehicles by different members. Use here includes the borrowing and shared use of a vehicle (Kienzler et al., 2015).

3.3 Types of car sharing

Basically, the car sharing service is divided into three basic types. These include the station­independent services, which are referred further as free-floating models, the station-based services and private car sharing, also known as peer-to-peer sharing (Carsharing, 2020b).

Basically, there is a differentiation between commercial and private car sharing. On the side of commercial car use, there are the traditional means of passenger transport such as taxis and rental cars on the one hand, but also car sharing on the other. In commercial car shar­ing, the vehicles offered come from a company's fleet and are made available against pay­ment to registered users; the user thus rents the vehicle directly from a company. These vehicles can be accessed in two different ways: vehicles are offered on fixed parking spaces around the station or flexible on-demand (Kaup, 2013). On the private side, there is the private car, carpooling and peer-to-peer (P2P) sharing. In this business model, the platform mediates between individual private car owners and people who would like to rent or lease such a private vehicle (Bertschmann et al., 2015)

3.3.1 Stationed-basedcarsharing

Station-based car sharing is the traditional form of sharing and is very similar to short-term rentals. Vehicles are pre-booked for a fixed period and made available at local pick-up points where the vehicles must be returned after use. The duration of the usage is agreed in advance, with a minimum rental period of one hour. The advantage of traditional car sharing is that certain types of cars can be reserved for more extended periods of time, enabling customers to count on the booked car (Gerdes et al., 2015). In 2019, station-based car sharing was represented at 740 locations in Germany, and 11,200 vehicles. Counting 63 locations more than in the prior year, the numbers are steadily increasing (Carsharing, 2020c). With a fleet of around 3,100 vehicles, Stadtmobil is the largest provider of station­based car sharing in Germany (Capital, 2020). The global market leader in the classic sense with a fleet of around 12,000 vehicles in 500 cities worldwide, including Frankfurt, is the American company Zipcar, founded in 2000. Zipcar now belongs to the AVIS Budget Group (Zipcar, 2020).

3.3.2 Free-floating car sharing

Free-floating car sharing is the latest form of classic car sharing and has increasingly en­tered the market since 2011. The Daimler AG already started the test run of its car sharing project "car2go" in 2009 (Daimler, 2008). The difference between free-floating and conven­tional car sharing is the flexibility and independence of stations. In this case, the vehicles are parked and rented randomly throughout the city. Vehicles are booked via a smartphone application, which allows locating the vehicles in advance. Once the ride is over, the rented vehicle is parked again in public parking spaces within the usage area. This model is cur­rently only available in larger cities, as the free-floating model is ideal for spontaneous trips or rides where it is not possible to determine the exact time of the end of the trip. The most significant difference compared to station-based car sharing is the option of one-way rides and rides of a few minutes within the city (Car sharing, 2020c). As the market leader and pioneer of free-floating car sharing, Share Now is currently represented in 27 major cities around the world with around 20,000 vehicles, of which 3,200 are electrically powered (Car2Go, 2020c).

3.3.3 Peer-to-Peer car sharing

As a result of new information and communication technologies, another type of car sharing has developed. Peer-to-peer sharing is an internet-based sharing of cars between private individuals. On an internet platform, private vehicles can be rented or hired with the help of an intermediary service. This service is supported by a professional mediation portal with regard to establishing contact (Gossen, 2012). For this type of car sharing, a separate con­tract must generally be concluded for each use. The vehicle is collected and returned to the owner, fees are set by the car owners and include, among other things, the refilling of the tank and transaction costs for the agent. The first P2P car sharing platforms in Germany were founded in 2010 (Bertschmann et al., 2015). In the following, only the two commercial models of station-based and free-floating car sharing will be discussed further, due to the rather low distribution and popularity of peer-to-peer car sharing.

The following table summarises once again, the different model of vehicle sharing ex­plained, by giving information about their first appearance in Germany, vehicle owners, pick­up and drop-off handling and the lending agreement (Table 1).

Table 1. Typical characteristics ofthe business models

Abbildung in dieser Leseprobe nicht enthalten

Source: Own illustration, based on bcs, 2020a; Bertschmann et al, 2015

Station-based and free-floating users differ primarily in the sense that former consider the car primarily as an instrument, while the latter attaches great importance to symbolic and emotional meaning; non-users are rather heterogeneous in this context and cannot be as­signed. In the socio-demographic profile of car sharing users, familiar patterns were con­firmed. Free-floating users are mostly young, male, well educated, live in urban areas and have above-average incomes. Station-based users, on the other hand, form a more heter­ogeneous user group that includes households with older members as well as young two- person households in medium to larger cities with slightly above-average income (Ifmo, 2016).

3.4 Car sharing market in Germany

In Germany, the organised form of car sharing by Stattauto E.V. first appeared in Berlin in 1988 (Keller, 2000). As early as 1992, further forerunners of Stadtmobil were formed in Pforzheim, Mannheim, Heidelberg, Stuttgart and Hanover. What began with much voluntary work in associations turned into a size that had to be organised professionally by companies (Stadtmobil, 2020). The first free-floating car sharing service in Germany went into test op­eration in Ulm in 2009 (bcs, 2020a).

The steady growth of the German car sharing industry is becoming noticeable. At the be­ginning of 2020, 226 organisations offer car sharing and provide vehicles at 840 different locations. Compared to 2019, the number of car sharing providers has thus increased by 45, and the number of locations by 100. Station-based car sharing remains the most popular form of car sharing with 219 providers and is represented in all 840 locations. Free-floating car sharing operates in 17 cities, mainly in large cities such as Berlin, Munich or Stuttgart, and only increased the number of vehicles provided compared to the previous year. With 13,400 vehicles at 17 locations, free-floating far exceeds the number of station-based car sharing services with 12,000 vehicles at 219 locations (bcs, 2020b). Although German car sharing providers have further improved the distribution and availability in 2019, car sharing remains a small market with just over two million customers (bcs, 2020b). Managing direc­tors of the Bundesverband für CarSharing are thus calling for the systematic promotion of car sharing, which represents the fourth pillar of the environmental alliance (2020b).


Abbildung in dieser Leseprobe nicht enthalten

Figure 1. Car sharing capitalofGermany

Source: Own illustration, based on bcs, 2019

The bar chart (Figure 1) deals with Germany's car sharing capitals in 2019. Eight hundred forty cities across the country offer car sharing; approximately a fifth of these cities with more than 50,000 inhabitants were taken into account (bcs, 2019). The chart highlights that Karlsruhe is the car sharing capital with 3.23 car sharing vehicles per 1,000 inhabitants. Ranked second to fourth are the megacities of Munich (2.13), Hamburg (1.61) and Berlin (1.60). Freiburg demonstrates the fact that a high density of car sharing services is not only found in large cities. The research location Stuttgart is ranked on position seven (1.70).

3.5 Relevant providers in Germany

According to the German Carsharing Association (BCS), there are over 220 different car sharing providers in the country, so it is essential to take a closer look at the major and largest corporations in this sector. The largest car sharing provider in Germany in the area of free-floating is Share Now. Among the station-based providers, Stadtmobil and Cambio rank in the first two places, closely followed by Flinkster (bcs, 2020c). The following table provides a simplified overview ofthe largest car sharing providers in Germany (Table 2).

Table 2. The largest car sharing providers by fleet size

Abbildung in dieser Leseprobe nicht enthalten

Source: Own illustration, based on bcs, 2020c

Share Now

Share Now offers a car sharing portal with the most extensive customer base in the free­floating segment as a joint venture between Car2Go and DriveNow. The major German car manufacturers Daimler (Car2Go) and BMW (DriveNow) have been working together since 2019 in this venture (Car2go, 2020). All Share Now vehicles are offered in a free-floating system without fixed rental stations and at a per-minute rate. Within the EU, Share Now is represented in Germany, Denmark, France, Italy, the Netherlands, Austria, Spain and Hun­gary. The vehicle fleet consists of the brands BMW, Mercedes, Smart and Mini. Prices are calculated according to size and quality, which can be divided into different categories. The Smart is offered in the smallest category (XS), followed by Mini (S). Cars of BMW and Mer­cedes are classified in categories (M) and (L), respectively. In the cities of Amsterdam, Madrid, Paris and Stuttgart, only electric vehicles are used. All cars are generally covered by liability insurance, in case of an accident, only the deductible will be charged. With the Share Now app, cars can be found directly and, if necessary, reserved for 20 minutes. After the ride, the car has to be parked in a public parking zone within the business area, and the amount will be debited (Share Now, 2020a). In the state capital Stuttgart, Share Now vehi­cles are charged exclusively with certified green electricity. If the charge level has fallen below 50 per cent at the end of the rental period, the car can be connected to a charging station by using the charge card in the vehicle which will be rewarded with a credit balance (MyPolygo, 2020).


Stadtmobil was founded in 1992 and is a car sharing association of eight mobility service providers. These include businesses in Stuttgart, Berlin, Rhine-Neckar, Karlsruhe, Rhine- Main, Rhine-Ruhr, Hanover and Trier. Vehicles are provided in a station-based car sharing system which means that a car was reserved and collected at a particular station and must, therefore, be returned to that. Today, the Stadtmobil group operates in numerous cities throughout Germany and maintains a fleet of around 3,100 vehicles of the brands Toyota, Opel and Ford. The rental costs are calculated based on time and kilometre costs. Compa­rable to the provider Share Now, the vehicles are divided into different categories and con­tain a further for vans. Whereas Share Now does not charge an admission fee, Stadtmobil charges 50 euros, costs are made up of time at an hourly rate and kilometre costs (Stadtmo­bil, 2020).


The car sharing company Cambio was founded in 2000 and is currently present in 28 Ger­man and 54 Belgian cities. Over 130,000 customers are on the road with more than 3,200 vehicles. Journeys can be booked via an application, by phone or on the Internet, even 180 days in advance. The vehicles are also made available at specific stations, so they must be returned to the same parking space after a ride. A one-time registration fee of 30 euros is charged, and the costs are made up of time at an hourly rate and kilometre costs (Cambio CarSharing Germany, 2020).


Flinkster is the station-based car sharing service of the Deutsche Bahn, which was launched in 2009. At that time, Deutsche Bahn offered 130 small Alfa Romeo Mito cars in Cologne and Stuttgart. Today, 4,500 vehicles are available for customers in more than 400 cities in Germany and are divided into five different classes, from small cars to vans. Vehicles are booked, provided and returned in the same way as mentioned previously. Compared to the other providers, the registration fee is only 9 euros, for customers with the Bahncard2, it is even free of charge. The travel costs consist of time and kilometre costs and are charged by an hourly rate (Flinkster, 2020).

The research location Stuttgart has an extensive, well-established and steadily growing car sharing network. There are currently two car sharing companies, Flinkster and Stadtmobil that offer the station-based model with 397 vehicles (Carsharing Magazin, 2020). Until 2018, the parking spaces of station-based providers were located exclusively on private property, as it was not possible to allocate parking spaces in public areas until the car shar­ing law came into force at the end of 2017 (Landeshauptstadt Stuttgart, 2019). The free­floating option is offered exclusively by the company Share Now, formerly car2go. At the beginning of 2019, 550 electric vehicles of the brand Smart were distributed across the city area (Tagblatt, 2020). In the medium-term, the state capital Stuttgart will promote and de­mand the increased use of electric vehicles in car sharing, as these can make an active contribution to local air quality and noise reduction (Landeshauptstadt Stuttgart, 2019). From 2021, another provider will set up electric rental vehicles in Stuttgart, the "WeShare" sharing offer from Volkswagen (Tagblatt, 2020). More than 100,000 people are registered for one of the existing sharing systems in Stuttgart (Landeshauptstadt Stuttgart, 2019). With the station-based e-bicycle rental system called RegioRad Stuttgart, the free-floating elec­tric scooter system Stella and the newly introduced “e-scooters3 ” by providers such as Lime, VOI and Tier, citizens have a wide range of offers at their disposal (Landeshauptstadt Stuttgart, 2019).

3.6 Motives behind the use of car sharing

3.6.1 Economic motivation

The high purchase price of an own automobile is often a criterion against it (Behrendt, 2000). The average price of a new car climbed above the 30,000 euro mark in 2017. On average, Germans spent 30,250 euros on a brand-new car, according to the 2018 report just published by Deutsche Automobil Treuhand. The year before they spent 29,650 euros (Deutscher Automobil Treundhand Report [DAT], 2018). Car sharing users, in contrast, do not have to worry about the high purchase price as the corresponding registration fee to be paid for rent is hardly worth mentioning concerning the purchase price of a new car. Be­sides, the user does not have to pay the so-called "total costs of ownership" such as taxes, insurance, maintenance or parking (Odenhausen, 2017). With car sharing, all costs incurred are already included in the user fee and are distributed equally among all users (bcs, 2020d).

According to a 2019 study by the German Logistics Association (BVL) and HERE Technol­ogies, traffic in German cities is moving at an even slower pace. Düsseldorf is the city with the slowest traffic flow, at an average daily speed of 35.6 km/h. Cologne, Stuttgart, Frankfurt and Hamburg are also in the top group of the slowest cities. In Stuttgart, the average speed is 37.6 km/h (ADAC, 2019) and is equivalent to a speed of 0. 627 km/min. The average distance in Stuttgart is only 7.5 kilometres for shopping, driving to the city centre and so forth (KIT, 2018). This distance takes about twelve minutes at the given average speed. The following cost comparison is based on the total costs depending on the kilometres driven.

Since free-floating car sharing is often used as a supplement to the private car, this model is used in the following cost comparison to show that it is the more cost-effective alternative.

Cost comparison between free-floating car sharing and car rental

The data on arising costs are provided by the car sharing operator "Share Now" and the car rental company "Sixt". The Smart Fortwo model was chosen for the calculation, as the car sharing provider Share Now is only represented with this car model in Stuttgart. The Sixt car rental company does not currently offer any of this model. Therefore, a different model in the same class is used - a Volkswagen VW-Up. For the rental car, the booking of payable extras was waived. The significant difference between both offerings is the minimum rental period, which is one day for Sixt and one minute for Share Now. The price per minute by Share Now is 29 ct/min and includes 200 free kilometres. If the vehicle is booked for the entire day, the price in this category is 49.99 euros (Share Now, 2020a; Sixt, 2020). For the cost comparison, the regular price is assumed. At an average speed of 37.6 km/h or 0.627 km/min, the price is 0.46 euro/km.

The rental price for a one day rent at Sixt is 76.98 euros and includes 150 free kilometres. In addition, it must be taken into account that the customer has to pay incurred fuel costs (Sixt, 2020). The calculation is based on the combined, officially indicated fuel consumption of the basic model, which is 4.4 litres per 100 kilometres (Volkswagen, 2020) and a petrol price of 1.11 euro per litre (as constituted on 15. June 2020) (Benzinpreis Aktuell, 2020). This results in running kilometre costs of 0.049 euro. The following graph depicts the costs in relation to the kilometres driven (Figure 2).

Abbildung in dieser Leseprobe nicht enthalten

Figure 2. Cost comparison between car rental and car sharing

Source: Own Illustration

Figure two illustrates that using car sharing for shorter distances is significantly cheaper than a rental car, which is only worthwhile after 188 kilometres. In practice, the probability of this scenario occurring is low because the average journey length with free-floating car sharing is only 7.5 kilometres (Figure 2; Bcs, 2018). To this extent, it supports the conclusion that both mobility services supplement each other.

Cost comparison between free-floating car sharing and taxi

For the cost comparison between car sharing and taxi, the same car model by the provider Share Now is used as previously. The basis for calculating the taxi costs is a base price of 3.60 euros, which is charged at the start of the ride, as well as an average kilometre flat rate of 2.25 euros, as constituted on January 1st, 2019 for the city of Stuttgart (Taxi-Auto-Zen­trale, 2019).

Figure three shows that even for short distances, taxi costs exceed the costs of car sharing. For an average usage of twelve minutes (corresponding to a distance of approximately 7.5 kilometres at the underlying average speed of 37.6 km/h), car sharing providers incur costs of approximately 3.50 euros, compared to approximately 20.50 euros for a taxi. Car sharing is the significantly cheaper mobility alternative compared to the taxi, though it is not yet available nationwide in Germany. The advantage of the taxi, however, is that people without a driving licence can use this form of mobility. Besides, the taxi is not tied to a defined business area orfixed station and therefore offers advantages in terms offlexibility (Figure

Abbildung in dieser Leseprobe nicht enthalten

Figure 3. Cost comparison between taxi and car sharing

Source: Own Illustration

To conclude, based on these examples, car sharing is a particularly inexpensive alternative to rental cars and taxis for short distances, whereas, for longer distances, a rental car offers significant cost advantages. Especially in urban areas such as the city of Stuttgart, where the average driving distance is only 7.5 kilometres, car sharing is a favourable mobility al­ternative.

3.6.2 Environmental motivation

Besides the economic aspects, there are also ecological aspects that play an essential role. Car sharing mainly uses low-consumption and environmentally-friendly vehicles, often also emission-free electric vehicles such as in the city of Stuttgart, whereby car sharing contrib­utes significantly to the reduction of negative ecological aspects (Gossen, 2013). According to a study by Frost and Sullivan, approximately 483,000 tonnes of CO2 were saved world­wide in 2009 through car sharing itself, with an upward trend (Frost and Sullivan, 2010). On average, a free-floating car sharing vehicle replaces between nine and 13 vehicles. With an average length of ten kilometres, it is used efficiently by a large number of customers (Bansal et al., 2017; Ifmo, 2016). The station-based model can replace between eight and 20 vehicles, with an average distance of 30-40 kilometres. These severe differences are mainly caused by the greater area coverage of station-based models compared to flexible offers which indicate that the use habits of the two systems differ considerably (Bcs, 2015). Shared use can reduce the number of vehicles, which in turn leads to a reduction of traffic in urban areas and thus also reduces side effects such as noise, pollutant emissions and the need for parking space (Glotz-Richter et al., 2007).

In the early beginnings of shared car use, the main focus was on the ecological, environ­mentally friendly aspect for users. This is confirmed by a survey of German car sharing users conducted by Baum and Pesch in 1994 (Loose, 2010; Baum & Pesch, 1994). In the meantime, it is clearly recognisable that ecological motives have lost more and more of their significance for car sharing customers. Economic motives such as cost arguments and the satisfaction of individual mobility needs, on the other hand, are now the determining reasons for using car sharing (Odenhausen, 2018). This emerging economic trend is also reflected in the results of the survey in figure four from 2014, which deals with the reasons for regis­tering to use car sharing in Germany. Central to this trend is financial savings opportunities ,36 per cent, through shared car use and non-existent monthly basic fees such as mainte­nance costs, 33 per cent. Forty-seven per cent of all respondents stated that the availability of car sharing vehicles in the immediate vicinity of the residence is an essential reason for using the service, a reason that speaks more in favour of the free-floating model, whose vehicles are distributed across the city. Ecological motives for use can be found in the avail­ability of electric and hybrid vehicles, at a lower level (Figure 4; Berylls Strategy Advisors, 2015).

Abbildung in dieser Leseprobe nicht enthalten

Figure 4.Reasons for registering with car sharing services

Source: Own Illustration,based on statista 2015

According to Doctor Siegfried Behrendt, Head of Research Technology and Innovation at the Institute for Future Studies and Technology Assessment (IZT), the weighting of the mo­tives for using car sharing services varies depending on the user's initial situation. Doctor Behrendt divides car sharing customers into three different types:

i. New entrants that do not own a vehicle. For them, car sharing offers an additional mobility option to complement public transport.
ii. Car sellers that have sold their vehicle due to the low frequency of use. Essential usage motives of this group are reflected in financial aspects and services such as maintenance, insurance and repair.
iii. Additional users that already own a vehicle but occasionally want to access car sharing services. An own vehicle is not enough to satisfy individual mobility needs. Car sharing is, therefore, a cost-effective alternative to the purchase of a second or third vehicle (Behrendt, 2000).

From a socio-cultural point of view, peoples' attitude to automobiles is of high priority, es­pecially in Western countries, and the number one means of transport. As already men­tioned in Chapter 2.3, a cultural change has been observed for several years. The hallmark of this cultural change is a loss of importance of ownership. Thanks to the Internet, an in­creasing trend towards shared use can be observed (Knaup, 2013). Shared mobility is cre­ating an image change - triggered by car sharing. Modern values are associated with free­dom, independence and flexibility. Thanks to the full range of vehicles offered, an appropri­ate vehicle can be booked for every purpose. Owning a car leads to a restriction on one type of car, which is limited to different classes and sizes depending on the owner's budget (Harms, 2003). This shift in values is accompanied by a general increase in awareness of ecological consequences. Studies show that users of car and ridesharing have a high level of environmental awareness (Antoniou et al., 2013).

The car sharing market has grown dynamically in recent years. Some consider this to be a beginning trend towards a sharing economy, which will lead to a wholly changed car own­ership structure and culture. Others see only the incentive of the new variety of offers, which does not change the fact that car sharing remains a niche market (Gruenderszene, 2015b). The potential of car sharing can be fundamentally divided into three different scenarios:

i. Niche Car sharing continues to be used by people who only need the car as an instrument, i.e. to fulfil a purpose, and for whom symbolic and emotional motives are secondary.
ii. Replacement Car sharing increasingly serves symbolic and emotional motives and can thus increasingly replace the privately-owned car.
Hi. Expansion Car sharing expands the mobility portfolio with new options and satisfies additional motives beyond the private car (Ifmo, 2016).

3.7 The pros and cons of car sharing

Vehicle sharing is connected with both advantages and disadvantages for the user or cus­tomer. As already mentioned in the previous chapter, the cost savings from the user's per­spective are probably one of the most significant advantages of car sharing. With this mo­bility alternative, high acquisition costs and running costs that would be necessary for a private automobile are eliminated. Besides, car sharing saves time and stress, as there is no need to organise a TÜV4 or workshop appointment (Handelsblatt, 2010). A person who drives 5,000 kilometres per year, for example, can save around 900 to 1,500 euros per year through car sharing, so experts believe that car sharing is worthwhile up to a mileage of between 10,000 and 12,000 kilometres per year (Finanztip, 2016). Especially for low-in­come consumer groups, car sharing offers a cost-effective mobility alternative (Oden­hausen, 2017). A further advantage, especially with free-floating, is flexibility because users can access a vehicle spontaneously when needed and can decide on the model. A wide range of vehicles is offered. Station-based providers, in contrast, offer the possibility of booking a vehicle in advance; however, this is associated with a higher planning and organ­isational effort. In addition, station-based car sharing requires a certain degree of flexibility, as adequate vehicles are not always available right outside the door (Handelsblatt, 2020). With today's information and communication media, rides can be planned in real-time and spontaneously, thus representing the ultimate added value. With the development and widespread use of the mobile Internet and the associated use of smartphones and applica­tions, the necessary conditions for the success of car sharing have been created (Bundes­ministerium fürVerkehr, Innovation und Technologie [BMVI], 2016).

The imperative nature of essential technical equipment for optimal flexibility creates a dis­advantage to a certain extent, as user groups without this equipment, i.e. without smartphones, have difficulty in accessing mobility services (Molter et al., 2013). A car shar­ing vehicle is not a status symbol - especially in Germany the connection with a private vehicle is still increasingly emotional. People for whom the relationship to the car is more rational than emotional, car sharing is easier (Handelsblatt, 2010). Although a change in attitudes regarding the attachment to a private car has been observed over the last few years, its ownership, especially of high-performance vehicles, is still a sign of success, wealth and independence. In contrast, shared mobility offers are having difficulties asserting themselves (BMVI, 2016). Furthermore, for many, car sharing is not a real alternative to owning a car, but some people can imagine doing without a second or third car (Steding et al., 2004). The loss of importance of the car as a status symbol, especially in the younger age groups, offers cities the opportunity to promote the abolition of the own car through car sharing or to avoid having to buy a new one (Landeshauptstadt Stuttgart, 2019).

Habitual drivers and older people represent a particularly challenging target group to reach for car sharing. The lifelong acquired routine makes them reluctant to accept new mobility concepts and means of transport. Lack of technical competence and lack of knowledge about the way they are used reinforces the fixation on the own car as a means of transport (Götz & Hefner, 2013), which is why a clear disadvantage must be noted here. Information deficits with regard to existing providers and their offers or their mode of operation represent a further obstacle to use. This is particularly true concerning insufficient or incorrect knowledge regarding the individual costs of private cars.

Concerning the running costs of using a car, often only the fuel costs incurred are taken into account. Other use-dependent costs, such as vehicle tax, insurance fees, parking fees or wear and tear costs, are hidden. Based on such an incomplete cost analysis, car sharing ultimately comes off unjustifiably poorly compared to a private car (Gallego, Ruddat & Son­nenberger, 2013; Loose, 2010).

3.8 Practical examples of the sharing economy

A study by PricewaterhouseCoopers (PWC) from 2017 examined the 25 most populous German cities and compared them on the basis of various criteria in terms of digitalisation (smart parking, mobile payment parking), sharing (proportion of shared vehicles), electro­mobility (charging infrastructure, electric car sharing) and local public transport (app, digital billing). The clear winner of this ranking is Hamburg, closely followed by Stuttgart, Leipzig and Munich. These cities will be examined in more detail with regard to their individual ad­vantages.


Hamburg has a convincing digital infrastructure, and many buses are already networked with the local traffic light system via sensors. In addition, intelligent evaluation methods pro­vide up-to-date and predictive information about the traffic situation, which can be called up via mobile devices. Thanks to its high level of digitisation, Hamburg leaves the other three locations far behind. By means of mobility hubs, Hamburg offers transfer points where buses, bicycles, car sharing, and trains meet. Hamburg is venturing into the field of electro­mobility by means of low-emission buses in everyday traffic (PWC, 2017).


The Bavarian state capital is in the first place in terms of sharing, with an above-average range of sharing services. In addition to the providers mentioned in chapter 3.5, Clever Shuttle and Uber can also be found here (PWC, 2017).


When it comes to sharing, Stuttgart convinces primarily through its distinctive bicycle rental system, which is also electrically supported. In addition, Stuttgart has a fully electrified car sharing fleet as part of its strategy to reduce air pollution from cars. Stuttgart has the densest charging station network in terms of area and population. All of these charging points can be viewed online via an application. The provider EnBW also offers real-time information on the availability ofthe charging stations (PWC, 2017).


Leipzig shows that innovative offers and solutions in public transport are not only reserved for the big cities. Especially the customer app "Leipzig mobil" of the public transport asso­ciation and the networking with other mobility providers enable Leipzig to reach the top position in the field of public transport. The app offers real-time information, a mobile pay­ment function and intermodal mobility chains. In addition, this application connects private mobility providers of bike and car sharing and offers an integrated billing system. Sharing offers are located directly at public transport mobility stations (PWC, 2017)

4 Combined Mobility - The Interface between Individual and Public Transport

“Combined Mobility is an emerging strategy to reorganise transport to tackle mobility and sustainability challenges by offering an alternative to private vehicle ownership in sparsely populated areas” (, 2020). Car sharing closes the gap of mobility independent of private car ownership. In combination with public transport, cycling and walking, it can en­sure that a suitable means oftransport is available at all times and for all purposes.

4.1 Public transport in Germany

A well-developed public transport system is essential in Germany to ensure universal ac­cess to services and to guarantee mobility for ecological reasons, especially in urban areas. Consequently, the quality of public transport has a direct influence on the quality of life in cities. The demand for safe, high-quality, efficient and affordable public transport in Ger­many is high. Every day, public transport is used by around 30 million people, replacing around 20 million car journeys. In comparison to the motorised private transport (MIV), the advantages of public transport are clear, more people can travel with each vehicle, and less area has to be paved. The specific energy consumption and pollutant emissions per pas­senger are also significantly lower than with private transport (BMVI, 2020).

On the basis of decisions made financial assistance provided by the German government under the provisions of the Local Transport Financing Act (Gemeindeverkehrsfinanzier­ungsgesetz orGVFG) is to be raised up to one billion euros per year from 2021. The Federal Government has thus created conditions to expand and to improve the attractiveness of public transport. The modalities of the GVFG are to be aligned even more closely with the objectives of climate-friendliness of public transport. In order to be able to plan additional expansion measures in the coming years, the German government intends to increase funding up to two billion euros per year from 2025. The modernisation and climate-friendly retrofitting of bus fleets will be further promoted by stepping up support for buses with elec­tric and hydrogen-based drive systems and buses powered by biogas (BMU, 2020c). The public transport laws call for an integrated overall transport system tailored to urban and transport development as a fully-fledged alternative to motorised private transport. (§ 1 ÖPNVG BaWü). The local transportation plans represent a set of instruments to determine the qualifications required for this. Linkage of the various means of transport is mentioned as an explicit goal in almost all plans. The basis for recognising public transport as a transport service that complements individual motorised transport is also laid down in the public transport act of Baden-Württemberg, which states that local public transport is also the transport with taxis or rental cars that replaces, complements or consolidates transport (§ 1 ÖPNVG BaWü).


Due to increasing traffic problems in the area of Stuttgart, the public transport service is to be significantly expanded in the coming years. Trains and buses of the Verkehrs- und Tarifverbund Stuttgart5 (VVS) are to become more efficient and better, so that at least 20 per cent more people will use it by 2025. The connection with car, bicycle and foot traffic is to be systematically improved, according to the Ministry of Transportation of Baden- Wuerttemberg (2020). The city of Stuttgart offers its residents and guests one of the densest local transportation networks in Germany. Around 500 urban railways and buses of the Stuttgarter Straßenbahn AG6 (SBB) and numerous suburban trains of the Verkehrs- und Tarifverbund Stuttgart (VVS) are in daily use. Between early morning and late-night, the companies transport an average of one million people a day - buses and trains thus make a significant contribution to resource-saving mobility in daily life. Stuttgart has a public transport system with a long tradition; SSB AG has been active for over 140 years and is today one of the most modern local transport companies in Germany and an associated company of the state capital Stuttgart (Stuttgart, 2020a).

4.2 Combined mobility as a challenge for future public transport

One auspicious development in recent years is the increased cooperation between public transport providers and car sharing companies. For future public transport, companies must transform themselves into comprehensive mobility service providers. The aim is to show the contribution that the integration of the car into the public transport can make as well as the current state of cooperation between public transport and car sharing in Germany (Huwer, 2003). An efficient public transport system as the backbone of mobility - combined with car sharing and bicycle rental - offers the opportunity to be mobile even without an own car. In order to make it smoother to switch between train, bus, bicycle and car sharing, intermodal mobility offers, and stations are necessary. In many cities, there are already trenchant offers which can be booked via integrated mobility apps from transport service providers, e.g. in Hanover, Stuttgart, Berlin, Hamburg, Leipzig or Osnabrück (Umwelt Bun­desamt, 2020). In addition, car sharing can also be integrated into the monthly public transport ticket to strengthen their close connection further. A prominent example of this is Augsburg (Federal Environment Agency, 2020). Since November 2019, Stadtwerke Augs­burg offer a flat rate for mobility that allows bus and train, car sharing and bicycle rental in a city to be used from one source. The SWA Mobil-Flat is available in two price packages for 79 and 109 euros per month, depending on how often car sharing is used (SW Augsburg, 2019).

The strategy of a multimodal interconnection with a strong public transport network makes sense for urban, rural areas and across regions. The aim should be to create attractive complete offers and thus contribute to a traffic shift. Against the background of demographic change, interconnection also offers opportunities in areas with low demand. Combining ex­isting vehicles and services with public transport helps to create a usable and, above all, financially viable basic mobility offer, or rather to be able to continue it at all (Fenske, 2015)

4.3 The impact of car sharing on public transport

A link between public transport and car sharing exists in all major German cities and is also popular in smaller towns. Many customers of station-based car sharing use public transport for their primary mobility and car sharing as a complementary service. There is usually no cannibalisation between these two systems (Glotz-Richter et al., 2007). According to an accompanying scientific research "Share", 40 per cent of free-floating users and 50 per cent of station-based users have a public transport subscription (Share, 2018). Consequently, it can be assumed that customers of all car sharing systems are above average regular users of public transport and used it more often than before registering for car sharing. The study WiMobil shows that 57 per cent of the customers of the station-based provider Flinkster use public transport almost daily. For the free-floater DriveNow, the rate is 47 per cent (WiMobil, 2016). Customers of station-based systems are therefore even more likely to use public transport than customers of free-floating systems. One study argues in favour of comple­mentarity between public transport and car sharing with the result that approximately 67 per cent of people who use car sharing does not make any changes in their use of public transport (BMVI, 2020). Overall, this results in an overall positive effect of car sharing on public transport.


1 IAA is an international motor show, in German known as the Internationale Automobil-Ausstellung

2 Bahncard is a discount subscription programme offered by Deutsche Bahn

3 E-scooters are two-wheeled stand-up scooters with small, electric motors

4 TÜV is a German business that provides vehicular inspection and product certification services

5 VVS coordinates the local public transport in the capital ofBaden-Wurttemberg, Stuttgart

6 SSB is a member of the VVS, and operates the Stuttgart Stadtbahn and bus lines

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Carsharing for sustainable urban mobility. Possibilities and obstacles of integrating car sharing into public transport
International School of Management Dortmund
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Carsharing, Mobility, sustainability
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Anonymous, 2020, Carsharing for sustainable urban mobility. Possibilities and obstacles of integrating car sharing into public transport, Munich, GRIN Verlag,


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