The Hertz Corporation, the world's largest general use airport car rental brand, has entered into a joint partnership with Smart USA to bring smart fortwo electric drive vehicles to Connect by Hertz car sharing and Hertz Rent A Car locations in New York, Washington DC, and San Francisco. 

Hertz's partnership with smart USA is another strategic element of our long term plan to provide consumers with electric vehicle access on a global scale, said Mark P. Frissora, Hertz Chairman and Chief Executive Officer.

With its worldwide recognition, smart was a logical choice for our program and we're excited to begin offering the smart electric drive to our customers later this month.

The car hire company has already announced that they will be adding the Coda Sedan, Mitsubishi i-MiEV and Nissan Leaf to its fleets, but now they will be offering the Smart Fortwo through their ConnectByHertz scheme in New York.

Reports suggest that Hertz will have 20 electric cars available to rent in Manhattan by the second quarter of 2011. However, they are set to have between 500 and 1,000 available throughout the United States by the end of the year.

A February 2010 report by business analyst Frost & Sullivan suggested that 5.5 million Europeans will be part of a car-sharing scheme in 2016. The firm said that 77,000 vehicles could be shared by 2016, one in five of them electric.