One of the many amenities available to visitors of the new Shanghai Disney Resort will be hourly electric-car rentals.

The cars will be provided by Chinese automaker SAIC, which itself is based in Shanghai.

SAIC will also provide a fleet of electric vans for shuttle service to the amusement park.

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The company hopes to use its connection to Disney to promote its green credentials as part of a more widespread public-relations push, according to Shanghai Daily.

SAIC currently operates a car-sharing service with 100 electric cars, as well as 100 electric buses that ferry tourists from nearby train stations, subway stations, and airports to the Disney resort.

The cars cost 30 yuan ($4.48) per hour to rent, and SAIC claims it is less expensive to drive in one from Pudong International Airport to the resort than the trip would cost in taxi fare.

Roewe e50

Roewe e50

Within the park itself, electric vans from SAIC's Maxus commercial-vehicle brand shuttle visitors from the parking-lot area to the main entrance.

An area of the park designated for RV camping was also named after Maxus.

Shendi Group—Disney's Chinese partner—recently made a large fleet purchase of SAIC electric vehicles for these various transportation services.

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That included Sunwin electric buses, Maxus EV80 and EV10 vans, Roewe e550 plug-in hybrids, and Roewe e50 electric cars for the car-sharing service.

Roewe models are for the most part based on those of the defunct British carmaker Rover.

SAIC purchased the rights to Rover in 2005—as well as acquiring MG in a later merger with another Chinese maker—but could not secure the rights to the Rover name itself.

Shanghai Disney Resort

Shanghai Disney Resort

That name is now held by Jaguar Land Rover, owned by India's Tata Corporation.

SAIC sells small numbers of MG-branded cars in both Asia and Europe.

The Disney resort sits within a new Shanghai International Tourism and Resorts Zone, which eventually hopes to have half of the vehicular traffic within its boundaries running on "clean energy," according to Shanghai Daily.

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SAIC hopes to expand its electric-car sharing service beyond the current 100-car fleet in the near future.

The SAIC division that operates that service recently merged with EVCard—Shanghai's largest short-term car rental company.

The two operations will be folded into a single corporate entity controlled by SAIC.

[hat tip: Brian Henderson]


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