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Sharing economy stalwart Zipcar zooms into Belgium with its first free-floating car share service

Francesca Washtell
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Zipcar's new fleet is taking to the streets of Brussels today (Source: Getty)

US car-sharing network Zipcar zoomed into its seventh European market today and launched its first free-floating service.

The free-floating system allows Zipcar members to pick up and drop off one of the company's hired vehicles at any location within a set geographical area, rather than in a specified spot.

Its new service is being launched in the Brussels-Capital as Zipcar enters the Belgium market for the first time, adding to its existing European presence in the UK, Austria, Germany, France, Spain and Turkey. The Brussels zone will include 16 of the city's 19 communes.

Read more: London should embrace new technology to make car ownership pointless

The initial fleet of 100 vehicles will expand to more than 250 in the first month, of which all cars will be Peugeot 208s.

Global membership of car-sharing services is projected to grow from less than five million in 2015 to 23.4m in 2024, according to figures from Navigant.

The sharing economy staple was founded in the US in 2000, before opening an office in London in 2006.

Read more: Telematics: The technology set to disrupt Uber and Zipcar

Zipcar international president Nicholas Cole said:

Not only are we extending our operations to another world-class city, but we are also excited to be launching our newest service, free-floating car sharing. Our proven ability in offering convenient access to a car, without the hassle of ownership, meets the need of our members to help them more easily navigate the city.

This development in our offering means that we are the first global car-sharing network to offer a variety of different car club models around the world, according to different cities' requirements.

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