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It all boils down to choices people make, which define the emergence and success of new concepts or products. In the ecosystem of mobility, personalised mobility has always been a preferred choice for decades. But the emergence of new options in automotive — along with rapid advancement in vehicle technology — has given consumers the choices that often seem irresistible.

There’s no denying that personalised mobility needs continue to be the driving force behind the choices made by the consumers, and that’s never going to change. But how to fulfil this need calls for another set of choices.

Millennials have started looking at personal mobility needs with a slightly different perspective.

- Karunesh Arya, General Manager, Autostrad Rent A Car

Fuelled by developments in the automotive industry, the car rental sector has undergone massive advancement, with companies offering innovative options to consumers to address their diverse needs.

Earlier, consumers used to make good with what they owned and if they needed a different vehicle, they reached out to their family or friends’ network to fulfil their short-term requirement.

Fast forward to today, millennials have started looking at personal mobility needs with a slightly different perspective. Majority of their decisions are driven by the choices available and shifting needs of personal mobility. We are seeing a consumer trend where — from weekdays to weekends to holidays — the need for a personal vehicle is changing, and given the metropolitan expansion across the world, parking spaces are becoming a premium real estate, adding to the value of a car that one wants to own.

Today, with new-age car rental platforms and evolved car rental companies, including Autostrad, offering flexible rental solutions, customers have started enjoying more convenience and options to meet their mobility requirements.

Consumers now also have the option to subscribe for car rental solutions with a range of vehicle choices. Here the rental car remains with the consumer as a personal car with the flexibility to change the vehicle on a short-term basis. Such a scheme gives consumers a need-based solution without the necessity of investing in a depreciating asset, where the value goes down over time.

Most carmakers are keeping a close tap on the growing need for rental and leasing options and many of them have activated their own channels or made strategic partnerships to keep themselves ahead of the curve. Some leading car rental brands have also partnered with automotive giants to offer improved services to clients.

With the auto industry working to reduce carbon emissions, we will see an imminent shift towards electric and other alternatively powered vehicles and the time is not far off when we will see new-age car rental solution providers offering environmentally sustainable options, including electric cars, to consumers.

The decision to buy or rent a car is driven by the changing needs as well as the options available with greater ease, and I see a happy synergy emerging between carmakers, rental operators, and technology companies.

The writer is General Manager, Autostrad Rent A Car