Avis Budget Group Launches Ultimate Test Drive for Consumers Interested in Purchasing Off-Rental Vehicles

By Trevor Dorchies | June 22, 2012
Starting today, you can purchase former rental vehicles used in Avis Budget Group's fleet through a new program named the "Ultimate Test Drive." In partnership with AutoNation, Inc., Avis Budget Group vehicles are now available for the public to test out for two hours free of charge. Perspective owners can also borrow the vehicle of interest for three days for a normal rental fee. If it's decided that the vehicle will be purchased, the rental fee will be refunded upon the time of the transaction. "'Car sales' is one of the most often-searched terms at Avis.com and Budget.com. This is one of the many indications that there is demand in the marketplace for our used vehicles," said Tom Gartland, president, North America, Avis Budget Group. Currently Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, and Nevada are the only states where the Ultimate Test Drive is available, but Avis has said it plans to expand into other states in the coming months. More than 75 manufacturers, both domestic and foreign, are available to choose from including Ford, General Motors, Nissan, MINI, Jeep, Toyota, and BMW. The actual sale of the vehicle will be orchestrated by AutoNation Direct representatives who are also available to answer questions about financing, trade-in options, the vehicle's service record, and most importantly, if any warranty is still in effect. Interested customers can shop for vehicles online at avis.com or budget.com to schedule their Ultimate Test Drive. "Vehicle sales have always been an important part of the car rental industry," said Michael Schmidt, senior vice president of fleet services, Avis Budget Group. "Until now, our vehicle resale program has been largely a wholesale operation, but AutoNation Direct will allow us to make vehicles available for resale, direct to consumers in a cost-effective and convenient way." As we reported last week, out of the four major rental car fleets in the United States, Hertz Global Holdings Inc. is the only company that doesn't rent or sell vehicles that are in need of repair or under a recall. Avis Chairman and CEO Ronald Nelson did respond though by saying that his company conducts the necessary recalls and repairs "as soon as practically possible." What say you? Would you purchase a vehicle after it served some time in a rental car fleet? Tell us what you'd do in the comment section below. Source: Avis Budget Group