Peugeot owner chooses DC for Free2Move car sharing launch

WASHINGTON — Groupe PSA, the European company that owns the Peugeot, Citroen and Opel car brands, is bringing its car-sharing service Free2Move to North America with D.C. as its first city.

But fans of Peugeot and Citroen cars won’t be able to drive one — at least not yet.

Free2Move has deployed 600 vehicles across all 8 wards in D.C. The fleet is a mix of Chevrolet Equinox and Chevrolet Cruze vehicles.

It is part of the Paris-based automaker’s anticipated return to the U.S. market, with a new North American headquarters in Atlanta.

Free2Move requires a $10 membership fee. The vehicles cost $13 per hour — fuel and insurance included — with no distance restrictions. It follows the Car2Go model of parking the vehicle when finished in any legal parking spot.

The Free2Move app also aggregates bookings for electric scooters from Bird and Lime, bikes from Jump, Skip and Capital Bikeshare, as well as ride-hailing from Uber. It shows various options, locations and prices from all of them within its app.

“The launch of Free2Move car-sharing in Washington D.C. is our first step in the deployment of our 10-year plan for North American entry,” said Groupe PSA North America CEO Larry Dominique.

In its two years of operation, Free2Move has expanded to 12 countries overseeing 65,000 cars, scooters and bikes. Its D.C. launch is the first in a planned North American expansion.

“Washington, D.C. was a natural choice for our launch based on population, traffic density and the wide range of mobility options,” said Michel Stumpe, CEO of Groupe PSA NA car-sharing. “Once our service becomes established into D.C.’s mobility community, we will leverage this experience to grow into new markets.”

Establishing its North American headquarters in Atlanta solidifies Groupe PSA’s re-entry to the North American auto market, though the company has not said which vehicles it will bring to the U.S. market.

The last Peugeot cars were sold here in 1991.

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Jeff Clabaugh

Jeff Clabaugh has spent 20 years covering the Washington region's economy and financial markets for WTOP as part of a partnership with the Washington Business Journal, and officially joined the WTOP newsroom staff in January 2016.

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