General Motors China Introduces Employee Carpooling Pilot Program

General Motors China has introduced a carpooling pilot program for employees based in Shanghai that enables them to arrange rides together using a self-developed mobile app.

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SHANGHAI – General Motors China has introduced a carpooling pilot program for employees based in Shanghai that enables them to arrange rides together using a self-developed mobile app.

This is one of GM’s recent moves worldwide to gain a better understanding of urban mobility issues and insights into car-sharing user experiences. The mobile app will enable about 700 employees at GM China’s Shanghai headquarters to share an enjoyable ride with their colleagues while making an effort to reduce emissions and congestion.

Drivers can input their preferred route, departure time and number of seats available. Riders can submit their commuter requests. The self-developed matching system quickly offers a list of potential drivers for riders to approach. When the driver accepts a rider, the system automatically shows one fewer available seat in his or her vehicle.

“The employee carpooling pilot program merges the Internet with intelligent mobile technology,” said Vivian Yu, who is leading GM China Urban Active Projects. “It will not only benefit our team members, but also enable us to test software systems in everyday usage scenarios.”

“This initiative will further expand our activities in alternate transportation models in one of our most important markets in the world,” said Julia Steyn, GM vice president, Urban Active. “It will help us learn more about vehicle user behavior as we develop business models for future global mobility solutions.”

GM CEO Mary Barra and her leadership team recently outlined the company’s plans to capitalize on the future of personal mobility, building upon nearly two decades of connectivity leadership through OnStar.

In addition to internal campus-based car-sharing and ride-sharing programs in the U.S., China and Europe, GM recently announced its first residential car-sharing initiative, Let’s Drive NYC, in the U.S. Unlike other mobility service offerings, Let’s Drive NYC leverages integrated and existing OnStar connectivity technologies and services such as remote diagnostic status and access to OnStar advisors with the push of a button.

In Europe, the company’s Opel brand has deployed a peer-to-peer sharing service called CarUnity, which incorporates dealers and their fleets to provide an array of available vehicles for sharing. In China, a fleet of EN-V 2.0 electric concept vehicles went into service at Shanghai Jiao Tong University earlier this year as part of a multi-modal campus transportation system alongside bicycles, cars and shuttle buses.

Further car- and ride-sharing initiatives will follow starting in the first quarter of 2016.

General Motors traces its roots back to 1908. GM has 11 joint ventures, two wholly owned foreign enterprises and more than 58,000 employees in China. GM and its joint ventures offer the broadest lineup of vehicles and brands among automakers in China. Passenger cars and commercial vehicles are sold under the Baojun, Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet, Jiefang and Wuling brands. In 2014, GM sold more than 3.5 million vehicles in China. More information on General Motors in China can be found at GM Media Online.