Renting is the new buying, and Hummers take a dive

6 06 2008

Renting household items may be a great alternative to buying, whether you a) have next to no space for new things, b) don’t want the hassle of arranging, storing, and dusting new things, or c) want to lighten your contribution to the local landfill. Now I’m not advocating those “rent-to-own” places that enslave you for a new T.V., but there are small-scale renting options popping up around the web that are worth a look. Zilok allows you to rent out or to rent from others anything from laptops to golf clubs to evening gowns. For the book-hungry, BookSwim has monthly rental plans that work like Netflix and start as low as 14.99.

In other news, here’s a positive update–according to an article on CNN Money.com, GM is shifting its auto production from 50% cars to 60% in the wake of gasoline price-induced consumer spending changes. Also,

GM is launching a strategic review of its Hummer line of heavy trucks and . . . may sell the unit, though finding a buyer will likely prove difficult.

“This is very difficult environment to sell a brand like that,” Mainstay’s Kudla said. “Unfortunately for GM, Hummer just doesn’t have much consumer appeal at this point.”

The proof is in the numbers. Hummer sales were almost cut in half in April compared to a year earlier, with 2,380 moving off the lots down from 4,375 in 2007.

I was going to say sorry to those who like Hummers, but tolerance has its limits. There’s never been a reason to appreciate Hummers as civilian vehicles, and unless you live on on a craggy outer planet, it doesn’t seem like there ever will be.

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One response

6 06 2008
Jeff Boudier

Hi Colleen,

Thanks for spotting us. We’re trying to promote peer-to-peer renting as a new, sustainable and community-driven way of consuming, tackling over-consumption and the accumulation of stuff. It’s already working pretty well in Europe and I think it’s only a question of time for it to take off here. If you like the idea, you can jumpstart your own rental community around you!

Cheers,
Jeff, Zilok US GM

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