a solution for the future

"Communauto was born out of the necessity of using cars differently. From this individual need, we created a solution for the future"

Benoît Robert, Communauto’s president and founder

Communauto is taking flight

An important announcement will take place today on the future development of carsharing: Communauto, North American carsharing pioneer, PSA group (Peugeot – Citroën) and Montreal-based investment fund MacKinnon Bennett & Co (MKB) are joining forces to shape tomorrow’s mobility. This strategic alliance means putting together capital, industrial basis and expertise that will allow us to take flight and reach new heights.

Often considered the industry’s “silent giant “, Communauto will most likely no longer fit that description. Our ambitions are now global. My greatest source of pride is knowing that we will now have the means to match our ambitions, while staying true to our mission. In other words, we are keeping “our hands on the steering wheel”. All through our search for investors and strategic partners, it was always of the utmost importance to find organizations that would let us stay in control and that were supportive of our mission: Communauto is a company with a social, environmental and urbanistic mission and will stay that way.

We can congratulate ourselves for developing right here in Quebec a carsharing model that is close to unique and that inspires cities and many mobility players around the world. After Québec, Nova-Scotia, Ontario and France, we now want to export our expertise all over the globe.

This doesn’t mean that we will neglect Québec in any way. Our new resources will allow us to increase our offer, improve our tools, all the while pursuing our ambitious electrification strategy for a major part of our Montreal Auto-mobile fleet, this over the course of 5 years. The goal is to remain a leader in Quebec, not only in Montreal but also in Québec City, Sherbrooke and Gatineau.

All this would not have been possible without the trust of tens of thousands of members and of many partners, ever-increasing, who believe in us. I want to thank all of them.

It is with much enthusiasm that we are heading off on this new adventure withthe conviction that we share, with our new partners, the same vision of environmental issues and the role that smart mobility will play in the evolution of our cities.


Carsharing : from Niche to Mainstream

Our cities’ growing urbanization, the reduction of car-friendly spaces as well as costs and constraints of owning a car are some of the elements contributing to the progressive decline of people’s desire and interest towards car ownership. Certain trends are starting to emerge in Europe and the U.S.:

  • Stagnation du kilométrage annuel parcouru par les véhicules privés
  • Decrease of the number of driver’s licence and cars owned by young people in developed countries.

The industry of collaborative mobility is booming. By 2020, collaborative mobility is expected to have 17 millions users in Europe while carsharing is to have 26,2 millions users world-wide.

In Quebec, a study by Tecsult indicated that the potential number of households having the same socio-economic profile as current Communauto members, and therefore susceptible of joining carsharing, is estimated at almost 139 000 members. This number represents 8% of households for the Montreal and Québec regions. The materialization of this market could contribute to taking between 57 300 and 89 400 cars off the road (according to median and maximum scenarios).

Communauto, an international business

Communauto’s out-of-province growth started in 2010 with collaborations with the Halifax and Ottawa carsharing companies. In 2012, Communauto crossed the Atlantic ocean and acquired a French carsharing company in order to demonstrate the relevance of its business model.

The Québec market

Within its first 10 years of operation, Communauto launched its service in 4 major Quebec cities. It started in Québec City (1994) and then Montreal (1995). In 2002, it expanded its carsharing service to Sherbrooke and again in 2003 to Gatineau. Today, tens of thousands of Quebecers can access more than 1500 shared cars but also unique offers combining carsharing and public transportation.


Since 2008 CarShare Atlantic has been providing Halifax citizens with the most affordable and flexible mobility solution: combining carsharing with public transportation, biking and walking. More than 1100 members, residents and businesses, can enjoy the benefits of sharing about 50 cars.


The carsharing network was launched in Ottawa, the Canadian capital, in 2000. It provides carsharing to more than 3000 subscribers of the capital region and surrounding cities of Gatineau and Kingston. In 2016, after years of collaboration, Ottawa became an official part of Communauto’s network.


In 2012, Mobizen is acquired by Communauto. The company, previously owned by Veolia-Transdev group, had not been delivering the expected results for a few years. It had also been the product of a recent fusion between the initial Mobizen and Caisse-Commune, Paris’ carsharing pioneer. This acquisition allowed Communauto, who restructured rates and operations, to improve the company’s financial situation, proving that the Communauto business model is not only profitable (unlike many carsharing companies world-wide) but can also be adapted to different cities and markets.


1. A mixed vehicle fleet to answer the needs of the clientele

Communauto currently has 2000 vehicles, 500 of which are in the free-floating service.More than 20% of this fleet is made up of electric vehiclesThe addition of 100% electric and hybrid vehicles into its fleet started in 2012. The progressive electrification of its fleet, aiming for an optimal mix of 100% electric and hybrid vehicles, is at the heart of the company’s strategy and makes this type of mobility service as atrtactive and complete as possible, allowing for trips outside of urban areas.

2. Two services that work together to offer the best coverage

In Montreal and Québec City, Communauto offers two types of services, maximising efficiency and coverage. Of its 2000 cars, a third are in the free-floating service (one way) and two-thirds in the station-based service (round trip) Montrealers were the first to benefit from this dual offer.

3. Degressive rates adapted to customer needs

Communauto has different subscription packages and plans adapted to all mobility needs. Whether its for occasional use or something more regular, the degressive rates encourage frequency of use.

4. Partnerships with public transportation for efficient and integrated mobility

The partnerships developed with public transportation operators (bus, train, bike-sharing) allow customers to access the complete network at competitive rates, therefore promoting the use of the urban transportation cocktail and reducing the number of cars on the roads.

5. Business development true to its social, environmental and urbanistic mission.

Communauto has succeeded in making carsharing a mode of transportation that is accessible, practical and efficient. The company has always been devoted to having a larger impact on its community and the environment. It has contributed to transforming the way city-dwellers use urban transportation and to democratize the access to electric vehicles. A Polytechnique study revealed that Communauto allowed an important reduction of the number of cars on Quebec roads, estimated to 12 000 cars in 2009, therefore reducing congestion and Greenhouse gas emissions (the company is expecting a reduction of more that 100 000 tons of GHG by 2020).

Each Communauto member reduces his GHG emissions by 1,2 tons, on average, simply by joining a carsharing service. Communauto members avoid 50 kt of CO2 each year in Montreal.

Communauto has contributed to the demonstration that cities can evolve through smart mobility all the while reducing their impact on the environment.

6. Technology in the service of mobility

In July 2013, the OPUS card (Montreal and Québec City transit card) became the access card for Communauto vehicles. The choice of the OPUS card says a lot on Communauto’s vision of integrating carsharing with public transportation. By choosing OPUS, Communauto reiterates the complementarity of the different mobility services and reinforces the idea of « mobility as a service », in which it is paramount to integrate all mobility services, whether it is through the access card or web platforms.

7. Unique and adapted reservation system

In 2002, with Communauto’s membership on the rise, the company decided to develop its own online reservation system, therefore making sure that it would always be adapted to the reality of its users and able to grow with the company.


This section is dedicated to a photobank that is free of rights. You will also find press documents given to members of the media at the public event.

Press material (downloadable)

Press material: Communauto partnership announcement - PSA and MKB MKB group


  • Group photo, announced (Paris)

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  • Group photo in front of Citroën C4 Cactus (Paris)

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  • Photo Brigitte Courtehoux & Benoit Robert (Paris)

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  • Photo Benoit Robert, Paris

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  • Group photo, announced (Paris)

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  • Group photo, announced (Montréal)

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  • Photo conference (Montréal)

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Auto-Mobile cars

Communauto Auto-mobile image media 16 Communauto Auto-mobile image media 15 Communauto Auto-mobile image media 14 Communauto Auto-mobile image media 13 communauto image media 11 communauto image media 10 Communauto Auto-mobile image media 8 Communauto Auto-mobile image media 8 Communauto Auto-mobile image media 8 Communauto Auto-mobile image media 7 communauto image media 1

Communauto cars

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Communauto electrics cars

Communauto Auto-mobile image media 18 Communauto Auto-mobile image media 17 Communauto Auto-mobile image media 12 communauto image media 1 Communauto Auto-mobile image media 7 Communauto Auto-mobile image media 5 Communauto Auto-mobile image media 4 Communauto Auto-mobile image media 3 Communauto Auto-mobile image media 2 Communauto Auto-mobile image media 1 communauto image media 12 communauto image media 7 communauto image media 7

Benoît Robert (Communauto’s president and founder)

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