Sharjah Roads & Transport Authority (Sharjah RTA) and UAE-based sustainable mobility solutions company ION are set to launch a new on-demand ride-hailing service in Sharjah.

The two organisations revealed that a fleet of electric vehicles (EVs), including Tesla Model S and Model 3s, will enter service by the end of 2020 during last week’s World Electric Vehicle Day.

The service will be available throughout Sharjah and is also planned to be expanded into the rest of the UAE.

The new EV ride-hailing service will be available through a mobile application, “which will offer passengers estimated time of arrival, view the number of available vehicles in the vicinity and even the positive carbon impact by travelling via ION’s service.”

“Sharjah RTA is always striving to provide the infrastructure for alternative and environmental transport solutions,” said HE Eng. Yousef Saleh Al Suwaiji, Chairman of the Sharjah Roads and Transport Authority (SRTA). “We rely on clean energy whenever possible in support of the UAE leadership’s initiatives to transition towards a green economy and sustainable development.

“This will only happen by adopting and embracing sustainable innovations in the field of transportation, which will contribute to achieving our plan towards an environmentally and civilized sustainable transfer. Such an approach is in line with the vision of His Highness Sheikh Dr. Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi, Member of the Supreme Council, Ruler of Sharjah, regarding the need to adopt the most sustainable methods in the Emirate in order to further enhance its position as an environmentally friendly city.”

According to HE Eng. Al Suwaiji the partnership with ION is a continuation of the Authority’s initiatives towards a sustainable future which includes the implementation of a plan to electrify its fleet operation.

“In order to achieve more energy-efficient transportation systems, which contribute to reducing carbon emissions from traditional fuels, the authority also operates 750 hybrid taxis that operate with electricity and gasoline, which contributed to reducing the percentage of pollutants and carbon emissions in Sharjah,” he added.

ION’s electric vehicles fleet has recently been deployed, pro bono, to help Sharjah Medical District’s doctors to facilitate home visits and COVID-19 testing around the clock. It was also used to provide rapid medicine logistics services by University Hospital Sharjah.

H.E. Khaled Al Huraimel, group CEO of Bee’ah and chairman of ION, said: “ION believes in providing sustainable transportation solutions, from building an accessible EV infrastructure to introducing services that help consumers make choices that lower their personal carbon footprint. Through this partnership with Sharjah RTA, we are combining our expertise with a wider mobility network to help raise a more sustainable quality of life for residents in Sharjah.”