Self Drive cars in India

Revv is the new self-drive car rental agency in India. I had tried their Audi Q3 few months ago and recently I booked a Ford Aspire from them again. This post details my experience with Revv.

Bangalore is not short of Self-Drive companies. It is home base for Zoom cars, Carzonrent powered Myles has a huge presence in Bengaluru and there’re many private players as well. But as the awareness about self-drive rental is growing, more and more people are coming out to experiment with rent and drive yourself concept. Thus there is still good market for more players. Given Bengaluru’s traffic problem, if people stop buying new cars and use either self-drive or Ola/Uber then city will be a better place to live.
Coming back to Revv, their fleet includes Audi A3 and Q3 on the expensive side, Celerio, Swift, Aspire on the cheaper side and Sunny, Duster, Scorpio etc in the mid-range.  Revv has a speed limit of 125 kmph similar to Zoom (25 kmph more than Myles’s 100kmph). While Myles doesn’t charge any per km rate and Zoom charges an exorbitant Rs 12-15 per km beyond pre-defined 120/240/360 kms per day (zoom takes care of entire fuel expense), Revv charges a fixed per km maintenance charge between Rs 1(for cheaper cars like Aspire, Swift, Celerio) to Rs 3 (Expensive cars like Audi), in addition to which customers are required to return the car full tank. Just like Zoom and Myles, Rev also has weekday/weekend and peak season rates. Deposit is at par with others- Rs 5000

Revv’s rental is almost at par with Myles for similar category vehicle. For example, a 48 hour weekend booking for Nissan Sunny costs Rs 6788 in Myles but Rs 6300 with Revv (and a per km charge Rs 1.5, assuming you drive 300 km a day, total rent comes at par with Myles). But advantage with Revv is that it can mix daily and hourly tariff. If I need a car for say 18 hours, Myles will count it as 2 full days and charge me accordingly while Revv will compute total for 18 hours only. This is very convenient if I need from say Saturday morning till Sunday evening. (Zoomcar also has similar flexibility, but their km limit and high per km charge beyond pre-defined kms doesn’t work out for me, as I usually drive 300-500 km a day when I rent a car)

In March they had some promo codes which would give about 20% off. Now no promos are running.

Overall, to me it looks like Revv is trying to take the best of both Myles and Zoom to define its policy/pricing

Pickup & Drop: When I had rented Audi in March, I was told that they can’t give pickup and drop at Bengaluru city Railway station. I had to go till Silk board. This time, driver said he could have come to Railway station. I was not aware of this extended pickup & drop range – may be introduced during past 2 months. After I collected my car at Silkboard, I had to return there only, I couldn’t return at Railway station. Some flexibility would have been nice. Do call their customer care to check if they can service whatever location you have in mind or you need to go somewhere else to pickup.
Looks like Pickup & Drop charges (About Rs 300) is added mandatory for every booking. There is NO option to go their garage and pick it up ourselves without having to pay this amount. (Myles and Zoom let you do that as they have fixed locations)

Extending the booking: I had originally booked for 2 days, but by the middle of Day 2, I realized that I might need it for another day. Extended the booking through their app and paid the difference. Zoomcar has similar feature but with Myles, modifying a booking is impossible.

During Booking: It would have been nice to have one point of contact throughout the booking. Today person who delivers the car is different, person who collects it can be different and all requests need to go through call centre. If I ask for point of contact previous evening or couple of hours earlier, call centre reply is “They will contact you 15 min before the scheduled pickup/drop time”- why not reveal the number earlier in case I have some clarifications?

Breakdown Replacement: The Ford Aspire I rented gave trouble on Day 2. Driver side door got jammed and couldn’t be opened. Some issue near the hinge that connects the door to car’s frame. If I apply more force, there was a risk that something might break, so I had to call Revv helpline and ask for a replacement car. I had to get out from passenger side door. They promptly arranged for an upgrade to Scorpio S4 and replacement car was delivered to me within about 2 hours of my request. This is very prompt service and I am pleased.

Remote locking: When I went to Silk board at the scheduled time, the staff who was supposed to come and pick it up was still away. When I said I have a train to catch, he said I can leave the car there and he can get it remotely locked. This is great and adds to convenience (Zoomcar also had introduced app/SMS based lock/unlock (for cheaper cars only), not sure if they are still offering the same)

No Accessories: Zoomcar gives accessories like tablet, car charger etc, Myles keeps tissue papers, fire extinguisher etc in the car. But Revv cars don’t have any of these. Carry your own stuff. Not even bare essential stuff like central locking unless that came standard with the car. Both Aspire and Scorpio had to be locked manually on the driver side door- not very convenient..
Good things about Revv Self Drive Car rentals
1. Newer cars, good no of options, reasonable rates
2. Responsive customer care and good service.
3. Pickup & Delivery
4. Remote locking facility
5. Good mobile app and easy to modify bookings

Not so good things about self drive cars
1. No option to pickup directly from their garage and avoid pickup/delivery charges
2. 125 kmph speed limit
3. Additional per km charge (Rs 1 to Rs 3) besides rentals and fuel expenses
4. Cheaper variants without some of critical accessories/features (such as central locking)
5. Have to deal with different person during pickup/drop etc. No single point of contact
6. Update the website to clearly indicate which cities and locations are serviced
Revv is currently operational only in Delhi-NCR, Hyderabad, Bengaluru and may be few more cities. It is not very easy on their website to know which city they serve and which they don't.

Right now, Revv seems like a small company with less number of cars compared to its rivals. Their service level is very good, customer care is easy to reach and overall experience was great. But we need to see if they can sustain the same quality of service as they grow rapidly. I hope they do.

Update 1: This post is now top post on Indiblogger (Is displayed on its home page for a while)
Update 2: I got my refund promptly. Looks like Rs 1 per km maintenance fee was not charged and also they refunded little extra for extra fuel I had filled. God bless them,
Update 3: In Feb I could book at Audi for min 4 hours. Now looks like 1 day is the minimum duration
Indian Bloggers 
Check Revv's Ford Aspire photos here * Buying vs Renting a car


  1. Thanks Shrinidhi for introducing this novel concept of Self Drive cars. As always, you have detailed your review with Pros and Cons, that's what makes reading eNidhi very beneficial to us novices.

  2. Seems like a good option to Zoom cars. I like your analysis. Gives you a clear picture of what to expect

  3. Thanks for a comprehensive review...from a consumer point of view the more car rental companies come in the market the better and the need to buy a personal car will go away. Very useful for people like me who love to drive but not everyday only when I am going out of town.

    I once called their call center to book, but then later went in my own car, but will sure give them a try.

  4. The reason why a person buys a car is due to the convinience that he can use his 24* 7.A typical car owner will not just use his car to go to office but as also other things such as ferrying kids to tuition ,swimming,visitng friends and family etc etc etc .Whereas renting a car is for a point to point stuff which will leave him in the middle of nowhere for us other chores that he needs transportation for.

    Not everybody has the patience to be booking renting a car each weekend ,planning his car planning how he will get to the car rentals,getting up early -going through surprises -reconciling to these surprises.They just want to get on with their jobs.The reasons for renting and buying is entirely different.Costs may be high for buying but that is not the only reason a person buys the car.It also depends on how much you are using your car.

    By renting a car you are certainly not reducing the traffic ,you are just forgoing your convinience for using it for other needs which sometimes are more needed than office going.

  5. Thanks, Shrinidhi, for the detailed review. Liked the idea of comparison with other agencies. Very informative post :)

  6. Informative. Thanks for the comparisons..

  7. Thanks Naveen, Ravish Mani.

    @Sujatha self drive concept was there since 10+ years in India

    @Ami: Thanks

    @Prasad- do try

    @The Wild: I agree owning a car has its advantages- status symbol, convenience, time saved etc. Many do not worry about money and prefer these advantages.

    May be in such cases one can buy a small car for everyday use and rent an SUV/MPV when needed, instead of buying expensive fuel guzzling SUVs.

    I know many friends who are ready to give up their call, if Ola/Uber can ensure then near 100% availabilty whenever they need a car

    There is lots of emphasis going on to reduce no of vehicles and try car pooling/odd-even, using public transport etc... Self drive also an extended way to achieve that in my opinion

  8. I really didnt know about them until today. I quickly checked online and they do operate in Delhi/NCR too and I am gonna give this a try for sure.

  9. Thanks for your detailed write-up. It was helpful and I have booked for this weekend trip. Ashwini


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