Hertz Charges Tesla Model 3 Renter $277 Fee For ‘Gas,’ Won’t Back Down

Electric vehicle charging station (Michael Marais for Unsplash)

You might understand the shock that Hertz customer Joshua Lee felt when he saw the receipt for his rented Tesla Model 3. After returning the vehicle back to Hertz following a weekend vacation in Los Angeles, Lee noticed he was hit with additional charge of $277.39 on top of his initial reservation price.

Why was he charged so much additional money? According to Hertz, that was the cost of refueling the electric Model 3. Unfortunately for Lee, the further he pried the company for information, the more Hertz doubled down, and the more confused he became.

When Lee made his reservation—the receipts for which were seen and confirmed by The Drive—he paid for the “Skip the Pump and Save Time” option, which allows customers to bring their rental cars back without refilling the gas tank. So even if he was driving a car that took gasoline, he shouldn’t have been charged an additional refueling fee.

OK—mistakes happen, and perhaps the person working at the counter accidentally checked the wrong box. However, when Lee submitted a billing question, Hertz doubled down on the refuel charge, despite the Tesla Model 3 not having a fuel tank to refill, and Lee having already paid for the “Skip the Pump” option.

You might ask, maybe Hertz was charging Lee for having to top the Model 3’s battery upon its return? According to the final receipt, the customer gave the Model 3 back to Hertz with the battery 96% full, the exact same state of charge it was picked up with.

And, even if Lee hadn’t done that, the maximum fee should’ve been $35, per Hertz’s EV recharging policy: “You can return your EV at any charge level and we’ll recharge it for $35—or just $25 for Gold Plus Rewards Members. Or, return it at the same level as pick-up and pay $0.”

Read the full story here.