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Rent-A-Wreck is a car rental company renting vehicles which have been previously owned by individuals or other rental car companies. They are also known[citation needed] for accommodating younger drivers and those with poor or no credit.

The company's trademark phrases are 'The Smart Alternative' and 'Don't Let The Name Fool You!', the latter referring to the fact that the vehicles in their rental fleet are not actually wrecks.


A Rent-A-Wreck in Gillette, Wyoming
The Kirmsee Family has owned and operated Rent-A-Wreck in Cherry Hill, New Jersey since 1979. Here father and sons Lanse and Howard pose with a Sting Ray and a Chevrolet.

Founded in 1968 in Los Angeles,[1] Rent-A-Wreck began as a pioneering concept: renting used cars for less at neighborhood locations. Airport based car rental was typical in the 1960s, and most renters were business travelers or vacationers renting while out of town. Media coverage, notably in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal and Mike Wallace show, sparked national interest in Rent-A-Wreck, and by 1973, the company had sold its first franchised unit.[1]

Since 1973, Rent-A-Wreck has grown to include franchised locations in 41 of the 50 U.S. states, Scandinavia, and Sint Maarten island in the Caribbean. The company operates primarily in neighborhood locations, often connected to or in close proximity to repair facilities, car dealerships or other automotive related services. Some Rent-A-Wreck locations offer airport pick-up and drop off.

Rent-A-Wreck was purchased by JJF Management on January 26, 2006.[1]

Rent-A-Wreck in Canada[edit]

A separate Calgary-based Rent-A-Wreck was founded in 1976 in Prince George, BC and not affiliated with the US based firm (changed parent firm from Rent-A-Wreck Capital, Incorporated to Franchise Services of North America, Incorporated).[1] This firm offers car and truck rentals in all 10 provinces and the Yukon Territory.


  1. ^ a b c d "About Us". Rent-A-Wreck. Archived from the original on 5 November 2011. Retrieved 29 April 2014.

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