National Car Rental

National Car Rental is a private American rental car agency based in Clayton, Missouri, United States. National is owned by Enterprise Holdings, along with other agencies including Enterprise Rent-A-Car, and Alamo Rent a Car. National typically caters to business travelers through its Emerald Club loyalty program that allows frequent customers to pick their own vehicles without stopping to fill out forms or deal with customer representatives.[1][2]

National Car Rental
IndustryCar rental
FoundedAugust 27, 1947; 75 years ago (1947-08-27)
United States
ParentEnterprise Holdings


National was founded by 24 independent rental car agents on August 27, 1947. It had grown from 60 locations in the United States in 1947 to over 2000 locations internationally as of 2005.

In 1987, Paine Webber, a historical American brokerage firm, gained majority ownership of National.[3]

In 1995, National was owned by an investment group containing William Lobeck of Tulsa, Alvin Swanner of New Orleans, and Archer McWhorter of Houston.[4] Lobeck was a former president of Chrysler's car rental unit and a former owner of Thrifty Rent A Car, a competitor of National. It was later sold in 1995 at an estimated price of $1 billion.[4]

In 1996, National acquired the Canadian fleet and operations of Tilden Rent-a-Car.

In 1996, National was acquired by Republic Industries (later renamed AutoNation).[5] AutoNation spun off its car rental properties as ANC Rental in 2000.[6] ANC filed for bankruptcy a year later; its properties were sold to Vanguard Automotive Group (controlled by Cerberus Capital Management) in 2003.[7] On August 1, 2007 Enterprise Rent-A-Car assumed control of Vanguard Automotive Group.[8]


  1. ^ Taylor, Andrew C. (September 1, 2013). "Enterprise's Leader on How Integrating an Acquisition Transformed His Business". Harvard Business Review. ISSN 0017-8012.
  2. ^ DePillis, Lydia (November 6, 2013). "Car rental companies keep merging. That might not be such a bad thing". The Washington Post. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved June 22, 2021.
  3. ^ Deutsch, Claudia H. (October 11, 1987). "At Car Rental Companies, the Owners Come and Go". The New York Times. Retrieved September 11, 2016.
  4. ^ a b Bryant, Adam (April 5, 1995). "G.M. Agrees To Sell Car Rental Unit". The New York Times. Retrieved September 11, 2016.
  5. ^ Bagli, Charles V. (November 8, 1996). "In Alamo Deal, Republic Puts More Money On Used Cars". The New York Times. Retrieved August 24, 2016.
  6. ^ "Car Rental Spinoff By AutoNation Is Set". The New York Times. May 31, 2000. Retrieved September 11, 2016.
  7. ^ Stieghorst, Tom (August 7, 2003). "Judge Approves Sale of ANC Assets". Sun-Sentinel. Retrieved August 24, 2016.
  8. ^ Thomas Jr., Landon (March 31, 2007). "Enterprise Rent-a-Car Buys Vanguard, a Rival". The New York Times. Retrieved September 2, 2012.

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