Rent-A-Wreck was founded in 1968 in Los Angeles, California. The company began as a marketing idea, with used cars being rented in neighborhood locations, rather than airports. The company rents cars generally purchased used from other rental companies.
The name of the company caused many people to take a second look. Positive write ups in The New York Times and Wall Street Journal, as well as interest by TV host Mike Wallace, gave the company plenty of free advertising. The first franchise came in 1973. Today, the company has franchised locations in 41 states. The company is best known for renting to younger persons and those with less than stellar credit.
Rent-A-Wreck is now owned by JJF Management, who acquired the company in 2006. Some locations now offer airport service, or airport pick up and delivery. The company recently started a wheelchair van rental program for the disabled.