Your car isn’t in use all the time, so why not rent it out and make some cash?
With the way things are going in the transport world, it seems likely car ownership will eventually become a thing of the past. Decades from now we’ll be transported around in self-driving vehicles that arrive on-demand. And if Larry Page gets his way, those vehicles won’t be traveling on the ground. Until then, car ownership remains very popular and GM has decided to take advantage of that fact beyond just selling us new vehicles.
As Bloomberg reports, GM is expected to launch a pilot program in the summer that will allow car owners to rent out their vehicles when not in use. It will form an extension of GM’s existing Maven car sharing service, but relying on other people’s vehicles rather than an existing fleet GM owns.
Nobody wants to rent out their expensive car without being reassured it will return in good condition, which I’m sure GM hopes its strong brand will help convince you it will. The company will be entering a market catered to by smaller players, with Turo and Getaround being the most successful so far. GM could very quickly dominate, though, due to its size and reach.
If GM’s service goes ahead, it could potentially add millions of car sharing opportunities to the market overnight, which is bad news for companies such as Uber or Lyft. For consumers, it simply means a lot more competition and much higher availability, both of which could drive down the costs of using someone else’s car.
It’s unclear how much money a car owner could expect to make by renting their vehicle through GM. However, whatever cash is generated, expect GM to take a healthy percentage for providing the service and guaranteeing your vehicle returns in the condition you left it.