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Car Sharing: GM Launches Beta Test of Maven

General Motors just added peer-to-peer to its Maven platform for car sharing. In a press release dated July 24, 2018, the carmaker announced it began beta testing peer-to-peer sharing in Chicago, Detroit and Ann Arbor. "Your car is one of the most expensive things you own," said Julia Steyn, vice president of General Motors Urban Mobility and Maven. "Sitting idle, it’s wasted. It’s time to put your car to work. Maven’s peer-to-peer offering is a smart way for owners to offset their vehicle investment."

In a nutshell, it’s an opportunity for owners (and most lessees) of late model (2015 and newer) GM cars and trucks to generate some income during vehicle down time.

What Is Maven?

Characterized as a start-up inside GM, Maven pairs members who need a shorter-term rental with members who have an available late-model GM vehicle. It began with GM dealers providing rentals to members, but has expanded well beyond that use. Peer-to-peer sharing joins already-established services in three of the 17 cities in which Maven operates. Other services include city station-based sharing where vehicles are offered for rent by the hour, day or month. There is also a university-campus sharing program for college students, as well as Maven Gig, which offers weekly rentals to ride-hailing and delivery drivers.

Currently, some 150,000 Maven members take advantage of the rental services.

Earning Potential

According to the Maven.com website, although the service provides a rental rate range based on the age and model of the vehicle, owners can set their own price. Owners receive 60 percent of the rental fee. Maven claims a 2016 Chevrolet Camaro owner’s cut can be as much as $1,607 when rented for seven days out of a month, and $19,278 for renting it out a total of 12 weeks in a year. Paydays are once per month through direct deposit.

GM’s Promise

Participating vehicle owners and their cars or trucks are covered by a $1-million liability insurance policy provided by GM. Only drivers vetted and approved by Maven can rent cars. Maven provides a 24/7 call center and OnStar with emergency services, stolen vehicle assistance, roadside assistance and more. Owners can locate their vehicle at any given moment.

Additionally, a Maven technician will pickup your car, install a device for keyless access for renters, take professional photos of your car and set up the OnStar account. There is no exchange of keys — renters can unlock and start the car with the Maven app.

Vehicle owners set their own schedule for renting out their vehicles. Renters have an agreement with Maven to return cars to the same spot and in the same condition as when picked up, including fuel level. Owners are expected to provide clean and fueled-up vehicles to renters.

What it means to you: Whether you have an interest in renting a car or have a late-model GM vehicle to rent out, car sharing can be a win-win. Maven appears to have thought of everything.

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Russ Heaps
Russ Heaps is an author specializing in automotive, financial and travel news. For nearly 35 years he has covered the automotive industry for newspapers, magazines and internet websites. His resume includes The Palm Beach Post, Miami Herald, The Washington Times and numerous other daily newspapers through syndication. He edited Auto World magazine, and helped create and edit NOPI Street... Read More

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