Quick to hop on the trend of auto manufacturers turning into mobility companies, GM has launched Maven, a new car-sharing service that lets you book and drive a vehicle on-demand and pay only for the hours you use it.
To start, the company will make a range of cars available in 21 locations in Ann Arbor, Michigan from today. Rates start at $6 an hour inclusive of fuel and insurance for a small car like a Chevrolet Volt or Spark, and go up to $12 per hour for a Chevrolet Tahoe pick-up truck.
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The service is supported by an app that lets users book cars, unlock them and even turn on heating or cooling systems remotely. Each vehicle’s in-dash infotainment system supports Android Auto, Apple’s CarPlay and SiriusXM so you can stream music and answer calls from your own phone.
Julia Steyn, GM vice president, Urban Mobility programs, said:
With more than 25 million customers around the world projected to use some form of shared mobility by 2020, Maven is a key element of our strategy to changing ownership models in the automotive industry.
Maven is the result of a number of steps the company has taken to transition from simply manufacturing and selling cars to offering mobility services to customers.
Last year, the company invested $500 million in Uber rival Lyft with an aim to develop an on-demand fleet of self-driving cars. In October 2015, GM launched Let’s Drive NYC, a program to allow residents of a posh apartment building in New York access to vehicles for hire at an hourly rate.
Earlier this week, the auto giant acquired ride-hail service Sidecar, which shut shop last December. The company culled employees from its latest purchase as well as from Google and ZipCar to form a 40-member team to run Maven.
The launch of GM’s new service is another sign of the rapid rise of car- and ride-sharing across the globe. Ford announced a program last year for customers to rent out their cars to other drivers and offset monthly ownership costs; it’s also set to launch a new service for ‘self-organized groups’ of three to six drivers to share a vehicle starting in Austin, Texas next month.
GM also plans to bring its residential car-sharing service to Chicago, and expand its Let’s Drive NYC program in the near future to serve a total of 5,000 drivers under the Maven banner.
➤ GM Launches Personal Mobility Brand: Maven [GM Corporate Newsroom]