Maven, General Motors' ride-sharing app, is now available in San Francisco. The company started its service at the beginning of the year and the recent announcement puts GM into nine different cities.
The service is dubbed Maven City and it comes to join Lyft's new driver rental program Lyft Express Drive, which rolled out during the summer.
GM actually contributed with a staggering $500 million to Lyft's latest funding round, and rumors surfaced that the car manufacturer is considering an acquisition of the rideshare company.
According to Maven, 10,500 of its members and Lyft drivers tapped into Express Drive to date, banking almost 15 million miles.
Keep in mind that the City by the Bay already has a myriad of ride-sharing options, such as MUNI, Uber, Lyft and the regular taxi cabs. Maven will face dire competition from historically established names such as Getaround, which has been running in the city since 2009 and Zipcar, which has been on the streets as early as 2000.
At the end of September, Maven started offering a one-way rental service, which allowed users to rent a vehicle for a one-way trip without having to return the car to the original rental location. Zipcar also features the one-way trip option.
However, Maven is confident that the tech-savvy crowd of San Francisco will be more than happy to use its service.
Maven's vice president for urban mobility, Julia Steyn, explains that "a fully connected car-sharing experience" is in tow thanks to the seamless technology embedded in Maven's cars.
By using their smartphones, users can unlock Maven's vehicles.
Keep in mind that the company is not the only one that provides this high-tech method. Where Maven has the upper hand is that it offers access to GM's cars. This means that users can tap into integrations of OnStar, Apple CarPlay, SiriusXM radio and Android Auto. Last but not least, Maven users will get 4G LTE wireless connectivity in the rental cars.
Maven will rent out its cars at an hourly basis for $8 an hour. The company offers a fleet of 60 tech-padded vehicles, most of which can be rented from the city's busy areas. For good measure, know that Getaround asks for $5 an hour or more, depending on model.
It seems like GM's car-sharing service is betting it all on the tech-savvy card, and it could yield high results. Those who are ready to shell out a little extra for the comfort and techie environment from GM's vehicles could prove Maven right.