GM's Maven follows Cadillac's lead and offers monthly rentals

March 8, 2017

Back in January, General Motors and Cadillac launched a monthly car-sharing service called BOOK. Users pay $1,500 per month, and in exchange they receive access to an array of Cadillac vehicles, including the XT5, CT6, Escalade, and V Series.

Now, GM has launched a similar program called Maven Reserve. An extension of Maven, which launched in early 2016, Maven Reserve relies on a fleet of Chevrolet vehicles (at least for now).

Similar, but different

Like BOOK, Maven Reserve gives folks access to vehicles for long-term usage. Also, each car in the Maven Reserve fleet comes equipped with a number of GM perks, like OnStar, 4G LTE Wi-Fi, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and SiriusXM radio. And rentals of vehicles include insurance.

There are, however, a couple of key differences between Maven Reserve and BOOK. Perhaps most importantly, BOOK is a subscription service with an ongoing fee. Users pay that fee whether they're using a car or not, though they can also keep a particular Cadillac for as long as they like.

Users of Maven Reserve, on the other hand, don't pay anything unless they're actually using a vehicle, and rentals max out at 28 days. Also, the fee for Maven Reserve varies from car to car. A ride like the Chevrolet Volt might cost $1,100 for 28 days, while an SUV like the Chevrolet Tahoe rents for $1,500.

Maven Reserve vehicles also come with a dedicated parking space--something BOOK doesn't offer. And Maven Reserve users receive $100 worth of gas for their travels.

At the moment, Maven Reserve is only available in Los Angeles and San Francisco. That's in part because of the way the service evolved. According to GM, "[Maven Reserve] was developed initially for entertainment and entrepreneurial communities seeking frictionless, on-demand transportation options and longer-term access to vehicles."

Our take

Will Maven Reserve take off? We can't say.

However, it seems like the service could have strong appeal to folks in densely populated urban centers--folks who need vehicles from time to time but don't want to deal with the costs of having a car full-time. At the very least, it positions GM well for a future in which mobility is more central to the auto market than owning or leasing a vehicle. 

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