General Motors is one of those companies that believe electric cars are the future. At the beginning of this year, GM began integrating electronic vehicles into ridesharing applications in California through its Maven brand. General Motors Green reports that there are now around 160 Chevrolet Bolts occupying the road by gig drivers, made possible by the more than 20,000 DC fast-charging events.
General Motors is now renting out the Chevy Bolt EV on a weekly basis to gig workers. These workers tend to make their living or side income through services like Uber, Lyft, or GrubHub. This is especially convenient for those who wish to make money in the gig economy but do not own a vehicle.
According to the Maven Gig site, "With Maven Gig you can reserve a car to drive for anyone, so you can shift seamlessly with the daily demand for ridesharing, food, package, and grocery delivery services.
"Low weekly rates for newer Chevrolet models include unlimited miles, maintenance, insurance (less the deductible), and OnStar roadside assistance. And if you’re interested in working with no fuel costs, our Chevrolet Bolt EV rental includes free charging (limited time offer). Plus with no early return penalty, you can return the car anytime after 7 days."
The way this works is the driver will rent the Bolt from Maven Gig for $229 a week, who in turn pays for the electricity, insurance, and maintenance of the vehicle. These jobs are high-mileage ones, so the drivers will surely benefit from the use of the DC fast charging stations which make up 95 percent of those fees. The increased use of public charging will help demonstrate the demand for them, as well as collect data from the drivers' trips on where additional stations should be located. The Maven Gig program is currently available in Boston, Massachusetts, Phoenix, Arizona, Washington, DC., and three cities in California: Los Angeles, San Francisco, and San Diego; Baltimore and Detroit will soon follow suit.
The drivers who are taking part in this service are already reporting positive feedback to GM. They say that the car is "cool, quiet, and a conversation piece." Getting into a Bolt for your ride is certainly different than the typical Camry or Altima you see on every block.
It is still uncertain as to what will happen in the next five years in terms of personal mobility and the EV movement. It will take a team to accelerate the effort and create a need for more charging infrastructure on the nation's streets.
GM's executive director of urban mobility said, “The opportunity to sharply increase carbon-free miles and grow the nation’s EV charging infrastructure is here. We need to bring various constituents together – city planners, municipal sustainability officers, parking providers, and electric utilities."