RelayRides, a peer-to-peer carsharing marketplace, will team up with General Motors and OnStar to create a new program that will provide transportation for those who need it and money for millions of GM car owners.
The program, set to begin in early 2012, will utilize the OnStar system to allow owners of Chevrolet, Buick, Cadlliac and GMC cars the opportunity to report when their car is idle and arrange for someone who is car-less and in need of transportation to rent it out.
This will be GM's first large-scale involvement in carsharing and will include a $1 million insurance policy to make sure the car owners and car renters participate in safe and convenient transactions from the online marketplace provided by RelayRides.
"We're using technology to make both our older and newest models carshare ready and available for those owners who choose to participate in carsharing," said Stephen Girsky, vice chairman at GM. "Our goal is to find ways to broaden our customer reach, reduce traffic congestion in America's largest cities and address urban mobility concerns."
OnStar will allow RelayRides borrowers to unlock the shared cars through their mobile phone. Vehicles without OnStar will be equipped with a small device, which will enable similar convenient access.
"RelayRides has always worked toward providing the safest, most advanced, peer-to-peer carsharing marketplace, where neighbors can help out one another by making their frequently unused car available to those who live nearby," said Andre Haddad, CEO of RelayRides.
Car sharing is nothing new but Paris is currently revolutionizing the types of cars that are shared. The Autolib' program was developed to reduce noise and air pollution by offering up electric vehicles for the city's citizens to share in an effort to curb private car ownership.
According to The Los Angeles Times, Autolib' is based off Velib', a bike sharing service that has about 20,000 bicycles stationed across Paris since 2007. Autolib' is projected to provide as many as 3,000 to 5,000 environmentally friendly Bluecars to citizens across 1,000 locations by 2013, the newspaper reports.