How to get a car for Uber or Lyft
Xchange, Uber’s popular rideshare leasing program, stopped leasing vehicles last month. Many drivers utilized Xchange because it was often the quickest way to get a vehicle for Uber. Drivers could also use the vehicle for Lyft, Amazon Flex, and other sharing services. Leasing through Xchange also meant the driver didn’t have to worry about maintenance, as oil changes and tire rotations were included.
However, the end of Xchange is actually a blessing in disguise for rideshare drivers. While convenient, Xchange leases were often more expensive in the long run than just purchasing a car for Uber or Lyft. Monthly lease costs on Xchange were usually in excess of $600, or even $800, per month! For that kind of money, if you want to drive rideshare, you’re much better off buying a vehicle. So, here’s a step by step guide on how to choose a car, get financing, and get the best price on your vehicle for rideshare driving.
Choose a vehicle
When selecting a vehicle for driving rideshare, the three most important items to consider are gas mileage, reliability, and price.
In terms of mileage, the Toyota Prius is the gold standard for Lyft and Uber drivers. It gets a whopping 52 miles per gallon. Just behind is the Honda Accord Hybrid at 48 miles per gallon. Coming in third is the Ford Fusion Hybrid, which gets a not too shabby 42 miles per gallon. The Kia Optima Hybrid also gets about 42 miles per gallon.
If you decide against a hybrid, the Chevrolet Cruze gets a stunning 38 miles per gallon. If you want to try the Chevy Cruze out, in certain markets you can rent this vehicle through Lyft.
After surveying various reliability surveys, it’s clear that the Toyota Prius also comes out on top in this category. The Honda Accord Hybrid also receives high marks from J.D. power. The Ford Fusion Hybrid, Kia Optima Hybrid, and Chevy Cruze are ranked a little lower, but still perform well.
Although the Prius is tops when it comes to reliability and mileage, the Ford Fusion Hybrid is far and away the best value among the hybrids. While you can expect to pay at least $21-24k for Prius, you can pickup a Ford Fusion Hybrid for less, often about $5,000 less. The Honda and Kia hybrids are priced similarly to the Toyota Prius.
However, the Chevy Cruze may be the best overall value. You may be able to pick one up for around $15,000. Given that the Cruze mileage is almost as good as the hybrids at 38MPG, that may be difficult to ignore. Essentially, you get hybrid like performance without the hybrid price.
Top 3 Rideshare Vehicles Based On Price, Mileage, and Reliability
- Ford Fusion Hybrid – The Ford Fusion is the car of choice for thousands of full-time rideshare drivers. Besides the excellent mileage, affordable price, and above average reliability, it has one major factor that puts it at the top of the list. The Ford Fusion is a full size sedan. It fits five comfortably, and has a large trunk. The car also has a very smooth ride, and excellent handling. If you’re driving rideshare, the importance of passenger comfort and space for luggage cannot be overstated. These factors combine to put the Ford Fusion Hybrid at the top of the list.
- Chevrolet Cruze – If you’re looking for the most cost effective vehicle, the Cruze is a great choice. It’ll probably cost you around 5k less than the Fusion, and 10k less than the Prius. While it gets slightly worse mileage than both, it still gets excellent mileage overall.
- Toyota Prius – The Toyota Prius is a fantastic vehicle with a slick interior, and top notch reliability. However, it is less comfortable than the Fusion, and significantly more expensive than both the Cruze and Fusion. If you can afford the extra five to ten thousand dollars for the Prius, go for it. If cost is a concern though, you’re probably better off with the Fusion or Cruze.
If you’re not sure which vehicle you want to go with, you can always sign up to drive with Lyft or Uber first. Then, you can rent the vehicles you’re deciding between from HyreCar, a service that rents cars to for rideshare driving. If you’re looking at the Cruze, you can often rent that from Lyft or Uber as well.
Once you’ve selected your vehicle, it’s time to get a loan. While you may be able to obtain dealer financing, a number of dealers have been hesitant to finance loans if your sole income is going to be Uber or Lyft. This makes no sense given that full time rideshare drivers can routinely take home $1,000 per week or more. Fortunately, there are a number of options for financing your vehicle besides the dealership.
Main Street Finance provides business financing for equipment like vehicles. You can receive approval within minutes and funding with 24-48 hours. Check Your Rate.
MyAutoLoan.com is a free service that matches you with up to 4 lenders who can finance your vehicle. Check Your Rates.
PersonalLoans.com provides low interest personal loans with APR’s starting at 5.9%. They offer peer to peer, personal, and bank loans. Check Your Rates.
24/7 Auto Finance is a great choice if you have less than stellar credit, and they usually make a decision within 24 hours. Check Your Rates.
For more financing choices, be sure to visit our main Vehicle Finance page.
Good luck with your new car purchase, and drive profitably!