Ever think of owning your own fleet of rental cars? You can with Turo

Have you ever wanted to drive a Nissan GT-R, a BMW M6, or a Ferrari 348TS? Good luck finding one to rent at a big name national rental agency. Maybe you would like to rent a 2004 Honda Element for a camping vacation. Whatever your car preference, the Turo peer-to-peer car rental marketplace was created to help people either rent their dream car or help pay for their own car by renting it to others when it would otherwise sit idly.

Turo’s business model connects people as well as cars, working on the assumption that people who want to rent Mustangs, for example, would enjoy meeting and renting a car from a Mustang owner. Turo does not rent only performance cars. Rental selection categories also include everyday drivers, fuel sippers, family-friendly cars, and backroads-ready vehicles as well as upscale and elite cars. For cities with a wide selection of available cars, such as Los Angeles which had 2,980 cars when we checked recently, you can narrow your search by category, make and model, pickup and delivery options, colors, vehicle features, and daily rental fees and mileage allowance.

All Turo renters are screened prior to their first rental, including auto insurance score, criminal background check, and driving history. To start the process, a renter enters a location in the U.S. or Canada and scrolls through the available cars. Rental rates are set by owners with guidance from Turo based on market value, location, time of year, and experience datasets.

When people pick up a car rented through Turo or are picked up at an airport, the renter and owner check the car’s condition. The owner also shows them how to use any special controls and features, checks their license, notes the mileage and fuel level, and hands over the keys. At the end of the rental period, the renter gives the keys back after another walk around the car and a fuel and mileage check. Turo handles the financial transaction. Car owners are reviewed and rated for their timeliness, the condition of the cars, and the overall rental experience.

People rent their cars either to help with payments, cover all ownership costs, or even start a business with one or multiple cars. Prospective car listers can use Turo calculators that estimate annual earnings based on the car’s market value and the number of days rented per month. There are four levels of insurance and vehicle protection available to owners during rental periods. Depending on the protection level, Turo pays owners from 65 to 85 percent of the trip price charged. Owners who already have commercial rental insurance can waive the Turo protection plans and earn 90 percent of trip prices.

Turo told Digital Trends the company currently operates in 4,700 cities in the U.S. and Canada. There are more than 2 million registered members, including about 110,000 cars in the system representing approximately 800 makes and models. A Turo representative said the majority of car owners can offset their monthly car payments renting their cars for nine or 10 days a month. People who want to rent cars as a business can consult with Turo for the best returns based on rental locations.

Emerging Tech

Own a drone? New rule means you have to change the way IDs are displayed

Registered drone owners will need to put their machine's ID number on the outside of the aircraft from February 23 in accordance with a new FAA rule. It means the ID can no longer be placed inside the drone's battery compartment.
Smart Home

Want to publish your own Alexa skill? Here's how to do it

Building new Alexa skills has never been easier! Thanks to Alexa Blueprints, you can pick a template and create any kind of Alexa skill you want. What new skill will you make first? Here's how to do it.
Smart Home

Ford’s ingenious bed for couples keeps mattress hogs in their own half

Drawing on its driverless-car technology, Ford has created a smart bed for couples that uses sensors and a conveyor belt to prevent either occupant from straying onto the other half of the mattress while they doze.
Mobile

Will new Vivo-owned brand Iqoo specialize in cutting-edge phones?

A new smartphone brand has launched. It's called Iqoo, and it's a sub-brand of Vivo, the Chinese device manufacturer owned by BBK Electronics. The company has not revealed its first smartphones yet
Cars

Volkswagen’s hot-rodded T-Roc R is ready to shred its tires to confetti

Volkswagen released a teaser sketch to preview a hot-rodded SUV named T-Roc R. Insiders suggest it will be closely related to the mighty Golf R, meaning it will pack a turbocharged, 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine rated at about 300…
Cars

Honda’s Urban EV is shaping up to be a high-tech, high-style electric city car

Honda will travel to the 2019 Geneva Auto Show to unveil a close-to-production prototype that previews an adorable, city-friendly electric car. The Urban EV will offer about 155 miles of range, and its interior is a tech lover's dream come…
Cars

Audi’s Geneva-bound Q4 E-Tron concept will give us a glimpse of the future

Audi has released a trio of teaser sketches to preview the Q4 E-Tron concept. Scheduled to make its debut at the 2019 Geneva Auto Show, the design study takes the form of an electric SUV with a muscular design and a tech-filled interior.
Cars

Tesla’s Dog Mode lets good Samaritans know that Fido’s A-OK

Tesla's latest over-the-air software update adds two features called Sentry Mode and Dog Mode. Sentry Mode records footage and alerts the owner if someone breaks in, while Dog Mode runs the A/C so owners can safely keep their dogs in their…
Cars

Rock out in the carpool lane with Singing Machine’s Carpool Karaoke microphone

Carpool Karaoke fans can count down the days till summer. That's when Singing Machine's Carpool Karaoke microphone will be available. Connect the Carpool Karaoke Mic to your car radio to make your next road trip a mobile karaoke party.
Cars

Bentley Bentayga Speed surpasses Lamborghini Urus as world’s fastest SUV

The Bentley Bentayga Speed has wrested the title of world's fastest SUV from its cousin, the Lamborghini Urus. But the Bentley is just 1 mph faster than the Lamborghini. It requires 626 horsepower to achieve that top speed.
Emerging Tech

With CabinSense, cars will soon know who’s riding in them and respond accordingly

What if your car could know who's riding in it and customize the entertainment and safety options accordingly? That’s what's promised by the new CabinSense in-car Occupancy Monitoring System.
Outdoors

General Motors cycles into a new market with its first-ever ebikes

When General Motors launched a public campaign last year to name its new ebike brand, many wondered if Bikey McBikeface might win out. But it didn't. Instead, it's called Arīv, and the two bikes are up for pre-order this week.
Product Review

The 2020 Volvo V60 Cross Country is a do-it-all Swedish army knife

Volvo laced up its smallest station wagon in hiking clothes to create the V60 Cross Country. It's a lifted, all-wheel drive wagon that laughs at icy roads while coddling its occupants. We travel to Sweden to try it out.
Cars

The Polestar 2, Sweden’s answer to the Tesla Model 3, begins taking shape

Volvo sister company Polestar has released a teaser image to give us our first look at the 2, its second model. Polestar tells us the 2 will arrive as a four-door fastback with a 400-hp electric powertrain and about 300 miles of range.