The 5 Best Cars for Ridesharing

For those considering ridesharing to supplement their income, one of the most difficult questions is what car to use? For many, the idea of getting a new car is not in the cards for attempting to rideshare so they must consider the car that they already own. But, if you are in the market for a newer car anyway OR if you are considering getting a new car specifically for ridesharing, the question may appear daunting. The simplest solutions for ridesharing usually revolve around keeping depreciation low and fuel-efficiency high. That is why every single car on this list is some form of hybrid.

Why not electric vehicles? One of the keys to maintaining a solid hourly rate is to minimize downtime, which involves having a very high range and not stopping for recharges. If you are taken on a very long ride away from a city center, also, you may need to decline the ride or stop along the way for a rechagre. So, as of now, with current ranges of electric vehicles and the grid that includes them, they are not the best vehicles to maximize ridesharing earnings (although I have heard of Tesla Uber rides!)

(Remember: Uber is offering $300 to try 40 rides driving for its platform! You can try it out, see if you like it and then quit!)

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Without further ado, the list:

5. Volkswagen Jetta Hybrid

The Volkswagen Jetta has always been an attractive options for those looking to keep their gasoline costs low, and this has been exaggerated even further with their hybrid option. The 2016 version of the Hybrid has an MSRP of $31,120 with HP of 150 so it is a bit more expensive and less powerful than the other cars on this list. Also, the sie of the vehicle leaves some to be desired, especially when compared with the Fusion and Sonata below. But the size also makes it an asset for maneuverability and parking if you live in a dense area. I can't count the number of times I wish I had a slightly shorter car (even 2 feet would do sometimes) simply for creative street parking. If you have a lot of space or are looking to carry a lot of cargo/passengers, there are better options.

Vehicle 2016 Volkswagen Jetta Hybrid
MSRP $31,120
MPG (city/hwy) 42/48
Horsepower 150
Size Small

4. Honda Civic Hybrid

One of the first transitions into the hybrid world, the Honda Civic's hybrid option is still a very formidable option. Similar to the Jetta, it is a pretty small vehicle with a smaller interior than many large or mid-sized sedans. The discontinued Honda Insight Hybrid was, sadly, a fantastic option for ridesharing, with very low upfront cost and fantastic mileage. Alas, the Honda Civic will do, however, with slightly larger interior and trunk space than a few of the other options on this list.

Vehicle 2015 Honda Civic Hybrid
MSRP $24,735
MPG (city/hwy) 42/48
Horsepower 110
Size Medium

 

3. Hyundai Sonata Hybrid

Hyundai's foray into hybrids has been a success with the Hyundai Sonata being a fantastic option for ridesharing. With a larger interior and a larger engine than most of the other options on this list, the Sonata doesn't sacrifice cost efficiency (being less expensive, even, than the Volkswagen Jetta). Using this vehicle will allow you and your passengers extra space and a little extra power when you need it.

Vehicle 2016 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid
MSRP $26,000
MPG (city/hwy) 40/44
Horsepower 193
Size Large

2. Ford Fusion SE Hybrid

Maybe I'm a bit biased because this is what I ride, but the Ford Fusion SE Hybrid presents an amazing option for ridesharing. My car, the White Rocket, provides a lot of space for my passengers and myself and have never had an issue with trunk space or passengers. It is also extremely powerful and I have had no issues with acceleration. The only minor issues I have had are with maneuverability and parking in small areas in the city. Sometimes, I am just unable to fit the car into tighter areas, especially in cities with great difficulty of street parking (shoutout to SpotHero).

Vehicle 2016 Ford Fusion SE Hybrid
MSRP $26,480
MPG (city/hwy) 44/41
Horsepower 188
Size Large

1. Toyota Prius c

The reigning champion, the Toyota Prius c has rightly earned its claim to the best ride for inexpensive mileage, prime for ridesharing. A bit smaller than the other Toyota Prius models, the c has an MSRP below $20,000 (keeping depreciation extremely low) and is able to claim an extremely high mileage. It has very little cargo area so if you are one to frequently go on road trips or maybe even skiing/camping, the Prius c will leave you longing for more space. Also, the vehicle's power/acceleration is on the low end (which is why the energy efficiency is so great) but sometimes city and traffic driving requires fast acceleration to optimize your time. But the size, mileage and cost makes this vehicle the best for maximizing your earnings on the road.

Vehicle 2016 Toyota Prius c
MSRP $19,560
MPG (city/hwy) 46/53
Horsepower 73
Size Small

 

Conclusion

There are many different options now for inexpensive hybrid vehicles that keep mileage expenses low. The most fascinating thing about tracking the mileage efficiency of vehicles is the speed at which it is improving. The cost to get a hybrid from an initial outlay position is continuing to be lower and lower. Saving ~$100/month on the initial cost of the vehicle can ensure better savings at year-end for ridesharing. As battery technology improves, also, I expect full-electric vehicles to begin to make a compelling case for being a useful ridesharing vehicle (both speed of charge AND range). In the meantime, however, these cars would be a great start to consider driving for ridesharing companies.

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