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General Motors to Shut Down Maven Car-Sharing Service

By John Rosevear – Apr 21, 2020 at 6:25PM

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GM's Zipcar rival is the latest new-mobility venture to fall victim to the COVID-19 pandemic.

General Motors (GM -5.08%) is shutting down its Maven car-sharing service, the latest blow to new-mobility ventures amid the coronavirus pandemic.

"After critically looking at our business, the industry, and what's going on with COVID-10, we have made the tough but necessary decision to wind down our business," the company said in an email to customers on Tuesday.

The news of GM's decision to shut down Maven was first reported by The Verge on Tuesday. 

A Chevrolet Bolt EV with a Maven sticker on the window.

GM's Maven offered short-term rentals of vehicles like the electric Chevrolet Bolt EV. Image source: General Motors.

GM launched Maven in 2016, as one of several initiatives intended to help GM "disrupt" itself, as CEO Mary Barra said. At the time, GM was facing pressure from investors to prove that it could compete with the rise of nimble new-mobility companies backed by Silicon Valley venture capitalists.

Originally structured as a direct rival to Zipcar, with fleets of GM vehicles available for short-term use via an app, GM expanded Maven's mission in 2018, allowing car owners to share their vehicles via the service as well. 

Maven was somewhat popular with ride-sharing drivers operating on the Lyft and Uber Technologies platforms, who could use Maven's Gig service to rent GM vehicles by the week at reasonable rates. 

Maven eventually expanded to 17 U.S. cities before GM cut it back last year. But Maven continued to operate in several major U.S. cities, including Washington, DC, until GM suspended its service in March.  

GM said that it will wind down Maven's service over the next few months. 

John Rosevear owns shares of General Motors. The Motley Fool recommends Uber Technologies. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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