HYUNDAI owners will soon be able to earn thousands for simply not using their car.
The South Korean car maker has joined forces with local car sharing company Car Next Door which allows properly vetted users to rent nearby vehicles either by the hour or the day.
Hyundai is currently developing its next-generation infotainment technology that will integrate the Car Next Door peer-to-peer car sharing app into its vehicles so owners can easily rent their cars out when they are not in use.
The car sharing company suggests that the average mid-size vehicle can earn upwards of $3000 a year while van owners can expect more than double that figure.
The in-built functionality will do away with a traditional key, allowing renters to access and drive Hyundais enrolled in the scheme with only a smartphone.
Hyundai will roll out the next-generation technology in 2019, with Hyundai Australia chief operating officer Scott Grant hoping that it will allow customers to earn some extra cash.
“By the end of 2019, Australians will be able to buy a Hyundai car with the built-in ability to seamlessly and easily rent it out and earn extra money,” Grant says.
“This capability will be pre-installed and integrated into a new version of Hyundai’s Auto Link unit, making it a simple matter to earn extra funds via Car Next Door’s innovative car sharing platform.”
Car Next Door founder Will Davies added that the program allows users to have a car whenever they need one while owners can cover the growing costs of ownership.
The move by Hyundai is part of a growing trend among car manufacturers that are looking to expand beyond the traditional new car sales methods.
Last year Holden launched its Maven service that allows Uber drivers to rent vehicles directly from the brand rather than purchasing them outright. The rental price — that starts from $215 a week — includes insurance and maintenance and has no kilometre limit or extra fees.
However, in the US Maven rents out GM owned vehicles to regular road users not just Uber drivers. And much like the upcoming Hyundai-Car Next Door partnership the linked cars are accessible to registered users by smartphone.
But now, according to a Bloomberg report earlier this year, Maven is trialling peer-to-peer car sharing that allows individual owners to rent out their vehicles to other users.
Overseas, several car companies have aligned with ride-sharing companies like Uber and Lyft to help develop driverless cars and to plan for the next phase of new cars sales once autonomous vehicles become more commonplace and private car ownership recedes.