Do You Dare Share?

Toyota Tacoma TRD Off-Road 09 II

By G.R. Whale

As manufacturers become mobility providers, ride-hailing (sharing) services will increase. Until now, the trucking industry has successfully managed transporting goods while taxis, shuttles and livery services have provided for human transport beyond the public transportation sector.

However, the pay-for-a-ride arena is quickly changing. Just as Tesla is battling states over how, if at all, it can sell cars, ride-hailing services such as Lyft, UberMaven and others — many in partnership with automakers — are knocking heads with government entities about where they can provide service. The hard-hit taxi industry is fighting back — arguably a guy hauling paying passengers in a yellow Prius isn't any different than you driving someone around in a red pickup truck.

But are you prepared to share? In some states pickups are presumed to be commercial vehicles and insurance companies charge accordingly; in others they're personal-use vehicles. You might not consider yourself a commercial operation for driving someone or carrying cargo, but any time there's payment involved, insurance companies will view the activity as a commercial enterprise. So should you decide to moonlight with a ride-hailing service it behooves you to speak to your insurance company and update your policy if need be.

Insurance isn't the only thing you need to consider. If you decide to use your pickup for ride-hailing, your warranty could be voided. The list of "not covered" exclusions in warranties include racing, permanent stationary power source ("permanent" was undefined), driving over curbs and commercial use. Our research yielded numerous commercial-use exclusions, from seat belts covered for just the base warranty period (except Kansas, which requires 10 years of coverage) to the life of the vehicle, and some manual transmission clutch parts that are not covered from Day One. So check your warranty for commercial-use exclusions before registering with one of these services.

Do you ride- or cargo-share, and are your insurance and vehicle warranty policies up to it? Share your thoughts in the comment section below.

Manufacturer image



can't imagine using a pickup truck for ride sharing.

When we bought my wife's car earlier this year we had to sign several pages detailing how we would be in breach of the retail purchase contract if we used it for ride-sharing.

I was in annapoilis MD for a boat show recently and was picked up in a Ram using Uber, it was a fun ride.

The comments to this entry are closed.