Finding a suitable Uber car

By Anna Kantilaftas, 18 Aug 2016 Car Advice

Man driving car

Thinking of becoming a freelance chauffeur and jumping on the non-Taxi-taxi bandwagon? We throw a few options your way.

Freelance cab drivers of the world are on to a good thing – what job could be better than driving around your city, listening to people’s whacky stories, and getting paid to do it… well, except for being a motoring journalist.

But what would be the perfect car to get around in if you were taking up the job as a casual chauffeur?

First, it would have to meet the criteria, starting with the four wheel rule a necessity – this isn’t Foodora or Deliveroo!

Uber, for example, has a list of criteria all drivers and vehicles have to meet before they’re able to start working.

Drivers must be at least 21 years of age, and have a criminal and driver history checks. Cars need to be less than nine years, in good condition and have four doors (sorry guys, that Mazda MX-5 isn’t going to cut it). You also have to have the car inspected prior to getting an Uber accreditation, and then have it checked at least once a year.

No Taxi-license is required, which is obviously why the company is so popular, but also the cause of plenty of controversy over the last few years.

So sticking to Uber’s criteria, we sorted through the caryards to find Australia’s best freelance-cabbie cars.

IT’S AN INVESTMENT

If you were buying a business, you’d want to find a place you loved that didn’t cost a fortune to buy or rent. Given in this case your car is your office, it’d need to be a car that doesn’t involve major costs to buy or run.

Toyota Prius

On the flipside, though, you could always use this job as a chance to make some extra pocket money to counterbalance the budget-blowout on your dream car. We’re all in for this one.

  • Suzuki Celerio – 4.7L/100km, $12,990
  • Nissan Micra ST – 5.9L/100km, $13,490
  • Mitsubishi Mirage ES – 4.6L/100km, $14,250
  • Hyundai Accent Active – 5.7L/100km, $14,990

LESS FUEL = MORE PROFIT

If you’re going to be driving people around all day, using tank after tank of fuel, you want something fuel efficient, right? Sure, you’ll be able to claim the fuel use on tax, but the less you have to spend, the more profit you get to make. Pure electric would be good, but way too inconvenient, so plug-in hybrids or diesel cars would take the gold here.

  • Toyota Prius Hybrid – 3.4L/100km, $34,990
  • Toyota Corolla Hybrid – 4.1L/100km, $26,990
  • Audi A3 Sportback 1.6 TDI – 3.9L/100km, $37,800
  • Peugeot 308 GT, diesel – 4L/100km, $42,990

BUMS ON SEATS

The more people your car can fit, the more chance you’ll have to pick up big groups and reach a pool of business your colleagues cannot.

Citroen Grand Picasso

Your kids are at school or playing weekend sport and you’ve got a few hours to kill – that big family car could start making you money. On Saturday night while the family are home getting ready for board games and smores, you’ve just scored yourself a few hours’ work driving tipsy groups from pre-drinks to bars.

  • Citroen Grand C4 Picasso – 4.5L/100km, $47,490
  • Hyundai Santa FE Active CRDi – 6.3L/100km, $42,350
  • KIA Carnival S – 7.7L/100km, $43,990
  • Toyota Fortuner GXL – 7.8L/100km, $47,990
  • Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV Hybrid – 1.9L/100km, $47,490

DO WHAT YOU LOVE, NEVER WORK A DAY

But most importantly, if you’re becoming a driver because you love to drive, then you may as well do it in a car you love. Forget the fuel consumption and make performance a priority. As the Confucius saying goes, “Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life.” Cheers to that.

Ford Falcon

  •          Holden Commodore SS-V Redline – 11.8L/100km, $54,490
  •          Ford Falcon XR8 Sprint – 14L/100km, $59,990
  •          Ford Focus RS – 8.1L/100km, $50,990
  •          BMW 220d Sport Line – 4.4L/100km, $50,900
  •          Renault Clio RS Sport – 6.3L/100km, $35,000

Alternatively, you could just choose one of Uber’s most popular cars like the Toyota Camry, Mazda3 or Holden Commodore. Either way, you’re driving for a living so we’d say you have one of the coolest jobs in the world.