Turo is one of the early stage adopters leading the way in P2P car rental. In the lead up to his sessions at Connected & Autonomous Vehicles, this May 15-18 at the Santa Clara Convention Center, we managed to have a quick interview with Turo's Chief Product Officer, Tom Wang.
Can you tell us about your experience and position with Turo?
I’m the Chief Product Officer for Turo and joined 4 1/2 years ago. I’m responsible for the consumer-facing user experience across all platforms and markets. My experience has been extraordinary, as the sharing economy has gone mainstream and Turo’s growth and pace of innovation has exploded.
What steps do Turo take to protect against theft?
Turo takes the safety of our community seriously. We’ve invested and continue to invest in building a high quality marketplace with trusted community members. We believe that data is the most valuable asset in protecting the community. We’ve leveraged our own data and best of class third party sources to continuously evolve the service. Our experience indicates that machine learning will continue to be important in identifying signals to keep our community safe.
To what extent do you feel consumers have embraced the P2P car rental model so far?
Turo is the leading car p2p car rental company and, as of end of last year, we had over 2.3 million sign-ups, which we’re proud of. But we see growth accelerating and imagine that mainstream adoption over next few years will be considerably greater.
How will autonomous vehicles affect the Turo P2P model?
Turo’s marketplace is premised on diverse selection and exclusivity of access. We think the spectrum of autonomy will enhance the diversity of cars on Turo. We also think exclusivity will differentiate between point-to-point systems.
To what extent do you believe the impact of autonomous vehicles will have on vehicle ownership?
We believe it will lead to a hybrid approach to ownership, which will reduce the cost of ownership.
How will how new mobility providers can partner with automakers?
Automakers are filled with tremendous engineering and manufacturing talent. New providers can complement these strengths with an orientation toward innovative software services
What impact do you believe startups will have in the automotive market?
Some will become automative manufacturers. Many will help transform the purchasing, sharing and utility of vehicles
You’re speaking at this Connected & Autonomous Vehicles, what excited you most about being part of this year’s show?
The growing realization and acceptance that transportation is being undergoing the biggest revolution since the introduction of the automobile.
Who are you most looking forward to meeting at Connected & Autonomous Vehicles?
Others who share our belief in the inevitability of car sharing as a means to make better use of the world’s 1 billion+ vehicles.