Vinty Finds Niche Audience with Classic Car Focus

Pierre Lapointe, CEO and co-founder of Vinty, poses with a Ford Mustang convertible. Photo courtesy of Vinty
Pierre Lapointe, CEO and co-founder of Vinty, poses with a Ford Mustang convertible. Photo courtesy of Vinty

Have you thought about renting classic cars for weddings, road trips, or professional photo shoots, but were looking for the right forum to find renters?

From a 1965 Ford Mustang convertible, a 1950 Rolls-Royce Bentley, or a 1970 Chevrolet Impala, Vinty provides hundreds of choices through its online rental marketplace. The vehicle selection isn’t limited to only classic cars; users can also choose from muscle cars, classic camping vans, and classic trucks.

“We act like an Expedia for classic rental car companies,” says Pierre Lapointe, CEO and co-founder of Vinty. “The rental company gives us a commission for renting out their classic vehicles. We are able to get the companies more reservations on their classic cars and get them more exposure.”

The rental process begins when a renter creates an account on Vinty’s website.

After browsing Vinty’s inventory and finding the right car, a user will submit his or her rental request.

“We act as the go-between for the online users and the rental car companies,” says Lapointe. “People find the vehicles through our website, but the rental contract, insurance, and vehicle maintenance are provided by the specific car rental company.”

As part of the verification process, Vinty asks for a driver’s license to confirm several factors, including identity, insurance coverage, criminal record, and driving record. Rental companies can do the verification process themselves or Vinty can do it for them, says Lapointe.

The rental company organizes the pickup time and location with the renter. At the pickup location, the renter will fill out the required paperwork. According to Lapointe, some of the rental companies prefer if the customer goes to the rental facility to get the car while other times the car will be delivered to the customer.

On average, the typical rental lasts from one to three days, says Lapointe. Some of the most popular models include the Ford Mustang convertible and classic wedding cars such as Rolls-Royce Bentley. Vinty also gets requests for premium corporate events, such as vintage car tours for customers or press events.

Launched in August 2016 in Southern California, Vinty now has listings for several U.S. cities, including Atlanta, Boston, Detroit, Maui, Las Vegas, Minneapolis, New York, Rhode Island, and San Francisco Bay area.

Challenges to Expand

Vinty wants to continue to increase its vehicle listings by serving the peer-to-peer market. Similar to Turo, Vinty looks to provide a peer-to-peer carsharing platform for private classic car owners to rent their personal vehicles.

“There are a lot of people with classic cars who want to rent them out for some extra money,” says Lapointe. “We find them at events like classic car shows and swap meets. We have a booth at the Pomona Swap Meet in Southern California, and 80% of the people who visited our booth wanted to rent out their classic vehicles.”

Expanding to individual car owners brings a new set of challenges. According to Lapointe, the biggest challenge has been looking for coverage options to offer renters. Additionally, Vinty faces the challenge that some personal insurance policies won’t cover the rental of a specialized car like a classic.

Currently, Vinty doesn’t need to provide extra insurance for its rental company partners since they already have their own insurance. But if Vinty wants to reach out to individual owners, it needs to find an insurance company that will provide coverage in the peer-to-peer marketplace.

“We are looking at different insurance companies and are ready to take on the peer-to-peer market and help people have more access to classic cars,” says Lapointe. “We want to help keep these cars maintained instead of rusting out in a garage.”

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