Driving for Uber can be a great way to make extra money, but Uber has a reputation to maintain, so they have specific Uber car requirements for drivers.
If you pass the vehicle and driver requirements, you may drive for Uber, but their vehicle requirements are quite detailed, so it’s important to understand them.
Uber Car Requirements to Consider
Uber drivers must not only qualify themselves, but their cars must also meet Uber requirements. Fortunately, the requirements aren’t too difficult for most drivers to meet.
The key is understanding the requirements for the Uber service you want to provide. UberX (standard Uber) has the most relaxed requirements, while the higher tiers have more specific requirements because they offer a distinct service to their clients.
Why Are These Car Requirements Necessary
Uber cares for its drivers and passengers, and by having vehicle requirements, they reduce the risk of safety issues, including car accidents. Specific vehicle requirements also ensure passengers’ physical and mental comfort as they trust someone else to drive them to their destination.
For example, all cars eligible for Uber must have four doors, making it easier for passengers, who usually sit in the back, to get in and out of the car.
Each Uber service has different requirements depending on the type of service they provide. Most people can sign up for any Uber driving tier; however, their vehicles must match the eligibility requirements.
How Requirements Vary
The Uber car requirements vary by location and type of Uber service. If your city has specific laws you must follow, or you want to drive for a specific Uber service, your options may be more limited.
- By City: Each city has different requirements for rideshare drivers. For example, some may require that drivers have commercial car insurance, not just personal. Others may require the vehicles to go through a stricter inspection process.
- By Type of Uber Service: Uber has many different services on top of its standard service. If you want to drive for any of the higher-end services, your car must meet the requirements. For example, if you drive for Uber Black, you must have a black luxury vehicle, whereas if you drive for standard Uber, the color and type don’t matter as long as it has four doors and meets the age requirements.
Finding Requirements in Your Area
To be an Uber driver, you must know the vehicle requirements in your area. Here’s how to find out.
- Eligibility Tools: On Uber’s site, you can check the vehicle requirements for your city. At the top of the site, type in your city’s name and car’s make and model. The tool will determine if the car meets the area’s eligibility rules.
- Find an Uber Green Light Hub: If you’d rather have in-person support, find an Uber Green Light Hub in your area and have your car personally inspected to determine its eligibility. To find a Green Light Hub in your area, download the Uber app, and under Help, click Book an In-Person Appointment and follow the prompts.
Minimum Uber Car Requirements
If you want to drive for standard Uber, here are the basic requirements your car must meet.
Cars must be 15 years old or newer and not have any physical or cosmetic damage. All cars must have four doors, and there should not be any commercial branding. Any Uber cars must also pass an Uber inspection.
Cars That Do Not Qualify
Certain cars don’t pass the Uber car requirements, no matter where you live. These include:
- Police cars
- Full-size vans
- Modified cars
- Trucks that seat fewer than four people plus the driver
All Uber drivers must pass a vehicle inspection. In addition, some cities require Uber drivers to pass the inspection annually.
You can have your Uber car inspected at an Uber Greenlight Hub or a third-party partner facility. Each city has an approved certified mechanic’s list, and Uber partners with Jiffy Lube for inspections.
All Uber drivers must bring the Uber Inspection form with them. When you have a completed inspection form, upload it to your driver profile unless you go to a Greenlight Hub, as they will automatically upload the information to your account.
All Uber drivers must have insurance. Uber provides insurance for certain times, such as when you’re active on the app and/or actively driving passengers. However, all drivers need a personal insurance policy with a rideshare endorsement or a commercial auto insurance policy for complete protection.
Requirements for Specific Uber Rideshare Services
If you want to drive for a service other than traditional Uber to make a bit more money, your vehicle must meet the requirements for each program.
1. Uber Comfort Vehicles
Uber Comfort is a service for riders who want to ride in a newer car with more legroom. Uber requires the cars to be a 2015 or newer, but the required year varies by make and model.
A few examples of Uber Comfortable vehicles on the Uber-approved list include:
- 2015 Audi A6
- 2018 Equinox, Impala, or Trailblazer
- 2020 Malibu
- 2018 Pilot, Accord, or Clarity
- 2020 CR-V
In addition, Uber drivers must meet certain requirements, including completing at least 100 trips.
2. Uber X Vehicles
UberX is the standard Uber service that accommodates up to three passengers plus the driver. All UberX vehicles must be 15 years or newer, have four doors, and be in good condition. Like all Uber cars, they must pass an inspection and may not have any commercial branding.
Eligible UberX vehicles include:
- 2007 or newer Acura CSX
- 2006 or newer Buick Century
- 2006 or newer Chevy Blazer
- 2006 or newer Ford Edge
3. Uber XL Vehicles
UberXL is for larger parties, so the vehicle requirements are larger. For example, the vehicle must fit five to six passengers, so it must have seven factory-installed seats with seat belts.
The allowed vehicles are vans and SUVs that can seat at least six people or a few people with extra luggage.
Common examples include:
- Dodge Caravan
- Ford Explorer
- Toyota Sienna
4. Uber Black Vehicles
Uber Black is a luxury service for top-rated drivers. The luxury service is for special events, business meetings, or when riders want a special experience.
The list of Uber Black vehicles is very short and cannot be older than six years. In addition, to live up to its name, the car must be black and have a leather interior.
Some cars on the Uber Blacklist include the following:
- 2016 Cadillac CT6
- Infiniti QX80
5. Uber Black SUV Vehicles
Uber Black SUV vehicles are a part of the Uber Black program, but with SUVs rather than vehicles. However, they must still follow the same requirements, including being no more than six years old, black, and having a leather interior.
Common Uber Black SUVs include the following:
- 2016 Escalade ESV
- 2016 Suburban
- 2016 Tahoe
6. Uber LUX Vehicles
Uber Lux is a step up from Uber Black. However, this service isn’t available in all markets, and the vehicle must be high-end and on a list of pristine vehicles such as BMW, Porsche, Mercedes, Lincoln, Tesla, and Rolls Royce.
Requirements for Uber Eats
Uber isn’t as particular about the car you use to drive for Uber Eats. Their only specifications are that the car has two or four doors and is reliable. In addition, if you live in an area where scooters are common, you can deliver on a motor scooter under 50cc.
Requirements for Uber Connect
Uber Connect has vehicle requirements that are similar to Uber Eats. Rather than delivering food, you deliver packages with Uber Connect. With this service, Uber isn’t as concerned about the type of vehicle you drive as long as it’s reliable. The car must have two or four doors, but like Uber Eats, you can use other transportation methods to deliver packages with Uber Connect.
Frequently Asked Questions
Understanding the Uber vehicle requirements is important. Here are some common questions I get about Uber vehicle requirements.
How are Lyft and Uber different, and are their requirements the same?
Uber and Lyft both offer ridesharing services that any eligible person can sign up to provide. Like Uber, Lyft’s vehicle requirements vary by city. They, too, require cars to have four doors and at least five seatbelts. In addition, most cities require that the cars be 15 years old or newer; however, a few cities may allow certain models older than 15 years old.
What happens when your car becomes too old for Uber?
When your car becomes too old to drive for Uber, you cannot transport people until you have a car that passes the requirements. However, you can still use the car to drive for Uber Eats, as there isn’t an age requirement for vehicles on Uber Eats.
How are the requirements for Uber Eats different from regular Uber requirements?
Uber Eats requirements are more relaxed because drivers aren’t transporting people. Instead, they transport food. So while the car must be reliable and have two or four doors, those are the only vehicle requirements Uber Eats has.
Are car requirements different since the pandemic?
Vehicle requirements haven’t changed since the pandemic; however, what happens inside the vehicle has changed. During the pandemic, all drivers and passengers had to wear masks, and all passengers were to sit in the back seat. Today, masks aren’t required, and if there isn’t room to sit in the back, a passenger is allowed to sit in the front seat.
Can you drive a compact smart car as an Uber driver?
Compact smart cars are not eligible for Uber because all vehicles must have four doors and seats for at least three people plus the driver. These requirements exclude compact smart cars.
Can you use a self-driving car as an Uber driver?
Currently, Uber doesn’t offer any self-driving cars; however, it is on the horizon. In 2023, Uber said it will release its program Motional, which will allow riders to choose the Hyundai Ionic 5 self-driving vehicle.
The Bottom Line
Uber is particular about their vehicle requirements, but for a good reason. They want to maintain a certain reputation and provide riders with excellent and safe service. There are different Uber levels with opportunities to use many types of cars to earn money as an Uber driver.