RideNerd Takes the Pain Out of Shopping for a Car Online

Startup: RideNerd

Co-Founded: Chris Reid, Alex Black

Launched: September 2013

Base: Waterloo Ontario Canada

Buying a car can be a daunting experience. When I decided to buy a car last summer, my search started online, before I even set foot in a dealer showroom. I looked at Carmax, Consumer Reviews and even compared cars on dealer websites. The challenge was that all of this information was spread across multiple sites.

The new startup, RideNerd, hopes to help make this process less painful by aggregating all of the pertinent information in one place. For example, if you’re trying to decide between a Toyota Prius and the Chevy Volt, RideNerd will provide you a score based on how the two vehicles  compare on things such as fuel economy, affordability and climate friendliness.

Not only does RideNerd show you the technical differences between two vehicles, it can also show you the differences in annual cost of ownership. Using the same example above, RideNerd demonstrates why even across after five years of ownership, the Prius is a better value than the Volt, which costs nearly $10,000 more.

Don’t expect to see what RideNerd Community Ambassador Brenden Sherratt referred to as “geeky spec lists.” Instead, the site shows you the difference between two vehicles. Sherratt says this type of comparison is much more useful since most consumers don’t understand what most of those spec lists mean anyway. The RideNerd system also uses natural language processing to simplify the technical information.

To be clear, RideNerd doesn’t create an original content, it simply pulls information from the EPA, manufacturers and consumer review sites to make the car research process less painful.

Unlike “hardcore review sites,” RideNerd doesn’t provide in depth reviews, it simply provides snippets of important information and points readers to the original source should they want a deeper analysis.

“We’re not reinventing the wheel,” says Sherratt. “Lots of people are just looking for information to help affirm a decision. RideNerd can give you a place to start or a place to begin.”

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