posted on November 15th, 2017

Bienvenidos a electricidad

Miami has always been a place of energy. Not the fast and frantic energy of a place like New York, but a sunnier, more relaxed energy. Its multicultural identity, excellent weather, and vibrant entertainment scene have made Miami a blue-chip destination for travelers.

Nathanael F. was drawn to this energy, and as many do, he moved from New York to Miami looking for a more comfortable pace of life. As he wound down his career in investment banking, he got into real estate with his sister in sunny Miami.

He quickly bought a Tesla Model S because it was a family friendly and comfortable way to show properties to clients. Nathanael has been interested in electric cars “ever since the days of the Fisker Karma,” so when Tesla came along, he was hooked. Most of his clients were European, and none of them had ever seen a Tesla before. “They were completely taken aback by the technology and the fact that it was an American car,” he said. “That was a really fun part of driving the Tesla.”

Nathanael’s Tesla Model S 70D

A friend of his soon turned him onto Turo, and since he was getting a lot of positive feedback about his Tesla, he thought it was time to start introducing people to electric driving. “And Turo was the perfect platform to do that.” Two years ago, he listed his Model S and started sharing the EV gospel. At the time, he also had his BMW i8, which is as exciting a plug-in hybrid as you’ll find on Turo or anywhere. It combines an electric motor with a mid-mounted turbocharged inline-three to make a total of 357 horsepower, good enough to whisk the i8 from zero to 60 in under four seconds. Plus, butterfly doors!

Nathanael’s BMW i8

A South Florida partnership

One of Nathanael’s first renters was Gabriel R., who rented Nathanael’s Model S because he was thinking of buying a Tesla. After test driving the car, Gabriel went ahead and bought his own. With the experience he had, Nathanael helped Gabriel get started renting out his Tesla. “I sort of became his Turo coach,” he said. “It’s the perfect example of how technology can connect people to share experiences, and in this case, our cars.”

Under the brand EccoGo Mobility, Nathanael caters to forward-thinking travelers interested in driving the most exhilarating low-emissions vehicles out there. He and Gabriel share this passion for electric cars and new technology, and both love the excitement of that comes along with truly inspiring innovation. “We’re interested in contributing to the adoption of electric driving. In a way, that’s our hidden mission.”

Nathanael’s Tesla Model X P90D
Nathanael’s Tesla Model S P90D
Nathanael’s Jeep Renegade

“He’s in Broward County, I’m in Miami-Dade,” said Nathanael. “This allows us to cover more territory across South Florida.” When it makes logistics easier for their guests, they refer people to each other, since they both have Teslas. Nathanael will connect Gabriel with a guest who is flying into Ft. Lauderdale and vice-versa to reduce delivery distances and make everything go smoother. With the help of Gabriel’s girlfriend Roxy (“an essential part of our team”), the trio provides excellent experiences and top-notch service — just check their reviews.

“It gives us so much satisfaction to deliver special cars and offer unique experiences. We love being able to do that.”

Electric evangelists

Gabriel has since added a Model X and another Model S, both 2017 models. Nathanael reckons that close to a third of their guests are people who are thinking of buying a Tesla or other electric car. They love nothing more than walking their guests through the cars, explaining the logistics of driving an EV, and setting proper expectations for charging. “We’ve become extremely well-versed in South Florida’s charging station network, which is really well developed, by the way.”

The Miami area has a robust infrastructure for EVs, and because “the Sunshine State” soaks up so many rays, the rate for electricity is lower than in most states (16th-lowest in the nation). It makes driving an EV in Florida very affordable.

Gabriel’s Tesla Model S
Gabriel’s Tesla Model X 75D

When Nathanael got his first Tesla, most people didn’t recognize it. “In the beginning they thought it was a Buick or something,” he said. “But that changed very quickly, within a year.” Nathanael has been stoked to see Tesla’s explosion into mainstream culture — the fledgling automaker is virtually inescapable in the news today. The guys’ excitement can barely be contained.

Together, Nathanael and Gabriel have two reservations for the Model 3, and eagerly await delivery along with half a million other Tesla customers. As these all-star hosts embrace the future, their excitement continues to grow. The energy in Miami is feeling more and more electric.

Are you in Miami this week? Swing by our community party tomorrow night in Wynwood to meet some of the Turo team and other hosts in and around Miami.

Steven is an avid car guy and content specialist at Turo. Between Golden State Warriors games he can be found getting lost somewhere in California.