Lyft goes classy with new Premier service

For when you absolutely must have leather seats.

Lyft has always played the more casual, laid-back ridesharing option to Uber's fleet of black cars and SUVs, but that vibe is about to grow up a little with today's launch of Lyft Premier. The new option, which is available now in the Bay Area, Los Angeles and New York City, is being billed as a "more stylish" ride for business trips or a special night out.

Users looking for a buttoned-up ride will find the "Premier" option below the Line, classic and Plus options in Lyft's mobile app and will be matched with a driver in a BMW 5 series, Audi A6, Lexus ES or Cadillac Escalade. Of course, luxury transportation comes at a premium: a quick look at fare estimates for a crosstown ride in San Francisco were about twice the cost of a regular Lyft ride. (But a launch day promotional code should ease that sting a little bit.)

While Premier service is only available in those three areas today, Lyft is promising to roll out the service to more cities in the near future. The driverless option, meanwhile, is still a couple years off.