Volvo is still working to roll out its Care by Volvo subscription service Down Under, but it won’t arrive until at least the middle of 2021.
“I think mid-year 2021 is probably more likely [as a launch date],” said Nick Connor, Volvo Australia’s outgoing managing director.
“We don’t see the demand being as great as it was before COVID, actually. Obviously there’s some complexities in making it happen.
“The other thing to take into account is the fact we’re actually quite short of supply, and we want to get cars to customers who want to buy them.”
Rather than paying upfront for a car and being forced to organise registration, maintenance, and insurance separately, the Care by Volvo service allows people to pay a monthly fee to use a car with all those critical payments bundled together.
In the USA, subscribers can pay US$600 per month ($825) for an XC40 T5 on the service, which can be cancelled after just four months.
Volvo has been pushing to roll its subscription service out in Australia since early in 2020.
“The Care by Volvo subscription service has been rolled out in a number of markets around the world really very successfully. I think, to be frank, it’s probably been more successful than even we anticipated – and we want to roll it out here,” Mr Connor told CarExpert early in 2020.
“I think the critical thing about Care by Volvo is you’ve got to do it properly. It would be quite easy to roll something out that was a fairly basic subscription service, but we’re very keen to get it right and actually have as much flexibility for the customers as possible.
“That takes a fair bit of work and infrastructure, and we’ve been working on it now for several months. It’s been in the planning for quite a long time.”
Although a number of carmakers have rolled out subscription services in Europe and the USA, they haven’t yet made the trip to Australia.
Mini has led the charge with an all-inclusive purchase plan for the Mini Electric.
Along with the vehicle the subscription-style deal includes a home wall box capable of recharging the car in four hours, and the peripherals to use public DC fast-charging infrastructure
It also includes a five-year service package and five years of roadside assist, and the ability to swap from the Mini Electric into a petrol-powered Countryman for a weekend away.
Mini says it’s aimed at people who want to “dip their toes” into the world of electric vehicle ownership. With that in mind, the car can be handed back to Mini after two or four years without any fees.
Buyers need to pay the following:
- $3000 deposit upfront
- $275 per week for the first two years
- $98 per week for the two years after
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