Volvo has joined carmakers like Cadillac and Ford by starting a monthly subscription service. Dubbed as Care by Volvo, the program would offer the 2019 XC40 compact SUV starting at $600 per month excluding local taxes.
Care by Volvo offers only one car for now
Volvo noted that the Care by Volvo membership program had been started with the intention of making a car accessible to everyone just like cell phones. During the subscription period, the customer can change cars and take a new 24-month subscription as early as a year into the agreement.
Currently, the XC40 is the only car available under the service. The company is offering two variants of the car, and both are premium models with a heated steering wheel, panoramic roof and heated front seats. One version offered is the XC40 T5 AWD Momentum, which comes with 19-inch black diamond-cut wheels, while the other variant is the XC40 T5 AWD R-Design, which has 20-inch, 5-double spoke matte diamond-cut wheels and a Harman Kardon premium sound system.
The subscription cost includes additional services such as the customer would get janitor service and 24/7 customer care, plus roadside assistance. There would also be a 15,000-mile annual allowance, and wheel damage protection, factory scheduled maintenance and replacement of worn out parts such as brakes and wipers.
“Care by Volvo takes the guesswork out of car ownership,” said Anders Gustafsson, Volvo USA CEO and president, adding that the plan would cover insurance, maintenance and service and almost everything except gas.
Customers would also get the Liberty Mutual Insurance policy offering $250,000 bodily injury protection per person and $500,000 bodily injury coverage per accident. Both of the plans have $500 as the deductible towards both comprehensive and collision coverage.
Speaking to Engadget, Volvo’s Chief Digital Officer, Atif Rafiq said, “What we think is lacking today is there’s ways to simplify getting your hands on a car, like getting a lease.”
Further, Rafiq stated that the subscription works on a different parameter as it is beyond just owning the car, but includes maintenance, paying for additional things such as insurance, and all included in a more transparent simpler fee.
Growing popularity of subscription services
Unlike Volvo’s service, General Motors’ premium subscription service – BOOK By Cadillac – offers almost any vehicle in their portfolio if the customer goes with their subscription service. However, the monthly subscription service is as expensive as $1800 per month, notes CNET.
A few weeks back, Cadillac expanded its subscription plan to Las Vegas and Dallas. The month-to-month service called BOOK, which was launched earlier this year in New York, requires the subscribers to pay a one time $500 initiation fee and a flat monthly fee of $1,800 after which they can pick a vehicle including the CT-6 plug-in sedan, Cadillac’s “V” performance sedans, and SUVs such as the Escalade.
Separately, earlier this month, Ford expanded its subscription plan – dubbed as Canvas – to Los Angeles. On an average, the fee comes to around $400 to $500 per month, more or less the same as what the customer pays for a conventional monthly lease and insurance. The service was initially launched in early May in the Bay Area, and has seen a “very strong and positive response,” said Canvas CEO and founder Ned Ryan.