Volvo is preparing to add two new models to its Care By Volvo subscription service, with the XC60 and XC90 set to join the platform “within the next couple of months”, according to UK managing director Jon Wakefield.
The service launched in 2017 with the XC40 compact SUV as the sole offering, and has since been expanded to include the recently launched V60 estate. The S60 saloon was previously confirmed to be joining the line-up over the summer.
With the addition of Volvo’s larger SUVs, the range will then include half of the company’s current UK model line-up.
Care by Volvo bundles the car payment, insurance, taxes, maintenance and roadside assistance into one monthly fee, with a subscription costing from £799 per month in the UK and requiring no initial deposit. Performance arm Polestar will be using a similar system for sales of the Polestar One, while Jaguar Land Rover, BMW and Mini have all launched pay-as-you-go subscription services of their own in recent months.
“The idea of people having a fixed monthly payment which is very clear, which is an honest price and covers all of your motoring needs is something we’ve been moving towards in the UK anyway,” Wakefield said.
“If you look in keeping with the marketplace, we’re almost 50% retail, and of that 90% is already done on a monthly payment basis, so we’re morphing towards it.”
The brand is aiming for 20% of its sales to use a subscription model by 2022, and 50% by 2025, according to CEO Håkan Samuelsson. Expanding the scheme to cover more cars is expected to help hit those targets.
“We’ve had a lot of interest, and there’s still a lot of work to do,” Wakefield explained. “The demand for XC40s has been so strong, we’ve perhaps not managed to maximise the launch of Care by Volvo.
“Where we’ve got to at the moment is at the base of a one- or two-year subscription with a package of servicing, collect and deliver, and insurance around it, and we haven’t necessarily pushed that into the marketplace as hard as we will do.”
While Care by Volvo targets the subscription model of ownership, the recently announced M Mobility brand will focus on app-based car sharing as an alternative to owning a car outright. It is due to launch in Sweden and the US in 2019, and will rival similar services from other manufacturers such as Volkswagen's Moia.
“I think the M piece is yet to be clearly defined. We’ve put out a statement that gives a broad definition, but ultimately there will be a dovetailing,” Wakefield said.
“We’ve work to do on both, but it’s really taking shape. I would see M as ultimate flexibility.”
Care by Volvo was originally planned to allow customers to share their cars with up to three friends or family members using a digital key, but that remains unavailable in the UK due to a lack of appropriate insurance policies. There’s no indication this stance will change in time for the XC60 and XC90’s arrival on the scheme.