Lynk & Co has launched its new membership-based car buying model which, it hopes, will make owning a vehicle ‘brutally easy’.
Due to launch in the next few months prior to first vehicles arriving in April, the membership-based system will see buyers entered into a €500 (£456) rolling monthly contract which can be cancelled after the first month if needed
For this, drivers get access to the new 01, while Lynk & Co will cover all of the major costs associated with car ownership including insurance, tax, servicing and tyres. Owners need only cover fuel costs while maintenance will be managed by the nearest Volvo servicing centre, a company which Lynk & Co sits alongside under the larger Geely umbrella.
However, drivers will be able to drive down their monthly costs by allowing other users to drive ‘their’ car. Lynk & Co estimates that by doing this several times each month, the monthly payment could be brought down to £0.
Those who do not wish to pay the monthly contract cost can become a free member, and pay to hire the vehicle instead. A smartphone-based app will show available cars nearby, which can then be unlocked via a digital key which is sent to the phone.
In addition, if a member goes on holiday, technicians will be able to access the car, take it away for servicing or updates and return it before the user arrives back at home.
The 01 will also be available for purchase outright, though Lynk & Co has yet to reveal full pricing for the vehicle. It’s available only with hybrid powertrains – either regular or plug-in – and can only be specified in either black or blue. There are no optional extras, either, will all equipment and safety features included as standard.
In addition, Lynk & Co will operate no ‘traditional’ dealership sites, instead creating ‘clubs’ dotted around key city locations across Europe. The first, based in Amsterdam, opens at the end of next month, while the second in Gothenburg will open ‘before the end of the year’. It’s here that people will be able to get an up-close view of the car, though Lynk & Co envisages that these spaces will be used for other community-based events too.
Alain Visser, CEO of Lynk & Co International, said: “Today we introduce a new approach to ownership and mobility. We’re offering a radical solution for a new generation of connected customers who want mobility on their terms.
“The automotive industry has continued with a distribution and ownership model that has existed for 100 years. We’re changing that. Customers today value products that reflect their digital and ever-changing lifestyle.
“We are Lynk & Co and our aim is to simplify ownership by innovating and redefining how cars are bought, owned, connected, serviced, and used. We exist to change mobility forever.”