Lynk & Co brings its Netflix-like subscription mobility service to Europe
You won't be able buy any of Lynk & Co's vehicles at a dealership, with the company opting to build a community of subscribers to its mobility platform. Now that platform is due to roll out in European cities, starting with Amsterdam next month.
Geely-owned Lynk & Co launched its first vehicle in October 2016, the 01 SUV – which was designed and engineered in Sweden and then described as the world's most connected car. Though drivers were able to buy the vehicle outright, Netflix-like subscription and sharing membership options were also rolled out.
The company then appeared to skip a beat with the release of the 03 sedan in April 2017, again selling it direct to customers as well as offering subscription and sharing options. The gap in the product numbering scheme was subsequently filled by the 02 crossover SUV in March 2018. After this launch, we got the opportunity to catch up with Lynk & Co Senior VP Alain Visser for a chat, where he discussed progress and future plans, among other things.
And now the company is launching its mobility service in Europe, based around the 01 hybrid or plug-in hybrid, with up to 68 km (42 mi) of all-electric per charge travel promised from the latter.
The hybrid electric model is a front-wheel drive SUV powered by a 3-cylinder turbocharged internal combustion engine, a 40-kW motor and a small Li-ion battery bank. All in, that adds up to a max power output of 145 kW (194 hp) and total torque of 345 Nm (254 lb-ft). The seven-speed automatic will sprint from standstill to 100 km/h (62 mph) in nine seconds, up to a top speed of 190 km/h (118 mph).
The plug-in hybrid's 3-cylinder turbocharged engine manages 132 kW, sports a more powerful electric motor (60 kW) and comes with a bigger battery pack (17.6 kWh). This translates to a combined power output of 192 kW (257 hp) and combined torque of 425 Nm (313 lb-ft). This flavor offers acceleration from 0-100 km/h in 7.9 seconds, and speed tops out at 220 km/h (136 mph).
There are no trim levels, option packs and so on here. "Everything extra comes standard," including a bunch of connected technologies and platforms. The only choices available to members are whether to go hybrid or plug-in hybrid and the color, which is either black or blue. The first 01 vehicles will be available in Europe in the local spring of 2021.
The Lynk & Co membership model has a few options available. The Netflix-like month-to-month scheme can be canceled at any time, vehicle insurance and maintenance will be taken care of by the company, and monthly cost will depend on membership tier, but Visser today confirmed that it will never be more than €500 (about US$585) per month for the levels where a car is supplied.
That may sound like a hefty regular outlay, but if you don't use your vehicle all of the time – and few of us do – then it can be shared with friends or the wider community, and the revenue gained set against the monthly fee. If you don't want or don't have room for a full-time car, a free membership level will give you access to a vehicle when you need it from friends or members of the Lynk & Co community. And if you still like the idea of ownership, there's a level to accommodate that option too. The membership platform is set to be opened up by the end of October.
Also revealed in today's announcement are the locations of Lynk & Co's first clubs, which replace the current car dealership model and serve as a hub for members to discover what's available and get access to special events. The first is heading for Amsterdam, the Netherlands, and will be open by the end of October, and will be followed by a second in Gothenburg, Sweden, which is due to open by the end of 2020.
Visser explains what Lynk & Co is all about in the video below, and shares information about the European mobility service subscription model.
Source: Lynk & Co