Geely Group, as you may already know, is one of the largest automotive entity in the world thanks to its huge portfolio of marques – both owned and partly-owned – including Volvo, Polestar, Lynk & Co, Lotus, Smart, Mercedes-Benz, and of course, Proton. According to a report by Autocar UK, Geely is now looking to introduce a cross-brand subscription service, making use of its large array of vehicle choices under its belt.
Speaking at the Financial Times’ Future of the Car event, Lotus executive director of corporate strategy and product management, Uday Senapati stressed that the idea is still very much in the discussion phase, although he added that “when you’re part of a big group, it’s natural you will look at what could be done together. It’s an obvious thing to look at.”
The comment came as a reaction to data showing that the average car is parked 96% of the time. “For Lotus, that number is probably higher. It’s really a Sunday summer car for a niche of enthusiasts who adore it for that,” Senapati added. “We can change that in the future, both by making our cars more useful and moving into different segments, but there are opportunities in sharing too.”
However, he also argues that subscription services will not necessarily replace car ownership completely: “Car ownership is here to stay, I believe. Cars aren’t just a commodity for many people; they mean more, and that will always be the case.”
Car subscription services have seen a spectacular rise in adoption in recent years. A recent report by Global Market Insights projects that 20% of car journeys by 2026 will be made in cars operating under subscription services, Autocar wrote. The trend is largely mirrored back home in Malaysia, with multiple companies – and some from carmakers themselves – offering said service. However, it remains to be seen if these services are gaining traction in our country.