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With Care by Volvo, owning a car is as simple as owning a phone

Care by Volvo
Image used with permission by copyright holder
The Volvo XC40 is a monumentally important vehicle in many ways. Volvo has never sold a compact SUV before, so the XC40 will push the brand into a new, millennial-friendly segment for the first time. It’s also the first product to ride atop Volvo’s Compact Modular Architecture (CMA), which, moving forward, will underpin multiple 40-series models as well as the brand’s first fully-electric car. In addition to all that, the XC40 will usher in a new subscription service called Care by Volvo that could change the way we purchase and maintain our cars forever.

In a nutshell, Care by Volvo bundles vehicle cost, insurance payments, service fees, and taxes into one monthly fee, which in theory makes vehicle ownership as hassle free as having a mobile phone. Given the XC40’s target demographic of smartphone-fixated young people, it’s the perfect vehicle to launch this type of service alongside.

“With Care by Volvo, we introduce a new car access for the modern age,” said Hakan Samuelsson, president and CEO of Volvo. “In a time where consumers are used to transparent flat-fees for all sort of services, the traditional process of buying and owning a car can be perceived [as] rather complicated. Care by Volvo changes all of that.”

In addition to subverting the traditional car-buying model, Care by Volvo offers several ancillary benefits including fueling, cleaning, and service pick-up. Also, buyers will have the option of “renting” another Volvo vehicle for short periods — say you’d rather have a larger XC90 for a weekend, for example — and the program also allows owners to get a new car every 24 months. Owners may also share their car with friends and family by using the Care by Volvo app as a digital key.

Volvo claims that price negotiation is one of the least-liked elements of vehicle ownership, so Care by Volvo eliminates the practice altogether. While few people truly enjoy haggling over costs at a dealer, this could be a major downside for those who prefer angling for a better price.

As to how Volvo’s new subscription service will be received by the market, and whether drivers will conclude that the convenience of hassle-free shopping will offset the savings that can sometimes be achieved through negotiations, time will tell.

Andrew Hard
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Andrew first started writing in middle school and hasn't put the pen down since. Whether it's technology, music, sports, or…
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