Auto manufacturers are introducing Electric Vehicle (EV) micro leases, providing consumers with an option for short-term commitments and increased flexibility as new EV models are set to launch in the coming year. Polestar, in particular, has launched its Flexible Lease program, aiming to address concerns related to long-term leasing contracts.
Polestar's Flexible Lease program, initiated in October, offers customers the ability to conclude the lease after five months (and five payments) without incurring an early termination penalty, with a $450 disposition fee in place. The program features the 2024 Polestar 2 Long Range Single Motor variant available for lease at $349 per month for up to 24 months, requiring $5,349 at signing. This model offers up to 320 miles of range and 205 kW DC fast charging.
Gregor Hembrough, head of Polestar North America, highlighted the program's unique aspect, allowing customers to lease a Polestar vehicle with the flexibility not typically offered by traditional leases. Describing it as an “extended test drive,” Hembrough sees it as an excellent option for those new to EVs or awaiting the arrival of specific Polestar models.
As the automotive industry experiences a shift toward electric vehicles, other players are entering the micro lease space. AutoNation, overseeing around 250 U.S. dealerships, recently introduced micro leases with 6- or 12-month options, recognizing that a traditional three-year lease may not align with everyone's preferences.
Polestar's flexible lease program has garnered significant interest, with approximately half of Polestar buyers opting for this short-term arrangement. In an industry where customer leases are expiring, micro leases provide a bridge for those anticipating the arrival of new models.
Polestar plans to extend the program to upcoming models, such as the Polestar 3 and 4. Andy Axelrod, responsible for retail programs and subscriptions at Volvo Car USA, expects increased participation as new models like the EX30 and EX90 are set to roll out in the coming year. The Polestar 3, expected to begin production in early 2024 with deliveries starting in Q2, offers up to 300 miles of range with an approximate starting price of $85,000.