After opening 50 stores in Europe, Vinfast announced it will open its six US showrooms in California this week. Overall, the Vietnamese electric vehicle manufacturer will come up with plans for 30 locations across the state by the end of the year.
Vinfast’s first six showrooms in the US are Santa Monica, San Diego, San Mateo, Corte Madera, Commerce and Berkeley.
Electric vehicles sold in the early stages will be imported from Asia, while Vinfast’s US start-up plant in North Carolina will start production in about 18 months.
For the US market, Vinfast will rely on a choice of two vehicles, the five-seater VF 8 and the VF 9 electric van. The VF 8 will start at $40,700 to $48,000, depending on vehicle setup, while the VF 9 will retail for between $55,000 and $15,000. $61,000.
The VF 8 has a range of 248-292 miles (400-470 km) while the VF 9 has a range of 262-369 miles (422-594 km). VinFast uses an unusual sales model for the US market, in which the vehicle is purchased by the customer, but the battery is leased. VinFast will replace the battery once the battery usage capacity drops below 70 percent.
VinFast itself already has fleet customers with Artemis DNA, a biotech company has ordered 100 electric vehicles from Vinfast.