Aside from presenting their autonomous Ioniq concept at this year's LA Auto Show, Hyundai also announced their new 'Ioniq Unlimited' EV subscription-based ownership experience alongside a program that will expose shoppers to their electric vehicles for free.
With the new ownership experience, Hyundai is looking to offer Ioniq EV shoppers (initially in California, from early 2017) a worry-free experience that begins online with one fixed payment that includes unlimited mileage, electric charging costs, scheduled maintenance, wear items and other typical purchase fees.
"We're excited to offer Ioniq Unlimited as an innovative, worry-free means of clean, zero-emission vehicle ownership along with our new Ioniq Electric vehicle," said Dean Evans, marketing VP for Hyundai Motor America. "This new ownership experience adds to the satisfaction of driving a no-compromise, clean vehicle with unlimited mileage and zero hidden costs. It was time to make clean vehicle ownership easy for everyone."
The program features a negotiation-free single payment method and a unique online buying experience, with customers able to select their exact vehicle from their preferred dealer's inventory. Once they're approved, they can visit the dealership directly in order to complete the purchase by signing a few forms before driving away in their new car.
As for the Korean automaker's partnership with WaiveCar, it will give consumers the chance to drive the Ioniq EV on-demand for two hours at no charge. How this actually works is that the vehicles are wrapped in advertising and include a roof mounted digital display, generating revenue for WaiveCar.
These displays are actually 4G connected, allowing for geo-targeted advertising tailored to one's driving location and time of day.
"WaiveCar presents some great solutions for us," said Hyundai corporate planning & strategy exec Mark Dipko. "The Ioniq offers emissions-free transportation to on-the-go Angelenos. This partnership allows us to reach potential customers and give them the opportunity to test drive our outstanding IONIQ electric while generating awareness for the IONIQ brand at the same time."
The way it works is very simple. All users need to do is download WaiveCar's app on their iPhone or Android device, find an Ioniq near their location, book it and drive off. WaiveCar even does all the locking and unlocking remotely, so users won't need any sort of cards or keys.
Once on the move, users can drive for free for 2 hours at a time, after which they can continue their journey for $5,99 an hour, or simply return the car at a designated spot for the next user to pick up.
This program represents Hyundai's first large-scale involvement in car-sharing and will feature 150 cars deployed throughout Los Angeles in the first half of 2017. WaiveCar is also planning on launching this program in three other cities by the end of next year, using a total of 250 Ioniq models.