Lexus Launches Subscription-Style ‘Complete Lease’ Program in the U.S.
Lexus Complete Lease is available at nearly 80 dealers in seven states.
Lexus is the latest auto manufacturer to dip its toe in the subscription waters, though they aren’t calling their new program a subscription, per se. Last week, Lexus announced a new, full-service Lexus Complete Lease program which mirrors many auto subscriptions. Lexus Complete Lease is a two-year lease with a 20,000-mile cap, and the payment includes the lease cost, maintenance, insurance and connected services like SiriusXM and Lexus Enform Remote Destination Assist in one bundled monthly payment.
“This type of alternative leasing program aligns with the heart of Lexus, providing an amazing guest experience in every way,” said Lisa Materazzo, vice president, Lexus marketing, in a February 5 news release. “By appealing to those looking to simplify their monthly commitment, the Lexus Complete Lease program makes the process more streamlined for our guests.”
At launch, the service is only available on Lexus UX and Lexus UX hybrid models to qualifying customers – based on credit and driving record approval – who reside in California, Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Rhode Island. The program is being offered by close to 80 dealers in those seven states.
Additional details of Lexus Complete Lease include the following:
- All scheduled maintenance at 5K, 10K, 15K and 20K mile intervals
- Vehicle insurance, available through Travelers ($500 deductible, auto liability and physical damage coverage)
- Guaranteed Auto Protection (GAP) waiver
- Two-years of connected vehicle services, including SiriusXM satellite radio
- Tire and wheel protection
- $1,000 excess wear and tear allowance
“The additional convenience and attractive list of services offered in the Lexus Complete Lease provide the enhanced and simplified payment experience our guests want,” added Materazzo. “Travelers has earned a reputation as one of the best auto insurance companies in the industry, delivering high-quality products and services that fit with the prestige of the Lexus brand. We want our guests, new and existing, to feel they are receiving above and beyond the standard – just as they would extend to a guest in their own home.”
Lexus did not specify how much a monthly lease would cause a consumer, but a 2019 Lexus UX starts at $32,000. The one shown below is $35,660. The Car Connection reports that part of the cost will be based on a driver’s credit score and history.
There are many other auto manufacturers giving the subscription model a try, though it is clear that most are experiments. Many of the auto subscriptions we are seeing are available on limited models and in limited markets and there is no uniformity to pricing or even features. Most of them offer all-inclusive pricing with maintenance and options like insurance, but each manufacturer has put its own twist on it.
Some manufacturers like Cadillac have struggled to find the right subscription to offer its customers. In fact, in November, Cadillac – who was an early adopter of the subscription model – announced it would terminate its Book by Cadillac subscription program. Then, last month, they relaunched the plan with more significant dealer involvement, according to The Drive. Meanwhile, in California, the California New Dealers Association filed a grievance against Care by Volvo, stating that the manufacturer’s subscription service “constitutes illegal competition between manufacturer and dealer.”
There does not seem to be a significant difference between an auto lease and an auto subscription, though “subscription” is definitely the sexier term these days. Auto manufacturers have essentially repackaged their auto leases to operate like subscriptions, perhaps to appeal to younger car buyers who are used to the subscription model and are not interested in the long-term commitment of car ownership or a traditional car loan. Like the other auto manufacturers, Lexus will likely test and tweak its complete lease program to find the perfect balance between manufacturer, dealer and consumer needs.