VinFast VF6 and VF7 Electric SUV: Should U.S. Companies Be Scared?
It seems like VinFast, the Vietnamese electric SUV automaker, has blasted out of nowhere, poised to launch in the U.S. at any moment. Sales will begin in November. Recently, it unveiled its VF6 and VF7 SUVs, which look to be every bit as competitive as what is available now. So will VinFast really put a dent in U.S. SUV sales?
Has VinFast started making electric SUVs yet?
Worldwide, the company has already sold 65,000 vehicles. Production from its North Carolina production plant is on schedule to produce 150,000 of its SUVs a year, according to Reuters.
And it is not just launching one or two electric SUV models. Instead, it has a full range of EV SUVs with its small VF5 through the luxury full-size VF9 flagship. Its VF5 and VF6 were designed by Pininfarina, while the VF7 and VF8 were mostly designed by Torino Design. So it has gone to some of the best in the business for its designs.
How does the VinFast electric SUV battery subscription work?
It was only in January when VinFast debuted its VF8 and VF9 at the 2022 CES Show in Las Vegas. One thing separating the company from others is that customers have a choice between buying the car in total or buying a cheaper version with a monthly subscription for the battery. That works out to $42,200 without and $57,000 with for the VF8.
With the subscription, VinFast covers battery repairs, replacement, and maintenance. There are no range limitations. If the battery reaches a charging capacity below 70 percent, VinFast will replace it. Monthly prices for VF8 models start at $169, going up to $219 for the VF9.
The battery offers 402 hp for a zero-to-60 time of 5.3 seconds from standard dual motors. The electric SUV’s range is 292 miles. Stepping up to the VF9, the range is a bit less at 369 miles and 6.3 zero-to-60 times. Those lesser numbers are a result of the VF9’s extra weight. A VF9 has an MSRP of $57,500 without and $76,000 with a battery. And all VinFast SUVs come with a 10-year or 125,000-mile aftercare package.
How current are technology and safety features?
Outside, the VinFast’s complete line features handsome styling at least on par with current SUV competition. The distinctive V-shaped thin LED headlights used as a signature across all lines separate the SUVs from other makes. Clean and contemporary cabins continue the smart styling, with large 15.6-inch interactive screen greeting drivers.
Safety and driver assist technology includes Virtual Assistant, drive assist, lane-keeping assist, collision mitigation, and driver monitoring. Options include 21-inch alloy wheels (20-inch alloy wheels are standard), a panoramic roof, and auto-dim mirrors. DC fast charging from 10 percent to 70 percent takes 24 minutes for the standard range.