The VinFast store is described as the Vietnam-based automaker’s flagship and will be followed up by locations at the CF Carrefour Laval in Quebec and the Park Royal Shopping Centre in Vancouver. These locations, plus five more retail and service centres are expected within the next two months, along with the first deliveries of the VF8 electric SUV.
The store features a bright, open and minimalist design that the automaker says evokes the theme “Future of Mobility.” It can fit about three cars on the show floor and includes seating areas with a lounge-like atmosphere. There are displays with virtual assistants that react to customers. Guests can try out the high-tech features of the vehicle on a large screen, or take the VF8 on a test drive.
Unlike the traditional dealership model, VinFast will be using a direct-to-consumers sales method, akin to other newcomers in this industry like Tesla, Lucid and Genesis.
“The direct-to-consumer model allows us to give customers the option to purchase how they want to purchase,” said Daniel Morello, director of customer commitment at VinFast Canada. “Whether it's purchasing online, or if they prefer to go through a store, we give the customers the options, which allows VinFast to really take control of the customer experience.”
“Not only can customers come to our stores and have someone go through the vehicle with them, but they can also do it online, from home,” he said. “A lot of people are used to ordering things online, and we offer the same experience with your vehicle. People want to do their research online, then they want to go to the next step of purchasing the vehicle.”
The automaker plans to deliver vehicles to reservation holders before the end of the year and is finally answering key questions about the ownership experience and business model.
When it comes to gaining customer trust, the automaker is again pushing the idea of options and choices to its buyers. This was referenced with purchasing the car, but also when it comes to servicing vehicles.
“We want to give our customers options,” said Morello. “We’re going to have a traditional model where you can go to a service centre if you need to get your vehicle serviced, and we will offer a mobile service.”
Depending on the location, and the service needed, VinFast will send someone to the customer's home or place of business to perform the service. “It’s a matter of preference, we’re all about the customer experience,” said Morello.
Additionally, the automaker boasts a 10-year, 200,000 km warranty. This is much longer than what other automakers offer. The warranty is said to include a roadside assistance plan, earning trust from new customers.
While the automaker is quickly ramping up for deliveries and customer service, it has recently hired its 100th employee in Canada. Currently, the vehicles are produced overseas, but the automaker has plans for production in North America, with a recent plan to invest US$2 billion in North Carolina for a manufacturing facility.