18 January 2021
- AA Smart Lease provides ‘mobile phone’ approach to ownership which slashes inclusive monthly cost as low as a tenner a day
- AA’s flexible leasing package, offered in partnership with vehicle leasing experts LeasePlan UK, offers drivers peace of mind during uncertainty of lockdown with ability to return car penalty free in certain circumstances, such as redundancy.
- New AA/Yonder research shows drivers tend to underestimate monthly car costs by more than £150
- Vauxhall Corsa just £290 per month inclusive of comprehensive insurance, servicing, maintenance, vehicle tax and VAT.
The AA, together with its partner LeasePlan UK, is helping its members motor through lockdown uncertainty with the launch of an innovative new car leasing product that mirrors the way many ‘own’ a mobile phone.
AA Smart Lease gives members the flexibility to lease a car from an expanding range, including full electric and mild hybrid options, which can be delivered to their home safely during the Covid restrictions. AA Smart Lease customers also benefit from peace of mind through the inclusion of a ‘life event’ break clause, which means they can terminate their lease early if, for example, they are made redundant.
The product has been launched as new AA/Yonder research* shows many drivers are surprised by how much they spend on their car every month.
Drivers were asked to estimate how much they spend on their car every month, with the mean coming in at just £157. Drivers in London estimate the highest mean monthly car running costs of £167 while those in the North East had the lowest at £143.
But when drivers were asked to drill down into every cost (including insurance, warranties, finance payments, fuel) the actual mean cost came out at £310.02, meaning drivers tend to significantly underestimate their monthly car costs. Young drivers reported the highest mean cost at £458.76, likely to reflect their higher insurance costs, and older drivers reported the lowest at £316.42.
When they added up their estimated monthly costs, excluding insurance, a third were surprised by the amount and 36% said they thought these costs had increased in the last year. AA Smart Lease customers could choose to lease a brand-new, insured petrol Vauxhall Corsa for just £290 per month inclusive of servicing, maintenance, vehicle tax and VAT.
We are excited about the opportunities that Smart Lease offers to customers as a flexible and affordable way of driving a new car without all hassles of traditional ownership
James Fairclough, CEO of AA Financial Services, said: “Our research has shown drivers tend to significantly underestimate the amount they spend on their car every month, which is understandable given the number of different costs they pay for separately.
“At any time, this would make it harder for people to manage their finances, but the pandemic has placed many people under greater financial pressure.
“AA Smart Lease will help alleviate this pressure by giving customers complete transparency when it comes to their vehicle, and this product comes with no upfront deposit and the reassurance of a fixed package price, which includes insurance, vehicle tax, and servicing.
“We know the pandemic continues to be a huge challenge for many of our customers, and a car is a big financial commitment in uncertain economic times. That’s why we’re enabling drivers to end their lease early and return their car without penalty if, for example, they are made redundant, or suffer a critical illness, offering vital peace of mind. The continuing cycle of lockdowns means many people are turning away from public transport and leasing is a straightforward way for them to have access to a private vehicle.
“We are excited about the opportunities that Smart Lease offers to customers as a flexible and affordable way of driving a new car without all hassles of traditional ownership.”
The cost of AA Smart Lease comes with a ‘Life event’ break clause, which means customers can return the car without penalty if their life changes significantly for example redundancy or divorce.
AA Smart Lease cars will be available on either a 24-month, 36-month or 48-month contract. Drivers do not need to make an upfront deposit in order to take out a lease.
If the car is driven more, or fewer, miles than planned during the lease, the mileage plan can also be changed at any time.
Product details correct at date of publication. Current AA Smart Lease options can be seen online at the AA.com/smart-lease
* Yonder received 12,892 responses from AA members to its online poll 8–14 December 2020. Yonder is a member of the British Polling Council and abides by its rules. For more details, please go to www.yonderconsulting.com.