Ford’s captive pleased with subscription-based growth after one year

Serving the San Francisco Bay and west Los Angeles areas, Canvas has added features to help customers better personalize their experience, from adding multiple drivers to allowing flexible mileage packages. (Photo courtesy of Ford)

The Blue Oval’s captive is pleased with how its subsidiary is performing while making inroads to serve consumers who want an alternative to securing a vehicle without the commitment of a retail installment contract or leasing agreement.

Executives from Canvas — the Ford Motor Credit subsidiary offering what they believe is a convenient and hassle-free subscription model — highlighted that they now have 600 current customers in the San Francisco Bay and west Los Angeles areas.

Canvas has added features to help customers better personalize their experience, from adding multiple drivers to allowing flexible mileage packages. Canvas said customers so far have driven more than 3 million miles — equivalent to 120 trips around the equator.

“Building on our success in 2017, we plan to further expand our platform and offerings in 2018 to meet even more customer needs,” Canvas founder and chief executive officer Ned Ryan said. “Month-to-month subscriptions are just the first step.

“As our product evolves over the coming year and beyond, we’ll be focused on adding more customization to the platform, implementing solutions to improve the scalability of the business and offering bigger savings for customers who want longer terms,” Ryan continued.

With Canvas, customers have a vehicle 24/7 as if it were their own. They pay a bundled monthly subscription fee that covers a preferred mileage package, comprehensive insurance, warranty, maintenance and roadside assistance. Packages start at $400 a month depending on the vehicle and other options.

Canvas allows customers to select a vehicle, mileage package, delivery location and other details easily and conveniently through its website. When a customer is ready to return the vehicle, they simply give seven days’ notice, and Canvas will pick up the vehicle at a convenient location.

“As car ownership evolves, we see Canvas as part of our suite of products that address changing customer needs in mobility,” Ford Motor Credit executive vice president of marketing David McClelland said.

“Canvas is building subscription products that are relevant to consumers today, and it’s building technology for the future, including billing and fleet management, with a nimble approach to product development,” McClelland continued.

Canvas insisted it has worked closely with its first customers to understand how they’re using their vehicles to refine the experience to better meet their needs. As a result, Canvas pointed out that its momentum to date includes:

—Vehicle selection: Canvas vehicles include a wide range of Ford models from compact cars to SUVs and trucks. Canvas launched with two models.

—Geographic expansion: After launching in the San Francisco Bay Area in May, Canvas expanded to West Los Angeles in November.

—More personalized packages: Canvas has created more options to allow customers to better customize the service. These include the ability to add multiple drivers to an account, which half of Canvas customers have done, and mileage packages that allow customers to flex mileage up or down as often as they need, even mid-month.

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