Audi Claims Customers Actually Really Want Subscription Features In Their Cars

Audi Claims Customers Actually Really Want Subscription Features In Their Cars

Photo: Audi

Audi plans to offer more “on-demand” features in future models, Autocar reports. Just don’t assume it’s about making more money, though. No, according to Audi it’s because the customers demand it. Because if there’s one thing I want to do after I spend a lot of money on a car, it’s spending even more money on that car.

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“A few years ago, there were ideas to generate more revenue on digitalization functions than by selling cars,” Audi’s tech lead Oliver Hoffmann told Autocar while insisting that on-demand features won’t really be about boosting profits. “This is a [big] step. I think there is a demand from the customer to bring new functions in the car, and this is a profit pool for us – but we don’t see these revenue pools with this kind of functionality.”

Audi currently offers a few of these features on its electronic models, including more advanced lighting options and a parking assistant. As far as what features the German automaker will allow owners to pay for through the Audi phone app, though, Hoffmann wouldn’t say. He also told Autocar that he’s aware that BMW has struggled to get customers on board with paying for features their cars already have installed but insisted it will all be “quite normal in the future.”

We’re not entirely convinced that’s the case, but maybe Audi knows more about its customers than a bunch of poor auto journalists do. Then again, when we asked you what features, if any, you’d be willing to subscribe to in your cars, we didn’t exactly get a lot of positive responses. So are our readers just poor too, or is the idea of paying extra for on-demand features something enthusiasts are uniquely resistant to?

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Or could it possibly be that Audi knows we know it’s just trying to make more money from its customers and is doing its best to get out in front of the inevitable bad press? We can’t say for sure, but we really aren’t thrilled about the idea of having to download an app and put in our credit card information if we want to activate heated seats.