Over 13,000 reservation makers left pining
The Hyundai Kona Electric is an unqualified success in Norway. Sure, there have yet to be deliveries of the battery-powered crossover to the EV-thirsty nation — they should start July 1 — but reservations have been made: 20,000 of them before the list was closed. Now, we learn that 6,969 of these have been moved to firm orders and onto the configuration stage.
Those numbers were shared in an email to customers from Hyundai Norway (we have the Google translation to English of the document below). Though there's no doubt company officials expected strong demand, it seems even they have been taken by pleasant surprise, and say that they are working to have the allocation of cars increased.
If you weren't among the original 20,000, your opportunity to get in line starts July 2, though Hyundai hints that your car may not be available until sometime in mid-2020. This reveals a potential flaw in the Korean carmaker's plan for electric vehicle domination. By not being able to scale supply quickly enough to fill demand, they are leaving the door open to companies with product in a similar price range — in Norway, the Kona Electric starts at 325,900 NOK ($39,813) for the large 64 kWh battery option, the only pack available in the Kingdom.
One area Hyundai has offered superior service is with communication with its customers. Besides this letter, the company has sent several others to customers, keeping them informed of things like the prices and process. Contrast that with the experience of at least one Norwegian Tesla Model 3 reservation holder who has received no word from the Silicon Valley outfit since sending a 10,000 NOK ($1,129.20 at today's rates) more than two years ago.
Dear KONA electric customer,
We in Hyundai Motor Norway will first and foremost say thank you for your trust. We are very proud of the product we offer in KONA electric, and wish to congratulate you as a customer on choosing a new Hyundai electric car.
KONA Electric has already proven to be a huge success for us in Hyundai. 20,000 Norwegians reported their prior interest, and after two weeks of exclusive pre-emption rights, the fasith was 6969 orders.
This means that the interest in this model is greater than we expected to hope for. We understand that people are now excited about the delivery situation and we will continue to keep as open and good as possible on this. It is clear that the interest we are seeing now will show the delivery situation, especially for those with high queue numbers. We can already say that with 6 969 orders, we expect new customers coming from July 2 to invest in waiting times by mid 2020. In other words, customers with a high queue number have to wait for waiting time.
Hyundai Motor Norway will today (21.6.2018) send out complete lists with expected delivery time for all who have placed orders, to our dealers. All customers will then be contacted by their dealer in turn, and especially customers with high queue numbers are asking to be a little patient.
This means that as a customer you do not have to do anything before contacting your dealer for final contract signing. Then you will also be informed when you can expect to have your car delivered.
Hyundai Motor Norway will also emphasize that it is now working continuously to secure a higher number of deliveries to Norway.
There are many items that are included, but we can assure our customers that we work to ensure that as many cars as possible are available to Norway. The supply situation is characterized by higher demand internationally, but Norway is clearly a priority market for Hyundai.
With best regards
Hyundai Motor Norway
H/T to Terawatt