Speaking about the Model T at a meeting in 1909, Henry Ford famously said that has gone down in history: “Any customer can have a car painted any color he wants as long as he wants it to be black.” That way, making the car would be easier and cheaper. However, although only black was sold for a few years, the Ford Model T could also be ordered from the factory in red, blue, gray or green. Simplifying customization options remains an effective method of reducing manufacturing costs: Tesla is a good example of this, but it is not the only one.
On previous occasions we have already seen Tesla reduce or temporarily limit the paint options for its cars. In fact, the customization options are quite limited compared to most of the competition. In this way, he could speed up the pace of production to supply more. This week we have learned that Tesla will give priority to two colors only to Model Y manufactured in Germany. And now it is Renault that is doing something similar in order to make faster deliveries to its customers.
The diamond brand has launched a program called ‘fast-track’ for the Renault Arkana, something like ‘Fast Shipping’, which guarantees the delivery of a new car in a maximum of 30 days, compared to an average wait of five months. The wait can be even longer, even reaching eight months depending on the version and equipment.
So one solution to make deliveries faster is to put certain limitations on customization: customers who want to receive their Renault Arkana in a month (or less), will have to settle for choosing it in universal white or desire red. Under normal conditions, you can choose between six different colors. Also, it can only be chosen with the 145 hp hybrid E-Tech mechanics and only with the RS line finish. If you want a car with fast delivery, you will have little choice. The price of this version starts from 35,360 euros.
In France, where this option also exists, express orders accounted for half of Arkana registrations last June. According to Renault, if any buyer requests additional options, delivery is not guaranteed. A source close to Renault told Reuters the French carmaker expects such simplified offerings to increase across the industry because the supply chain problems will not end soon.
However, according to an analysis carried out in 2020 by the automotive consultancy JD Power, 98% of the possible combinations in the automobile industry models sell less than 50 units each and accumulate only 25% of total sales. Three quarters of the sales are taken by only 2% of the possible combinations.