5 things we know about the VinFast VF 8 electric SUV [Update]

Update: ‘179 miles of range,’ ‘U.S. production in 2024,’ and ‘First batch of the VinFast VF 8 arrive from Vietnam’ sections updated.

Vietnam’s first major global automaker VinFast is set to make its foray into North America. After showcasing its entire line-up at CES 2022 in Los Angeles, VinFast was also present at the 2022 New York International Motor Show (NYIAS 2022), where it offered test drives of the VinFast VF 8. Here are five things we know about the VinFast VF 8 mid-size electric SUV:

Rivals the Tesla Model Y

VinFast attempts to establish itself as a promising player in the popular mid-size electric SUV segment. However, it isn’t going for the mass-market players. It has positioned the VF 8 as a premium and luxurious model that competes with Tesla’s Model Y, which starts at USD 65,990. However, it’s nowhere close to the American model when it comes to range, which we’ll get to shortly.

Designed by Pininfarina

The cabin quality of the VinFast VF 8 appears top-drawer. Pininfarina designed the SUV, and the cabin is aplenty with hand-finished craftsmanship. A key feature of the U.S.-spec SUV is the sizeable 15-inch touchscreen infotainment with over 30 artificial intelligence-powered features. VinFast has also partnered with Amazon for Alexa voice commands in the VF 8. The U.S. model will also come with advanced driver assistance systems, including lane-keeping and changing assist, collision warning and mitigation, parking assist, and more.

VinFast VF8 interior
A key feature of the U.S.-spec SUV is the sizeable 15-inch touchscreen infotainment with over 30 artificial intelligence-powered features. Image: VinFast

179 miles of range

VinFast has launched the VF 8 in the U.S. in a limited-production City Edition. It comes in Eco and Plus dual-motor AWD variants, with the former packing a 349 hp/369 lb.-ft. powertrain and the latter sporting a 402 hp/457 lb.-ft. powertrain.

A 0-62 mph sprint should take 6.5 seconds in the VF 8 Eco and 5.5 seconds in the VF 8 Plus. Both have an 82 kWh battery pack and deliver an EPA-est. range of just 179 miles, but VinFast plans to improve with a software update as early as January 2023.

U.S. production in 2024

Production of the VinFast VF 8 takes place at the company’s Hai Phong plant in Vietnam. VinFast is constructing a manufacturing facility in the U.S., located in Chatham County, North Carolina. Spread across 800 hectares in the Triangle Innovation Point megasite, this production site will have space for electric car and bus production and assembly, EV battery production, and the suppliers’ ancillary industries.

VinFast is expecting 150,000 vehicles to be the annual production capacity of the U.S. plant and July 2024 to be its start-of-production date. The company will likely localize the VF 8 once this facility is ready.

First batch of the VinFast VF 8 arrive from Vietnam

The first batch of the VF 8 for the U.S., consisting of 999 City Edition units, landed at the Port of Benicia in California on December 20, 2022. Customer deliveries should begin by the end of January 2023.

Prices of the VinFast VF 8 in the U.S. start at USD 59,000. Reservations are open and need a USD 200 deposit. The VF 8 City Edition is exclusive to California residents and available on a 24-month lease program at USD 599 (Eco)/USD 699 (Plus) per month.

Customers leasing the VF 8 City Edition need to pay USD 5,774 (Eco)/USD 6,789 cash at the signing, and this amount includes a USD 4,480 (Eco)/USD 5,395 (Plus) capitalized cost reduction, USD 499 (Eco)/USD 699 (Plus) first month’s payment, and a USD 695 acquisition fee. There’s no requirement for a security deposit. Driving over 20,000 miles is chargeable at USD 0.25/mile. USD 395 is the deposition fee, but a purchase option will be available, for USD 37,442 (Eco)/USD 41,405 (Plus) and a USD 350 purchase fee.

VinFast will be present at CES 2023 between January 5 and January 8. The company will display the VF 6, VF 7, VF 8, and VF 9 electric SUVs and four electric bikes and offer VF 8 test drives at the event.

Featured Image Source: VinFast