The German automaker is the latest auto brand to go the subscription route

BMW has officially launched its first vehicle subscription service. The new service will be called “Access,” and it will provide members with unlimited access to a fleet of BMW vehicles through a single monthly subscription that will cost anywhere from $2,000 to $3,700 per month. The fees also cover vehicle maintenance, insurance, and BMW Roadside Assistance.

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The cost of a membership will start off in two tiers — Legend and M — costing $2,000 and $3,7000 per month, respectively

Like all new services, BMW will roll out its Access subscription service slowly, beginning with a pilot program that’s restricted in the area around Nashville, Tennessee. If the service works the way the company intends, it could expand the service to the entire U.S., giving customers all over the country a chance to drive their own BMWs without having to buy or lease one for themselves. The service will be facilitated by local BMW dealers who are responsible for delivering the vehicles to the customer’s hands and ensuring that those same models receive the proper maintenance work as part of the program’s offerings.

For now, though, BMW is focusing on the pilot phase of the service. Part of that involves offering memberships to customers who are interested in signing up. The cost of a membership will start off in two tiers — Legend and M — costing $2,000 and $3,7000 per month, respectively, and inclusive of maintenance, insurance, and use of Bimmer’s Roadside Assistance service. Once the Access subscription service expands, additional tiers will be offered to give customers greater access to a broader range of BMW models.

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Not only is it giving customers an alternative way to drive home with a BMW model, but it’s doing so at a fixed cost, meaning that customers only have to pay the monthly subscription fees

Launching this service is a big step for BMW. Not only is it giving customers an alternative way to drive home with a BMW model, but it’s doing so at a fixed cost, meaning that customers only have to pay the monthly subscription fees. Ian Smith, CEO of BMW Group Financial Services USA and Region Americas, emphasized the growing demand for service-related offerings in today’s growing mobility market. “Subscription-based services are of emerging interest for our customers, and we’re excited to be offering a mobility service to meet their individual and evolving needs,” he said.

No doubt that BMW, together with other automakers that have launched their own subscription programs, have seen how the template has not only worked in other businesses, but has shaped the way consumers think about their daily needs.

Those who do avail of the BMW Access subscription program will have the ability to request a vehicle through a mobile app. It’s that easy. Once that vehicle has been requested, a BMW concierge will deliver the vehicle that matches a customer’s needs wherever and whenever they are. Vehicles that arrive are fully fuelled and detailed as if they’re brand new. Most importantly, BMW isn’t imposing a cap on the number of vehicles a customer can go through in a month.

BMW has a New Subscription Service, but is it Worth Paying $2000 a Month for A Car You Don't Own? High Resolution Exterior Wallpaper quality
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Supposing a customer subscribes to the service for two years, they’re going to end up paying $88,800 for the service

All of it sounds great. The template is great. The services are great. Even the chance to drive just about every BMW in the company’s portfolio is great. The only potential issue is the cost. Assuming that the Legend tier is going to be the baseline tier of the Access subscription service, customers are going to have to pay a minimum of $2,000 to keep their membership status in the program. Models that are available in this tier include the BMW 4 Series, BMW M2, BMW X5 xDrive40e, and the entire BMW 5 Series range, including the 530e. If they want to score higher-tier BMW models like the M4, M5, and M6 Convertible, they’re going to have to pay as much as $3,700 per month.

Supposing a customer subscribes to the service for two years, they’re going to end up paying $88,800 for the service. At that amount, they could just as easily buy an M4 for $70,000 and use whatever’s left to pay for maintenance and other attached costs of ownership. That latter scenario also comes with the fact that they own the M4.

As promising as subscription services are, BMW and other automakers still have to convince customers of the value and worth of their respective services. It’s one thing to subscribe to Netflix for $14.99 a month. It’s another thing entirely to subscribe to BMW Access for $3,700 a month. That’s the challenge auto brands face. Let’s see if they’re up to it.

References

2017 BMW 5 Series High Resolution Exterior
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Read our full review on the 2018 BMW 5 Series.

BMW has a New Subscription Service, but is it Worth Paying $2000 a Month for A Car You Don't Own? High Resolution Exterior Wallpaper quality
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Read our full review on the 2018 BMW 530e iPerformance.

2016 - 2018 BMW M2 High Resolution Exterior Wallpaper quality
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Read our full review on the 2018 BMW M2.

2018 BMW M5
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Read our full review on the 2018 BMW M5.

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