Getting a new car on a subscription that's a lot like a very expensive mobile phone contract is an idea in the motor industry that's gaining a lot of traction at the moment, and a number of big players are currently trying them out to see how they're received by consumers. Until very recently, BMW wasn't confirming it was about to start a trial of a new vehicle subscription service, but the rumors were true and the trial has now been officially launched and the pricing structure announced.
This flexible alternative to traditional leasing agreements, which themselves are becoming increasingly popular in Europe and the USA these days, is called Access by BMW in this particular case. The pilot scheme is limited to Nashville and the surrounding areas of Tennessee in the US at the moment, but if it proves successful we can expect to see the scheme become commonplace at BMW dealers everywhere before too long.
How successful such schemes turn out to be is without a doubt going to come down to how they are priced, and BMW has revealed pricing for the Nashville pilot.
Under the program, subscribers are able to request a vehicle based on their needs using a mobile phone app that's available for both iOS and Android. Once the request is made, a concierge from BMW will deliver a vehicle that's as close as possible to a match for the needs of the subscriber to where they are at an agreed time.
BMW 320d Edition Sport Shadow. (Image: BMW)
On arrival it will have been freshly valeted, pre-set to the subscriber's preferences, and will have a full tank of fuel. Subscribers are then able to swap vehicles as often as they like within a given month, and they are even able to switch between the two pricing tiers if they want to.
Of course, it doesn't come cheap, and the two tiers of pricing have been initially set at $2,000 and $3,700 per month, depending on whether you want the lower or upper tier. As well as the vehicle itself, the subscription also includes taxes, fees, full valets, a $1 million liability insurance policy with a $1,000 excess and the company's roadside assistance service. However, subscribers are limited to driving a maximum of 2,000 miles per month, and there's also a $575 joining fee.