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BMW launches Uber-like car-hailing service in US state

TENNESSEE: Germany-based globally renowned firm BMW has launched an Uber-like car-hailing service named Access by BMW in Tennessee.

BMW has started a pilot program today in Tennesse which will provide unlimited access to BMW cars for a flat predetermined monthly fee. This service can only be availed by the pre-registered members.

“It’s a very small pilot; just enough to get our feet wet and see what happens,” BMW spokesperson

Accessible by a smartphone app, Access by BMW works with both on Android and Apple-powered devices. Members will use the application to request a car like they request a ride through the Uber app. The models they have access to depending on the tier they have pre-selected when they signed up for the program.

The Legend tier includes relatively standard cars like the 4 Series, the 5 Series, the new X2, the X5, and the M2. BMW also makes plug-in hybrid models like the 530e iPerformance available. The more expensive M tier consists of M-badged models such as the M5, the M6, the X5 M, and the X6 M.

BMW X5

Models like the i3, the i8, the 7 Series, and the Mini Hardtop aren’t included in Access by BMW. The company promised to add additional tiers as it expands the program so they could join the program sooner or later.

BMW i8

“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,” said Ian Smith, the CEO of BMW Group Financial Services. “With Access by BMW, our members will enjoy the freedom of personal mobility,” he added.

Once a member selects a car, a BMW concierge will deliver it at the chosen place and time. Every car comes with a full tank of gas with personal preferences already pre-set. There’s no limit to how many times a member changes cars per month; it’s possible to change cars daily.

Pricing ranges between $2,000 and $3,700 a month depending on the tier selected. These figures include the membership fee, maintenance, insurance, and roadside assistance.

Rivals Porsche and Cadillac introduced similar services last year named Porsche Passport and Book by Cadillac, respectively, while Volvo took a slightly different path when it created Care by Volvo.

The idea of a subscription service isn’t to bypass the traditional dealership. Dealers in the Nashville area remain responsible for delivering the vehicles and maintaining them. If the pilot is successful, it’s safe to bet BMW will expand its Access program to other parts of the country and, later, the world.

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