Thinking of Getting a BMW Subscription? Expect to Mercifully Pay Less

Matt Posky
by Matt Posky
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thinking of getting a bmw subscription expect to mercifully pay less

BMW is trimming some of the fat off its car subscription program after the media collectively realized that paying twice what you would on an average lease didn’t constitute a good deal. Frankly, most car subscription services that exist right now are an incredibly poor value. Bavarian Motor Works was the rule, not the exception.

However, most of these programs are in their infancy and cater to wealthier individuals who get a kick out pestering automakers to submit to their whims by occasionally delivering a new vehicle. It was presumed that those lofty fees would come down as competition ramped up and mainstream automakers entered the fray. That, along with some public criticism of the subscription model, seems to be helping push automakers away from astronomical prices.

That’s not to say the German manufacturer is suddenly offering a bargain alternative to leasing. But if you love the idea of having a car for every occasion and don’t want to deal with insurance agents, Access by BMW has become more affordable.

According to Automotive News, BMW has reduce the price of both of its existing packages by a significant amount. The $2,000 per month package, which yielded customers models like the X5 M and M2 Competition, now runs $1,399 per month. Meanwhile, the $3,700 top-tier plan that could have you swapping between several six-figure models is now $2,699 each month.

There’s also a new basic plan that gets you into just about every BMW with a starting MSRP under $50,000 for just $1,099 — which is priced suspiciously close to the Mercedes-Benz Collection plan’s opening bid.

Again, these aren’t the best deals we’ve ever heard of, but insurance and maintenance are included. The company will also let you hop between vehicles. For example — if you’re a member of the cheapest plan and spend most of your time in an M240i convertible, but need something bigger to take the whole family out of town for a week, you can swap into an X3 without much trouble. Want to see how you like a pint-sized electric? Ditch the SUV and hop into an i3.

The pricing still isn’t low enough for us to endorse any of these programs as financially sound. But, if you absolutely love the idea of car swapping and have some money to burn, we suppose there is little harm in jumping in and seeing how you like it — other than normalizing the practice of factory-owned rental cars masquerading as your own personal vehicle.

[Image: BMW]

Matt Posky
Matt Posky

Consumer advocate tracking industry trends, regulation, and the bitter-sweet nature of modern automotive tech. Research focused and gut driven.

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  • Jalop1991 Jalop1991 on Jul 31, 2018

    "Again, these aren’t the best deals we’ve ever heard of, but insurance and maintenance are included. " Why does Days of Thunder suddenly come scrolling across my consciousness?

  • Stuki Stuki on Aug 01, 2018

    I don't find these prices outrageous, either. No more so than BMWs in general. Now, make the $1099 plan $799, but stipulate at least 50% of the time in either a "stripper" 1/2 series or on a BMW bike, and we're really talking........ Going off-BMW, payments on a CX-5, a Miata AND a Japanese bike probably don't combine to much more than $1099, so you're obviously still paying for the roundel...

  • SCE to AUX "Should car companies shack up with tech giants in order to produce legible infotainment systems and the like? Or should they go it alone?"Great question(s).The River Rouge days are gone, where Ford produced whole cars out of raw materials entering the plant at the other end. Nearly everything is outsourced these days - sometimes well, sometimes disastrously.But the problem with infotainment systems is that they are integrated with the car's operation. VW has delayed entire products for issues with infotainment.For me, the question boils down to a contractual arrangement - who owns and maintains the code forever? Since more and more of the car's function is tied to the infotainment system, I'd argue that the car mfr needs to own it - especially the larger ones.Do mfrs really want to share intellectual property with Huawei just to fast-track some code they've managed themselves in the past?
  • Kwi65728132 I always did like the styling of the 300C and it was on my short list for a new (to me) rear wheel drive, naturally aspirated V8 luxury sedan but I found a Hyundai Equus that was better optioned than any 300C I could find and for several grand less.
  • Redapple2 .....300S ....and Charger and Challenger, have been long overdue for an update, but still sell well. Thx EPA
  • Dukeisduke Covered last Wednesday on Autoline Daily.
  • Dukeisduke This could make a decent 24 Hours of Lemons car (who needs reverse on the track?) - they just need to drop the price.