BMW is betting heavily on their electric vehicles program and plans to lure in many EV customers. Just recently we reported on BMW’s plans to offer gas-powered loaner to i3 buyers and a new report by Automotive News Europe says that BMW will offer other extra service to attract drivers to its “i” sub-brand.
Part of these offerings is the optional installation of home fast-charging systems. Also i3 owners will be able to borrow a fuel-powered car from their dealer for weekend or vacation travel requiring a longer range.
We have also learned through different sources that BMW is engaged into a large program to provide “i” showrooms and an unique customer experience to those buyers in the United States.
While all the extra perks and services are welcomed, the success of the BMW i3 or i8 vehicles will be based on the pricing structure, and in some case, the existing infrastructure of recharging stations. While the user of expensive carbon fiber materials can be a concern, BMW says that the new production process reduces the number of body parts by two-thirds. Furthermore, the use of thermoplastics instead of steel for the body panels will eliminate the need for a paint shop.
“The i brand will play a pioneering role that drives technology to be rolled out over coming life cycles and to the rest of the BMW brand,” Herbert Diess, the carmaker’s head of development, said for Automotive News.
To solve the second issue, at least in Europe for now, BMW is establishing a chain of quick-charging stations along the 590km route from Munich to Berlin that will take only 30 minutes to power up the battery.
BMW’s DriveNow car-sharing program will also include i3 vehicles, giving customers the opportunity to fully experience the premium electric vehicle without the need of purchasing one.
The BMW i3 will have its market launch later this year and the car is on U.S. grounds for official photoshoots.