Coinciding with the birth of BMW i brand, BMW North America’s image is getting a complete makeover. Starting with the all new BMWUSA website last month and working its way down to every dealership over the coming years, BMW plans a total change for the consumer.
Leading by example, BMW USA’s company-owned dealership, BMW of Manhattan, finished a massive makeover earlier this year and provides a first hand look at the new image. Back in 2011, we reported that BMW of Manhattan was to under go a $60 million dollar renovation and this was completed this year.
BMW of Manhattan is located at West 57th Street and 10th avenue, and it’s BMW’s flagship dealership. The new image projects an efficient and sustainable look. BMW backs the sustainability up with a multitude of sustainable green features. These include specially-designed louvers installed on the exterior of the building which are able to reduce heat soak in the summer yet maximizing daylight inside thereby decreasing electrical consumption. BMW has installed solar panels on the roof of the neighboring MINI building. Lighting things up inside the dealership are high efficiency fluorescent, metal halide as well as LED light fixtures.
Behind the scenes at BMW of Manhattan, the mechanical systems were replaced with new high-efficiency heat exchangers which can capture heat from exhaust air. Not to be left out, the water consumption was addressed through efficient are low-flow plumbing fixtures. They use regionally sourced materials as well as materials that have a substantial recycled material content. BMW of Manhattan is truly a sustainable major urban center dealership. It is LEED Certified in keeping with BMW’s commitment to sustainability in all of its activities.
The overall look and feel of BMW of Manhattan reminds me a lot of BMW’s outstanding dealership in Munich, BMW Niederlassung München Frankfurter Ring with its use of natural woods and open feel. The new Manhattan dealership is bright and open with a lot of natural wood in use. Gone from BMW dealership playbook is the silver and white of years past.
BMW is moving away from traditional closed sales offices, to open offices with low walled open style offices incorporating a Norwegian furniture style . The new BMW new corporate image almost resembles the Apple store style where the emphasis is on the product complete with “BMW geniuses” to help explain BMW tech and products to customers. BMW says that this approach is helping increasing customer satisfaction with in-depth explanation of BMW features. The Genuises are paid a fixed salary and when a customer is ready to buy a BMW, they are passed off to sales.
A unique feature at BMW of Manhattan is their huge three story entrance hall with LED display wall which is a rolling, changing display of BMW technology and automobiles. BMW can use this are to hold new car unveils to customers and it’s really a stunning design feature of the dealership. Exposed stair cases and overlooks decorated with new cars and a motorcycle give a multitude of gorgeous views that were very difficult to capture well with the camera. If you are in the area, it is definitely worth a look to see the new direction of BMW dealerships in the coming years.