BMW is shutting down its Access by BMW subscription service at the end of January. The service was started off as a pilot project in Nashville in the US with the idea of testing whether people wanted to have access to a fleet of BMWs instead of owning a vehicle. Recent requests to join the service have indicated that it is coming to an end. "Unfortunately the Access by BMW subscription program is ending on January 31st and we are no longer taking new members," a sales representative said in an email to The Verge.
"The Access by BMW vehicle subscription program was launched in Nashville, TN in April of 2018 and was always intended to be a pilot program," the spokesperson said. "As such, the pilot will conclude at the end of this month. We are in the process of developing the next iteration of Access by BMW and will share more information with you as it becomes available," the report added.
Access by BMW had two tiers. For $2,000 month members could choose vehicles like the X5 SUV, 4 Series, 5 Series and the all the plug-in hybrid editions of the vehicles. Higher-end users could get access to the M4, M5, M6 and X5M, X6M SUVs for $3,700 per month. Notably the flagship 7 Series was never a part of the service.
Regardless of which way you see it, the service was expensive. In the US, as the Verge reports the $3,700 tier was untenable as that's three times more than the cost of leasing an M5 when the downpayment is not included.
BMW's shut down comes after Cadillac shut down its service called Book in 2018 to restart it months later with fewer options. Even Mercedes pulled the plug on its Collection service.
Porsche, Audi, Volvo, Nissan and Jaguar, however, have had some success with their services. Big car rental companies like Hertz and Enterprise are also getting in on the bandwagon especially after their businesses have been ravaged by COVID19.