Car subscriptions are uncharted territory for major automakers, especially as it remains unclear how much partakers will be willing to spend for the ability to swap in and out of cars nearly seamlessly. BMW is the first to realize it perhaps asked a bit too much.
The German brand announced Wednesday that it has slashed the monthly price of its Access by BMW subscription from $3,700 to $2,699 for the top tier (M) and dropped the second tier (Legend) from $2,000 to $1,399. Additionally, Access by BMW now features the new entry-level tier Icon that starts at $1,099 to rival the Mercedes-Benz Collection subscription.
Mercedes-Benz Collection launched in June with a starting price of $1,095 in Nashville, Tennessee and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, while Access by BMW was launched in Nashville only back in April. Both include a range of cars for the flat monthly fee, along with insurance and roadside assistance. Depreciation is also factored in since subscribers neither lease nor purchase the car.
For Mercedes' entry-level tier, subscribers gain access to the C300 sedan and coupe, GLC300 and GLC 300 Coupe SUVs, and C300 Cabriolet and SLC300 convertibles. As for Mercedes-AMG products, the only car available is the CLA45 sedan. The pricier Reserve tier opens access to the E-Class cars, AMG C43 sedan, GLE350, and AMG GLC43. The AMG SLC43 is also included.
2018 BMW i3s
BMW's new Icon tier will provide access to 330i, 330e iPerformance, X3, X2, M240i Convertible, and i3 models. Moving into the Legend tier includes cars up to the 5-Series and X5 as well as the M2, while the M tier includes most BMW M models.
Those looking for an even more exclusive subscription service may find Porsche Passport more to their liking, but the price of entry is a steep $2,000 per month. An extra $1,000 opens up availability to 22 Porsche models. Cadillac also offers its Book by Cadillac subscription, which costs $1,800 per month for a variety of cars, including the V-Series performance models.
As the car subscription model catches on or flounders, we'll likely see continued price changes as companies place a proper value on the luxury of not owning a car.
Note, there's another type of car subscription model. Care by Volvo sees members keep a single vehicle for the subscription period. The first model available via Care by Volvo is the XC40 whose subscription starts at $600 per month.