BMW Takes on Apple Store with it's BMW i Store
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The Bavarian automaker is eager to show it has sustainable solutions, or at least working on them by unveiling a showroom that offers a completely new brand experience focused on sustainable mobility. The BMW i Park Lane is the company's automobile answer to the Apple store but in the automobile world. BMW says it will officially open its doors in London on 25th July.
Understanding that customer needs are changing and that sustainable mobility is becoming an increasingly important part of the modern urban lifestyle is something BMW recognizes and doesn’t want to miss out on. Ian Robertson, Member of the Board of Management of BMW AG, Sales and Marketing BMW said: “BMW i Park Lane marks a completely new approach. Situated next to BMW Park Lane and MINI Park Lane, it gives people a perfect opportunity to learn more about electromobility and get close to our future electric and plug-in hybrid BMW i vehicles. This is a further demonstration of our commitment to electromobility.”
BMW presented an advanced version of its all-electric BMW i3 Concept. The i3 Concept can be viewed at BMW i Park Lane, together with the plug-in hybrid BMW i8. The i3 will be the company’s first fully electric series production vehicle built from the grounds up with truly advanced material composites. The i3 will be available to customers from late 2013 with the i8 joining in 2014. The cars will be available through established sales channels with authorized dealers, as well as new customer contact points such as a mobile sales force and online purchasing channels are under consideration.
Charging Up The Competition. The group also presented its BMW i Wallbox charger, specially created for BMW i models. The company claims that the BMW i Wallbox has been designed to make home-charging particularly easy and efficient. However, it seems the charger is very much as any other charging stations.
BMW Support Pillar. Perhaps where BMW has done the most work and taken a cue from Nissan’s superb overall EV experience is with its BMW i system support for customers. Through its Assistance Services, customers will use services such as the ConnectedDrive e-remote apps and future roadside services such as mobile recharging equipment. The Public charging is BMW i’s partnership with public charging providers globally where BMW i models are present. The Home Charging is BMW i’s Wallbox and the Flexible mobility solutions system is where customers will find solutions with mobility requirements that cannot be completely met by the range of an electric car. BMW i plans to offer mobility options that enable longer distances to be covered, for example with the loan of another BMW vehicle powered by a conventional, fuel-efficient combustion engine.
All in all, while BMW might be a little behind in the electric car, EV and plug-in hybrid, PHEV game, it does enter the scene with a well thought out plan, covering a potential user’s experience fully. In many ways, the BMW i stores remind us of Apple stores and we can only see the success this has been for the company. We wouldn’t expect anything less from BMW and their BMW i experience will surely be a success.