The world of car sharing got a push into the luxury league with the introduction of BMW’s first premium car sharing program in the United States.  The announcement on August 20th in San Francisco launched the luxury car maker into the relatively new world of car sharing.

BMW’s DriveNow car sharing program has been operating in Germany for some time.  The company decided to take the successful program on the road and selected forward thinking and leaning San Francisco for their American kick-off.  Sticking to an environmental/eco-friendly theme, the automaker will deploy its 100% battery electric “ActiveE” series sedans.    BMW car shares will cost $39 for the signup fee and then $12 for the first half hour and an additional 32 cents for each additional minute of use.  So the cost for a full day of driving would be around $90. The program also allows a driver to take a car from one location to another, unlike similar programs that require the pick-up and drop-off location to be the same.

The BMW program also as added an additional feature for smartphone users.  The company launched its ParkNow app that gives drivers a search option for locating parking spots at any of the garages that are part of the DriveNow program.  Once a parking space is located, the user can book the spot.  A QR code will be generated that provides the driver with access to the garage.  Currently there are 10 garages in the program and at least 100 more will be added in the coming months.

The future looks bright for that first date, showing off to the in-laws and impressing your least in San Francisco.  Hopefully as this idea gathers steam more cities will be added and one can only hope that Porsche and Land Rover will be the next automakers to venture into this new luxe space.

What Do You Think?

-Kevin Feather

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