BMW is plugging into the nascent electric vehicle market. But that doesn’t mean it’s all that charged up about the technology’s opportunities, especially in the U.S., near-term.
Perhaps the best opportunity to create a market, the maker appears to be betting, is through non-traditional marketing efforts, such as the new DriveNow car-sharing service it has partnered with in San Francisco.
Without significant new incentives, senior BMW executives caution, direct EV sales to consumers will likely remain little more than an asterisk on the sales charts.
With little fanfare, BMW quietly began letting DriveNow begin renting out its new 3-Series-based ActiveE battery-electric vehicle in late June. At a growing number of automated locations in the city – with a center coming at San Francisco International Airport – motorists can pick up an ActiveE and use it for as little as a half hour or keep it for several days.