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By Airkuhl
I'm all for the latest high tech cars and features, but this is a bridge too far. ... -no-really

BMW gave a glimpse of its newest in-car operating system on Wednesday, expanding on last week's announcement of its partnership with Apple for a digital key service that's supposed to revolutionize Apple CarPlay. In addition, the automaker went a bit more in-depth about what the future holds for its tech-heavy vehicles.

The important takeaway here is that over-the-air updates and features will play a big role in BMW ownership, but more importantly, that users will have to pay for features already installed in their cars, such as heated seats, infotainment features, etc. Yes, you read that right.

We hate to break it to you, but you're not having a bad case of deja vu—this isn't the same announcement about BMW's controversial decision to charge drivers an $80 annual fee to use Apple CarPlay (which it has since walked back).

According to BMW, this means you could theoretically pay to activate those heated seats and steering wheel originally installed in your car, or perhaps even flick on the car's automatic high-beams. If you fancy a new engine sound, you can also buy a new note through BMW's IconicSounds catalog—no wrenching required. Even advanced safety features like Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC) aren't safe from the hands of the subscription service.

But hey, some good news: you can get a trial period for many of those items! It appears that while some features may be subscription-based, others may be permitted to buy as a one-time fee. So as long as you're willing to pony up the extra cash, BMW will activate the feature via an over-the-air software update initiated from within the car or the new My BMW mobile app.

To get a sense of why BMW might be doing this, we have to revisit the launch of the BMW 4 Series. Specifically, the notion that Adaptive Cruise Control is an optional feature on a premium car that starts above $45,000.

During a chat with Andreas Ederer, the head of 4 Series project team, and Jos Van As, the head of 4 Series dynamic team, they told The Drive that one of the reasons that adaptive cruise control isn't standard on many current BMW vehicles is due to the take rate. In fact, it was revealed that less than 25 percent of customers choose to purchase ACC, citing the large gap left between cars while on the road—mainly that drivers didn't want other motorists using the opening to cut ahead in heavy traffic.

In the future, from the looks of it, features like ACC will already be installed, and owners could potentially decide to upgrade after leaving the lot, sometime down the road—which is great for BMW. For consumers, however, we can't help but feel that this cash-grab is rather slimy.
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By Airkuhl
Fox_ wrote: Fri Jul 31, 2020 12:50 pm Taking a page out of the Tesla play book?

All cars come with heated seats, but you've got to pay $$$$ to unlock them in software.
Deciding after the purchase that you want pay for an option and unlocking it in your driveway is a great thing. That's the Tesla model.

Paying a monthly subscription forever for it is a whole 'nother thing.
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By DAVfoto
That is insane. Heated Seats? That is pretty much standard now in Toyota, Nissan and American cars. BMW is testing the waters to see how many people get pissed off about this and will probably walk it back just like the Car Play thing. BMW corporate has gotten away from the Ultimate Driving machine to the Ultimate leasing machine.
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By eflight
Imagine buying a car used only to have a bunch of features turn off after a month of ownership cause the original owner did not tell you that all those cool features were subscription based.
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By fastcars914
Yeah, I saw the article the other day. Crossed my mind to call/email BMW USA to tell them how idiotic it would be to do that, but I have better things to do. I love my E92 335, but if BMW does the subscription crap, I won't be getting one from that era, ever.
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At least they won’t be charging subscription to use the turn signals, they’d go tits up in a hurry
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By Voith
I bet it'll be yearly payment so in summer you are paying for nothing. I wonder if it will also be per seat subscription or for all.. If per seat you can be an ahole and only pay it for yourself. :lol:

Soon we'll have to subscribe to air we are breathing.

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