BMW has retreated from its plans to make owners pay to ‘subscribe’ to features already fitted to their cars.
Speaking with media in Munich, BMW board member for sales and marketing Peter Niota told Autocar the brand is focusing on “functions on demand” software features such as “driving assistance and parking assistance” with its subscription plans.
“What we don’t do any more – and that is a very well-known example – is offer seat heating by this way,” Mr Niota said in comments reported by Autocar.
“It’s either in or out. We offer it by the factory and you either have it or you don’t have it.”
“We thought that we would provide an extra service to the customer by offering the chance to activate that later, but the user acceptance isn’t that high. People feel that they paid double – which was actually not true, but perception is reality, I always say. So that was the reason we stopped that.”
CarExpert has reached out to BMW Australia to see if heated seats will be made standard on the base X1 sDrive18i, which has heated seat hardware installed… but locked out unless owners pay a monthly or annual fee.
The ConnectedDrive store in Australia – which BMW uses to sell upgrades to owners of internet connected cars – no longer features heated seats in its public-facing section.