For 2018 BMW is changing its CarPlay pricing from a one-time $300 option to a $80 a year subscription fee. While both approaches don’t sit well with us, the $80 a year subscription pricing is particularly egregious. BMW has gone on record in saying that it actually represents a slight reduction in cost for those who lease vehicles for three years. But for those who buy second-hand or keep their vehicles for many years, it clearly represents additional cost. Not substantial cost mind you, but enough to give owners a bad taste in their mouth for a brand that they should love.
Will MINI follow? It’s unclear as MINI typically pricing technology in similar ways but still has autonomy to follow their own course. If the backlash is large enough (it’s trending that way) we suspect MINI will stay away from the subscription model.
However if you own a BMW and want to have your voice heard, we recommend reaching out directly to BMWNA via phone, email, twitter or DM through various social channels.