BMW is planning on selling some of its cars online – for the first time ever. The electric BMW i3 and BMW i8 have spurred BMW to forge into online sales. BMW is planning the i3 to be on sale in late 2013.
BMW is spending roughly $3 billion in developing and bringing the i3 and i8 vehicles to market – and it’s estimated the automaker could save somewhere between 5 and 7 percent by selling the electric vehicles online instead of in a traditional showroom.
Some current BMW dealers will be able to sell the i sub-brand vehicles on their lot as long as they meet certain criteria: there must be ample space for the i information displays, and they must be a high traffic/high sales dealership. 20% of current dealerships meet this criteria.
Sales chief at BMW, Robertson says the BMW i3 should produce earnings right from the start. “We clearly, as a company, go into any product launch with the view of making profit, which is no different with the I brand,” Robertson said. “This is a car line just as every other car line, and we intend to make profit from Day 1.”