Individual charging options, with nationwide access to charging infrastructure and innovative digital services, consolidate BMW Group’s leading role in premium electromobility segment
Munich. BMW Charging and MINI Charging are extending and supplementing their customer offering to coincide with the market launch of BMW’s fifth-generation electrification kit. Innovative charging solutions and digital services for easy and convenient home, workplace and public charging will be available to meet every customer need.
“Electromobility’s success in the market will hinge on the availability of charging solutions that create value for customers. Our customers love the ease of electric driving and the unparalleled zero-emission dynamics. We make sure that charging is comfortable and easy for our customers. BMW ‘360° Electric’ already introduced and gradually expanded a wide range of customer services to accompany the market launch of the BMW i3 back in 2013. BMW Charging is now taking things a step further with Gen5. For example, with the launch of the fully-electric BMW iX3, customers will be able to set up an individual charging solution for their specific user profile when they configure their electric vehicle – from homeowners to street parkers, up to and including operators of commercial electric fleets.”
The portfolio is supplemented by innovative concepts building on years of expertise in the field of digitalisation and electromobility. Services like eDrive Zones and BMW Points help plug-in hybrid drivers use their vehicle efficiently and, therefore, sustainably.
Home charging options have been expanded with the addition of the new BMW Flexible Fast Charger available for the first time for the iX3*. Thanks to an interchangeable adapter solution, the Flexible Fast Charger works with both domestic and industrial power outlets with a charging capacity of up to 11 kW. The Flexible Fast Charger adjusts to the charging infrastructure available, at home or on the road. The high-performance BMW Wallbox with a charging capacity of up to 22 kW can be purchased as an additional option. For customers who invoice their charging costs or want to integrate a wallbox into their home energy management, BMW Charging offers the Smart Partner Wallbox with specific partners in each market. Wallbox functionality can be expanded through cloud services. All charging solutions can be combined with a comprehensive installation package for a set price (as long as structural requirements are met). A green electricity tariff is also included in the service.
For charging in public areas, the BMW and MINI Charging Card provides BMW and MINI drivers with access to one of the world’s largest charging networks, with around 450,000 charging points. This includes around 24,000 charging points in Germany alone and 160,000 across Europe. Charging points are displayed in the navigation system and in the app to make it easier to plan charging stops. With the BMW iX3* and subsequent models, customers receive the BMW Charging Card, including a one-year charging subscription with no basic fee, as well as a standardised charging cable that can be used at public charging posts across the European Union. This equipment enables customers to use AC, DC and high-power charging posts across Europe at transparent, standardised and affordable prices.
BMW Charging includes high-power charging services offered by our partner, IONITY. IONITY’s high-power charging stations along motorways and main transport routes enable ultra-fast charging with a capacity of up to 350 kW at distances of approx. 120 kilometres apart. This means a BMW iX3*, for example, can be quick-charged to 80% in 34 minutes. Over 400 charging stations with a total of 2,000 charging points will be available by 2022.
BMW Charging also bundles various charging options for fleet customers and company car drivers. Its holistic approach covers all charging requirements: from evaluation of needs to installation and operation, all the way to invoicing. Vehicle drivers use a standard charging card for home, workplace and public charging, as well as for invoicing purposes. An intelligent wallbox, including an invoicing solution that complies with German calibration law, is available for home charging. Services are implemented by specific BMW Group partners in each market.
The BMW Group is already implementing large scale workplace charging on its own premises. A total of 4,100 charging points will be set up at BMW sites in Germany by 2021; around 50% of them accessible to the public. The project, which is the first of its kind, also allows the standard BMW Group corporate charging card or app to be used for billing at the BMW employee rate, as well as other features, such as an integrated home-charging function with an intelligent wallbox. This concept will be rolled out to other European countries over the coming years.
eDrive Zones, BMW Points and more: digital service features
BMW and MINI offer a wide range of digital services around e-mobility. In the latest version of the BMW Operating System, digital services have been expanded to include additional charging functions.
In the iX3* and later models, route guidance uses the eRouting intelligent charging service. This also calculates expected charging costs and displays charging stations’ quality profile. The charging experience is completed by a series of other functions in the central display or myBMW app and BMW charging app, such as an overview of the full charging history and range radius.
The focus this year will be on digital services for plug-in hybrids (PHEVs): Since the fourth generation, more and more BMW plug-in hybrid models have been equipped with a ground-breaking geofencing function that enables vehicles to recognize green zones independently and automatically switch to pure electric operating mode when entering eDrive Zones, depending on the charge state. This occurs automatically and does not require any active intervention by the driver. This innovative operating strategy allows PHEVs to drive emission-free, especially in Y’s hiurban areas, and, at the same time, significantly reduces noise emission and running costs for the vehicle owner.
The BMW Points loyalty programme rewards drivers of certain PHEVs for using electric power more often by awarding them bonus points. Every kilometre driven on electric power earns one BMW Point, or two BMW Points per electric kilometre in eDrive Zones. Points can be redeemed for BMW Charging credit. In this way, the PHEV customer is rewarded for frequent electric driving with free charging electricity.
Images courtesy of BMW