As Tesla realized from the beginning, trying to sell EVs alongside legacy vehicles could be a losing proposition. Dealerships that also sell gas-burning cars have incentives to steer customers away from plug-ins and toward their proven sellers.
For an automaker that actually wants to sell its electric models, it may make more sense to establish separate, EV-only dealerships – and that’s just what a California BMW dealer has done.
Stevens Creek BMW in Santa Clara, at the heart of Silicon Valley, recently opened the first full-service standalone BMW i facility. It includes a showroom, a service department, and most importantly, a dedicated sales staff, separate from the much larger dealership next door selling BMW’s legacy models (the brand differentiation hasn’t yet been extended online, however – the dealership’s web site contains no mention of the new showroom).
“Our BMW i facility caters to only the new BMW i3 and the growing electric-car lifestyle in the Bay Area,” Sales Manager Tiffani Wyatt told Green Car Reports. “We have three Level 2 charging stations that are open to the public 24 hours a day, and are free to use, and we have a staff of four BMW i Geniuses who are here to educate and provide extensive product knowledge on what BMW is trying to accomplish with the i3.”
Source: Green Car Reports