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Audi, BMW Ending Car Subscription Programs


Three automakers have now pulled the plug on experimental subscription programs that allowed users to swap between various cars on a whim.

Audi and BMW are in the process of discontinuing their programs, while Cadillac has made no public moves to revive a program it dropped in 2018. That leaves just the Volvo and Porsche subscription deals that essentially bookended Audi, BMW, and Cadillac in terms of cost and availability.

German automakers Audi and BMW plan to wrap up their programs by this month. Both were similar in that they charged a month fee for access to certain models, which subscribers could swap between as they saw fit. Insurance and maintenance were included, and the programs were only available in certain limited markets.

The Audi Select program started around $1,000 a month, as did the Access by BMW pilot program that launched in Nashville.

Sticking around are two programs that are quite different from one another: Care by Volvo and Porsche Drive. Volvo’s program runs as little as $600 monthly for two years, giving access to the small XC40 SUV, though additional vehicles are available at a higher rate. The subscription differs from a traditional lease in that insurance, maintenance, and even tire replacement are covered, and drivers are off the hook for as much as $1,000 in damages.

Porsche’s program starts at $1,500 for a single model – the Macan SUV – to $2,600 month for a 911 sports car. Porsche Drive is offered only in the Atlanta area, where the automaker’s U.S. operations are headquartered, while Volvo’s is available in most states.

Andrew Ganz
Andrew Ganz is an author specializing in helping in-market consumers get the most bang for their buck -- and the best car, while they're at it. When not virtually shopping for new and used cars, Andrew can probably be found under the hood of a vintage classic that's rapidly losing fluids.

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