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BMW rewards plug-in hybrid drivers for every electric mile

BMW is incentivising UK drivers of its plug-in hybrid models to drive in electric-only mode through a new rewards programme.

The BMW programme is offered to drivers of the 330e,  530e, 545e, 745e, X3 30e ( from August 2021) and X5 45e drivers with Operating System 7.0

Already available in Germany, Belgium and the Netherlands, the Points programme gives UK drivers charging credits for each electric mile driven, including abroad.

Those signing up are also awarded bonus points every time their vehicle is charged for a minimum of 15 minutes and there’s a monthly reward for each user who charges their vehicle 20 times a month for a minimum of 15 minutes each time.

Once drivers have collected 3,200 points, they will be rewarded with £10 charging credit to be used across the BMW Charging network. At 7,500 points, customers will receive £25 and at 14,500 points a £50 free charging credit.

The scheme is available on BMW’s plug-in hybrid models using Operating System 7.0 and provides a nifty solution to the issue of drivers opting for plug-in hybrids to save on Benefit-in-Kind taxation but still relying on the combustion engine; there has been high-profile concern over driver misuse of PHEVs in the last few years. Volvo also took action in 2019 to tackle this, introducing a time-limited reimbursed electricity offer for plug-in hybrid customers that was then extended until October 2020.

Under BMW’s rewards programme, drivers can also double their points when using the electric-only mode in designated eDrive Zones; last year saw BMW became the first car manufacturer to launch geo-fencing technology in designated areas across London and Birmingham, enabling its plug-in hybrid models to automatically switch to electric-only power once in a zone.

This has now been expanded with a further six eDrive Zones launched in Glasgow, Edinburgh, Belfast, Liverpool, Bath and Manchester. BMW is also introducing eDrive Zones in Ireland, starting with Dublin and Limerick.

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Natalie Middleton

Natalie has worked as a fleet journalist for nearly 20 years, previously as assistant editor on the former Company Car magazine before joining Fleet World in 2006. Prior to this, she worked on a range of B2B titles, including Insurance Age and Insurance Day.