When Nissan released an “attack ad” against Tesla’s reservation process for the Model 3, they were mostly laughed at by Model 3 reservation holders – at least in the comment section of our article about the new ad campaign – but this new ad by BMW is arguably even worse.
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In a new 30-second commercial for the BMW 330e, the German automaker spends most of the ad asserting that you shouldn’t wait for the Tesla Model 3 and instead buy BMW’s new plug-in hybrid. They spent so much time on establishing the premise that you shouldn’t wait for the Model 3 that they ended up mentioning only one feature of the 330e, its EPA-rated gas consumption of 72 MPGe.
BMW’s argument boils down to: buy our car because it’s available now.
It’s hard to blame Nissan or BMW for wanting to tap into Tesla’s new pool of ~400,000 potential customers who showed interest in paying $35,000+ for an electric car, but do they really think that availability is the main factor here?
The Tesla Model 3 is an all-electric vehicle with an estimated range of over 215 miles and a base price of $35,000. The BMW 330e is a plug-in hybrid with an EPA-rated all-electric range of 14 miles and a base price of $44,000.
Here’s the ad:
In the ad or at least in its description of the ad, BMW is referring to Tesla as “that other electric car company”. Does it imply that BMW is considering itself to be an “electric car company” now too? I would consider BMW a car company that also offers electric cars. Do people make the distinction?
Also, they are implying that the Model 3 will not come out for another 2 years? That would place the release for August 2018, a full year after Tesla’s official planned release. Delays are not impossible, but directly advertising that it will be delayed by a year “and maybe more” is a bit disingenuous.
Maybe BMW is nervous because its “true Model 3 fighter”, an all-electric BMW 3 series, is not expected to make it to market until the next decade… and maybe more.
Update: apparently, they are making a whole campaign out of this “wait or drive” thing. This one features dummy Tesla Superchargers:
It’s almost as if BMW forgot that its own electric vehicle, the BMW i3, is capped at 50 kW charging at DC fast-charging stations, while Tesla’s vehicles can charge at up to 120 kW at Superchargers. You really don’t want to highlight that difference in a commercial you paid for…
If you are mad at BMW right now because of this ad campaign, maybe I can interest you in a video of BMW’s CEO bonking his head on a Falcon Wing door when trying to rush out of a Tesla Model X.