It’s widely known that a MINI offers drivers an unrivaled exhilarating go-kart feel, transforming even the most mundane journey into something much more fun. For the first time, MINI is launching a new service to enable MINI owners to share this unmistakable experience with friends, acquaintances and family.

With the new MINI Sharing app, MINI owners can grant friends, family members or colleagues permission to open and start their vehicle via a smartphone. As part of a pilot project in the Spanish capital, this personal form of car sharing is now being tested under everyday conditions.

The peer-to-peer sharing trial is designed for a fleet of up to 500 vehicles. Owners of current MINI models produced since March 2018 will be invited to participate, and their vehicle will be equipped or retrofitted with a MINI Sharing Module that enables access and engine start via smartphone.

The trail in Madrid will provide important insights for the global expansion of the MINI brand’s sharing economy activities. The BMW Group has identified digital mobility services as one of the future fields to advance as part of NUMBER ONE> NEXT strategy.

With its increased commitment to the D-ACES (Design, Autonomous, Connected, Electrified and Services) topics, the company is playing a leading role in shaping mobility of the future.

"MINI drivers are always ahead of their time, just like their groundbreaking and modern vehicles," says Sebastian Mackensen, MINI Senior Vice President. "With MINI Sharing, we enable our customers in Spain to participate in the sharing economy. This new technology fits perfectly with our desirable cars and our innovative customer demographic."

MINI Sharing allows the vehicle owner to share their MINI with up to ten people of their choosing, with the vehicle availability highlighted in the app's inbuilt calendar function. The guest drivers can use the app to make a reservation request from their smartphone with just a few taps.

After the owner has granted their consent, the location of the vehicle and pedestrian directions are displayed on their phone. Upon arrival at the vehicle, the smartphone on which the MINI Sharing App is installed becomes the car key.

A Bluetooth connection between the smartphone and the MINI makes it possible to open the vehicle doors and start the engine by pressing the start/stop toggle switch.

If desired, the MINI owner can mark specific individuals as VIP users in the MINI Sharing App. These individuals can book the vehicle spontaneously without having to wait for the owner's consent.

After the guest driver completes their journey, the MINI will be parked in an area agreed with the owner and locked via smartphone.

The MINI Sharing App generates a report with the travel data required for billing, and the guest driver is presented with the opportunity to transfer a payment to the MINI owner via PayPal. The cost calculation for the MINI Sharing App is based on a flat rate of € 0.30 per kilometre driven.

Insurance cover for each vehicle can be extended easily, with a lump sum for each additional guest driver participating in the MINI Sharing trial. For data protection reasons, the MINI owner can view the location of their vehicle at any time via the MINI Sharing App - with the exception of instances where another passenger is traveling inside the vehicle.

MINI Sharing creates new opportunities to share the MINI experience with friends and family. Once again, MINI is taking on a pioneering and innovative role in further advancing urban mobility. Based on the trial information gathered from the MINI Sharing Community in Madrid, this innovation could go on to conquer additional cities worldwide.

The BMW Group has a new addition to the expansive BMW ConnectedDrive portfolio. The BMW Connected App takes personal mobility to the next level, and is available as a free download from the Apple App store.

Seamless and secure

BMW Connected is a personal mobility assistant designed to ensure customers arrive at their destination comfortably and in good time, thanks to a seamless integration between vehicle and smartphone or other connected device. This level of connectivity is made possible by a secure system known as the ‘Open Mobility Cloud’.

Any data used must first pass through highly secure servers based in BMW’s Munich headquarters. As a result, no data is shared directly to the smart device from the vehicle, or vice versa.

BMW Connected links purely to the vehicle’s infotainment system and therefore has no connection to the vehicle’s engine and safety systems.

Flexible and adaptable

Available to vehicles equipped with iDrive 4 onwards, BMW Connected adapts to daily routines. Users need never be late again, with integrated ‘time to leave’ notifications that adapt to current traffic and road conditions.

BMW Connected can also sync with your calendar and transfer appointment information from approved third-party suppliers, such as Google Maps, Apple Maps and Yelp, adding further peace of mind before any trip.

Once a destination has been set, the App offers a simple ‘Start Trip’ function that transfers the information to the vehicle’s navigation system, adding further convenience.

The App can also support you on either side of your journey. ‘First Mile Navigation’ is perfect for use when returning to the vehicle in a large car park, such as an airport or shopping centre, while ‘Last Mile Navigation’ can provide walking directions to a final point when the car is parked a distance away from the destination.

BMW Connected App – key highlights

The BMW Connected App provides owners with a one-stop app shop, replacing the previous BMW Connected Classic app as well as BMW Remote and BMW i Remote Apps.

As a result, BMW Connected offers the following integrated services directly to your Apple iOS smartphone or device, including the Apple Watch:

Journey Management

  • Store and manage destinations
  • Learn and predict trips
  • Search and send destinations to in-car navigation
  • Time to leave notifications based on live traffic data
  • Destination management, including expected trip duration
  • Ability to share arrival time and destination via SMS
  • Fuel station and car park locator

Remote Services

  • Remotely lock and unlock car doors from the smart device
  • Flash headlights
  • Find vehicle
  • Engage the vehicle’s ventilation systems to pre-condition the cabin
  • Display current fuel level, and remaining range (iDrive 5 with Professional Navigation)

For BMW i and iPerformance customers, the BMW Connected App allows remote setting of the vehicle’s charging profile. Charging can also be scheduled based on departure time, and the preferred charging time can be set to reflect off-peak electricity timing, for example. A search function allows for easy discovery of nearby charging stations.

Access popular third-party apps

BMW Connected offers access to a wide range of third-party apps to further enhance the Connected experience.

  • Spotify
  • Pandora
  • TuneIn Radio
  • Audiobooks
  • Deezer Music
  • Glympse
  • Stitcher Radio for Podcasts
  • Life360

Personalised servicing checks delivered to your smartphone

For vehicles equipped with Navigation System Professional and iDrive 5 as a minimum, BMW Connected can advise and recommend when servicing or maintenance is required.

The BMW Connected App monitors the vehicle’s current mileage and can also offer information on tyre pressures, engine oil levels, brake fluid levels and brake wear.

Data details

Please note that any data used by BMW Connected is drawn from the user’s smartphone SIM card.