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The M-pire strikes back

The new BMW M showroom and servicing centre at 315 Alexandra Road.


BMW's M cars, at home on racing circuits, now have a new home in Singapore.

A new dealer for BMW M, Performance Munich Autos (PMA), officially opened the doors to its showroom and servicing centre at 315 Alexandra Road yesterday.

This gives BMW's high performance division a presence in the key Leng Kee/Alexandra automotive belt. The brand was previously housed in Teban Gardens Crescent by former dealer Munich Automobiles (MA).

PMA was incorporated by Sime Darby Motor Holdings in February this year to handle the BMW M business. Sime Darby also owns main BMW and BMW i dealer Performance Motors Limited (PML).

The Business Times understands the group is discussing a partnership with the parties behind MA for the new business.

MA was the world's first standalone BMW M dealer, and the new company will continue what is still a rare arrangement for the brand. PMA's facility is the world's only dedicated showroom and servicing centre for BMW M. There are four other M-only showrooms elsewhere, and just one in four BMW dealers around the world are certified to sell M cars.

PMA is kicking things off with by-invitation-only previews of the BMW M5 starting today. The 600hp super saloon made its global debut on Monday and will be launched in Singapore only next year, but a left-hand drive unit will spend a month here, so interested parties can kick its tyres.

The X3 M40i and special editions of the M3 and M4 are other new models due in 2018, but PMA will focus on customer service in the meantime.

"The same spirit of 'customer first' prevails as in our sister company Performance Motors," said its managing director Horst Herdtle, adding that PML will lend back-end support to the business. He also promised a "highly-personalised" experience to anyone who visits the showroom.

A BMW M Genius will be on hand to answer questions about the cars and help customers configure them. With no sales target to meet, the Genius can focus on explaining the cars without pressuring customers.

Mr Herdtle said the company will organise drive-aways, golf days, food tours and other events for customers. BMW M drivers now have four service centres to choose from, including two operated by PML.

"We are very happy about the high investment of PML," said Peter Quintus, vice-president of sales and marketing for BMW M.

The division sold 67,900 cars around the world in 2016 and surpassed that figure by October this year. It intends to sell 100,000 cars a year by 2020, and the appointment of PMA is part of that ambition.

"We can have more customer satisfaction," said Mr Quintus. "We expect some volume growth in 2018. That's the major target next year."

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