BMW has announced that it will provide around 4,000 vehicles for VIPS and officials during the 2012 Olympic Games in London, a move that has drawn disapproval from critics worried about the biology impact of the chauffeur-driven cars.
Furthermore, the vehicles will have admittance to 30 miles (48km) of VIP-only traffic lanes during the Games.
“Four thousand vehicles seems lunatic when we have such a good public transport system,” said Jenny Jones, Green Party London Assembly member, in a recent interview. “I can understand a few officials need secure transport, but 4,000? Shipping new cars in from Germany is also extremely bad news for the environment. I am sure there are many local car dealers which could have supplied vehicles.”
Out of the 4,000 vehicle-fleet, around 250 VIPs will have access to a chauffeur-driven BMW for personal use during the Games, while others will be a part of a consortium shared between members of the “Olympic family” that includes officials, sponsors, dignitaries, and athletes.
The BMW sponsorship has angered eco-conscious members of the London Assembly Transport Committee, which “promised that the 2012 Games would be the greenest Olympics ever to take place,” according to committee member Caroline Pidgeon.
“Only electric vehicles should have been considered.”
Out of the 4,000 cars, 200 will be EVs, with the rest emitting under 120g/km. Majority of the fleet will be 3-Series and 5-Series sedans and Touring models, worth approximately £150m. After the Games, BMW says that it will sell the cars on the used market in right-hand-drive markets.