A BMW i-3 electrical car is refueled at a power station for e-cars in the city center of the western German city of Koblenz, IN, Germany in this March 1, 2016 file photo. REUTERS/Wolfgang Rattay/File Photo
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While Tesla's Model 3 will hit showrooms in 2017, and as rivals Porsche and Audi are working on all-electric cars for release by 2019, the German carmaker appears to have put such cars on the back burner.With a fully autonomous vehicle, BMW could launch a ride-hailing business without having to pay drivers, Froehlich said, giving carmakers a competitive edge over new ride-hailing companies like Uber and Lyft which are eroding car sales by making part-time use as convenient as ownership.BMW too may partner with a ride-hailing firm, particularly in markets like China, but the Bavarian carmaker's strategy on potential partnerships with companies in this space is still being worked on, Froehlich said.
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