BMW dealers will be able to show their customers every car, color and trim combination available without having to increase their inventories, shortly after ringing in the new year.

That's when BMW will place its multi-media kiosks in 200 dealerships across the country. The kiosks provide video demonstrations of each BMW, from the 3 series through the 8 series, on a touch-screen monitor.

'At a touch of the screen, consumers can choose the car that's right for them,' said Victor H. Doolan, president of BMW's U.S. sales operation.

BMW spokeswoman Barbara Heep-Richter said the kiosks should be in dealerships by the end of February.

'It will be used as a promotional piece; we encourage them to incorporate it into their dealerships,' Heep-Richter said.

The kiosks employ CD-I technology that uses video clips, graphics and animation to create an informative and entertaining video show for consumers.

The technology also includes a color selector that simulates every combination of exterior paint and interior trim color available in the BMW model range.

The display covers key features such as safety, technology, warranties and accessories.

Also via kiosk, consumers can:

Glimpse BMW concept cars.

Get an update on BMW's worldwide environmental efforts.

Get an aerial view of BMW's new plant at Spartanburg, S.C., see its visitor center and glimpse the inside of the facility.

Heep-Richter said BMW developed and designed the system at its expense and is making it available to dealers.

Initially, BMW planned to put the kiosks in 100 dealerships, but response from dealers was so great they expanded the program. She declined to say how much it costs dealers, but did say the price includes a four-year service and maintenance contract.

Heep-Richter also said the kiosks could eventually be used in other venues such as a shopping malls or auto shows, but future applications have not been finalized.

You can reach Arlena Sawyers at

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