For several years Bob's BMW in Jessup, Md., sold used BMW Authority bikes to consumers through an arrangement with the primary dealer supplier of BMWs leased to the California Highway Patrol (CHP).
The CHP operates hundreds of BMW motor units, so there was always a fresh supply of bikes coming off lease — bikes the California dealership would've never been able to find a home for. Cue Bob's, 3,000-some miles away.
At Bob's, 60,000-mile off-lease RT-Ps sold for over $10,000.
Ashton Menefee, sales manager, Bob's BMW, says Bob's used to have the "pick of the off-lease litter,"" while all of the banged-up or otherwise flawed units went to auctions.
"We did full inspections of the units we purchased and even had an extended warranty available for them," he says. "It was a pretty good business, but it dried up in the past year."
"There's a different dealer supplying the CHP now, and it appears the contract has changed — we don't know what's happening to the bikes coming back into the market, but we're not seeing them," Menefee says.
One reason Menefee cites as possibly responsible for changing his business: "Some organizations, like the Maryland State Police, have a requirement where, when their bikes reach their service limit, they must be sent to public auction."
Nevertheless, Menefee says Bob's — halfway between Washington DC and Baltimore — continues to find sales with BMW Authority Bikes by selling new RT-Ps to civilians. "We sell several each year," he says. "In fact, I'm talking to a customer about one today."