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Audi launches subscription for MMI Navigation Plus with Function On Demand program

You can pay month-to-month or by the year, but either way, it seems like a bad deal.

2021 Audi Q5 45 TFSI
If you want Audi's MMI Navigation Plus but didn't shell out for it when you bought your car, you can get it later, but it's not cheap.
Craig Cole/Roadshow

We here at Roadshow are not fans of paying an ongoing subscription fee for a vehicle feature. We've talked about it before when BMS tried this system, and surprise, we're still not fans of the idea. 

Audi clearly didn't read our take on the whole concept because it announced on Thursday that it would offer its MMI Navigation Plus service and its full-speed Wi-Fi option as either a yearly license or a monthly subscription fee for select 2021 Q5, Q5 Sportback, A4 and A5 models. This move is part of a new program called Function On Demand.

The monthly fee for Audi's (admittedly pretty cool) satellite-view navigation is a not-inconsequential $84.99. You can purchase a month here or a month there, depending on needs or wants, but if you want a whole year of the service, it will set you back a whopping $849.99.

The MMI Navigation Plus system is a $1,500 option on Premium Plus models and standard on Prestige models, so we'd say that you should probably buy it when you get the car. Barring that, find a vehicle that has it already if you're buying used, or do what we would do and just use your phone for navigation, even if it's less cool-looking.

Audi is also giving E-Tron and E-Tron Sportback buyers the chance to get in on the fun, somewhat, by offering a retroactive activation of the Light Function Package for a single $249.00 charge for the life of the vehicle. This package gives drivers dynamic cornering lights, turning lights and maneuvering lights.

Audi will roll out other Function On Demand subscription features in future months.

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