BMW recently unveiled an electric concept SUV, the Vision iNEXT, with plans for the vehicle to enter the market in 2021.
The BMW Vision iNEXT is the German carmaker’s next step in intelligent-drive development, as the car will be highly automated, fully connected, and completely emission-free.
In a public statement at an annual BMW General Meeting in May, Harald Krüger, Chairman of the Board of Management at the BMW Group said, “The iNEXT project will provide our building blocks for the future, from which the entire company and all of its brands are set to benefit.”
The Vision iNEXT follows the line started by BMW “i” in 2007 and BMW “i3” from 2013, two models which used electric powertrain technology.
More than anything, it is the three “Shy Tech” visionary applications that will make the BMW Vision iNEXT a trailblazer in the future development of automobiles
First, there is the Intelligent Personal Assistant, an integrated digital world linked with smart devices that respond to voice commands by the driver. There is also Intelligent Materials, a single-touch functionality that allows the car to respond to various hand or touch gestures a passenger makes upon the seats with their fingers as if they were inputs. Finally, there is Intelligent Beam, a projection light that beams images, moving content, or interactive video graphics at the simple command of the driver or passenger.
The BMW Vision iNEXT will be equipped with other impressive aspects. Cameras will take the place of exterior mirrors, and touch-sensitive graphics will take the place of door-handles. iNEXT drivers can choose to either use “Boost” mode to drive themselves or “Ease” mode to be driven by the car’s technology. BMW says that “Boost” mode is a virtually silent driving experience that exerts zero-emissions from the car.
While in “Ease” mode, the steering wheel retracts slightly into the dashboard, and the display panels change into “Exploration Mode” which allows passengers to digitally explore activities in their surrounding environment as the car cruises along.
“The BMW Vision iNEXT represents a new era of sheer driving pleasure,” Krüger said in the public statement. “It underlines the leading role Germany plays in the future of mobility.”