Driving is evolving – with automated vehicles like the Vision iNEXT marking the beginning of a new era. BMW started research on the vision of autonomous driving back in 2000, taking to the race track in 2006 and arriving on the motorway shortly after in 2011.

To continue shaping the future of autonomous driving, our research focusses on developing safe and efficient vehicles you can drive, but don’t have to. Our passion for performance and hunger for progress is taking driverless vehicles from strength to strength, creating an elevated experience with driving pleasure at the heart.

BMW concept cars

THE PURSUIT OF PROGRESS.

At BMW, our collaborative working initiative brings together design and engineering experts from across the world into agile teams. This collaborative environment inspires new, creative solutions and helps projects evolve fluidly, significantly accelerating our development process.

Development of autonomous driving

RESPONDING TO THE ROAD.

Autonomous cars are uniquely engineered to learn and adapt to the road, seamlessly. Constantly responding to new information collected by sensor technology and on-board cameras, vehicles can detect and react to traffic lights, road signs and measure the speed of other objects. These sensors signify a breakthrough for autonomous driving and lay the foundations for the next big development, real-time maps.

BMW iNEXT cockpit and dashboard

MAPPING THE FUTURE.

High-precision digital road maps provide autonomous cars with a digital picture of the environment, allowing the vehicle to ‘see’ beyond its sensor range – effectively acting as a kind of safety net. As the car’s location is geo-located on the map, real-time data from the sensors is synchronised with the mapping data. Its on-board computer then processes information from the various technological components into an overall picture, to calculate the route the car will take. This map data can also help cars to predict potential traffic situations, provided that sufficient inputs are available and able to be correctly interpreted.

The future of autonomous driving

FROM VISION TO REALITY.

In many of our models, semi-autonomous driving is already a reality and with the development of the iNEXT, BMW is taking the next step. Combining innovation and aesthetics, the iNEXT creates an enhanced driving experience that allows you to drive when you want to drive. The future of autonomous driving is a vehicle that understands the road and learns from you, delivering a completely united and intuitive driving experience.

BMW iNEXT seen from above

Find out more about BMW's visionary Concept Cars.

Share this article