BMW Vision Neue Klasse previews the brands future EV design
The BMW Vision Neue Klasse concept is a study of the future generation of BMW automobiles, foreshadowing the brand's transition as it enters a new age.
It hints at a major shift in visual and interior design direction, as well as the introduction of cutting-edge powertrain technology. The term "Neue Klasse" was last used in BMW ranks in the early 1960s, when BMW was in the midst of its final major period of development, effectively birthing a series of automobiles that would become the 5 Series.
BMW will introduce six Neue Klasse EVs in the next 24 months, however not all of them will be built on the same platform due to the varying needs of the various sectors BMW intends to serve.
BMW Vision Neue Klasse: Design
Many people will recognize the iVision DEE Concept's profile and basic aesthetic components - the window line, its face, and its rump. In the overall shape and the 'Shark Nose' face, the DEE employed allusions to the original 'Neue Klasse' and other previous BMW saloons that established the tone for what we know and love today.
The new light signature is a departure from BMW, with lights and graphics around the car that have a wake-up routine to greet the driver replacing chrome. The front twin headlights are combined with the kidneys, making additional space for sensors. Yes, there are cameras in the side mirrors, and there are no door handles; instead, sensors unlock the doors. The glass roof runs the whole length of the car; it is laminated and may be tinted to provide shade.
BMW Vision Neue Klasse: Interior
The streamlined theme continues on the interior, where most of what the car performs is now controlled by speech via the BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant. The single rectangular infotainment screen in the centre of the dash connects to the Panoramic screen and controls what is presented on the windshield that all four people can view.
Surprisingly, the shifter is still in the centre console: a black bar with three places that you press forward and back to.
All of this is powered by a new iDrive system, which BMW refers to as the 'interface between real and virtual worlds'. The next iteration of iDrive, which will hit the road in 2025, will allow both the driver and passenger to interact with and change the information presented on the new central infotainment screen. When automobiles are allowed for Level 3 autonomous driving, information is shown using new augmented reality, which will allow gaming.
BMW Vision Neue Klasse: Powertrain
Vision Neue Klasse includes BMW's in-development sixth-generation eDrive technology, which should provide up to 30 percent longer range, 25 percent more efficiency, and 30 percent faster charging.
This, like the next Neue Klasse series of BMWs, is a more environmentally friendly car. To simplify and clean up production, the Vision Neue Klasse employs a substantially larger percentage of secondary raw materials while minimizing the diversity of resources. The next generation of BMWs will also be easy to disassemble and hence recycle.
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