At the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2023 in Las Vegas, the BMW Group is presenting a vision of the future for digital experiences inside and outside the car. "BMW i Vision Dee" is the name of the futuristic mid-size sedan in a new, reduced design language. The name "dee" stands for Digital Emotional Experience. And that's exactly what it's all about – an even more intensive relationship between people and cars in the future. The future digital functions will go far beyond the level of voice control and driver assistance systems known today. The full-width head-up display anticipates the next generation of vehicles. This innovation will be available in the NEW CLASS models from 2025. In addition, the BMW Group has further developed the color change technology. At the last CES, she showed the BMW iX Flow Featuring E Ink, which could switch from black to white, while the BMW i Vision Dee can display its exterior in up to 32 colors.
BMW i Vision Dee
“With the BMW i Vision Dee, we are showing what is possible when hardware and software merge. We are thus exploiting the full potential of digitization to turn the vehicle into an intelligent companion. This is the future of an automobile manufacturer - and this is the future of BMW: the fusion of virtual experience and real driving pleasure," says Oliver Zipse, Chairman of the Board of Management of BMW AG. “At the same time, the BMW i Vision Dee is another step on the way to the NEW CLASS. With this vision, we look far into the future - and underline the paramount importance of digitization for our coming product generations."
With its intelligent and almost human capabilities, the BMW i Vision Dee accompanies drivers not only through what is actually happening on the road, but also in their digital environment. “A BMW always lives from its incomparable digital performance. The BMW i Vision Dee is about the perfect integration of virtual and physical experiences,” says Frank Weber, BMW AG Board Member for Development. "Those who master this integration of their customers' digital living environments into the vehicle at all levels will master the future of automotive engineering."
The BMW Mixed Reality Slider: in five steps into the virtual world
The digital highlight and central control element of the BMW i Vision Dee, in conjunction with the extended head-up display, is the BMW Mixed Reality Slider. Shy-Tech sensors on the dashboard allow drivers to determine the amount of digital content that can be seen on the extended BMW head-up display. The five-stage selection ranges from analog, information relevant to driving, content of the communication system and an augmented reality projection to entry into virtual worlds. At the same time, reality can be gradually faded out with the help of dimmable panes. Mixed reality can be experienced in the BMW i Vision Dee without additional aids in an immersive way that appeals to different senses and creates a new dimension of driving pleasure for the user.
The extended BMW head-up display: from 2025 in the NEW CLASS
The BMW Group is the pioneer of the head-up display in the automotive sector and has been consistently developing this technology for two decades. In the BMW i Vision Dee, projection across the entire width of the windscreen enables information to be displayed on the largest possible display surface, which is only recognizable as such when it is activated.
The BMW Group is thus demonstrating the great potential of projection technology. The BMW i Vision Dee visualizes how an expanded head-up display can also be used for the display operating concept in the future. As early as 2025, the series version of the BMW head-up display will be used across the entire width of the windscreen in the models of the NEW CLASS.
Welcome scenario with speech and phygital icons
The digital experience begins outside the vehicle with an individual welcome scenario that includes graphic elements, light and sound effects. Natural language serves as the simplest and most intuitive form of interaction for perfect communication between humans and automobiles. In addition, the headlights and the closed BMW kidney grille form a common phygital (fusion of physical and digital) icon on a uniform surface, with which various facial expressions can be displayed.
In this way, the BMW i Vision Dee can speak to people and at the same time visually express moods such as joy, astonishment or approval. In addition, the BMW i Vision Dee can project an image of the driver's avatar onto the side window pane to further personalize the welcome scenario.
World premiere for full color E Ink technology
After the spectacular debut of the BMW iX Flow featuring E Ink at CES 2022, the BMW Group is presenting the BMW i Vision Dee, the world's first full-color version of E Ink technology used as the outer skin of a vehicle. Instead of alternating between black and white, the BMW i Vision Dee now shows a multicolored, fully variable and individually designable exterior. An ePaper film from the cooperation partner E Ink applied to the body ensures this magical play of colors. Up to 32 different colors can be displayed.
The body surface of the BMW i Vision Dee is divided into 240 E Ink segments, each of which is controlled individually. This allows an almost infinite variety of patterns to be generated and varied within a few seconds. The laser cutting process used to cut the foil and the electronic control design were developed together with the cooperation partner E Ink. The adaptation to curved surfaces and the programming of the animations are in-house developments of the BMW Group and enable a form of individualization that is unique in the automotive sector.
Reduced exterior and interior design
The design of the BMW i Vision Dee is deliberately reduced. The focus is clearly on the digital experience and the DNA of the BMW brand. The exterior is defined by the classic 3-box sedan design that is at the heart of the BMW brand. Traditional design features such as the BMW kidney grille, the double round headlights and the Hofmeisterknick are reinterpreted, phygital icons replace analogous elements. This gives the BMW i Vision Dee its own digital and at the same time human character.
In the interior, digitization goes hand in hand with a reduced use of materials, controls and displays. So nothing distracts from the digital experience and the driving pleasure that has been expanded to include new impressions. The unconventionally designed steering wheel with its central vertical spoke offers touch surfaces that come to life when approached and touched and can be operated with a thumb movement. These phygital touchpoints control the selection of content projected onto the windscreen, supporting the principle of "hands on the wheel, eyes on the road" together with the extended head-up display.
“With the BMW i Vision Dee, we are showing how the automobile can be seamlessly integrated into your digital life and become a loyal companion. The vehicle itself becomes your portal to the digital world. The driver always retains full control,” says Adrian van Hooydonk, Head of BMW Group Design. "Properly implemented, technology will create many valuable experiences, make you a better driver or simply bring man and machine closer together."
Another milestone on the way to the NEW CLASS
The future of the BMW Group is electric, circular and digital. The BMW i Vision Dee stands for the digital aspect of this triad and is thus another milestone on the way to the next generation of vehicles, the NEW CLASS. In the course of 2023, the BMW Group will provide further insights into the revolutionary vehicle concept of the NEW CLASS.
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