BMW’s 4D Future Vision
BMW recently showed off a vision of the automotive future as part of its centenary celebrations. The unveiling of the Vision Next 100 was held at the company’s original factory in Munich, where operations began in 1916.
Conceived as a possible vehicle of the future, the Vision Next 100 is one of four concept vehicles to be rolled out over 2016, others coming from Mini, Rolls, and the bike division as well. The VN100 incorporates new construction and design techniques along with visionary ideas that might not happen for decades. Why there’s even 4D printing, taking things to the next level.
Two driving modes are possible, one autonomous (Ease mode), the other manual (Boost mode). Naturally driving pleasure is incorporated into the latter, and digital intelligence supports the driver, with information on optimum turnin points, impending traffic jams etc. In the former, controls retract, seats move and there’s more room for relaxation. Few details were released on the drivetrain, except that it will be a zero-emissions design.
The shape of the concept is a three-box saloon, a BMW tradition, with a hint of i8 in the overall design and surfacing treatment. Paired headlamps either side of the kidney grille are still present, though to us, the frontal treatment looks a little too much like a beaver.
Anticipating a move away from the use of metals in car construction, the Vision Next 100 uses carbon fibre and plastic for body composition. Flexible bodywork (“Alive Geometry”) covers the wheels, resulting in a super-slippery Cd of 0.18.
The design team worked from the inside out. Access is by wing doors that open automatically, and the seat and wheel positions conform to the stored data on the smart key. BMW anticipates high definition displays being replaced by information projected across the windscreen via an extended head-up display.