BMW to launch electric self-driving cars by 2021

It’s all green light for BMW as they scheduled to release iNEXT in 2021, which will be electric, fully connected, and self-driving. Aside from that, a whole range of highly automated models are to follow.

The BMW Group also announced that the development of vehicle connectivity and automated driving will take place in a new campus in Unterschleissheim near Munich. More than 2,000 employees are to work on the project – from software development to road testing.

The road to fully-automated driving is an opportunity for Germany’s automobile manufacturing base. The decision to develop and road-test these vehicles in the Munich area illustrates how the BMW Group and the whole region can benefit from this shift in the automotive industry,” explains Klaus Fröhlich, member of the Board of Management, responsible for Development at the BMW Group.

 

In order to succeed, Fröhlich added that they will develop the technology under a new collaboration called “project i 2.0.” In a nutshell, it will be the combination of speed and flexibility of start-ups, and the process security and industrialization expertise of an established company. With this, they are aiming to have an optimized process, which will speed up the timeline to achieve the target 2021 release. 

Moreover, the BMW Group also said that they are doing their own programming during the development. In the current 600 people they employ, majority are software developers who use the latest technology such as ROS (Robot Operating System). This way, the implementation of ideas are faster and much easier to test.

It’s exciting to see what the future holds for BMW and their future models. Just last week, they announced that they will showcase BMW’s HoloActive Touch at the 2017 Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, which will render buttons useless in the future by using holographic images as dashboard controls.

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