BMW Future Vision Luxury revealed
The BMW Future Vision Luxury saloon previews technology for future models
While Land Rover used the New York Motor Show to show off some of the technology that will feature on its Land Rover Discovery Sport, BMW previewed its BMW Future Vision Luxury saloon at the Beijing Motor Show.
Although the saloon that provides the technological showcase will never be built, we can expect much of its design elements to filter down in future models. That includes the show car’s lightweight construction.
Using knowledge gained from the design of the BMW i3 and BMW i8, the company has used lightweight aluminium and carbon fibre throughout the BMW Vision Future Luxury saloon’s construction to save weight, the effect being to make the car quicker and more economical.
Aerodynamics – which are already playing a part in current model designs – will feature even more heavily in the future, and the BMW Future Vision Luxury saloon previews the kind of technology we could see. It gets an Air Breather system and internal air channelling, which allows it to cut through the air more easily for improved fuel efficiency.
The BMW Future Vision Luxury saloon also gets the latest in lighting technology. That means the car has laser headlights – that will feature on the i8 supercar – and are up to ten times more powerful than conventional LEDs. Rear lighting, meanwhile, comes courtesy of organic LEDs that are 400 times thinner than a human hair, very flexible, and open up a whole new range of applications as a result.
While it is lightweight, the car’s construction is also super-strong, so BMW can get away with fitting the car with thinner B-pillars, allowing the driver better over-the-shoulder visibility. It also means the Future Vision Luxury saloon gets suicide rear doors, which hinge from the back rather than the front, for better access to the rear seats.
Once inside, the overriding theme is of luxury. BMW has used super strong carbon fibre to underpin the interior’s fixtures and fittings, before covering them in wood, leather and metal. That allows them to be slender and elegant, but also strong and lightweight.
BMW’s traditionally driver-focussed dashboard features on the Future Vision Luxury saloon, but in place of conventional dials there are now three high-definition screens. They use 3D images to give the impression that the interior continues past the controls, for a more spacious feel inside.
The driver also gets a “contact-analogue” BMW Vision Head Up Display, which is capable of producing an augmented view of the road. So, for example, the technology could be used to overlay sat-nav directions on to the driver’s natural view of the road.
In the back, BMW has chosen to drop the rear bench in favour of two individually sculpted seats – to provide plenty of space and yet more luxury – and they’re also sectioned off from the front seats for a ‘very private ambiance’. Rear-seat passengers get plenty of toys to play with, too. Including twin displays, which are controlled by a detachable tablet, and give the passengers access to a luxury concierge service and the Internet.