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BMW Flaunts Futuristic Cars At Trade Event

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2018 BMW i3s Range Extender Chicago Auto Show CAS
The BMW i3
Photo: The News Wheel

Leading premium carmaker BMW is strongly holding onto the luxury crown by unveiling its plans to launch an extensive lineup of futuristic concept cars and electric vehicles, as well as a trendsetting makeover of its existing sport utility vehicles. At its NEXTGen event held in Munich on June 25, the German automaker showcased its ambition of debuting 25 models of partially or fully electric vehicles by 2023, two years earlier than originally scheduled for 2025.

BMW has flaunted several of its latest EV technology like its Motorrad Vision DC Roadster motorcycle and its concept sports car, BMW Vision M NEXT. The futuristic-looking car has been dubbed as a next-gen BMW i8 sports car and can be tagged as the standard design of the future generation’s car models. While the exterior might have a vibe of sporty driving anyone can see in sci-fi movies or video games, the interior breathes extreme futuristic design that serves as the look of the company’s vision in the next few years.

The German automaker did not only tease everyone with sleek design, electrified models, advanced adaptive cruise control system, self-driving capabilities, and plug-in hybrids. BMW announced earlier this month that it has tapped the services of award-winning film score composer and record producer Hans Zimmer to engineer a sound that is Hollywood-worthy for its next generation of EVs by collaborating with its own sound designer, Renzo Vitale. All throughout his career, Zimmer has orchestrated music for more than 150 films including the Dark Knight trilogy, Blade Runner 2049, the Pirates of the Caribbean series and Inception, among others.

Teasing us further, the automaker launched a webpage where visitors can listen to the sound created by Zimmer for Vision M NEXT, get a sneak peek of its ambitious cars and design highlights, print vehicle design in 3D, and even download wallpapers and posters. The video clip on the website comes with special acoustics reminiscent of THX Opener and Blade Runner 2049.

Adrian van Hooydonk, SVP of BMW Group Design, said these concept cars will be created with a focus on the “people inside”. Additionally, he stressed BMW’s ambition of bringing state-of-the-art technology to “transform life on board our vehicles“.

The add-on sound feature might also be BMW’s answer to proposals and possible regulations requiring noise-emitting devices for EVs. Since electric vehicles are silent, several groups and government agencies are concerned that these low-emission cars and vans might be putting pedestrians at risk. These sounds can avoid soaring personal injuries, especially to the visually impaired, and more cases filed by lawyers like Tinker Law Firm.

As such, an EU rule has been enacted to require all quiet vehicles to feature a warning noise that sounds like a traditional engine. The alert system must sound even when vehicles are running at low speed or when reversing. There is no standard rule as to how the noise would sound like. So, manufacturers have the option to create their own sounds the same way that Zimmer did for BMW.

Apart from the big revelation, BMW reported early this year that it is releasing the Mini Electric by the end of the year, the all-electric SUV BMW iX3 by next year and the all-electric-sedan BMW i4 by 2021. With a series of vehicle line-ups, the German automaker is now driving ahead of the competition as it doubled its US sales lead and delivered over 9,000 more units than its rival, Mercedes-Benz.

This is a collaborative article.