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Into the dark ages
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Discussion Starter #1


The virtual co-driver with a seventh sense.

The BMW Group is developing the seventh sense for the automobile:
ConnectedDrive is a concept destined to give the motorist an even more
“intelligent” and individual vehicle in the future, offering even more safety and
motoring comfort. This new intelligence is created by inter­connecting the “nervous
systems” of the car with one another and with the world outside, in this process
creating new skills and abilities. Two examples of this new intelligence already
tested in a research car are, first, the process of making stop-and-go traffic easier
and smoother through ConnectedDrive, with the driver able to delegate the job of
constantly applying the brakes to his car, and, second, the ability to make
unpredictable country roads safer particularly at night, with the active gas pedal
“telling” the driver to slow down by building up increasing counter-pressure in front of
tight bends.

These examples show that ConnectedDrive is not just some kind of new system, but
rather an overrriding, all-round and truly convincing concept. It interconnects and
supplements formerly separate modules in the areas of telematics, online services
and driver assistance systems, intervening by providing the necessary support and
giving the driver specific, on-demand information. You might therefore say that
ConnectedDrive is a kind of virtual co-driver giving the driver the right information
correctly processed at the right time. And this immediately reveals another, decisive
advantage of this special concept developed by the BMW Group: The driver does
not necessarily receive more information, but rather better information –
ConnectedDrive makes life easier, not more difficult, for the driver.

Introducing ConnectedDrive, BMW is making a significant, far-reaching contribution
to the improvement of mobility. The concept offers everything required to
interconnect the needs of the environment, the optimisation of transport as a whole,
the maximisation of safety on the road, and that sheer driving pleasure so typical of
BMW. The latest module introduced within the concept of ConnectedDrive is a
wonderful example of this far-reaching improvement: BMW Online incorporating an
internet-based parking information service guides the driver to a car park where
space is still available. This eliminates the usual, tedious process of looking for
parking space, at the same time making life easier for the driver, helping to improve
traffic conditions, and preserving the environment. ConnectedDrive also
supplements the dynamic navigation process by enabling the driver to avoid traffic
congestion, with the navigation system, traffic information services and the BMW
Assist telematics service all interacting for this purpose in order to provide a wide
range of benefits. “We wish to bring the driver out of his isolation, giving him access
to all the information he finds important or desirable”, states Dr Burkhard Göschel,
BMW Group Board Member for Development and Purchasing: “ConnectedDrive
bringing all the necessary systems and features together is the key to reaching this

The early days of ConnectedDrive:
navigation using signals for the ABS brake system.

BMW’s development specialists set the foundation for ConnectedDrive years ago,
introducing the first concepts into practice right from the start. Today, for example,
signals from the wheel speed sensors serve not only to mastermind the brakes, but
also to measure distances in the process of vehicle navigation, for example when
satellite contact is interrupted in a tunnel. Signals generated by the airbag
electronics, in turn, are used for triggering an automatic emergency call function via
BMW Assist.

BMW Assist:
Future-oriented ConnectedDrive service already available today.

The BMW Assist telematics service already in use today is an important highlight of
ConnectedDrive comprising a number of significant functions:

• Emergency call/automatic emergency call in severe accidents.
• Mobile support service.
• Real-time traffic information (not available in the US)
• Mobility-based inquiry services covering numerous points of interest.

In Germany BMW has been offering customers BMW Assist since 1999, providing
a data retransmission function feeding navigation data such as the addresses of
service stations, hotels or any other address from an external BMW call center into
the navigation system of a car while on the move.

This function also covers telephone numbers required by the driver, the car
telephone connecting the driver with the number desired automatically
after he clicks on to the number.

BMW Online: entering destinations from the internet
at the touch of a button (not available in the US).

Introducing the new 7 Series, BMW is offering internet-based services in
the car for the first time through a special gateway. And with its deep integration of
on-board electronic systems, BMW Online is truly unique in the market: Going
beyond the features already provided by BMW Assist, this service enables the
driver to download further functions from the internet providing a wide range of
additional benefits and options. Accordingly, the BMW customer is able not only to
access comprehensive databases such as directory services, hotel addresses as
well as the latest news or information on the stock exchange, but also to enter his
personal data files such as address lists directly from his PC, naturally maintaining
full confidentiality in the process. Then, while riding in his car, he is able to
conveniently access both general and private data, if necessary entering new
destinations and addresses whenever required. And all he has to do to file this
information in the on-board navigation system is press a button.
The online services portfolio can be adjusted and supplemented to meet new
requirements at any time, simply by updating the software. This made it very simple
for BMW’s engineers to integrate the new service already described for listing and
showing the way to car parks with free spaces in densely populated areas (not
available in the US). The car park operators linked to this parking information
service are networked with the BMW Online gateway and regularly report the
number of parking lots currently available. Given the popularity of this service, the
number of car parks linked up to the system is constantly growing. Further
information on this service is to be found in the internet under

Pooling comfort and service benefits from the Web.

BMW Online already offers a wide range of individual services (not available in the
• E-mail accounting.
• Address book functions.
• Inquiry services.
• The latest news in politics, sports, culture and business,
as well as local news.
• The latest corporate news.
• Stock prices.
• City guide and travel information.
• Weather information.
• A 3D view presenting a specific location from a bird’s-eye perspective.

The customer is also able to enter individual reading markers for the BMW gateway
on his PC at home, then accessing the services required quickly and conveniently
from his car. Indeed, he is able to access the BMW gateway not only from his car or
his PC at home, but also from his mobile phone.

To ensure an optimum combination of information requirements, safety and comfort,
all online services are tailored to the operating and control conditions within the car
itself. As an example, the BMW gateway presents news, business reports, directory
inquiry services or weather conditions at the driver’s point of departure or his
destination, condensed in each case to the key words and headlines both the driver
and passenger are able to take in within fractions of a second.

Floating Car Data: cars exchanging data in a fully automatic process.

Precise traffic information provided reliably and in good time gives the driver extra
safety and motoring comfort. The prerequisite and starting point absolutely essential
for this purpose is the comprehensive coverage and compilation of traffic data.
Future-oriented concepts therefore use cars as mobile sensors. Since September
2001 all BMW cars equipped with the BMW Assist telematics service have been
participating in the Floating Car Data (FCD) system – provided the driver wishes to
use this service himself. This means that BMW cars on the road serve not only as
recipients, but also as collectors and providers of traffic information, the car’s
current position
and road speed being transmitted for this purpose to the FCD Center – naturally in
a fully anonymous process, without identifying the car as such. Then, proceeding
from the position and speed data entered in this way, the system is able to calculate
the current traffic load with a relatively high standard of accuracy. BMW drivers
participating in the FCD system thus enter and receive information free-of-charge
on traffic obstructions not even covered and detected by sensors on the motorway.
And precisely this is another big advantage, traffic conditions being monitored and
evaluated without requiring any additional infrastructure. This means that the system
is able to anonymously gather and process traffic flow information from any point on
the digitalised road network.

Via BMW Assist, the networked cars transmit the data registered by the
ConnectedDrive on-board network automatically to a registration and recording
center where the data is compared with information from other road users and
sources of traffic information, processed and transmitted directly by SMS through
the car’s telephone to the navigation system in BMWs equipped with BMW Assist.
Should there be any traffic obstructions on the route the driver intends to take, the
navigation computer will immediately select an alternative route and offer the driver
this option.

Without requiring any additional sensors, BMW cars equipped with FCD are able to
generate information on the flow of traffic on motorways and country roads and
within built-up areas. The dynamic route guidance function enabling the driver to
avoid traffic congestion is incidentally no longer limited to the motorway (ie, the
Autobahn in Germany), but also covers the entire digitalised road network.

The XFCD ConnectedDrive project:

BMW Group developing enhanced data acquisition functions.

Road speed and the distance covered are only rudimentary data, not sufficient for a
detailed assessment of traffic conditions and their ongoing development. Precisely
this is why the BMW Group is developing the Extended Floating Car Data or XFCD
system providing far more precise traffic information by means of extended
car-generated traffic data coverage.

To provide this input, a modern car is able to present not only speed, but also a
wide range of other data generated by the various on-board systems. The
introduction of modern on-board networks ranging from dynamic suspension control
systems to driver assistance provides a wide range of further data available for
assessing traffic conditions, road conditions and the weather situation. Such data is
provided by the low- and high-beam headlights, the foglamps, ABS, ASC or DSC,
the outdoor thermometer and air conditioning, the car’s brakes, the navigation
system, rain sensor or screenwipers.

Taking the same approach as with FCD, XFCD processes the entire range of
extended data within the car to provide incident-related, traffic and road condition
reports indicating current traffic situations and dangerous conditions such as heavy
rain, aquaplaning, black ice, limited visibility or fog. Operation of ASC in
conintersection with a low outdoor temperature, use of the windscreen wipers, and
low road speeds, for example, would clearly indicate the risk of slippery roads at the
location where the car is currently being driven.

The wide range of ConnectedDrive functions is intended not only to provide
communication linking the driver, the car and the stationary infrastructure, but also to
ensure direct car-to-car communication in future without going through any kind of
control center.

ConnectedDrive ALC project: intelligent light for extra safety.

The examples presented at the beginning with the stop & go assistant and the
active gas pedal are only two out of many functions to be provided in future through
the cooperation of systems within the ConnectedDrive concept. A further example is
Adaptive Light Control (ALC) soon to enter series production. ALC receives
information, inter alia, from the navigation system, directing two headlights following
the steering and variable in their light distribution to the course of the road. This
enables the driver, when approaching and taking a bend, to gain a clearer and,
accordingly, safer picture of the road ahead. When the car is approaching a bend,
ALC broadens the light beam to provide better illumination of intersecting roads
and pedestrian walkways.

ALC “sees” where the driver is steering the car and thus ensures bright illumination
even of tight bends thanks to the swivelling headlight units.

The system is masterminded by car-based and ConnectedDrive information such
as the steering angle, road speed and lateral acceleration. Even GPS satellite
navigation and electronic road maps may be used for this purpose. Applying this
intelligent process of networking car information, ALC will be able to provide
optimum illumination of the road ahead in all driving situations. In town a wide light
beam increases safety also for other road users such as cyclists or pedestrians. On
the motorway, in turn, ALC gives the driver a powerful, bundled strip of light ensuring
a longer range and, accordingly, a higher standard of safety.

Already standard in the USA: BMW Brake Force Display.

The intelligent Adaptive Light Control headlights are quite literally “reflected” by the
Brake Force Display already featured as standard in the US models of the new
BMW 7 Series. This makes BMW the first car manufacturer in the world to introduce
a dynamic brake display concept telling motorists, following from behind, that the
driver of the BMW ahead is braking hard for emergency reasons whenever the tail
lights come on bcorrectly in addition to the brake lights. Whenever deceleration
exceeds 5 metres/sec2 or when the ABS brake system intervenes, the brake light
area illuminated at the rear is enlarged accordingly, warning the driver of a vehicle
following from behind. This enables him to respond more quickly in such a situation,
shortening his stopping distance. Since the Brake Force Display is masterminded
by signals within the car itself, the system cannot be tampered with or intentionally
misused. Due to different homologation standards from one country to another, the
date for introducing the Brake Force Display in Europe has not yet been

ConnectedDrive pixel headlight project:
Light graphics pointing the way.

Revolutionary pixel headlights ensure entirely new, ultra-precise light distribution.
This new, freely programmable headlight technology is based on the DMD (Digital
Micromirror Device) principle with ultra-small, individually controlled mirrors taking
the place of the conventional headlight reflector. This paves the way for
unprecedented functions such as permanent, dazzle-free high-beam illumination
automatically covering up the lights on the eye level of motorists approaching in the
opposite direction. Another option is to improve the illumination of markings on and
along the road.

The BMW Group’s development specialists are also working on the active
integration of information signals such as light fields presenting direction change
arrows for navigation purposes and thus displaying the driver’s route directly in his
line of vision. A further advantage of pixel light technology is the improved dynamic
control of headlight range even geared to individual requirements such as the
illumination of bends, light conditions in the city as opposed to illumination
requirements on country roads and motorways, and the enhancement of illumination
in bad weather.

ConnectedDrive Bluetooth project:
Wireless communication within and around the car.

All data connections so far provided by cable will be wireless in the future.

This is made possible by an electronic chip transmitting voices and data over short
distances without requiring any kind of wire or cable connection – a new concept
called Bluetooth technology. Bluetooth communication will be inexpensive, suitable
for global use, and will provide a high transmission rate on low energy. It will be able
to correct possible errors in communication and will ensure safe encryption of
sensitive documents.

Introducing Bluetooth technology, BMW will turn the automobile into a mobile
information platform. Installation of a Bluetooth chip ensures a highly efficient
connection linking, say, the navigation system, audio unit or car telephone with other
devices such as a laptop, a mobile phone or an organizer. One of the big
advantages in this context is that the system is non-proprietary, meaning that it is
not restricted to a specific manufacturer. “Today the service life of a car is much
longer than the service life of digital systems and equipment”, says Dr Burkhard
Göschel, BMW’s Board Member for Development and Procurement. “Now,
benefitting from the Bluetooth standard, the customer can buy new equipment at any
time and use it in his car without any specific installation requirements.”

Bluetooth offers the motorist a wide range of new options and opportunities. Here
are just a few examples:

• The possibility to exchange route data and additional travel information
between the laptop, the navigation system or the car telephone (as well as the
driver’s mobile phone), thus making such data available also outside the car.
• The option to download telephone numbers, addresses and navigation
maps from an organiser database through the car telephone or navigation system.
• The possibility to update the driver’s personal timetable.
• Use of a mobile phone inside the car with hand-free operation.
• The option to play music from a portable MP3 player through the car’s hifi
• Keeping an electronic logbook conveniently also outside of your car with a
Personal Digital Assistant.

Apart from customer benefits, Bluetooth technology also allows further applications
in all areas of the car trade and the automotive industry, ranging from production all
the way to repair. Once each car is equipped with a Bluetooth chip, for example, it
could be followed up at any point in time during production by way of a wireless
monitoring system. And since each BMW is tailor-made to the specific customer
and his personal wishes, the logistics required for this purpose could be handled by
Bluetooth in future. The chip would then remain within the car, taking over other
important functions for example by simplifying final approval tests at the factory,
helping the dealer in maintaining his inventory and monitoring his local car park, and
supporting diagnositc requirements for subsequent repairs. Wherever the data
interfaces in a car still differ today from one mode to another, Bluetooth will
introduce a common standard.

ConnectedDrive electronic rear-view mirror project:
Enhanced safety when overtaking and turning.

Collisions when turning at an intersection or when changing lanes are among the
most common types of accidents, often with severe consequences for pedestrians,
cyclists or motorcycle riders. In a vast majority of cases such collisions result from
the “simple” fact that the driver failed to see the other party, ie, the other road user.

To reduce this risk to a minimum, specialists within the BMW Group are developing
two ConnectedDrive assistance systems automatically monitoring the danger areas
involved with the help of optical or radar sensors: When turning at a road
intersection, the driver activating the direction indicator automatically operates a
sensor monitoring the appropriate side of the car and scanning the entire area next
to the car at an angle of approximately 90°. As soon as this monitor recognises a
moving object, the driver is warned accordingly.

While this system is tailored to the traffic conditions typically prevailing in town, the
lane change assistant is used primarily on multi-lane express highways, where it
permanently monitors the areas to the side of and behind the car. As soon as the
system detects a vehicle approaching from behind on a lane to which the driver
wishes to change it will activate an appropriate warning.

Acting together, these two systems create an electronic rear-view mirror able to
handle two of the most critical and common dangers in road traffic today.

ConnectedDrive Heading Control project:
An efficient assistant for changing lanes with extra safety.
On average, the driver corrects the position of the steering wheel at least slightly
every two seconds at the very most. He does this in response to mistakes in the
current position of the car and in the direction in which he is moving, adjusting the
steering accordingly in order to keep the car on track within his own personal
tolerance margin. The tighter the lane, the more precise and more frequent such
corrective maneuvers have to be, as we all know from experience, for example
when passing by construction sites on the motorway with narrower lanes.

Cameras with interacting image processors are already able today to determine
the course of a road and the precise position of the side markers, provided the road
is properly built and well structured. Then, applying dynamic driving data, an
electronic control system is able to calculate the correct position of the steering
wheel for optimum heading control in a very simple and straightforward process.
The ConnectedDrive Heading Control function provides this assistance in a most
convenient and effective manner, giving the driver the information he needs directly
on the steering wheel, that is where he is required to make the necessary
corrections. Should, say, an overtired driver threaten to lose direction on the
motorway, a counter-force building up gently on the steering wheel will tell him which
way to go in order to avoid a possible accident.

Conveying knowledge even more efficiently:
ConnectedDrive takes new approaches in transmitting information.

The “touch” or “feel” effect provided by Heading Control in giving the driver
information characterises yet another highlight of ConnectedDrive: The driver is not
to be burdened by the provision of new information or the availability of new options.
Particularly the safety functions provided by the ConnectedDrive concept therefore
seek to give the driver the necessary information clearly, conveniently and without
the slightest distraction.

This nevertheless calls for new approaches in providing information.

Precisely these are the approaches already taken by ConnectedDrive with a
number of practical results right from the start: The iDrive concept featured in the
new BMW 7 Series is based on the criteria already described, the limited range of
controls and instruments really essential for motoring being positioned on and
around the steering wheel, with basic functions used frequently located in the middle
of the instrument panel. Most other functions, in turn, are integrated for the first time
in a Controller interacting with the Control Display in the center console for intuitive
operation by the driver. On the road, therefore, iDrive means simple, intuitive and
safe control at all times.

The Control Center providing feedback the driver can see and feel.

The Controller right in the middle of the iDrive control and display system in the new
BMW 7 Series is a very convenient control element at the front end of the center
armrest for easy operation by the driver at all times, while resting his hand and arm
in the most convenient position. Pushing, turning and pressing the Controller, the
driver – or front passenger – can select the function desired presented at the same
time in the Control Display positioned perfectly for optimum ergonomics. The
Controller also incorporates a unique feedback function for intuitive control, variable
force feedback with an electric motor simulating steering forces increasing and
decreasing, as well as the individual rest and terminal positions.

ConnectedDrive active steering wheel and active gas pedal:
Greater safety and comfort you can really feel.

Enhancement of the man/machine interface within the ConnectedDrive project
opens up an even wider range of options with modern driver assistance systems:
Currently, BMW is testing the active steering wheel and the active gas pedal
inducing the driver to correct the steering by generating a slight counter-force or
advising the driver to reduce his road speed.

The active steering wheel, for example, provides information for the comfort- and
safety-oriented Heading Control already mentioned, seeking to support the driver in
remaining on track. An electric motor in the steering wheel builds up steering forces
in the direction the driver is supposed to follow. These forces are however
intentionally not strong enough to automatically turn the steering, nor will the steering
wheel build up excessive resistance to the driver’s commands. Accordingly, the
driver can easily override the system in order to avoid an obstacle on the road or
safely overtake another vehicle, meaning that the driver always remains in control. A
further point is that the system is only active when the driver has his hands on the
steering wheel, thus being able to intervene immediately should he briefly “doze off”.

The active or “feel-oriented” gas pedal follows the same principle as the active
steering wheel, applying a force against the driver’s foot whenever the car is moving
too fast in a given situation. Such advice to reduce speed may be provided, say, by
the navigation system when entering a bend or a built-up area. Critical road
conditions such as wet and snowbound surfaces detected by sensors or vehicles
ahead moving at a lower speed may also trigger this assistance function. And like
the active steering wheel, the active gas pedal will naturally “give in” to the driver’s
commands whenever necessary, allowing the driver to override the function for
example when overtaking another vehicle.

ConnectedDrive SAM project:
Intelligent drive management for lower consumption and emissions.

Information provided by ConnectedDrive may also be used to improve the driver’s
overall motoring strategy. Precisely this is the approach taken by Situation-Adaptive
Drive Management (SAM) seeking to help the driver save fuel and reduce
emissions in future without foregoing the high standard of comfort and driving
pleasure he wishes to enjoy. The main focus of this driver assistance system
projected for the years to come, is to intelligently link information on the current
traffic situation around the car, on the car itself and the driver’s wishes in order to
determine the most fuel-efficient motoring strategy. The essential point to be
considered in this context is that the driver himself has the greatest potential to
reduce fuel consumption and emissions, with his influence on the car’s operating
efficiency being well over 30 per cent.
The data required by the system for this purpose is already available today: The
navigation system on board each BMW informs the SAM computer of the route the
driver plans to take and provides route-related information.

The drive management systems, in turn, receive information on current traffic
conditions by evaluating the driver’s specific behavour and traffic data.

Proceeding from this information, SAM provides recommendations telling the driver
how to minimize both fuel consumption and emissions. In this process SAM acts
only as a discreet assistant making proposals but leaving the decision and the
ultimate responsibility to the driver. The active gas pedal serves as the interface to
the driver, the SAM computer building up slight but clearly perceptible
counterpressure on the gas pedal whenever appropriate, thus “telling” the driver to
take back the throttle. At the same time the SAM computer proposes the best
speed in each situation by selecting the right pressure point on the gas pedal which
the driver may nevertheless overcome easily at any time, retaining full control and
responsibility on the road.

Compiling more knowledge:
ConnectedDrive with new sensors and services.

ConnectedDrive is based on the application of precise and reliable data,
as we clearly see from the functions of the systems currently being developed. The
sensors already integrated in the car today will be supplemented in the near future
by further units focusing in particular on the car’s immediate surroundings. Precisely
this is why BMW’s specialists are developing new sensor concepts based on radar,
laser and image processing technologies.

Sensors of this kind are required, say, for detecting the frictional coefficient of road
surfaces of fundamental significance to active safety. Optical sensors can “see”
whether the road is covered by snow or ice, or whether the road is wet. Indeed, such
sensors can even measure the thickness of a layer of water essential, say, for
detecting the risk of aquaplaning. Then, proceeding from the data measured, the
frictional coefficient sensors are able to condition the operation of suspension
control systems and the ABS brakes, giving the driver an appropriate warning
whenever necessary.

The fundamental principle of ConnectedDrive:
The focus remains on the driver.

Providing warnings instead of interacting directly is one of the fundamental
principles of ConnectedDrive: The driver always remains responsible for his car just
like in nature the rider is responsible for his horse. A horse will hardly take important
decisions all by itself, for example when changing direction or aiming for a certain
destination. Rather, the horse will generally follow instructions provided by the rider,
with the two interacting ideally as a perfect team. The rider, in turn, is able to “read”
a lot of important information from the horse’s behavour and its reactions, then
applying this information in order to take definite decisions. The horse, finally, will
respond independently to specific risks and possible danger, for example when
riding too fast on slippery ground, reducing its speed by itself in such cases.

The human being is absolutely indispensable particularly when taking complex
decisions, since he is able to consider ethical standards and requirements even the
most sophisticated computer cannot understand. A machine, for example, will not
know that a sudden manouver avoiding an obstacle on the road ahead might
endanger another vehicle or pedestrian approaching in the opposite direction, and
that suffering material damage to the car alone would be the better alternative in
such a case. So the driver is and remains the key element when seeking, like the
BMW Group, to reduce the risk of accidents to an absolute minimum.

Attempts to introduce artificial intelligence and automate chaotic systems such as
road traffic either in full or in part are currently seen in a very critical light. This also
includes attempts to limit the top speed of a car by means of telematic functions,
thus forcing drivers to stick to the speed limits dictated by law. Shifting responsibility
in this way from the driver to some kind of overriding system may lead to severe
chain reactions, and a question still to be clarified is who is liable for possible
accidents suffered despite the use such systems. Dangerous and risky situations
are bound to arise whenever the driver relies on a definite speed limit dictated to
him from outside, which then proves to be inappropriate in a specific situation. The
same risk would arise, of course, if the system failed to operate properly once in a

Practical tests with a ConnectedDrive BMW X5.

A specially equipped BMW X5 is currently being tested by the BMW Group’s
researchers as the first practical example of the ConnectedDrive concept serving
as a spearhead in technology. Incorporating the innovative sensor and
communication systems described in the foregoing, this very special BMW X5 is
permanently informed of road conditions, the traffic situation and the general traffic
environment. The data required for motoring is processed in this research
laboratory on wheels either to provide automatic functions such as the operation of
Adaptive Light Control or to give the driver clear and straightforward information, for
example through the active gas pedal.

ConnectedDrive combines the strengths of the driver
and automotive technology.

Notwithstanding all its technical potentials, ConnectedDrive seeks to achieve a
sensible, target-oriented balance, combining the strengths of the driver with those of
the car’s technical systems. The idea, quite simply, is that each player should make
the best possible contribution. While in the past interaction of the driver, the car and
the environment was usually left up to the driver himself and his ability to adjust to
different situations, ConnectedDrive now opens up new perspectives. The objective
is to give the driver as much information as desired and required, providing this
information individually and ergonomically for optimum results.

Making life easier and not more difficult through the assistance principle,
ConnectedDrive is thus able to support the driver and enhance the overall standard
of safety and comfort on the road. The driver nevertheless remains the key factor in
all cases, retaining full responsibility for all driving maneuvers. Precisely this is why
all features of ConnectedDrive are merely options made available to the driver,
giving him freedom of choice he may use at his discretion. And depending on his
personal wishes, the driver can put together his own personal system at any time,
riding in supreme comfort today and using all information all the way to the inquiry
service, while restricting the use of information tomorrow to safety features alone,
enjoying maximum driving pleasure just with speedometer and rev counter. The
bottom line, therefore, is that ConnectedDrive offers an even higher standard of
sheer driving pleasure in the ultimate driving machine.

2,262 Posts
no way in hell i'm reading all that. :D

what's it about? super-souped version of i-drive?

and curses to everyone who's going to quote the original post. :p (making the thread 2 miles high)

Registered User
10,856 Posts
Sounds like everything short of having the car drive for you. *roll*

:thumbdwn: :thumbdwn: :thumbdwn:

Registered User
10,856 Posts


0 Posts
The future apparently holds an entirely different interpretation of what is meant by "the Ultimate Driving Machine".

106 Posts
<-- Speed reader

Took a good skim at the article and a lot of those things mentioned near the end I wouldn't mind having.

- bluetooth?
- better headlights?
- safer rear lights
- easier to turn steering wheels (saftey!!!)

a lot of these things would be great for my mom, and if they make them options that can be removed, I think that would be the perfect balance.

I do'nt make mistakes.
10,478 Posts
ChrisTO said:
These examples show that ConnectedDrive is not just some kind of new system, but rather an overrriding, all-round and truly convincing concept. ..... You might therefore say that ConnectedDrive is a kind of virtual co-driver giving the driver the right information correctly processed at the right time.
Just what I need: an electronic back-seat driver. My car can't figure out when to roll the window down for opening the door, and I'm supposed to trust it completely around traffic?

26 Posts
I am stationed in Italy, and I am being told for 250 Euros a month I can get the european version of the BMW assist and BMW Online. Does anyone know if this means that I get the connected drive? I have the navigation system, and the connected drive looks pretty neat, but what does it include?

6,970 Posts
Those of us with late 645Cis and the new 650i find that "Connected Drive" means we are connected to the dealer through an upload cable for new iDrive downloads.

Rather than invent a new marketing term, use the dough to get geek programmers who have refused to work for Bill Gates.

detour in Ingolstadt
3,180 Posts
Floating Car Data: cars exchanging data in a fully automatic process.


I'm a software engineer I get off on that kind of thing. Incredible. They've been doing it for almost 5 years and I'm just learning about it. Man that's amazing I wish I could work on that.

151 Posts
I'd just like to say this new technology sounds great, and I look forward to it being in my next BMW.

Mostly for the Internet Data, 3D representations on the map, and real time traffic. (if they decide to bring these things to America)

Do the interns get Glocks
9,324 Posts
The BMW Group is developing the seventh sense for the automobile:
ConnectedDrive is a concept destined to give the motorist an even more
“intelligent” and individual vehicle in the future, offering even more safety and
motoring comfort.
Do we really need more "motoring comfort" in the supposed "Ultimate Driving Machine" :tsk:

Please, leave the electronic gizmos to Lexus and MB...give us more HP and grip.
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