British Asia Network - Shahzad Sheikh
London 27 June 2019 - BMW has presented a supercar concept which appears to represent what a future high performance version of the BMW i8 hybrid-electric sports car could be like, but also takes inspiration from the 1978 M1 supercar.
The Vision M Next is certainly more powerful than the 374bhp i8. It has a turbocharged four-cylinder and offers either rear-wheel drive or all-wheel drive, thanks to electric motors, with a total output of 600bhp. That makes it capable of 0-62mph in just three seconds with a top speed of 186mph. It can also drive in pure electric mode with a range of up to 62miles.
However as the name suggests the Vision M Next is all about imagining the future of supercars where you could choose between driving the car yourself or letting the autonomous systems take over - as such you can select between EASE (autonomous) or BOOST in which you drive.
'The BMW Vision M Next is a progressive hybrid sports car that makes a very clear and confident statement, in terms of both appearance and interaction,” says Domagoj Dukec, Vice President BMW Design.
The sports-car proportions features front and rear ends finished in the matt-neon shade Thrilling Orange, producing a vivid contrast against the exterior’s otherwise silk- matt Cast Silver metallic paintwork. The idea is to give the car an air of modernity and emphasise dynamism.
There's also an extraordinary new interpretation of the famed BMW kidney grille, the soft outer curves of the openings are said to be reminiscent of a turbine’s air intake, while the colour gradient used for the inside of the two kidney elements creates a sense of depth. The grille openings are each blanked off by a transparent layer with a laser-etched, illuminated pattern that seems to be floating inside.
The headlights hand a debut to Laser Wire lighting technology, whereby glass fibres coated with phosphorous are used to produce headlight elements with a new, super-slim and extremely precise form.
Facial recognition technology unlocks the car automatically for the driver. There are gullwing-style doors and inside BMW has gone for a minimalist cabin design. The cockpit gives the impression of being created from a single mould. The seats are upholstered in foam material with shape memory properties. Projected displays provide only the information you need at the time you need it.
A fascinating and visionary concept from BMW which, whilst it will not see production, serves up an enticing prospect of future cars to come from the German marque.