Chairman of the Board of Management at the BMW Group Harald Krüger calls the iNEXT a project encapsulating and representing BMW’s plans to integrate electric mobility across their entire range of BMW and Mini vehicles, a concept designed to answer the question, “What does a vehicle look like which no longer needs to be driven by a person but can be if desired?” The answer is an electric powered crossover SUV
<a href="https://design-milk.com/bmw-vision-inext/bmw-vision-inext-10/" data-wpel-link="internal"><img src="https://design-milk.com/images/2018/09/bmw-vision-inext-10-810x566.jpg" alt="The BMW Vision iNext Concept Backseat" /></a> The BMW launched the electric powered i3 in 2013, and the pug-shaped high-roof hatchback proved immediately popular amongst urban drivers used to navigating narrow streets and perpetually challenged by scant parking. But the i3 wasn’t an island unto itself, always planned as the first of several “project i” vehicles. BMW is back with a design noticeably more sexy and dynamic than its hatchback predecessor – a flagship crossover with prognostication written all over it: the BMW Vision iNext Concept.
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Volvo Car’s Mårten Levenstam describes the 360c as a “conversation starter” rather than a predestined design for the Swedish automobile manufacturer – an exploration of possibilities autonomous technology may impart onto society and infrastructure. These changes are obviously directed at delivering a first-class private cabin experience in parallel to upper tier air travel, moving passengers door to door without the friction of public transportation or even private modes shared amongst passengers today. From Mårten Levenstam, senior vice president
<a href="https://design-milk.com/volvo-360c-concept/volvo-360c-concept-5/" data-wpel-link="internal"><img src="https://design-milk.com/images/2018/09/Volvo-360c-concept-5-810x456.jpg" alt="The Volvo 360c Concept Imagines Autonomous Business Class Travel" /></a> If you’ve ever flown a transcontinental flight in either business or first class, the appeal of a fully autonomous car ride outfitted with the connected comforts of a mobile office space is immediately evident. Instead of simply being a passenger, the <a href="https://www.volvocars.com/intl" data-wpel-link="external" rel="external noopener noreferrer">Volvo Car’s</a> 360c autonomous concept imagines driverless travel offering valuable time to enjoy the commute, work, and even sleep in the privacy and confines of a luxurious cabin on four wheels.
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Though our own interest in the royal wedding itself was admittedly tepid at best, word of their one-of-kind electrified rendition of the iconic monocoque 1968 British sports car being duplicated for production definitely ignited an audible amount of approval and wide-eyed interest
<a href="https://design-milk.com/jaguar-most-beautiful-electric-car/j_classic_e-type_zero_production_240818_03/" data-wpel-link="internal"><img src="https://design-milk.com/images/2018/08/J_Classic_E-type_Zero_Production_240818_03-810x483.jpg" alt="Jaguar’s “Most Beautiful Car in the World” Goes Fully Electric" /></a> The general rule is it’s considered uncouth to upstage the bride and groom at their own wedding. But when it’s the iconic Jaguar E-Type we’re talking about, even royalty can make an exception. <span style="letter-spacing: 0.13px;">Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s electrified matrimonial <a href="https://www.jaguar.com/about-jaguar/jaguar-classic/authentic-cars/conceptzero.html" rel="noopener external noreferrer" data-wpel-link="external">Jaguar E-Type Zero</a> sparked such great interest with its appearance at the conclusion of the Royal Wedding this past May, the British luxury automotive manufacturer decided to turn a one-off fairytale into the reality of a production vehicle.</span>
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Launched by two ex-Google engineers, the all-electric R1 errand vehicle navigates traffic using a combination of LiDAR, radars, and cameras – all located across the top of the vehicle and hidden within the shape of an arcing handle. Without any seats nor even the option for a driver, the majority of the vehicle’s interior has been optimized to carry a payload of groceries from warehouse distribution centers directly to customers’ doors for a $5.95 flat
<a href="https://design-milk.com/nuro-self-driving-electric-car/nuro-autonomous-delivery-4/" data-wpel-link="internal"><img src="https://design-milk.com/images/2018/08/Nuro-autonomous-delivery-4-810x479.jpg" alt="This Cute Self-Driving Car May One Day Deliver Your Groceries" /></a> The race to get autonomous vehicles onto roads has primarily steered toward getting passengers into self-driving vehicles. Yet, despite all of the promises, investments, and press, artificial intelligence still seems more than a few upgrades away from confidently ensuring safety for riders at a fully autonomous level. Perhaps it won’t be passengers, but driverless delivered groceries like the <a href="https://nuro.ai/" rel="noopener external noreferrer" data-wpel-link="external">Nuro R1 driverless delivery van</a> that will provide the public with their real first experience with fully AI-operated vehicles.
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On display at the V&A for The Future Starts Here exhibition, the collaboration between the BMW Design Department and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Self-Assembly Lab explores the possibilities offered by complex printed silicone assemblages connected with precise pneumatic controls to manipulate volume and shape. The effects are not unlike watching the initial malleable bodies of arthropods as they emerge from larval state. In configurable groupings, the technology is envisioned to offer automotive interior designs the ability to design cars with cabins capable of transforming, adapting, and morphing from one state to another. At the touch of a button, seating could be moved, or even added, to different sections of
<a href="https://design-milk.com/bmw-design-department/bmw-mit-01/" data-wpel-link="internal"><img src="https://design-milk.com/images/2018/06/BMW-MIT-01-810x540.jpg" alt="BMW and MIT Envision Automotive Interiors That Can Change Shape" /></a> In the near future car interiors may transcend the limitations of today’s fixed passenger layouts, capable of morphing into different configurations as desired using adaptable 3D-printed inflatable structures as developed by researchers at BMW Design Department in collaboration with MIT’s Self-Assembly Laboratory.
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Take what you already know about the electric hybrid BMW i8, surgically remove the top, and you’ve got the upcoming BMW i8 Roadster. BMW used their social media channels for the announcement, but details are scant and preliminary:
<a href="http://design-milk.com/bmw-i8-roadster/bmw_i8_roadster-3/" data-wpel-link="internal"><img src="http://1.design-milk.com/images/2017/07/BMW_i8_roadster-3-810x420.jpg" alt="The BMW i8 Roadster Teases It’s Taking Its Top Down" /></a> We’re still harboring lingering longings since our close-up rendezvous in Milan, Italy with <a href="http://design-milk.com/bmw-concept-8-series-coupe/" rel="noopener noreferrer" data-wpel-link="internal"> BMW’s last</a> “tease you now, please you later” concept vehicle. But where the Concept 8 Series intent was clearly intended to whet the palate, the Munich-based automotive’s latest teaser showcasing the lines of the BMW i8 Roadster reveals an electrifying peek of a car with more concrete plans.
BMW i8 Roadster plug-in hybrid BMW eDrive: energy consumption (combined): 15,4 kWh/100 km. Fuel consumption (combined): 2,0 l/100 km, CO2 emissions (combined): 45 g/km. Fuel consumption is determined in accordance with the ECE driving cycle (93/116/EC), made up of approximately one-third urban traffic and two-thirds extra-urban driving (based on the distance covered).The camouflaged profile seems to have kept the
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Just as an octopus, squid or cuttlefish are capable of dynamically adapting their exterior skin using color-changing cells called chromatophores, the Lexus LIT mimics the color changing capabilities using an enormous array of hand-applied LEDs, the sum capable of pumping out 175,000 lumens of light for an effect not unlike the Disney Main Street Electrical Parade. Each pulsating wave of colorful patterns are synchronized to adapt to music, react to motion, or simply be put into the equivalent of a screen-saver mode for “look at me” attention grabbing display.
<a href="http://design-milk.com/41999-programmable-leds-turn-the-lexus-is-into-a-moving-screen/lexus_lit_is_01_e26d782121e3c0d3cb308269ca29ca35d10c97c6/" data-wpel-link="internal"><img src="http://1.design-milk.com/images/2016/12/Lexus_LIT_IS_01_E26D782121E3C0D3CB308269CA29CA35D10C97C6-810x604.jpg" alt="41,999 Programmable LEDs Turn the Lexus IS Into a Moving Screen" /></a> The Lexus LIT is a one-of-kind technological audio-visual experience on wheels – a customized <a href="http://www.lexus.com/models/IS/gallery" data-wpel-link="external" rel="nofollow external noopener noreferrer">Lexus IS</a> wrapped in 41,999 programmable LEDs engineered to shine attention to the latest song from UK artist Dua Lipa.
A music video was a perfect place to launch the LIT IS and working with Dua Lipa allowed the concept to come to life, putting a spotlight on the Lexus ISContinue reading "41,999 Programmable LEDs Turn the Lexus IS Into a Moving Screen"
Divergent 3D Blade Supercar
<a href="http://design-milk.com/the-must-see-cars-from-the-2016-los-angeles-auto-show/jaguar-ipace-unveiling/" data-wpel-link="internal"><img src="http://0.design-milk.com/images/2016/11/Jaguar-IPace-Unveiling-810x540.jpg" alt="The Must See Cars From the 2016 Los Angeles Auto Show" /></a> If there were three takeaways from this year’s <a href="http://laautoshow.com/" data-wpel-link="external" rel="nofollow external noopener noreferrer">Los Angeles Auto Show</a> they were: 1. SUVs are back with a vengeance, 2. virtual reality is the new marketing tool of choice for auto manufacturers, and 3. matte grey paint is the unofficial concept car color of 2016/2017. Jaguar also unveiled a showstopper electric SUV, 3D printed auto parts/detailing were on display everywhere, Bentley’s new luxury SUV is as smooth and luxurious as you’d imagine, and I might have found a strong contender for my next car. There weren’t as many outlandish concept vehicles at this year’s show with numerous vehicles already unveiled earlier this year, but the following vehicles left their impression as expressions of design, ergonomics, and future automotive technologies:
The retina-tantalizing paint job stopped plenty of passerbys in mid-stride. Closer inspection revealed a supercar that is built based on 3D printed aluminum parts, one powered by a 700 HP engine capable
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The drive was consistently smooth, if mostly uneventful from behind the wheel – the ride a predictable, “everything is comfortable” sedan experience that suits the model’s intended audience (admittedly our tastes lean more toward the latest GT, the ferociously aggressive Raptor, or even the zippy hatch Fiesta ST when it comes to their stable). Before and during our overnight stops, we found ourselves engrossed with details related to Ford’s sustainable materials lab. Dedicated to the exploration of alternative and renewable sources for existing and
<a href="http://design-milk.com/fords-blueprint-sustainability-turning-tequila-car-parts/ford-fusion-energi-with-coca-cola-plantbottle-technology/"><img src="http://2.design-milk.com/images/2016/07/Ford-FusionEnergiCoke_06_HR-600x400.jpg" alt="Ford’s Blueprint for Sustainability Is Turning Tequila Into Car Parts" /></a> It was a few weeks ago when Ford Motor Company invited us to take their new <a href="http://www.ford.com/cars/fusion/trim/hybrid/" >Fusion Hybrid and Fusion Energi</a> plug-in hybrid for a weekend from Los Angeles out to the desert glamor of Palm Springs, through the desert forest of Joshua Tree and back. During that time we put a few hundred miles on the Fusion Energi, a lithium-ion battery powered system aided with regenerative braking, an energy-efficient combination that made refueling a non-issue for the entirety of our desert land expedition.
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There we were, lost somewhere amongst the winter-wilted olive groves dotting the gently drifting hillsides of Spain on a stretch of road less traveled than most. We had already spent several hours behind the wheel of Volvo’s newly updated 2016 XC90 in its plug-in hybrid “T8″ iteration, an arctic white review model loaned to us by the Swedish auto manufacturer to test drive for the afternoon on the Catalonian coast, along a serpentine route designed to underline the car’s agility, luxuries, and performance, all against the backdrop of the craggy Mediterranean coastline. Never to complain when given the combination of a new car and an open road, we charged from coastline into the interior of the Spanish farmlands until we realized we weren’t quite sure where to go next. After navigating countless roundabouts (aka auto roulette), threading through numerous toll booths, and even detouring off course for an impromptu off-road test through a dusty conifer forest, the confident plug-in-hybrid XC90 had suddenly lost all willingness to map our course any further, leaving my fellow journalist and I to find our way back to our starting point the old fashioned way following roadsigns (Volvo reps apologized, explaining the navigation system was still being fine tuned). Despite the technological setback, neither of us found much reason for concern. Our bemusement of our predicament was born after two days driving the new Volvo, during which time we discovered our 4-wheeled Scandinavian friend sported a surprising amount of comfort and safety features quietly integrated into its handsome, understated design. If there was any vehicle to find yourself lost in the countryside of a foreign country driving, the Volvo XC90 was the ideal vehicle. The last time the XC90 was gracing the roads as a brand new model Nelly and Nickelback were still topping the music charts*. But good things come to those who wait, and it seems Volvo bided their time carefully, waiting to refresh their top-selling vehicle with a slew of interior, exterior, technological, and performance improvements all designed to instill the sort of thankfulness for the inanimate proselytized by Marie Kondo. Everywhere details – great and small – seemed to communicate the premise this was to be a lifetime partnership between car and owner, where driver and materials would age gracefully together.