The BMW of 2040 presented today.
BMW has unveiled a visionary new concept vehicle that's very appropriately called the i Vision Circular Concept at this year's Munich Motor Show. This four-seat, all-electric vehicle was teased last week and boasts a compact circular shape with a major focus on sustainability and luxury. The circular theme comes into play based on "circular economy principles." BMW's goal is to ultimately use 100 percent recycled materials and achieve equal recyclability. The concept's solid-state battery, very appropriately, is fully recyclable and most of its certified bio-based raw materials are sourced from this circular production method.
As BMW explains: "Circular design embraces the four principles of RE:THINK, RE:DUCE, RE:USE and RE:CYCLE." Another core element is to reinterpret classic BMW designs, namely the front end. Gone is the chrome surround with bars; in is a new kidney grille reinvented as a digital surface.
These surfaces further extend across the front end's entire width and blend into the headlights and grille to create a "double-icon." The marbled surface bumper is made entirely from recycled plastics. From the side view, we're digging the new proportions BMW says will take the brand in a new direction. The rising roofline and cowl panel are pushed forward for a more aggressive look. All four wheels have been pushed out to the maximum and the flared wheel arches contribute to the sporty stance.
Take note that instead of the traditional chrome strip, there's a slim digital surface going around the Hofmeister kink. Not only does it look cool but it's also functional as a display. For example, it can show vehicle status and serve as a door opener by using lights.
The exterior paint color? There isn't one because there's no paint. The main body is constructed from secondary aluminum with a light-gold anodized finish. The rear end's dark glass tailgate nicely matches the styling theme up front.
Inside, you'll find plenty of 3D printed components, like the steering wheel, and more recycled materials. BMW even avoided glue in favor of new bonding techniques. There's a Monochrome Taupe finish for the front and rear seats and gold-bronze metal accents can be found throughout. There's also lots of glass, such as for the roof, to create the feeling of space, while the instrument panel is a work of art: a hovering, V-shaped sculpture projecting out into the cabin with a 3D-printed crystal body at its core.
The head-up display has been taken to a whole new level as all vital information is projected onto the lower section of the windscreen across its entire width. Rear seat passengers can relax on a comfy bench. Famed Hollywood composer Hans Zimmer was once again asked to create the EV's unique sound.
So, are we looking at the 2040 BMW 3 Series? It's honestly way too early to predict. But we're really liking the way BMW is breaking old rules, rewriting new ones, and thinking outside the box in truly creative ways.