BMW i4 Owner Discover The EV Won't Update Unless Parked On Flat Ground

Electric Vehicles / 8 Comments

That's rather inconvenient, especially if you live on an incline.

A BMW i4 owner was somewhat surprised to find their electric vehicle could not perform a regular software update. The reason? It was parked on an incline.

First reported by The Drive, Clare Eliza's premium EV was situated on an incline when a message popped up on the central display. "The road is too steep to start the installation. Please park the vehicle on level ground." As the owner lives on a hill, this must be somewhat frustrating to deal with whenever the vehicle requires an update.

But how does the vehicle even know it's on an incline? What's more, why can't the software update take place? In a statement, BMW told the publication that there isn't a specific reason behind this peculiar quirk.

2022-2023 BMW i4 Charging BMW

"The vehicle has all sorts of sensors (pitch, yaw, lateral and longitudinal acceleration, and deceleration, etc.) that allow it to understand its orientation, so it knows when it's on an incline," explained a BMW spokesperson. "It's likely a catchall, every-worst-case-no-matter-how-unlikely scenario safety precaution to try to prevent any chance of the vehicle moving should the programming be interrupted or go wrong."

Basically, BMW doesn't want to put the owner in a risky situation. While unlikely, anything can happen, and if the parking brake were - for some reason - to disengage, the vehicle would be on flat ground and not rollaway at high speed. Interestingly, there are other prerequisites for a BMW software update.

The automaker stipulates that the battery charge level should be sufficient, the transmission must be in park gear, and the engine (if it's an ICE vehicle) needs to be switched off.

Clare Eliza/Twitter

While annoying, it's a small price to pay for the convenience of over-the-air updates.

The automaker recently introduced a new software update for vehicles with iDrive 7 and 8. Aside from several new comfort and safety features, the free upgrade introduced Remote Control Parking to owners in certain countries. The Digital Key also received an update and can now be activated within the vehicle with an activation code.

Recently, the BMW i4 and the larger iX SUV were recalled over a faulty pedestrian warning sound. Electric vehicles must emit a low-speed sound that warns pedestrians of their impending arrival. The brace of Bimmers was recalled over the risk that the artificial sound generator control unit might fail to generate a noise.

2022-2023 BMW i4 Rearward Vision BMW

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