BMW is gearing up for its future range of highly automated models by pooling up its development expertise in vehicle connectivity and automated driving at a new campus in Unterschleissheim near Munich.
The campus is slated to begin functioning with the iNEXT; a model that is scheduled for release in 2021 and will be the flagship vehicle for BMW’s autonomous and EV-centric models. In a bid to achieve its target of introducing fully automated cars, the new development center will have more than 2,000 employees who will work towards making fully automated driving a reality.
Small teams of specialists with a high level of individual decision-making authority will be used. Software developers in the autonomous driving team will also use the latest technologies, such as ROS (Robot Operating System) so that they are able to see the results quickly in the vehicle. BMW aims to start testing highly automated vehicles within the city limits of Munich as early as 2017.
“The road to fully-automated driving is an opportunity for Germany’s automobile manufacturing base. The decision to develop and road-test these vehicles in the Munich area illustrates how the BMW Group and the whole region can benefit from this shift in the automotive industry,” explains Klaus Frohlich, member of the Board of Management at BMW.