Driver training with the BMW i8.Two new BMW Driving Experience courses allow participants to sample life in the sports car of the future at the BMW and MINI Driving Academy’s training facility in Maisach.

Munich 09.02.2015 – BMW i has served as a byword for sustainability, future-focused mobility and visionary vehicle concepts since 2013. The all-electric and locally emission-free BMW i3 was Germany’s highest-selling electric vehicle in 2014 and has been an integral part of the BMW Driving Experience from the word go. With the BMW i3 eDrive Experience, BMW became the first premium car manufacturer to offer a specific training course featuring electrically-powered vehicles.

And now two new training courses have been added to the programme which offer the participants the chance to drive the BMW i8 sports car with plug-in hybrid technology. The BMW eDrive Experience shines the spotlight on electric mobility and the functionality of the BMW i3 and BMW i8, while the “BMW i meets BMW M” course is centred around sporty driving in the BMW i8 and BMW M6.

The two new courses line up alongside the BMW i3 eDrive Experience, in which the participants drive the BMW i3 exclusively.

BMW eDrive EXPERIENCE
This new training option allows participants to experience the fascination of BMW i to the full. Experienced BMW instructors provide them with a greater understanding of future mobility, at first in theory and later in practice. A special course has been set up at the BMW and MINI Driving Academy so that participants can experience the various driving modes offered by these trailblazing cars. And, in the highlight of the day, the participants get behind the wheel of the BMW i8 to experience how the combination of sports performance and exceptional energy efficiency feels first-hand.

BMW i meets BMW M
The two flagship models in the BMW i and BMW M model ranges are the stars of this new training course. The participants are given the opportunity to drive the BMW i8, with its plug-in hybrid system, and the high-performance BMW M6 in the same afternoon. The BMW instructors offer an insight into the sophisticated technology which guarantees the BMW i8 sports-car performance capability yet also small-car efficiency, before the group heads out onto the practical training area. The participants finish off by taking both models for a few laps of the BMW and MINI Driving Academy circuit.

BMW i3 eDrive Experience
This successful training course, where participants drive the BMW i3 exclusively, remains a fixture of the program. At the BMW and MINI Driving Academy facility in Maisach, the participants familiarise themselves with the BMW i3 and find out everything they need to know about the BMW i mobility and lightweight design concept, the car’s battery and driving characteristics, and service and maintenance. They then take to the wheel of the BMW i3 themselves for driving exercises on two training areas and a circuit, enabling them to sample the driving properties of an all-electric car and its technical capabilities. The positive reaction of customers to the BMW i3 course at the training facility in Maisach has ensured its status as a genuine success story.

BMW Group supports a paradigm shift to cities based around people rather than cars.

BMW Group supports a paradigm shift to cities based around people rather than cars. Presentation of concepts that explore how urban mobility can be managed without private cars; Electric car sharing as a key component; BMW i3 now available via DriveNow.

Berlin – 07.15.2015 – Electric car sharing represents an important pillar of the BMW Group’s efforts to help create a sustainable model for urban mobility, reduce traffic volumes and improve the quality of life in cities. In order to bring this goal within reach through partnership with cities, the BMW Group set up a Centre of Urban Mobility Competence in early 2015. The team of experts brought together under its roof are working with cities and the relevant stakeholders to develop sustainable concepts for future mobility in urban areas. Today’s press conference signals the official start of operations at the BMW Competence Centre.

At the same time, 100 all-electric BMW i3 cars are now available for DriveNow car sharing customers in Berlin, Hamburg and Munich. In London the BMW i3 was already added to the DriveNow fleet in May, and other cities in Germany and Europe will soon follow suit.

DriveNow has added more than 470,000 customers around the world over the last four years, including 430,000 in Germany (120,000 in Berlin). Since 2013, DriveNow has been running 60 all-electric BMW ActiveE cars in Munich and Berlin as part of the WiMobil and ePlan research projects. They have performed outstandingly well in day-to-day use and will now be replaced by 40 BMW i3 cars in Berlin, 30 in Hamburg and 30 in Munich. “Our customers have enjoyed using the BMW ActiveE cars as much as the conventional vehicles in our fleet,” says Nico Gabriel, managing director of DriveNow. “This initiative has enabled us to put around 3,000 people per month behind the wheel of an all-electric vehicle for the first time – and, in so doing, spark their enthusiasm for electric mobility. The introduction of the BMW i3 into our fleet is the logical next step, and will soon be followed by a range of others in Germany, Europe and around the world,” adds Gabriel.

Electric car sharing acts as a catalyst for electric mobility.

Another key element for the BMW Group is the important role electric car sharing has to play in driving forward electric mobility as a whole in Germany. Vehicles involved in electric car sharing schemes boost the use of charging points in cities – and on a more predictable basis. This rapidly makes electric mobility visible and more easily accessible to local people, turning it from a niche activity into an everyday reality. It breaks down barriers and eases the pathway into electric mobility.

eCarsharing is an important component of sustainable urban mobility concepts.

Electric mobility and car sharing represent two important building blocks for the BMW Group when it comes to working with cities to develop revolutionary mobility concepts. As Dr Bernhard Blättel, Vice President Mobility Services at BMW AG, explains: “A significant change has taken place within the BMW Group. In line with our strategic goals, we are setting out to establish ourselves as the leading supplier of premium products and premium services for personal mobility worldwide. We are witnessing the changes our customers and society as a whole are making and we are taking them on board. Our aim is to work towards developing a higher quality of life in cities with ample space for urban living. Set up at the start of this year, the Urban Mobility Competence Centre has since provided us with a team of experts who are working with cities and the associated stakeholders to develop and implement new concepts for future urban mobility. In the BMW Group’s view, it is possible to further improve mobility for people living in urban areas. It is not a contradiction in terms to improve mobility and at the same time ensure cities offer a high quality of life for the people who live there.”

The quality of life in our increasingly densely populated cities can be improved significantly by putting public spaces to different use. One way we can achieve this is by freeing up a large portion of the parking areas currently required. To make this possible, mobility concepts and frameworks need to be in place which can spark people’s enthusiasm for urban mobility beyond their own car. Local public transport continues to provide the backbone of mobility services in urban areas. Complementing local public transport with car sharing schemes and other modes of transport, and creating seamless intermodal connections, allows people to use all the routes through a city. This results in a significant reduction in the volume of cars looking for parking spaces and in the number of parking spaces required, not to mention improvements in air quality and noise emissions.

The recently published main points of the German federal government’s car sharing legislation fundamentally address this approach. The legislation enables cities to offer parking privileges for car sharers over private car users in the public interest. On the assumption that these kinds of incentives apply in equal measure for users of station-based and non-station-based car sharing, cities would be able to make substantial progress when it comes to extending the reach of sustainable mobility.

The same applies to Germany’s electric mobility legislation, which, among other things, gives cities the option of designating parking areas exclusively for electric vehicles. This can also help local authorities meet their aims when it comes to limiting vehicle emissions. Indeed, authorities can combine such an approach with a well-thought-through strategy for sustainable urban development to set the tone and embark on a course towards creating an environment that provides a higher quality of life.

BMW Group is a leading provider of mobility solutions; Urban Mobility Competence Centre paves the way.

The BMW Group has recognized the changing nature of the challenges it faces when it comes to mobility and broadened its corporate strategy accordingly. The company’s strategic roadmap runs up to 2020 and is clearly defined: the BMW Group aims to be the leading supplier of premium products and premium services for personal mobility worldwide. Alongside DriveNow, this involves other services such as ParkNow and ChargeNow. The substantial pressure on parking in central areas of cities around the world gives rise to considerable traffic caused by people looking for parking spaces – and with it unnecessary emissions. For drivers, this is often the most unpleasant part of a journey. ParkNow serves as an integrated platform on which to manage parking using both public areas and private spaces.

The benefits for users are clear. But there are also advantages when it comes to parking space monitoring in cities if parking tickets can be paid for online and the number of ticket machines reduced. Depending on parking demand, it is also possible to use real-time information in cars to manage traffic by showing drivers the likelihood, based on a learning algorithm, of a space being available on a given street. If there are no parking spaces available in a particular area, this allows traffic caused by people looking for spaces there to be avoided from the outset. This idea can be extrapolated to provide another parking management option – i.e. pegging parking prices to current demand.

The intermodal route guidance function integrated into the navigation system of the BMW i3 moves things forward another step. When route guidance is activated, this function shows not only the most efficient route to the desired destination by car, but also an intermodal connection, should this provide the most efficient solution. For example, a switch onto local public transport – using precise timetable data – or a rental bike can be integrated into the route guidance process. The intermodal route guidance function, which will be introduced gradually across all the BMW Group’s vehicles, allows additional traffic to be avoided and the driver to be pointed actively in the direction of alternative local public transport options.

The technical and conceptual solutions we have detailed here are all part of the BMW Group’s constantly expanding portfolio. Working together intelligently, they open the door to new forms of urban traffic management in the years ahead. Our long-term vision is for cities to offer an enhanced quality of life, in which more efficient organization of mobility solutions helps to create a new environment in which to live. The top priority of the Competence Centre is to safeguard mobility for all users at its current level at the very least. Deprivation or coercion are not an option. Instead, the types of mobility available will be improved and coordinated so effectively that people will adopt them as a logical consequence.

BMW i8 joins fleet of The Peninsula Shanghai

BMW continues to promote innovative sustainable mobility
– First five-star hotel in the world to feature a BMW i8 in its fleet

Munich / Shanghai. 07.09.2015 – Guests at The Peninsula Shanghai can now experience the excitement of the BMW i8 for themselves after the five-star hotel added the award winning, innovative sports car to its fleet. This is a further step in the BMW Group’s strategy to encourage sustainable mobility and is being fully supported by The Peninsula, Shanghai which has installed public charging stations compatible with all electric cars standardized for China.

The move is part of the BMW Group’s efforts actively to promote electric mobility in China and comes after the company handed over a BMW i3 to the Kempinski Hotel Beijing last year. The BMW Group also encourages the construction of public charging networks in China by working with major Chinese state and local enterprises such as the State Grid, Shanghai Electric Power, Expo Shanghai Group, Vanke Group and Swire Group. Private customers are also being assisted to make the change to electric driving, as free BMW i wall-boxes, including installation, are being offered to the first BMW i customers. BMW i authorized dealers are obliged to make sure all BMW i customers have adequate access to a charging point.

Since its launch in June 2014, the BMW i8 has proved to be a highly sought-after vehicle with well over 4,000 delivered to customers worldwide. It is the world’s most sustainable sports car and the first plug-in hybrid from the BMW Group.

Rolls-Royce, BMW and MINI vehicles are used as limousine service cars at each of The Peninsula Hotels worldwide; the addition of BMW i to the line-up underlines the continuing successful partnership between BMW Group and the luxury hotel group.