At the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, BMW has unveiled the i Inside Future concept, a BMW 5 Series Sedan-based prototype that can drive and park itself, understand gestures and even receive drone deliveries on the road.

Its aim is to demonstrate how the next generation of personal vehicles will not only feature automated driving, but will also be able to connect up with the owners’ other electronic devices, via the internet of things.

 BMW i Inside Future Concept

On specific route segments, drivers can hand over both longitudinal control tasks and lateral control to the assistance systems, which frees them up to concentrate on other activities. The sensor and control technology that makes it possible for drivers not only to delegate acceleration and braking to the vehicle but also to take their hands off the steering wheel for long periods at a stretch is based on a further-refined prototype solution based on the driver assistance systems already fitted in today’s production vehicles.

 BMW i Inside Future Concept

Another service possible with future versions of BMW Connected is delivery of tens of thousands of goods while the customer is on the road. Amazon Prime Now, which is integrated into all the user’s devices (both in and outside the vehicle) via the Open Mobility Cloud, enables goods to be ordered through the app while drivers are on the way to their next destination.

 BMW i Inside Future Concept

A further example of this collaboration with Amazon Prime Now is BMW Passenger Mode. Based on the selected route, BMW Connected can tell when the vehicle will switch to automated driving and the driver could have time, say, to use Amazon Prime Video. In Passenger Mode, the vehicle can then adapt to the passengers’ needs in different situations. For instance, when rear-seat passengers start playing a video, the interior lighting is immediately dimmed and the sunblinds closed.

Another feature is a robot valet parking service – a fully automated parking procedure, similar to the one that Faraday Future is also presenting at CES. The driver is sent a text notification once the car is parked.

 BMW i Inside Future Concept BMW i Inside Future Concept BMW i Inside Future Concept BMW i Inside Future Concept

all images courtesy of BMW Group