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Page Overview: BMW Group - Innovation - Company

Company

One company, one vision: to create innovations.

Ever since the company was founded, innovation has been one of the main success factors for the BMW Group. Focusing on the future is an integral part of the company’s identity and its day-to-day work and the basis of our business success.

Innovation from a company perspective: major topics and driving forces.

Smartwatch on the wrist of aBMW Group production employee.
Winners of the BMW Supplier Innovation Award 2014.
Logo of the BMW Startup Garage.

Innovations within the company: current developments.

From small production aids to new products: The BMW Group’s innovations underline its role as a pioneer. Read about the latest developments here.

In the supply logistics hall at the Wackersdorf plant, an autonomous robot brings car parts weighing up to half a ton to where they are needed. Equipped with a wireless transmitter and a digital map, the robot is able to find its own way through the complex system of halls. A built-in sensor recognises possible obstacles and stops the robot if necessary.

As a HERE stakeholder, the BMW Group is forging ahead with the digitalisation of mobility. HERE combines high-definition maps with local information and provides vehicles with a detailed up-to-the-minute representation of the real world. These functions play a key role in the continuing development of highly-automated driving.

The BMW Group’s Rapid Technologies Centre produced the first prototype parts back in 1991. Today, 3D printing is mainly used in fields where customised and often highly complex components are needed in small quantities. A particular highlight in the use of this technology is, for example, new vehicle developments, with prototypes largely produced using 3D printing.

Virtual reality will be an integral part of many developer workplaces in the future, based on a mixed-reality system developed from components used in the gaming industry and now deployed for the first time in the automotive industry by the BMW Group. This will open up entirely new opportunities for developers, including fully simulated city drive-throughs to test the panoramic view of the surroundings.

A DriveNow vehicle being opened with a credit card.

The new BMW and MINI credit cards combine all the benefits of state-of-the-art payment technologies with BMW mobility services.

Using innovative close-range communications technology, the card becomes the key for unlocking cars in the DriveNow car-sharing fleet. When the card is held near the sensor in the windscreen, the system identifies the user and unlocks the vehicle. No additional card or smartphone is needed.

In dialogue with the future.

Framed by the four BMW Group VISION NEXT 100 vehicles, CEO Harald Krüger and Adrian van Hooydonk (Senior Vice President BMW Group Design) discussed the future of mobility with opinion leaders from around the world.

The conversation raised a wide range of questions: In the future, what will people share? Is car-sharing just the beginning? What lies ahead in terms of sustainability? How can multinational corporations and civil society harness their creativity and capabilities so that resources can be protected even more effectively? Digital and cultural transformation – do they go hand in hand?

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