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A BMW is as individual as its driver

The BMW Group is focused on customer needs and their requirements for modern digital mobility

BMWs can be further personalised after purchase by activating vehicle functions or booking digital services

The BMW Group is focused on customer needs and their requirements for modern digital mobility. Sheer driving pleasure is no longer restricted to the vehicle itself, but can be consistently geared towards customers’ digital needs. Since 2014, with options for booking digital services through the BMW ConnectedDrive Store, it has been possible to adapt the vehicle to personal requirements on an ongoing basis. The next step towards greater flexibility will be to allow additional vehicle functions to be added later. Current examples include the High-Beam Assistant, the Active Cruise Control (ACC) driver assistance system with Stop&Go, and the BMW Drive Recorder. Expanding the options offered by the BMW ConnectedDrive Store to conventional vehicle functions will allow each BMW after sale to be further personalised.

From classic special equipment to individual services
The BMW Group’s expanded, customer-centric digital offering enables the vehicle to be updated over a period of many years. This means customers no longer have to commit to certain special equipment when they buy the car – instead, they can adapt it to their individual requirements over time. Peter Henrich, Senior Vice President, BMW Product Management: “Digital technologies and classic automotive development are merging more and more. We want to offer our customers different dimensions of sheer driving pleasure – including the latest digital services and the possibility of booking functions as needed. All new BMW vehicles are now technologically enabled for this and we will be systematically expanding this offering.” Customers will continually be offered a choice of new digital options – which may not have been available at the time of buying or leasing the vehicle. The BMW Group will also be able to respond faster to digital development and new technologies. The ability to book and unlock additional vehicle functions is primarily enabled by the Remote Software Upgrade technology launched in May 2019. New digital services and features can be downloaded directly into the vehicle and then installed over the air.

This means a BMW can be kept digitally up-to-date for years to come. Peter Henrich: “In the long run, we could also imagine digital services no longer being linked to the car, but to the customer who books them.” This is a particularly attractive option for used cars. In this case, secondary buyers are no longer tied to the digital features of the previous owner, but can choose whatever suits their own needs and requirements.

Vehicle functions can now also be digitally activated
The range of digital services that can be ordered at a later date, such as RTTI, On-Street-Parking Information or BMW Music is now being expanded to include the option of activating vehicle functions. Since August, it has been possible to install the High-Beam Assistant, the Active Cruise Control (ACC) with Stop&Go vehicle distance assistant with Start/Stop and the BMW Drive Recorder in this way. The BMW Drive Recorder uses the cameras installed for driver assistance systems to record video images of the vehicle’s surroundings – for instance, when driving through particularly spectacular scenery. Depending on the model and special equipment, the necessary hardware for these functions is already integrated into vehicles*. The range of additional vehicle functions will be expanded going forward. Peter Henrich: “Our goal is to provide the customer with the best possible digital experience in their BMW. With digital services on demand, we are aiming for a new model that gives customers far more freedom and flexibility than has been possible so far. For example, in the future, we might also offer functions such as Remote Engine Start or Adaptive M Suspension.

As part of the digitalisation process, the vehicle itself has become a touchpoint. The BMW Group has supported this development for 20 years with the BMW ConnectedDrive Store and, since 2016, the BMW Connected App. “We want our customers to enjoy all products, digital and other services together as a seamless experience. They are already connected today via all the BMW Group’s digital channels – from the web, through the BMW ConnectedDrive Store or via smartphone. Our goal is to ensure the customer no longer has to adapt to the specifics of their vehicle, but for the vehicle to be geared instead towards their personal and individual requirements,” explains Jens Thiemer, Senior Vice President, Customer and Brand BMW. In the BMW ConnectedDrive Store, selected digital services can be tested for a time as a “teaser” without any obligation. Depending on the service, teasers may be offered as soon as the vehicle is delivered. These services can then be extended – or not – via the Store for a set period of time.

* depends on special equipment. Example: The BMW Drive Recorder is available in some new models in conjunction with Parking Assistant Plus. BMW Operating System 7.0. is required for Remote Software Upgrade.


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