I may not be at CES 2023, but I was still able to catch one of the most over-produced keynotes I’ve ever seen, courtesy of BMW.
So, this year, BMW gave a keynote presentation on CES 2023’s opening night. It went on for about an hour and included one of the…
… Well, shit. You know, I was typing this article just as I thought the presentation was about to wrap up, but they’ve literally just brought Arnold Schwarzenegger on stage with the Terminator theme playing.
This wasn’t a gigantic surprise, as he was part of a pre-produced video, which showed a live story and Schwazzernegger arguing with BMW’s new AI concept car, Dee. David Hasselhoff was also there (and so was KITT, yes, the Pontiac Transam with red lights and AI). Herbie was also there for some reason?
Eventually, they actually showed off a car and it’s your classic concept car. BMW chairman of the board Oliver Zipse said that the car was “the perfect digital car of the future”, but to me it (initially) looked like the most lukewarm concept car ever. I was so wrong.
This concept car supposedly includes a “mixed reality slider”, allowing travel into a virtual world in five steps. The first being your HUD, and the fifth being an XR skin over the world around the car, as projected through the windows.
The car is supposedly also available in 32 colours with BMW’s full-colour e-ink technology, allowing for dynamic colour changing. This was later shown off in the presentation, with panels changing colours individually to match what was being played on screens around it.
It was honestly the coolest part of the whole thing and had my jaw dropping.
“Choosing the right colour is important,” BMW iX Flow project lead Stella Clarke said.
“Dee, you are the world’s first colour-changing car.”
Here’s some of that colour changing now (with a Herbie colour scheme).
And a little bit more.
Dee (the car) apparently also has a “digital soul”. That’s f*cking terrifying, do not give objects souls. That was the point of Terminator, guys.
Anyway, BMW decided to show off those other cars with digital souls. Hey, remember that part in Herbie: Fully Loaded when the car literally expresses sadness? Don’t give sentience to cars!
“With the BMW iVision Dee, we are showcasing what is possible when hardware and software merge,” Zipse said.
“At the same time, BMW iVision Dee is another step on the road to the Neue Klasse. With this vision, we are looking far into the future and underlining the tremendous importance of digitalisation for our upcoming product generations.”
The Neue Klasse, BMW’s new electric range of vehicles, will launch in 2025 with an SUV and sedan, with more models launching “in quick sequence”, according to Zipse.
Dee is “your first glimpse” of Neue Klasse, and shows how a car can “give you more freedom”.
Apart from the cringe over-produced intro to the keynote, the BMW CES 2023 presentation was a pretty good watch.
It also looks like a dint might be expensive for a colour-changing car like this.
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