BMW i Vision Circular : Sustainable Elegance
When it comes to electric vehicles in the year 2040, sustainability and elegance are at the forefront of the BMW I Vision Circular design. Circular economy ideas have been applied throughout the design process of this Vision Vehicle. Use of recycled materials/recyclability of 100 percent is the goal. This 100% recyclable, all-solid-state battery is also used in the BMW I Vision Circular. When it comes to the most valuable resources, it will be able to reach a far higher energy density.
The BMW I Vision Circular was designed, developed, and manufactured with circularity in mind as part of the ‘circular design’ methodology. If you’re looking for materials that can be deconstructed swiftly and simply at the end of the product’s life cycle, the BMW I Vision Circular puts recycled materials first (“secondary first” philosophy).
Therefore, the purposeful focus on disassembly is a crucial factor. This “joyful fusion” is most evident in the quick-release fasteners for wheels, seats, and instrument panel, as well as a string tie in the back seat bench. The BMW I Vision Circular has a completely unique and appealing look thanks to the rigorously applied circular design approach. Meanwhile, it shows how a high level of sustainability and a sumptuous aesthetic may coexist.
As for the front end, the kidneys and headlights have been re-interpreted as a digital surface. Using digital design in the future could eliminate the need for geometric variances in lights and bumpers, hence reducing the amount of materials and tools needed to produce them. It’s not necessary to utilise extra trim components or quality badges, as the brand logo is etched on the front of the car instead of adding them on, and the vehicle badge is lasered on instead. Later, a complex marbled surface is applied to the bumper region, which is made from recycled plastics.
The car’s proportions are taken in a new direction for a BMW because of the car’s strong design language. The Vision Vehicle extends from the front to the rear axle in a continuous volume. To go along with its electrified architecture, the vehicle has a luxury-class cabin in a tiny car’s footprint A light-gold anodized secondary aluminium finish replaces paint on the BMW I Vision Circular’s surfaces. Using a heat treatment procedure on the steel, the frame at the rear of the car has an enticing interplay of blueish purple surfaces.
As a result of the refinement techniques applied to the various surfaces, they have a strong visual impact, while maintaining optimal reusability. The tyres are comprised of natural rubber that has been responsibly cultivated and is slightly translucent. Tire compounds are strengthened by adding coloured recycled rubber particles that give an attractive terrazzo look that intentionally highlights the reuse of materials. Materials used in the wheel rims have been minimised. To cool the brakes, wheel centres with maximum permeability are used. The outer rims have more enclosed surfaces for best aerodynamic efficiency.
To replicate what was done at the front end, all of the display surfaces and lighting functions are integrated into the dark glass tailgate in an inconspicuous manner. It’s impossible to see the BMW logo when it’s turned off. The rear-end design is completed by the aerodynamically optimized black bumper, which is also built from visible recycled plastic.
Circularity and strategic material selection in the BMW I Vision Circular’s interior suggest what might be possible in the future, including fascinating aesthetics. When it comes to deconstructing and sorting later on, mono-materials and innovative new joining procedures that don’t require glue are key. Using processes such as 3D printing, all components and materials will be made to fit perfectly, reducing wastage and offcuts. Any excess material will be returned to the materials cycle in a systematic manner.
The driver and front passenger are greeted with an expansive sense of space in the bright and pleasant interior. In the front seats, the glass roof and the windscreen header are positioned so that they appear to be sitting in the open air. Two separate lounge seats with integrated headrests offer a luxurious atmosphere. Recycled plastic upholstery is held in place by a light-gold aluminium frame. On the narrow front seat shells, the backs are composed of recyclable polymers that have a terrazzo surface. Quick-release fastener “joyful fusion” allows metal and cloth to be separated, sorted and reused.
The BMW I Vision Circular’s global user experience, like its material qualities, intentionally hints at a more distant future with higher in-car intelligence and more sensors that react to the user. As a result, the traditional instrument panel has been transformed into a next-generation user interface. You can control it with your hand movements thanks to a 3D-printed crystal body. Natural treated wood from externally certified sources surrounds the crystal body on both sides. Instrument panel and A-pillars are connected with gold-bronze metal pieces made of anodized secondary aluminium. Also in this case, the “joyful fusion” quick-release fasteners make deconstruction a breeze!
Rather than having a central information display, the information area is situated above the instrument panel on the windscreen, just below where you would expect it to be. Any further interior displays can be eliminated because the existing windscreen can be used as an information source.
Three-dimensionally printed from wood powder, the steering wheel’s rim has a genuine, warm feel to it. The gold-bronze vertical spoke is positioned in the middle of the wheel in an unorthodox way, giving it a modern twist. Backlighting and displays identical to those on the instrument panel are included in this crystal interface section.
Featuring a spacious, slightly raised rear bench seat with softly padded side bolsters, the seat is exceptionally comfortable for two people. As if they were cushions, the head restraints include built-in audio speakers that allow each seat to have its own dedicated sound zone.
Backseats are upholstered in a woven fabric with an exquisite Jacquard pattern manufactured from 100% recyclable material. A gold-bronze anodized aluminium frame surrounds the rear bench seat. An elastic cord holds the cloth and frame in place while the seat is being disassembled. 100 percent recycled plastic is used in the construction of the vehicle’s deep-pile carpet. One of the glass iDrive Controllers from the BMW IX is now a lamp in the C-pillar.
For the BMW I Vision Circular, composer Hans Zimmer and BMW Group Sound Director Renzo Vitale collaborated on the sound design. You can hear the car’s round motion. With each and every tone, you’ll be able to see and hear how outside structures move as well as interior regions and materials.
Besides all of its material and design advances, the BMW I Vision Circular has the ability to be used in a vehicle to grid scenario as well. Instead of a stationary energy storage device, the vehicle acts as a mobile energy storage device and feeds power back to its surroundings such as buildings or infrastructure.