For Daimler and BMW, the advantages of the planned cooperation are obvious: With the expertise and experience of the individual partners and a scalable architecture, the development of future generations of technology will be accelerated and more efficient. In addition to these synergies, new technologies are to be passed on to customers more quickly and updated in shorter innovation cycles. The reliability of the systems is a central criterion in the cooperation, the two companies assured in a joint press release. Both partners continue to claim to set the pace for development.
The joint development is to include several automation levels up to Level 4 via a scalable architecture, with Level 3 and Level 4 technology enabling automated driving on motorways in Europe as well as in the U.S. and China. In addition, the partners also aim to discuss extending the scope of cooperation in the future to higher levels of automation on motorways as well as for urban areas and cities. This underlines the long-term and sustainable character of the cooperation towards a scalable platform for automated driving. However, the development of the current generations and the cooperation between the two companies are unaffected by this and will continue unchanged. Both companies will examine further partnerships with technology companies and car manufacturers that can contribute to the success of the platform.
Autonomous driving in the BMW Group
BMW has been working on highly automated driving since 2006 and has established a non-exclusive platform with technology, supplier and OEM partners for the development to series maturity. Among others, Intel and supplier Denso are involved in this platform. Since 2017, BMW has been bundling development at its Autonomous Driving Campus in Unterschleißheim near Munich. The agile software development used there for the first time accelerates the development of the platform and sets standards in the automotive industry. BMW is currently testing the latest developments with more than 70 test vehicles on the road worldwide. The vehicles collect data to further improve the technology through machine learning with artificial intelligence in virtual simulation and test new functions from Level 2 to Level 5 on the road. The technology generation currently being developed will go into series production with Level 3 for the first time in 2021 in BMW iNEXT and will be qualified for pilot projects with Level 4.