Remember Kitt from Knight Rider; the car so ahead of its time, it could be driven just by talking to it? What if we told you this has become a reality?
Arriving in Ireland this March, the new BMW 3 Series can change the temperature, music and lighting just by chatting to it. What's more, it has the ability to see around corners, drive itself, and plan your parking space in advance.
The car, which puts your comfort and enjoyment first, has a host of new features too; with everything from heated seats to a built-in personal assistant. It's a must-drive for anyone keen on smart technology and style.
Want to know more? Here are our five favourite things about the brand new BMW 3 Series...and you would like to be one of the first guests to see the new BMW 3 Series (and enjoy an Ultimate Experience), BMW invites you to attend the nationwide preview this January. Click here to find out more...
BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant
The new BMW 3 Series Saloon comes with a nifty personal assistant; an intelligent, digital character (whom you can name whatever you want) that responds to the prompt "Hey BMW" – think Google Home or Amazon’s Alexa, but for your car.
Not only does the BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant await the driver’s every command (such as, ‘turn on the radio’ or ‘open the sunroof’), it’s also there to provide casual conversation ("Hey BMW, what’s the meaning of life?").
Your Personal Assistant is there to make you feel comfortable. If you say, "Hey BMW, I’m tired", the system will activate the air conditioning to cool the cabin; as well as adjust the ambient lighting and turn up the music to help you stay alert. It can also give you navigational directions and updates on your oil levels.
The best part? The more you engage with your Intelligent Personal Assistant, the more it learns your preferences. See it in action here:
Ever find yourself at the car door, only to realise you left your keys in the kitchen? No problem.
The new BMW Digital Key turns your smartphone into a car key. Holding your phone up to the door handle opens the car and, once inside, the engine can be started by placing the phone in the wireless charging tray.
It's a particularly handy feature for people who share the car with other members of the family, as the digital key can be shared with up to five other people via the BMW Connected app (provided they have an NFC-capable Samsung Galaxy smartphone running on Android 8.1 or above).
What's more, a new movement sensor has been added to the BMW 3 Series car key for added security. The sensor permanently monitors whether the key is being carried or if it has been put down; allowing it to switch into standby mode, removing the risk of the key signal being picked up by transmitter devices.
Sustainability is more important than ever, and we at IMAGE want to give credit where it's due. We think the new BMW 330e plug-in hybrid is the perfect stepping stone to electric driving, with its 60 km electric-only range.
For most Irish drivers, 60 km is more than the average daily commute – but there's also a two-litre, four-cylinder petrol engine (with BMW TwinPower Turbo Technology) to take you on those longer trips.
Not only that, but the new BMW 330e also features regenerative braking in order to optimise efficiency. The system stores energy captured during braking; with the electric motor taking on the function of a generator. That means you get more out of the electric range in the car.
Plus, if you care about green credentials, Dow Jones has consistently named BMW Group the most sustainable automotive manufacturer in the world over the past 10 years.
Comfort meets style
If you spend hours commuting, or you enjoy taking long drives with your family at the weekend, the new BMW 3 Series is the perfect car choice. Its revised design offers more space and increased comfort to both the driver and passengers, that means, increased space in the boot and three kids seats that fit in the rear.
Shoulder room in the front has been increased, while passengers in the rear will benefit from more legroom.
Other impressive features include heated front seats (great for chilly, winter mornings); interior ambient lighting with up to 11 colour settings; three-zone air conditioning (for when the kids are too warm, but you're just right); folding headrests; leather seats; a reversing camera, and electric folding rear-view mirrors.
There is also an option to get an electric glass sunroof and electric seats with lumbar support. Really, what more could you want?
Who needs a Sat Nav or Google Maps when you have an in-built navigation system in your car? BMW's Connected Navigation makes route planning (both in the car and away from it), much easier.
The new technology allows drivers to send destinations from various apps straight to their car’s navigation system. What's more, it stores your most important destinations for future use (which is especially handy if you need directions but your phone battery has died).
Another new feature is the Parking Space Assistant, which suggests various parking options to the driver before the destination is reached. This service includes providing information on the nearest multi-storey car park, as well as proposing routes where there's a good chance of finding a parking spot close to the destination.