BMW's M brand has teamed up with Epic Games to provide a crazy-sounding experience: Pull on a pair of VR/MR goggles, strap into a real BMW M2 on a track, and start driving—while the goggles show you a gamified version of the road.
"People need to be able to experience the new feeling of driving a BMW with VR/MR glasses while mastering challenges at high speeds as in a racing game. Integrated gaming elements, such as avoiding obstacles, collecting virtual 'coins,' etc., reinforce the immersive in-car experience."
"The system takes all movement and rotary axes of the BMW M2 into account. The vehicle itself becomes the controller, in this case the fastest controller in the world."
Here's what it looks like in action:
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The "///M Mixed Reality" experience, as it's called, made its debut this month at Lisbon's Web Summit technology conference. It's not clear if the experience will be expanded commercially or to BMW customers—nor is it clear, precisely, what the practical point of it all is. However, Frank van Meel, CEO of BMW's M brand, is strident about the experience's importance to the brand:
"Anyone who asks what virtual experiences in the automotive sector might look like in future: That is the answer. People must be able to experience this new feeling — and with ///M Mixed Reality, we offer them a suitable solution for this.
"At BMW M, we have always been testing the limits of what is technically feasible and thus, among other things, laying the foundation for new immersive experiences."
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