German vehicle manufacturer BMW unveiled a concept version of its iX SUV at the 2022 Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. The vehicle uses “E Ink” – the same technology used by e-readers like the Kindle – which allows it to change colour at the touch of a button.
BMW says its concept is bringing the car body to life, adding that digital experiences will not be limited to just displays in the future as the real and virtual world melds.
The manufacturer says the fluid colour changes are made possible by a specially developed body wrap.
When the ‘paint’ is stimulated by electric signals, the E Ink technology brings different colour pigments to the surface and the vehicle takes on the driver’s desired colour.
However, it will probably take some time before this special BMW iX is available to the public. “The BMW iX Flow is an advanced research and design project and a great example of the forward-thinking that BMW is known for,” said Head of BMW Group Design, Adrian van Hooydank.
Personalisation is all the rage and the manufacturer’s head of the iX Flow project, Stella Clarke, believes the concept is an example of new technologies that will allow “a whole new level of decision-making in the future.”
“This gives the driver the freedom to express different facets of their personality or even their enjoyment of change outwardly, and to redefine this each time they sit into their car,” said Clarke.
“Similar to fashion or the status ads on social media channels, the vehicle then becomes an expression of different moods and circumstances in daily life.”
The base vehicle is the all-electric BMW iX, which was first introduced in 2021. The crossover SUV has a range of 630 kilometres and retails for R1 650 000 in South Africa.