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  • irishtimes.com - Posted: July 5, 2010 @ 1:18 pm

    Live Event Blog: BMW Innovations Day

    Michael McAleer


    Project i will also deal with the intermodal forms of transport. Data transfer can happen when the car is charging. Users may in the future get access to a standard car if they require it for longer trips and emergencies.


    Project i will be aimed primarily at the major cities of the world. Trials have shown that with the Mini E, that cars tend to be stopped for more than 5 hours when they are charging.


    Hydrogen is still part of the plan for BMW, but it is in the far away future – Hybrid is today, Electric is tomorrow and Hydrogen it appears is still some time away.


    It strikes me when you look at the cell, which when you stand beside it is actually quite big, means that this car will be about the size of a Mini Clubman and since we know that there is no b-pillar, then we can probably guess that it will have rearward facing ‘suicide’ doors like Mazda’s RX-8.


    The Megacity is rear wheel drive, but it isn’t just to make it more fun to drive. It gives better interior space, turning circle and crash safety

    BMW Megacity Carbon Fibre Frame

    Tuesday 07.11

    Last night we got a chance to speak to some of the project leaders of Project i, the think tank which has come up with the Megacity and you can hear what they had to say in Wednesday’sĀ MotorsĀ and it is fascinating stuff.

    Suffice to say, the Mini E and the BMW Active E projects appear to be ways of the brand seeing what works and what doesn’t in terms of electric vehicles and from there they have pretty much torn up the rule book and appear to be starting from scratch.

    Monday 16.20

    It is time for a chemistry lesson. CFRP or Carbon Fibre Reinforced Plastic has been used on parts of the BMW M3 and M6 and now it is going to be used on the new range of EVs in the future. It is 30 percent lighter than aluminium and 50 percent lighter than steel.

    This takes me back to Physics class in school. Nodding knowingly at the teacher when he looks at me. I don’ t have a clue what he is on about.

    Monday 15.34

    Just had a drive in the Mini E electric car, which was trialled in the US and in Europe. BMW are telling us more about this trial later and what they have learned from it. It is a remarkably fast car, but in 18km I used 20% of the battery.

    Mini E

    Monday 13.00 Munich

    Good afternoon from Munich where BMW are drip feeding us information about their new Megacity Electric Vehicle Programme. We know that this new car will herald a sub-brand of BMW, that will take care of their small electric vehicles and that they will use carbon passenger cells to offset t rather lardy batteries.

    We’ve had an introduction as to why BMW are set to get involved in electric cars, so we have the usual figures wheeled out about oil running out and how there will have to be a move towards electrification. So far, nothing new. In the afternoon we will get a drive of the Mini E to test the powertrain and then see the cell of the new Megacity.

    • Gerard F Smith says:

      I thought the whole idea of ‘global warming’ was our attempts to stop rich people and their ridiculous material consumption.
      How can they be miserable when they will still have expensive cars to crow about?

      We need to forget all technology and return to nature, its the only way to save the planet! And yes we need to remove 5 billion people from the planet as well.

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