Elegant and powerful. Fleet managers know that BMW vehicles create the right impression at a glance. But the value of BMW’s iconic models is more than skin deep.
Today’s BMW models are — at their heart — technological business tools designed to help drivers get their jobs done safely, efficiently, while staying completely connected.
No matter where your drivers are on their career journey, there’s a BMW vehicle that will fit their company role. For sales and field representatives the selector could include the 3-Series, X1, X2, X3, and MINI. For managers, the 4-Series, 5-Series, X3, X4, and X5. And for executives, the 5-Series, 7-Series, X5, and X6. These selectors provide drivers’ choice and the fleet consistency in quality, efficiency, and style.
For most fleets today, safety is a top-of-mind concern, and BMW offers an array of standard and optional safety and driver assist system features that are designed with driver safety in mind to both monitor behavior and react — with near-autonomous precision — when drivers need help to avoid a dangerous situation.
No matter the vehicle your driver is operating, there are a wide range of safety features across any selectors that will keep your drivers safe.
For example, sales drivers operating a 2018 330i have a number of monitoring and active assist systems that come standard or as available options. On the monitoring side, there’s lane departure warning, active blind spot detection, pedestrian warning, and forward collision warning—along with heads-up display and a standard back-up camera. On the active, collision mitigation side, there’s active cruise control, city collision mitigation, park distance control, and parking assistant.
Managers, for example, those driving the 2019 X3 sDrive 30i, have a number of advanced features also available as standard or as available options. As with the 330i, the X3 has a standard back-up camera and available heads up display, with the addition of cross traffic alert front and rear. The X3 also features a number of combined monitoring and active, collision mitigation features, including frontal collision warning with city collision mitigation, active lane keeping assistant with side collision avoidance, traffic jam assistant, parking assistant, active park distance control, active blind spot detection, and active cruise control with stop and go.
For senior managers and executives, there’s additional safety features available. For example, the new BMW X5 is equipped with the standard Active Driving Assistant, which includes Blind Spot Detection, Lane Departure Warning, Rear Collision Warning, Frontal Collision Warning, Pedestrian Warning with City Collision Mitigation — which now also alerts the driver if a cyclist is detected — Rear Cross Traffic Alert, and Speed Limit Information.
Available as an option, the Driving Assistant Professional package includes traffic jam assist with extended hands-off time (available December 2018) and lane keeping assistant with active side collision protection. The package also features automatic lane change, which can help manage lane changes to avoid collisions, and the evasion aid, which helps the driver maintain control during a maneuver needed to avoid a collision with a vehicle or pedestrian.
And it’s not only managing the vehicle that may be needed in an emergency situation. Sometimes, the focus needs to be the driver. This is where Emergency Stop Assistant, which is part of the Driving Assistant Professional package, comes into play. It is intended for instances when the driver is incapacitated because of a medical emergency. It is activated by pulling the electric parking brake switch. Depending on the driving situation, this will bring the vehicle to a standstill either in the current lane, at the edge of the road, or on the hard shoulder. Simultaneously the hazard lights will activate and the Intelligent Emergency Call function will automatically notify the BMW Assist call center, which will alert emergency services.
While Level 5, fully automated vehicles may still be some years away, BMW has included fully automated features as an option.
Parking Assistant Plus enables the automatic selection and use of parallel parking spaces. Once a parallel parking spot is chosen, the system takes over the entire parking process. Back-up Assistant takes over the steering and maneuvering out of a confined parking space for up to 55 yards in the reverse pattern the driver used to pull forward into the spot.
BMW vehicles are still driving machines, and they are loaded with technology designed to make them among the most efficient on the road.
The automaker’s 2.0L and 3.0L twin turbo engines are equipped with a twin-scroll turbocharger, variable value control, and high precision injection, increasing their fuel efficiency. The 8-speed Steptronic Automatic Transmission with Adaptive Transmission Control features a wider ratio spread and new control electronics to increase the powertrain’s overall efficiency. BMW’s Driving Dynamics Control gives drivers the ability to change driving modes between ECO PRO, Comfort, and Sport at a touch of a button. For fleets focused on controlling fuel spend and sustainability, the ECO PRO mode maximizes fuel use, with savings that go right to the bottom line.
Unnecessary idling, particularly in large cities beset by stop-and-go traffic, is one of the most fuel-wasting driver behaviors. BMW vehicles equipped with start-stop shut down their engines when they’re at a full stop. When the driver depresses the accelerator, the vehicle seamlessly restarts the engine, eliminating idling and wasted fuel.
For fleets that want to go green, BMW offers both plug-in hybrid and full electric models (the i3 and i8) that minimize or abandon the need for gasoline. In addition to being better for the environment and making a visible green statement to customers, hybrid and electric vehicles have a number of bottom-line benefits for fleets, including lower fuel/energy costs and, often, less frequent maintenance.
BMW’s hybrid and electric vehicles even make their own energy. When a driver applies these vehicles’ brakes, the energy used to stop is regenerated and stored in the vehicle’s battery, where it is available for use later.
BMW isn’t just connecting drivers in the vehicle. It’s taking the connectivity outside the cabin as well. BMW Connected is the companion app for BMW drivers, syncing their smart devices to the vehicle. This out-of-vehicle connectivity can help drivers remain efficient by integrating and automating functions related to their daily business. For example, BMW Connected can assist in managing business appointments by importing meeting details and address information directly from the driver’s calendar into the vehicle’s navigation system to begin route guidance. The system calculates the optimum departure time based on real-time traffic information and notifies the driver with a message on his or her mobile device when it is time to leave. This takes the guess work out of routing and time management — keeping the driver on time for important business appointments that could directly affect the company’s bottom line.
Behind the wheel, drivers will experience a connected driving experience. For example, the BMW iDrive interface uses voice command and navigation to guide the driver to his or her next appointment — eliminating the need, and, more importantly, the risk of using a phone for directions.
BMW models are efficient business machines, so, while your drivers are on the road, they can wirelessly charge their phones or other mobile devices, or connect them to the onboard Wifi hotspot to stay in touch the office to check e-mails or fill out any important forms while they’re away from headquarters and parked.
In large cities, parking comes at a premium — and BMW’s connectivity can help there, too. With On-Street Parking Information, drivers don’t have to waste time trying to find a spot. The vehicle will identify it for them. While they’re at a meeting, drivers can check to make sure their company-provided vehicle is safe and secure with Remote 3D view, which gives a real-time view of the vehicle with the surround view camera system right on the driver’s mobile device. Remote Services allows a driver to pinpoint his or her BMW vehicle in a crowded parking lot or anywhere in town. This feature allows the driver to remotely trigger the vehicle’s horn and lights or find it on a map on his or her mobile device.
Finally, the Remote Lock and Unlock feature allows the driver to lock or unlock the vehicle from afar, double checking to make sure the car is locked if while the driver is away from the vehicle or unlocking it to save a second or two when heading to the next appointment.
A Remote Software Upgrade feature keeps the vehicle up to date with the latest software and can be updated much the same way as a smart device. Important vehicle upgrades occur automatically.
To view the entire BMW vehicle lineup and the available standard and optional productivity, sustainability, and safety features go to www.bmwusa.com or contact your BMW fleet dealer.