2014 CES: BMW M235i, 6-Series GC are self-driving cars that can drift [w/video]

Article by Anita Panait, on January 11, 2014

The BMW Group is presenting a new element of BMW ActiveAssist at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2014 in Las Vegas. This new element is a safety assistance system which swerves back the vehicle into line even without any input from the driver. The BMW Group Research and Technology have built a research prototype with perfected control technology, allowing it to drive its way at high speeds and with exceptional precision on a slalom run between cones.

The prototype also managed to stick to a marked out circular course regardless of the friction coefficient of the road surface and could even execute an obstacle-evading lane change to perfection. The technology – which makes optimum use of the potential of both engine and chassis – allowed the prototype to follow its path safely and along almost identical lines even when provoked into oversteer.

While current control systems restore stability by braking individual wheels, BMW’s safety assistance system introduces active and precisely calculated steering inputs into the mix. The prototype also reacts to fluctuating grip levels with the precision of an expert driver. While the prototype travels along the predetermined target line, it does not attempt to maintain a preset speed under all circumstances; but constantly considers the condition of the road surface and responds as required.

The sensors providing information are the same as those fitted on standard current vehicles and also send data to the DSC system.

BMW ActiveAssist is part of BMW ConnectedDrive banner that aims to integrate unique and innovative functions that link the driver, vehicle and outside world intelligently with one another – allowing the carmaker to make a significant contribution to bringing the vision of accident-free mobility a step closer to reality. [source: BMW]

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