autoevolution

Future MINIs Might Have Remotely Activated Features

Today, building a great engine and a perfect transmission isn’t enough anymore. A lot of manufacturers started making more and more viable components and therefore you need to distance yourself from your competition using other means.
MINI Cooper S 1 photo
In this regard, MINI is trying to offer its customers more and more optional features in the future. For now we know that the new Cooper will be getting some interesting optionals that weren’t there before, stuff like parking sensors and adaptive dampers. However, according to a recent interview by MINI boss, Peter Schwarzenbauer, upcoming models might get all sorts of crazy stuff, over the air.

How does that work? Well, in order to keep the costs and timeframe within decent limits (currently some customers have to wait up to 3 or 4 months to get their desired car, depending on the optionals they want) the cars might be built with more optional features than one wants. After that, depending on what you need and are willing to pay for, some features might be activated as easy as buying an app.

The car would receive a software update over the air that would allow you to use the desire function of the car. This kind of things are already happening and very popular. People call them ‘power tuning’.

Ever heard of the guys with laptops that can upgrade your car’s HP just by adding a new ECU software? It’s the same principle, only easier to do and, probably, cheaper too.

The same technology would eventually be used by BMW too and I’m expecting it to debut on the upcoming 7 Series. The range of possibilities is virtually limitless. You could turn your Cooper S into a JCW or downgrade if you want to, activate DRL or deactivate them and so on.

The only problem that remains to be solved is the cost. How much cheaper or more expensive will these optionals be? Of course, fitting all the cars you sell with the same kit is easy and time saving but how about costs? We’ll just have to wait and see what the BMW financial team says about it.

 
 
 
 
 

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