New BMW development site

New BMW development site

BMW has offered a first proper glimpse of its new development site in Sokolov, in the Czech Republic.

BMW's first development site in Central Europe is taking shape. Two track sections at the new BMW Group Future Mobility Centre in Sokolov have taken shape, the site will be used for the development of new assistance systems for autonomous driving alongside electrification and digitalisation for future models. The site in the Karlovy Vary region of the Czech Republic – located about two-and-a-half hours’ drive from BMW's main development site in Munich, is expected to be fully operational by summer 2023. In fact, the Sokolovsite will operate in addition to the BMW's existing testing facilities in Aschheim near Munich, Miramas in France and Arjeplog in Sweden.

The 300-million-Euro investment has begun with the construction of two six- kilometre motorway-style test tracks, eventually more than 100 employees will work on site which will include a 'New Technology Area' of around 90,000 mÇ, this homologation-capable area will feature three separate run-up tracks, providing optimal conditions for testing assistance systems and behaviour in cross traffic – as well as emergency braking and evasive situations. The tests are prepared and controlled from an adjoining control room.

A six-kilometre Autonomous Driving Highway, a motorway-style circuit with on- and off-ramp scenarios for testing autonomous vehicles on motorways, is one of the most impressive elements. It has been equipped with two functional lanes and an emergency stop lane, as well as gantries and a straight stretch measuring over 1,000-metres.

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