In the BMW 7 Series, numerous microprocessors ease driver's life
While the most visible electronic feature are the new full-LED headlights, the most significant innovation is located in the passenger compartment - or, to be more exact, in the electronics compartment between the engine and the passenger compartment. The multifunctional instrument display behind the steering wheel takes its cues from the driver's needs as fully adaptable to the driver's needs. Extended black-panel technology opens up a new range of display options through the 10.25-inch screen. The instruments are presented using different colours and graphics depending on the driving mode selected, and provide situation-specific information such as status and function. Three basic driving philosophies - Comfort, Sport and Eco Pro - are directly translated into the way the instruments are visualized.
The control display in the centre of the instrument panel has also benefited from visual and technical improvements and now uses high-resolution 3D graphics. At the same level of advanced technology as the centre display, the BMW ConnectedDrive portfolio includes new features that acknowledge the vehicles' position in the luxury segment.
Among the systems helping to maximize safety is BMW Night Vision system with Dynamic Light Spot. The system recognizes pedestrians even beyond the range of the high beam. Once a pedestrian has been identified, the system determines whether it is on a collision course and provides appropriate warning to the driver. In addition, the LED Dynamic Light Spots are used to pinpoint the detected object.
BMWs adaptive cruise control system with stop-and-go function has been enhanced. For an enhanced interpretation of the traffic situation ahead, the full-range radar sensors are now supplemented by a front-mounted camera on the rear-view mirror. When driving in heavy-flowing traffic or traffic jams, the driver is able to safely move along with the flow and let the vehicle's automatic systems handle the tasks of stopping and pulling away again as well as approaching junctions where there are already vehicles waiting ahead. Combining radar and video data in this way improves detection of other vehicles and cuts the system's reaction time. If a vehicle ahead brakes very sharply, requiring the driver to take action, he is prompted to do so by a two stage warning. Simultaneously to this, the activation thresholds of the Brake Assist system are lowered, activating the brake priming function in the process. If the driver fails to react to the acute warning, Driving Assistant Plus will intervene to decelerate the vehicle itself, even braking it to a stop depending on the situation.
Available is also an anti-dazzle LED High-Beam Assistant, active Protection with automatic fatigue recognition and Speed Limit Info using road sign symbols. A more powerful operating system governing the central Control Display ensures the entertainment programs are simpler to operate, optimises office and online services, and eases using the telephone. The Professional navigation system is now more powerful and features new and ultra-sharp map graphics and 3D city mode. The proven user interface has been maintained while the system features an enhanced functionality. The system is powered with an 1.3 GHz microprocessor with dedicated 3D graphics card - unfortunately BW did not want to detail further. In any case, the processing power of this microprocessor enables high-resolution graphics as well as dynamic transitions between the screens.
Additional function bars on the screen enable users to individualize the map view without leaving the map. These bars also provide direct access to real-time information on traffic (RTTI) and weather. If the driver clicks a place in the interactive map the so called PIE menu opens - a circular menu that offers numerous options.
With its specific clientele of always-busy business users in mind, the Professional navigation system also offers a number of office functions. Towards this end, the carmaker has enhanced its speech recognition system by a dictation function that enables drivers to compose text messages simply by saying what they wish to write.
Don't worry, you won't have to learn German to utilize the system: It identifies and understands six international languages. A few seconds after dictation has been completed, the transcribed text appears in the display and can be read out if desired. A number of simple-to-use editing tools is available to the driver for putting the final touches to emails and text messages. A further speech-based option to enhance office functionality is voice memos which can be sent directly by email if required. The advantage to the motorist is the ability to swiftly store ideas or to-do items and send them to the relevant addressee(s) – without being distracted from what's happening on the road. The recorded memos can be stored on a USB stick for use outside the car.
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