BMW co-develops ’emotionally engaging’ driving sound for electric M-spec model


BMW, in collaboration with composer and curator Hans Zimmer, has created a distinctive sound for the BMW M models that are powered by a fully electric or plug-in hybrid drive system. The automaker stresses that the sounds have been created in such a way that they engage the driver emotionally, enriching the driving experience.

Zimmer has earlier been part of deriving exclusive driving sounds for electrically-powered BMWs. In his latest partnership with the company, he has developed drive sounds for the BMW iX and BMW i4, including a differentiated sound for the M-specification version of the BMW i4.

(Also read | BMW adds M xDrive all-wheel-drive system in M3, M4 model line-up for first time)

BMW says that while the electric vehicles offer comfortable driving, their quietness takes away some degree of emotional pleasure of driving. Thus, the specially developed drive sounds will add to the driving experience of the vehicles by involving all the senses of the driver. The company adds that in the future, there will be acoustic feedback to every movement of the accelerator.

The driving sound of the vehicle will respond as per the driving situation and the mode selected. In the BMW i4, in Comfort mode, a pleasant sound experience is created initially but as the driver steps on the accelerator, the sound experience deepens as load and speed increase. In the Sport mode, the car’s drive sound is more dominant and powerful.

(Also read | BMW combines AI tech with age old art pieces for its new range)

In the M specification of the BMW i4, the drive sound has been charged with extra energy and there is an especially stronger differentiation between the Comfort and Sport modes. “When you press the pedal of an M car, you suddenly get goosebumps all over your body. We translated this feeling into a drive sound,” says BMW sound designer Renzo Vitale.

The new drive sounds for the BMW i4 and BMW iX will feature in the vehicles over the course of 2022. It will come as standard in the BMW iX and can be specified as an option for the BMW i4. The sound portfolio for each car includes one ready-to-drive sound, one stop sound as well as driving sound.

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