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BMW opens autonomous driving facility in Germany

ABR Staff Writer Published 13 April 2018

German automaker BMW Group has inaugurated a new center of excellence for autonomous driving in Unterschleißheim near Munich.

The center covers every base when it comes to providing better capacity for innovation and increased development efficiency.

BMW decided to pool together its expertise in the fields of fields of vehicle connectivity and highly / fully automated driving in one location.

The centre of excellence is spread over 23,000m² of office space and  will house 1,800 employees.

BMW stated that it is looking to hire IT specialists, software developers, artificial intelligence and machine learning researchers and data analysts for the lab.

The company is also trying out new working environments in this space with an open-plan layout, intelligent and flexible use of office space, and a creative workplace. The move will improve flexibility, efficiency, allow for a high level of autonomy and shorter distances. 

At the inauguration BMW Group mobility senior vice-president Elmar Frickenstein said: “For us, autonomous vehicles (AV) is one of the most important challenges in the auto industry. It’s about bringing a completely new system to the street.

“We tackled extreme challenges – challenges we have never faced in the automotive industry. It’s open plan with a large-scale scrums and we need the ability to cooperate with the best technology partners.”

A software developer working at the campus can immediately test a freshly written code on a vehicle, which is just a short walk away.

BMW also claims that it is the first company in the auto industry to have implemented agile working model systematically and universally for an entire specialist area, from research phase all the way to series production.

Image: BMW’s new autonomous driving campus in Unterschleißheim. Photo: Courtesy of BMW Group.