Virtual reality makes design of vehicles a tangible experience

BMW Group

Uniform platform for AR, VR and 3D real-time use cases

From planning to production

The BMW Group is developing a uniform platform for AR, VR and 3D real-time use cases based on the Unreal Engine in order to make the entire vehicle design process a virtual experience and to visualise it. From planning to production. Engineers and designers can experience the vehicle at an early stage just as customers will later.

It is also possible to collaborate on the virtual model regardless of location, which saves having to build hardware prototypes. Networked functions in new vehicle types can be displayed in the context of the vehicle, such as light and sound in connection with climate or seat settings.

Christian Langenmair,
Head of Mobile at MaibornWolff
  • “Our technical expertise, combined with agile software development and communication, is one of the success factors in the project.”

Design & virtual product experience

MaibornWolff supports the BMW Group in the project “Design & Virtual Product Experience”. In addition to applications for collaborative VR use cases, the task is to provide plugin-based process support built on the Unreal Engine. The individual plugins are designed to make specific steps of the process easier and more efficient, while the connection of plugins creates synergies when working with the Unreal Engine.

For example, one plugin can be used to first import a vehicle model from a central database, while another plugin supports the discussion of the vehicle in the team through variant control. In this way, users can put together tool environments that are adapted to their area of responsibility.

Digital & virtual product creation

Another focus is on the integration of the Digital and Virtual Product Creation platform with other BMW Group systems. For this purpose, a scalable and expandable infrastructure is being developed in the cloud.

MaibornWolff with key role

MaibornWolff has been one of the preferred partners in this endeavour since 2019. Our team took on a key role in the conception, implementation and roll-out of the UE plugin-based strategy, which supports the specialist departments in many steps of the design and development.