The increasingly “ugly” BMW is living up to its creed

A few months ago, BMW officially released the 2024 BMW 5 Series. The internal design team rarely reduced the size of the "double kidney" front grille and also brought a new design language to the BMW 5 Series.

▲ 2024 BMW i5

BMW design chief Domagoj Dukec revealed in an interview with the media that the internal team has reached a consensus on deciding the design direction of the air intake grille. Taking the 5 Series as the dividing line, BMW will use two sets of design languages ​​with different styles in the future, respectively for its high-end flagship and mass-market models.

Domagoj Dukec believes that as a high-end car brand, BMW's model products should follow the "luxury" principle. Users who love luxury goods do not like to be in an "unstable" state. Only classic, timeless and timeless designs can win the hearts of these users. BMW, which firmly believes in the principles of luxury goods, will adhere to the appearance Design a consistent strategy. Whether it is a fuel, hybrid or pure electric model, BMW uses the same design language in the same series of models to reduce the sense of fragmentation.

▲ BMW i5 M60

However, BMW’s “little thoughts” are hidden in the consistent design language. At the recent International Media Day in Portugal, Christopher Weil, head of BMW's exterior design, personally explained more design details about the new BMW 5 Series, from which we can discover BMW's deeper thinking on design.

BMW, which is getting more and more "ugly", is sticking to its design creed.

Showing difference, BMW’s “halo”

Christopher Weil talked about BMW's emphasis on traditional inheritance in the interview. The internal team will completely preserve BMW's "historical heritage." Some traditional iconic designs such as "double kidneys" and "Haw's Corner" will be used in the new 5 Series. The model has also been continued.

Interestingly, while retaining the iconic design, the BMW design team also used modern modification techniques to create more ingenious designs on these iconic parts.

▲Christopher Weil (right) video screenshot from: BMWBLOG

The biggest change comes from BMW's front grille, whose general outline is still the classic "double kidney" grille. But the difference is that while BMW intentionally narrows the size of the "double kidney grille", it also provides more grille style choices. On this generation of pure electric i5, BMW provides two different grille designs, one is the conventional silver vertical stripe style, and the other is the parallel stripe style applied to the sports version.

▲Silver vertical lines

▲Parallel stripes

It is worth mentioning that BMW’s design team also added an additional ring of luminous light strips at the edge of the air intake grille. When the driver turns on the headlights, the aperture of the grille will also be activated and light up. Christopher Weil said that after the facelift, the BMW 5 Series will be the first 5 Series model to adopt a halo design.

▲ Luminous light strips surrounding the outline of the grille

Another noticeable change occurred in the position of the headlights. BMW completely "abandoned" the classic prototype headlight design and used dual vertical linear light groups to replace the slightly curved light strips of the previous generation. Christopher Weil believes that the double vertical line headlights are "very important" for BMW, because too many peers are imitating BMW's headlight design, and BMW must make changes if it wants to continue to maintain its uniqueness.

▲Video screenshot from: BMWBLOG

The new dual vertical line light group design is called the "echo of the grille" internally at BMW. In a dark environment, the illuminated halo is like a circle of echoes from the grille hidden in the shadows, a light "additive" amplification It enhances the visual impact of the entire front face of the BMW 5 Series. In addition, the headlight lines and halo grille echo each other when lit, emphasizing the sporty feel of the new 5 Series.

▲ Comparison of E39 5 Series round headlights and 3 Series Pictures from: Motor1

The balance of sophistication and wildness

BMW has always been considered one of the most "Italian" German brands. We hope to incorporate more Italian elements into the new 5 Series.

Christopher Weil said this while standing in front of this BMW i5 M60.

BMW, which is good at creating a sense of sportiness, how can it find the balance between refinement and wildness in a pure electric model? Christopher Weil believes that the answer lies in the body lines. BMW’s internal design team has spent a lot of effort on the line design of this i5 M60.

▲ Video screenshot from: BMWBLOG

Compared with the simple lines of the body, the BMW design team left rough and radical lines on the front face. Coupled with the rendering of large areas of blackened parts, the front face of the i5 M60 is very "aggressive". Christopher Weil revealed that the arrangement of the complex lines and blackened components below is functional. In addition to distinguishing the sports version from the standard version, the team also added air curtains to the components to increase the air intake area at the front of the car. Improve the performance of sports models.

Christopher Weil also mentioned the slightly abrupt lidar on the front face. Although many people think that the position of the lidar is too abrupt, especially when it is on the black grille, BMW’s internal team believes that the position of the grille is to ensure the functionality of the lidar. The best location. LiDAR can be easily integrated into the silver grille of the standard version, but on the sports version, the slightly abrupt feeling can actually make car owners notice the functionality of LiDAR.

▲Video screenshot from: BMWBLOG

Moving his eyes to the side of the i5 M60, Christopher Weil specifically pointed out the position of the C-pillar. In order to create enough lightness of the body, BMW's internal team designed the C-pillar of the i5 to be very slim. It may not be enough to create a light and sporty feel with the Huo's corners and slim C-pillars. In order to incorporate more elegant atmosphere, BMW added two fold lines extending from the front of the car to the side of the body. The precise fold lines have good "fluidity" from all dimensions. BMW believes that this dynamic creation method is very refined.

Going to the rear of the car, the rear line of the i5 M60 has returned to the "wild" side. What is completely different from previous models is the trunk position of this car. From a visual point of view, the new trunk design is shorter and tighter. . This is closely related to BMW's design philosophy. Talking about the original intention of the vertical sharp line design of the i5 tail, Christopher Weil revealed that the inspiration came from BMW's past E12 5 Series model, and the BMW design team brought this retro element back. Weil said that BMW hopes to use modern techniques to recreate the retro, rather than "coldly" copying it mechanically. The internal team believes that they have accomplished this goal well with the i5 M60.

▲BMW E12 M535i

▲i5 M60 rear

If the appearance is a combination of retro and modernity, then inside the car, BMW has carried out modernization to the end. Sitting inside the i5 M60, BMW has almost removed most of the physical buttons and replaced them with more virtual buttons. Christopher Weil explained that dephysicalization would be a good way to express modernity. With the help of the central control screen and virtual buttons, certain functions can be controlled more accurately, and most in-car functions can be controlled by the central control + voice. bear.

▲Video screenshot from: BMWBLOG

The new BMW 5 Series is still in the whirlpool of controversy, but put aside the subjective feelings of beauty and ugliness. We can see from this major exterior change that BMW has always practiced its aesthetic creed without compromise, away from the controversial noise from the outside world.

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