Even though BMW is aggressively working on self-driving cars, its executives believe “large-scale” production of those cars remains a ways off.
“We believe that, at the moment, the technical and social challenges involved are still too great,” said Klaus Froehlich, a BMW board member responsible for development, at BMW’s annual accounts press conference in Munich. “In addition, adjustments must be made to the legal implications for customers and manufacturers.”
BMW and Chinese search giant Baidu are working on a joint project to produce a self-driving car for the Chinese market.
The car is said to be in development since 2013, but no launch date has been communicated.
BMW has been testing self-driving cars since 2011 when a 330i was put to test on a closed circuit. The autonomous driving project continued in 2014 with a 6 Series Gran Coupe performing self-drifts, and last year, a self-driving BMW i3. In 2011 a test vehicle managed the drive from Munich to Nuremberg without any driver intervention. The company also previewed a series of autonomous functions last year at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.