MUNICH -- The futuristic autonomous, highly connected Vision Next 100 concept car shown last week hints at BMW's future direction into increased connectivity, says its CEO.
"At the BMW Group, we are always on a quest for the best solution," said CEO Harald Krueger. "It is part of our DNA."
At its earnings press event on Wednesday, March 16, BMW is expected to announce a major foray into connectivity and digitalization as part of its strategy through 2025.
"Future mobility will connect every area of people's lives," Krueger said. "And that's where we see new opportunities for premium mobility."
Krueger gave only hints of what he'll present, but said the Vision Next 100 demonstrates the kind of technologies that will be on the road in the next 20 to 30 years.
"For a better quality of life, the BMW Group is going to turn data into intelligence. Soon, our cars will be digital chauffeurs and personal companions. They will anticipate what we want to do and make our lives easier for us."
Krueger also underlined BMW's commitment to electric cars -- as demonstrated by the company's investment in the i subbrand that developed the i3 city car and i8 plug-in hybrid. He was questioned whether last year's sales of i cars was a disappointment and whether BMW would mount a true competitor to Tesla.
"We believe in electro-mobility," Krueger said, underlining that nearly 30,000 i3 cars were sold worldwide last year. "E-mobility is a marathon, not a sprint," and the industry needs incentives from individual countries to increase sales, he said.
Krueger spoke before BMW's celebration of its 100-year anniversary held at the Olympiahalle on March 7 and attended by about 2,000 people, including former and current BMW executives, German politicians, dealers, suppliers and employees.