BMW i8 Hydrogen Fuel Cell Research Vehicle

The integration of BMW eDrive technology into an increasing number of models from the BMW brand, the ongoing development of combustion engines with TwinPower Turbo technology and the concept of a Fuel Cell Electric Vehicle (FCEV) focused on the long term have helped the BMW Group prepare for the challenges of the future. Underpinning all these developments are flexible architectures and an increasing variety in drive system technology: efficient petrol and diesel engines, plug-in hybrid and battery-electric drive systems and, in the future, hydrogen fuel cells will provide effective technology for each individual segment and set of requirements.

The BMW Group test facility in Miramas: the ideal environment for
testing innovative drive system and chassis technology. For almost 30 years the Miramas proving grounds in southern France have played a central role in the development of BMW cars and motorcycles. With its stable climate and wide range of usage possibilities.

The Autodrome de Miramas was bought by BMW France in 1986 and has since been consistently extended and updated. As well as test tracks measuring a combined length of more than 50 kilometres (31 miles), Miramas now also features ultra-modern office and workshop facilities for the development and fine-tuning of new models and technological components. At the heart of the testing facility is the erstwhile race circuit’s five-kilometre (three-mile) asphalt oval. Added to which, a motorway ring for high-speed tests, various handling courses and hills, plus switchback bends, rough roads and off-road sections can all be used for individual trials and extended testing programmes. Among the special features of the site are a reproduction of a section of the Nürburgring. Renewal work on the Petit Ovale at Miramas included adding a carbon copy of the ’Ring’s Caracciola-Kurve (aka Karussell) corner. The ultra-challenging section of the proving grounds has since provided the ultimate yardstick for the optimisation and fine tuning of chassis components and electronics control systems.

Source: BMW Press

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