Showcasing a new design philosophy for BMW, the Concept CS has made its world debut at the Auto Shanghai 2007 motor show. Based on a bespoke platform, this unique car offers a vision of future BMW design rather than the first look at a new product. The BMW Concept CS is a four-seat premium vehicle that takes sophistication and luxury to a new level in the shape of a four-door coupe.
The BMW Concept CS was created by a team at BMW Design Development in Munich and comes with several exterior and interior design touches that could make their way on to future models. Its body width increases towards the rear to emphasise the sporting pretensions and wide track of the car. The BMW Concept CS is 400mm wider (1,978mm excl mirrors) and 67mm longer (5,106mm) compared to a standard wheelbase BMW 7 Series. Its sleek profile hinting at the low centre of gravity is confirmed by a roof line that, at its zenith, is just 1,367mm – 124mm lower than a BMW 7 Series.
While the Concept CS is a vision of one possible future, it still retains its core BMW DNA. A reworking of the classic kidney grille design aimed at improving air flow to the engine, currently a 5.0-litre V10, is incorporated, while the Concept CS features the traditional Hofmeister kink on the C-pillar and dual corona ring headlights. For the design study the double BMW headlamp arrangement features innovative LED reverse projection technology to provide the illumination. Rearward facing lights project a beam onto a smooth reflective surface, which in turn conveys a precise beam on the road ahead. Such technology provides a wide expanse of illumination without dazzling oncoming motorists.
To the side of the car flared wheel arches house uniquely-styled 21-inch light alloy wheels. The shoulder line present in all BMWs for visual effect is differentiated on the Concept CS with a break in this line at the rear quarter. A trailing shoulder line at the rear curves to mirror the line of the rear wheel arch. The door handles are fitted flush to the lower window ledge so the bodywork remains clean and without interruption. Access to the car is controlled via sensors which, when activated, move the door handles proud of the bodywork for use.
Inside and the BMW Concept CS is distinctive for the layered interior surfaces that create a unique interior style. The clearly defined joints between different pieces of the interior jigsaw serve a functional purpose. Gone are the traditional air vents present on current car centre consoles. These are replaced by slender gaps in between the centre console’s materials from where air is distributed. The same openings also provide an aperture for discreet lighting. The layered interior design concept, applied to the design of the double circular dials, provides clearly structured information on several visual levels.
A driver-oriented cockpit is consistent with BMW’s ethos of building drivers’ cars while a fresh look at ergonomics makes for superior comfort in the controls and displays. Ceramics as the material for the controls and instruments have also been introduced to BMW for the first time, while the driver and his three occupants are cocooned in innovative sports seats with a height-adjustable collar element. The new design of seat houses elements of the car’s entertainment and communication features for enhanced personalisation.
The BMW Concept CS is a design study. However, it is likely that key elements of the car could appear on forthcoming new models.