Color-Changing BMW Will Make You Look Twice

Technically, it’s more of a gray-scale shift that complete color change, but the BMW iX Flow electric SUV concept definitely will turn heads.

The concept was revealed at the CES Show. At first glance, it looks similar to other iX crossovers until you see the color shift. The wrap relies on E Ink technology which BMW says is embedded in a wrap that “is tailored precisely to the contours of the all-electric Sports Activity Vehicle.”

How does it work? The E Ink wrap has millions of tiny capsules on each panel. Each capsule contains negatively charged white pigments and positively charged black pigments. Electric currents then bring one of the pigments to the surface which creates different shades. Once the color change is achieved, the panels stay that color without needing additional electrical charge.

The car is equivalent to a mood ring of sorts, according to BMW’s Head of Project, Stella Clarke who said, “This gives the driver the freedom to express different facets of their personality or even their enjoyment of change outwardly, and to redefine this each time they sit into their car. Similar to fashion or the status ads on social media channels, the vehicle then becomes an expression of different moods and circumstances in daily life.”

On a more practical note, the color changing ability can make the vehicle more comfortable and even fuel efficient. For example, on hot days, a white body could reflect heat. This would keep the interior more comfortable along with reducing the need for air conditioning. The same applies for keeping the body panels black in the winter to absorb more heat and help keep the cabin warm.

At this time, BMW has not announced any plans to bring this sort of technology to production.

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