Today, the world faces alarming environmental challenges that pose serious threats to people’s health and livelihoods. According to experts, carbon dioxide (CO2) levels in the atmosphere are at their highest as the world experiences the warmest years since 2000. Climate change and rapid urbanization call for the urgent creation and promotion of sustainable solutions.
Globally, the automotive industry is one of the biggest energy consumers. In the Philippines, CO2 emission levels from vehicles are increasing along with rapid population growth. In the line with this, vehicle manufacturers are confronting the challenge of finding sustainable solutions that directly address the worsening environmental condition.
“BMW has always envisioned itself as the frontrunner in developing sustainable mobility solutions. Over the years, BMW has responded not just to the changing consumer demands but more importantly to global challenges through constant introduction of new premium mobility concepts focused on sustainability,” says Maricar Parco, President of Asian Carmakers Corporation (ACC), the official importer and distributor of BMW cars in the Philippines.
Since the early 1970’s, the concept of sustainability guided BMW in preparing for the future of mobility by implementing technology projects, as evidenced in their line-up of products and services. In 2014, the group targeted investments in ultra-energy efficiency technologies in their vehicle lineup that solidified its leadership in the global luxury vehicle segment.
Over the years, the company pursued a balance between promoting mobility and protecting the environment through product innovations that still delivers the promise of sheer driving pleasure. Back in 2000, BMW launched the BMW EfficientDynamics which provides measurable benefits for the climate, resources, and customers. The CO2 emissions of BMW vehicles were significantly reduced by 30% between 1995 and 2010.
Taking sustainability a step further, BMW also developed the BMW i electric vehicle range as part of Project i, an initiative to develop sustainable and future-oriented mobility concepts. BMW also began to introduce Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicles (PHEV) to their standard vehicle lineup.
Rethinking mobility from the ground up, BMW decided to use Carbon Fiber Reinforced Plastic (CFRP) to construct the foundation of BMW i vehicles – BMW i3 and i8. This material is as strong as steel, but half the weight, allowing for incredibly responsive acceleration, impressive handling, and undeniable efficiency.
As a plug-in hybrid, the BMW i8 combines the performance of a sports car with the consumption of a compact car. It was hailed as the “Luxury Green Car of the Year” by the Washington Auto Show in 2015. The BMW i8 is a mixture of light materials – aluminum, carbon, and high-end plastics, structured with a maximum strength that resulted in a 1,485 kg weight, for less fuel consumption. The powerful plug-in hybrid system with the combination of BMW eDrive technology and a BMW TwinPower Turbo 1.5-litre, 3-cylinder petrol engine bring together the benefits of an electric motor and a petrol engine to produce an outstanding driving experience. It also featured a unique stream-flow design, partly-closed kidney grille, air vent control, and aero flaps that significantly reduce air resistance.
As the iconic automotive brand celebrates its centennial this year, ACC participated in the 6th Philippine International Motor Show (PIMS) and presented for the first time to the local public, the BMW i8. The BMW i8, on display at the BMW Pavilion, is a representation of innovation. The progressive automobile may not yet be available for purchase in the Philippines, but the brand sees the potential to strengthen its thrust towards sustainable mobility. Under the theme, “Steer the Future,” the 6th PIMS formed part of a yearlong celebration and served as the perfect platform to showcase BMW’s vision for sustainable mobility for the Philippines in the next 100 years.
“Sustainability at BMW is not just a word; it is our supreme guiding principle. This is why we designed the entire life cycle of BMW i vehicles in line with the value of maximum conservation of resources. We demonstrated on many occasions throughout our history that we are capable of learning fast and taking bold steps in shaping the future of mobility,” says Parco.
BMW’s success was built on long-term thinking and responsible action. The company established ecological and social sustainability throughout its value chain, comprehensive product responsibility, and a clear commitment to conserving resources as an integral part of its business strategy.