The car interior as a ‘stage’

When the automobile industry began facing challenges related to fast-changing consumer electronics, the BMW Group reached out to Pilotfish to help tackle the issue.

Pilotfish took on projects to integrate these quickly developing consumer electronics into the interiors of the next generation of cars in ways that would meet customer expectations.

Pilotfish was assigned to be part of the design team for the entire dashboard and the tangible user interface of the next generation MINI in 2005. The project – which lasted for more than six years – started with a workshop to define the vision based on a white paper and continued until the new MINI was introduced, including the detailing and roll-out of all model variants that entered the market in the following years.

The main goal was to emphasise the brand’s legacy with a strong focus on British car heritage, but to also bring these values into the modern world, where production has become more global and new history is being created. While many brands like BMW tend to be driver focussed, MINI keeps the central console the centre for everyone in the car – not only for the person behind the wheel.

Pilotfish integrated BMW’s cross-brand platform strategy, which entails that the same electronic and mechanical modules are used across all brands, with the haptic interface elements to
meet MINI’s emotionally driven brand language.

“Pilotfish is like a good friend: They come when you need them, listen and lend a hand – without babbling around!”   

Georg Friedrich, Design Transformation Manager at BMW Group


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