BMW starts virtual production of its next-gen EVs using NVIDIA's Omniverse

The association enables faster, more efficient planning processes for next-generation vehicles.
Jijo Malayil
Factory planning revolution
Factory planning revolution


BMW has joined forces with NVIDIA to introduce new-age technologies in factory planning, setting a milestone in automotive manufacturing. The association has resulted in the German brand virtually initiating production of its next-generation all-electric Neue Klasse (new class) vehicles two years before its series production for the mass market. 

Debrecen is the BMW Group’s first facility to be planned and validated completely virtually using NVIDIA Omniverse and is scheduled to open in 2025.

 “Virtualisation and artificial intelligence are accelerating and refining our planning. With the various planning systems consolidated within a digital twin, our teams around the world can now work together in real-time and make decisions faster and on a more solid foundation,” said Milan Nedeljković, head of the production at BMW, said in a press statement

Virtual planning to be available by the end of March

The Omniverse, a computing platform by NVIDIA, enables individuals and teams to develop Universal Scene Description-based 3D workflows and applications.

Omniverse enables the collaboration of BMW teams across sites and time zones and supplements "planning and design of structures, production systems, and processes at an entirely new technological level." According to BMW, Omniverse will be made available to BMW experts in various technologies and planning departments by the end of the month. 

A step towards realizing BMW's iFACTORY concept

Implementing virtual planning in production processes is a step in the direction of the BMW Group’s next proposed iFACTORY setup. The concept is described as the "masterplan for the automotive production of tomorrow”.

The Neue Klasse of electric vehicles marks the transformation of production to the BMW iFACTORY. A project that began in 2020 involved 3D-scanning of the group’s vehicle and engine plants. "More than seven million square meters of indoor and 15 million square meters of outdoor production space have been scanned." The team is now finishing virtual planning for the 1.4 km2 production hall planned for the Neue Klasse in Debrecen.

The system allows production experts to "use live data in-house and with suppliers on the detailed planning and optimization of processes and individual systems – without compatibility issues." The shared reservoir of information, which includes structure and facility data, makes it easy for teams to retrieve and integrate with equipment and assembly line data. 

Also in the pipeline is the integration of items and part numbers for production materials to be made available. According to the firm, various areas of "logistics can be played through in real-time, photorealistic simulations and adapted as required." Enabled by Omniverse, BMW hopes that all future modifications will be evaluated, validated, and implemented in real-time.

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