At the 2022 Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, German automaker BMW showcased its new technology that allows a car to change color in front of your eyes with the push of a button.
At CES 2022, automaker BMW presented the iX Flow featuring E-Ink electronic ink. The concept would allow owners to change their car’s exterior color with the push of a button. BMW said the iX Flow SUV at CES includes a specially developed body envelope, stimulated by electrical signals to change the color of the exterior of the vehicle.
According to BMW, the surface coating contains millions of microcapsules, each about the diameter of the thickness of a human hair. The microcapsules contain negatively charged white pigments and positively charged black pigments. Electrical stimulation causes white or black pigments collect on the surface of the microcapsule, which changes the color of the vehicle.
What could E-Ink technology be used for on a car?
The iX Flow SUV uses E-Ink electronic ink electrophoretic technology to change exterior color almost immediately. The color change effect can go from front to back, and can even create shapes like spots or stripes.
BMW says its E-Ink technology could be used in a variety of situations to help owners better understand their vehicles. For example, it can provide a quick and easy way to communicate the status of the vehicle, for example if it’s fully charged while you wait at a charging station. In addition, in a carsharing situation, the technology would make it possible to know whether the vehicle has been prepared and cleaned for use. Finally, if you lose your color-changing BMW in a parking lot, her whole body may start blinking so you can spot her easily without waking children or scaring animals with loud modes.
As a reminder, the BMW iX Flow technology is not the first product to use E-Ink technology. Indeed, it is abouta technology more commonly used in e-readers such as the new Amazon Kindle Paperwhite 2021 or on an old Pebble watch.