BMW app delivers virtual test drive to promote its first electric car BMW i3

BMW’s first electric car, the BMW i3 is to be promoted through an interactive 360 degree film developed for smartphones and tablet audiences, aiming to offer a virtual test drive of the vehicle.

The campaign, created by WCRS, Mustard Films and Tool has been developed to promote the BMW i3, the first model within the BMW i range, which is a lightweight engineering and premium sustainable materials, with the pure pleasure and thrill of fully-electric driving.

BMW wanted to make an advert as innovative as they believe the car is. ‘Virtual test-drive’, is an interactive film for smartphone and tablets shot by Emmy Award-winning Director, Jason Zada.

Jason Zada, director at Mustard/Tool, said: “‘Become Electric’ is a step in the evolution of storytelling and brand engagement. It’s an interactive film that puts you in complete control of saving the world. You are at the wheel of the new BMW i3 electric car for almost the entire film, all while being immersed in a big Hollywood-style movie.”

To achieve 360° interactivity, Tool’s developers used OpenGL to project the film on a sphere. OpenAL was leveraged to integrate multiple layers of audio – including background music, ambient sounds and dialogue. This gave a 360 degrees of sight and sound.

Ross Neil, creative director at WCRS, said:

The BMW i3 is a truly amazing car that is right at the cutting edge of innovation and so we wanted to create communications that reflected this. Our idea was to create the first ever 360° virtual test drive film. By producing it as an App for mobile and tablets we were able to put the viewer in control and give them a unique, personalised experience that would entertain as well as allow them to experience the car, ultimately helping them on their own journey to Become Electric.

The app containing the film delivers an experience somewhere between film, advertising, gaming and digital marketing also letting viewers test drive the car.

The app will be available on the Apple platform from 9 September with an Android version to follow. Viewers are prompted to ‘Become Electric’ and sign up to experience a real test drive.

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