Do you have a BMW with iDrive Operating System 7.0, and software that was updated in July of this year or more recently? If so, you’ll be among those who get to witness a special new year greeting directly from BMW starting December 31. It’s as simple as starting the car, and clicking on a special banner that will appear at the top of the center iDrive control display. The banner will appear when starting the car a total of three times.
BMW owners will also be able to cue up the special message through activating their BMW’s Intelligent Personal Assistant by saying, “Hey BMW, Happy New Year.” The animated message from BMW will be displayed on the main iDrive control display, and is coordinated with, “aptly chosen” background music, and ambient lighting in the BMW’s interior.
The new year greeting will be accessible from December 31 through January 7 in 41 countries around the world, with the odd exception of Germany. The message follows one sent out starting on December 24 celebrating Christmas, which is available for seven days. To see if your BMW (with modern, up-to-date software described above) got the message, either start the car and wait for the banner to appear, or bring it up by saying, “Hey BMW, Merry Christmas.” The animated messages can also be accessed by using the vehicle menu within iDrive during their available time frame.
Given the functionality of BMW’s iDrive system and ConnectedDrive, one has to wonder how long BMW has had this capability, especially when considering just how active and enthusiastic Tesla has been in terms of pushing updates and interesting new features, gimmicks, and easter eggs to its cars.—Alex Tock
[Photos courtesy BMW AG.]