The unveiling of BMW’s 2024 5 Series is causing some side eye.
Entering its eighth generation, the BMW 5 Series offers a revolutionary new feature that allows drivers to change lanes just by looking into its side view mirrors.
With Active Lane Change Assist, an optional part of the Highway Assistant Level 2 driver assistance suite, your car can automatically change lanes for you. Here’s how it works:
- The system first prompts you that a lane change is suggested. This might be because you’re approaching a slower car or because your lane is ending, and you need to merge.
- With Active Lane Change Assist, the driver simply looks at the side view mirror, and the car will change lanes — as long as it’s safe.
Other vehicles, such as GM’s SuperCruise system, have an automated lane change option, but they require you to accept the prompt using the turn signal stalk physically. BMW takes that step out of the process, letting your eyes do the steering.
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Not everyone is a fan of this new feature. MotorTrend, for example, questioned the safety of eye-controlled steering.
“We’d be lying if we weren’t slightly concerned,” the auto magazine wrote. “The reality is that it’s not an arduous process to move your hand a few inches and touch the stalk, and there’s a lot less potential for the car to misinterpret the action. We’ll have to try this system out once the car is available for review to see for ourselves.”
First electric 5-Series
The eye-controlled lane change system wasn’t the only major news to come out of BMW this week. The German automaker also announced the debut of two all-electric 5 Series models.
The i5 eDrive40, with 335 horsepower, has an EPA range of about 300 miles per charge. The sticker price starts at $67,795.
On the higher end is the 5 M60 xDrive, a two-motor, 590-horsepower machine. You’ll have to shell out at least $85,095 for this one.