Whether Gran Turismo, Forza, or any other racing video game franchise, you’ve likely played in the past few years, you’ve likely raced against your friends’ best lap times. Or you’ve raced a “ghost” version of your best lap, trying to hone your skills and improve technique.
BMW is making everyone’s favorite parts of virtual reality into actual reality with its new M Power app. Using either preprogrammed circuits or small makeshift courses like the ones used for weekend autocrosses, the M Power app taps into a BMW equipped with BMW Apps, whether or not it’s a high-powered “M” car, like the BMW M5 or BMW M6, and can record acceleration, lap times, and telemetric information for how a car handles. From there, times can be compared from friend to friend, seeing who got on the brakes quicker, whose car accelerated more quickly, and who lapped faster.
The app will allow drivers to compare lap times concurrently, using a “ghost” view, just like in video games.
As demonstrated in the above picture, it shows two drivers going around the Circuit of the Americas outside of Austin, Texas, which still looks like the middle of nowhere, according to the map view. Whoever BMW’s satellite provider is hasn’t updated its map in two years.
To use the app, BMW drivers will need BMW Apps, an iPhone with iOS 6, a USB cable or snap-in adapter, and patience. The BMW M Power app launches later this summer. But if you want to see how it works, check out the video below.