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BMW’s Latest Art Car Is a Matte Black Augmented Reality Racing Machine

Cao Fei is the first Chinese designer commissioned by the German car manufacturer.
BMW Art Car #18 by Cao Fei: Augmented Reality still. BMW Art Car based on the BMW M6 GT3. All images courtesy © BMW AG and Cao Fei Studio

The latest BMW art car debuted at the Mingsheng Art Museum in Beijing on May 31, and it's designed by Cao Fei, the first Chinese artist commissioned for the ongoing project. The German car manufacturer is known for routinely recruiting top names from the art world to put their own stamp on one of their luxury vehicles. Fei's distinct design will feature augmented, technical elements in the company's 18th iteration, covering a M6 GT3.


Fei, a native of Guangzhou, China, presents a uniquely modern aesthetic choice by incorporating reality and virtuality into her design. The swirling vision of the art car, featured in the film stills portion of the project, are temporal and mystic, floating into the ether like the visualization of an automobile's soul, or least its energy in horsepower. BMW shares that the artist's concept involved ancient Chinese philosophy and drew upon Fei's interest in creating parallel universes. Overall, Fei's art car presentation is made up of three parts: a video depicting the soot-black, matte-textured vehicle in an alternate realm; an AR component, viewable in a complementary app, featuring dancing colorful lights over the car; and finally the physical version of the car, a sleek racing machine.

Check out more images of the latest BMW art car below:

BMW Art Car #18 by Cao Fei: Unmanned, video, 4min51sec, film still © BMW AG and Cao Fei Studio

BMW Art Car #18 by Cao Fei: Unmanned, video, 4min51sec, film still © BMW AG and Cao Fei Studio

Portrait of the artist, Cao Fei. Photo: Myrzik and Jarisch

To see more art from Cao Fei, visit her website.


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