BMW have announced that Level 3 automated driving, which allows drivers to take their hands off the steering wheel and temporarily divert their attention away from the road, will soon be available in the new BMW 7 Series as of next spring.

Designed to assume the entire task of driving, the automated driving function will be offered exclusively in Germany priced at €6,000.

This means that German driver will be legally allowed to use this autonomous vehicle system on German roads in 2024.

BMW Personal Pilot L3 is the name of the new self-driving function which will enable the driver to go fully autonomous and remove their hands from the wheel in certain situations.

This new function can be ordered for the new BMW 7 Series (excluding the i7 eDrive50 and i7 M70 xDrive) from December to be fitted in vehicles from next March.

The technology allows drivers to redirect their focus to other in-vehicle activities when travelling at up to 60 km/h (37 mph) on motorways with structurally separated carriageways.

The announcement of this function will make BMW Group the first carmaker to offer both Level 2 driving function where the hands can be taken off the steering wheel and a Level 3 system.

The crucial difference between Level 2 and Level 3 is that with Level 2 (partially automated driving) responsibility continues to lie with the driver at all times. Whenever the BMW Highway Assistant is in use, drivers must watch what is happening on the road and be able to take over the task of driving again at all times.

The BMW Personal Pilot L3 for Level 3 highly automated driving in the BMW 7 Series gives drivers the option of concentrating on secondary in-vehicle activities away from what is happening on the road.

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