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BMW: THE DIGITAL CAR PROJECT

Group 4

the BMW group produced 1. BMW produces motorcycles under BMW Motorrad and Husqvarna brands. . motorcycle and engine manufacturing company founded in 1916.History of BMW     Bayerische Motoren Werke AG (BMW) (English: Bavarian Motor Works) is a German automobile.481.253 automobiles and 112. In 2010. It also owns and produces the Mini marque. and is the parent company of Rolls-Royce Motor Cars.271 motorcycles across all its brands.

BMW Journey .

Korean and German Car makers. Competition was strongest between Mercedes Benz and BMW. .  Fickle consumer tastes: The predictability made the competitive environment harder to predict. Japanese .    Competitors: The competition was strong among US. Product development cycle had become an important factor to leverage competition.What were the competitive challenges in the Automotive industry when the case was written?  From the Consumer point of view: By the Mid- 1990’s the Automobile market had become Consumer driven.

engineers.How is BMW affected?     Running in profits but had slower product development cycles. Risk of the New method failing. Hard negotiations with the designers. It was decided to reduce the Product development cycle time by 50% and the project was named as Digital Car Project . . and Middle-level managers.

Question 2 How would you evaluate the product development process at BMW? Why does the senior management want to reengineer the product development process? .

Emphasis on intricate designing. Modelers were those who had prior experience in the field and had mastered the art. Designers handpicked from art schools and other industrial design schools.The product development process  Typically a 5 year cycle.involving development of package and the skin.    .

Design process  The first part included creation of hand sketched designs from pencil. 1922 model by Paul Jaray . charcoal or water colors.

.Clay Models  After the paper designs the company created clay models of the size of 1:2.5 for better understanding the design.

A few life size clay models were made to choose from.Clay Models  A final choice of design was made after discussing on the basis of feedback received. .

They considered it as a reason for their superior designs ultimately leading to success over competitors.  The digitization would help in speeding up refinements in the design process itself.  .Digitization of models  Digital sensors were used to digitize data on the models to be used for computer aided design process. BMW relied heavily on handcraftsmanship.

The help of computer based processes ensured that parallel processing of information could be done. .   Identification of potential problems could be done much earlier in the development schedule.Evolution of product development process  The number of prototyping cycles was reduced to 2.

. Market demand was changing and people wanted new models at a faster rate than before.   Japanese and US competitors were working hard to reduce lead time in order to better suit the customer needs.Evaluating the product development process  Superior handcraftsmanship demanded extra time which could prove to be hazardous.

  .Evaluating the product development process  BMW had typically high fixed costs. Extending current process could mean reduction in sales and an inability in recovering high costs. The number of units produced of the same model were less and they relied on cashing their models for a longer period of time.

   .Reengineer the product development process  Reengineering aimed at reducing the product development time by 50%. The actual number of prototypes generated were higher. They aimed at streamlining their existing engineering processes. Computer aided simulations to be implemented right up to the brainstorming stage.

Question 3 What are the risks if BMW changes its product development process quickly? What are the risks of changing too slowly? .

Risk: BMW changes its product development process quickly      Holding back data One generation of prototypes might be sufficient to identify all potential design problems Employee dissatisfaction Barrier to Creativity Time Management .

Risk: BMW changes its product development process slowly    Delay in time to market Giving competitive advantage to others Losing market share to competitors .

they should implement the process . quality product is BMW’s USP  Change is not absolutely critical as revenues are growing  After gaining experience and learning from mistakes.Q4: How to implement New Development Process  Derivative 3 series project or flagship 7 series project?  BMW should go follow more conservative approach and use derivative 3 series project for implementing NDP  BMW management is not familiar with the new process and structure of the organization may not be prepared to support the new process  Changing rapidly can result in compromise in quality for speed of production.