BMW Mini has announced its prototype Augmented Vision goggles which, at first glance, look and sound like a late April Fools' jokes – they're real.

The BMW Mini Augmented Vision goggles will be shown off at the Auto Shanghai show intelligently connecting to the car for screens that only the wearer can see. But they're for use outside of the car too. Presuming you don't get laughed off the streets.

While driving, the goggles can project navigation information with arrows "on" the road, speed and local limits, points of interest, messages from a connected smartphone which the car reads out, Augmented Parking for distance to curb and X-Ray View to see outside the car. For example you'll be able to see through the doors before opening them, potentially, into a pillar.

When driving, data like speed will always be in the same place, above the wheel, as if it were another screen – but one that only the wearer can see. Open parking spaces are also highlighted somehow so the driver can spot a space more easily.


While BMW Mini does not talk much on how the goggles are used outside the car presumably the navigation information and connected smartphone messages can work on foot also.

At the moment this project between BMW Mini and Qualcomm Connected Experiences is just a prototype but, presumably, this could become something people buy with their next car.

"We are proud to have helped develop a breakthrough augmented reality interface between eyewear and the automobile," says Jay Wright, VP Qualcomm Connected Experiences, "BMW Mini Augmented Vision offers a compelling example of what’s possible today, and what we can expect in the future."

READ: Hub by Premier Inn: What it’s like to spend a night in the app-controlled, high-tech hotel room of the future