Bayer MaterialScience and the BMW Group, together with a number of partners, have collaborated to develop car display panels in the latest BMW 7 Series. The advancement which they call 'black panel technology' are based on surfaces made of Marnot® polycarbonate films and make the displays and controls visible only when needed by the driver. The polycarbonate films were supplied by Baver MaterialScience. The multi-functional instrument panel for the cockpit and the audio/air-conditioning control systems in the instrument panel and the rear are designed to have a black, matt, completely homogeneous surface when the displays hidden behind them are not activated. Unlike conventional backlighting technology, even the contours of the displays do not stand out. As a result, the interior of the BMW 7 Series exudes a feeling of clarity, elegant functionality and familiarity. The films also had to have antireflective surfaces to ensure good legibility of the displays and backlit symbols, while delivering excellent abrasion and scratch resistance.
The large-format multi-functional instrument panel is covered with a thin light-transmitting sheet made of Marnot® XL GU 90. It is produced by BÖ-LA Siebdruck- und Kunststofftechnik GmbH based in Radevormwald, Germany, and fitted with a removable protective film. A control system in the instrument panel, which is known as the centre stack and incorporates the radio and air conditioning functions, carries the design of the multi-functional instrument panel to the interior. The surface of the centre stack is made of Marnot® XL GU 130 and is produced by Albea Kunststofftechnik GmbH using the film insert moulding (FIM) process. The developer and system supplier for the entire centre stack was Preh GmbH from Bad Neustadt a. d. Saale, Germany.