Building BMW Customisation Tool in UE4

Daniel Falci from gave an exclusive look at the production of the amazing BMW vehicle customisation tool.

Daniel Falci from gave an exclusive look at the production of the amazing BMW vehicle customisation tool, produced in UE4. All the materials here are created with the help of Substance Painter and Substance Designer. The model of the car itself has over 5 million of polygons. Check it out!


UE4 Car Project

Our main focus was to demonstrate that UE4 is capable to reach a photorealistic result in real-time for an automotive visualization. Also we tried to explore the maximum rendering power of the engine with interactive elements and touchscreen interfaces. We have started the first demo in November 2015.

It was interesting because a few months later began to appear other automotive visualization demos made in UE4. Our final version was completed in March, but we had a delay to launch the video.




Production Process

The car was made by the team and adapted for UE4. We have mapped each single piece. The model has approximately 5 million polygons and the illumination is static – scenario and car uses baked lightning.




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Most of the materials were created using Substance Painter and Substance Designer. The main challenge was to get in a realistic and natural result: we have tried to create a version with HDRI backgrounds but it has not worked for this case. The scenario itself is not so complex, we have used simple materials and a lot of noise and defects in reflections to give a natural appearance for the materials. The harmonic colors of the elements also played a key role in photorealistic result.The car shader was developed based in some example of forums and tutorials.





Interactive Elements

The interactions are all made with blueprints and UMG widgets. Our goals was to create an easy touchscreen interface with different scenario options. The first thing was to implement the camera system and we already had developed a similar camera solution for Villa Savoye project

After adapting the camera system for the car dimensions we have developed a new autofocus system using circular DOF. This way we can have a nice effect on every angle of the car.

To customize the car we had to separate each interactive part of the car to manipulate them via blueprint. The headlights and taillights can be turned on and off and the opacity of the headlight glass can be changed to simulate a black mask. To open/close the doors we have animated them and inserted some sounds. The wheels can be changed using different meshes and coloring them with silver or graphite colors. For the car colors we have created different material instances to change them easily.




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As the car was an independent component on the scene it was easy to insert it on different scenarios that we created to simulate different lightning conditions. A simple load level workflow is used to load each level.

We have not rigged the car as our main focus was only display and customize but we should make experiences with rigged and movable vehicles soon.





Commercial Application

We have first imagined this project as a sales stand facilitator where the client of an automaker could change and customize his future car using touchscreen/multitouch displays, but the applications are almost endless, it can be a prototype car showroom, a wheel manufacture tool, a B2B presentation tool or even a game. We think that Unreal Engine 4 has potential for a variety of areas, particularly with the growth of new technologies such as virtual reality. We have seen experiences created to be used in therapy, medicine, sports, television and many other areas.





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Comments 2

  • Edward

    How do you manage to unwrap a 5 million polygon model?



    ·4 years ago·
  • Hein

    i wnt this file :-D



    ·7 years ago·

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