Modern cars are full of assists to help you with driving. However, it’s crucial to remember – they’re there to help, not to do it for you.
The BMW i4 Parking Assist (or Parking Assistant Plus) takes control of the steering, speed, and gears in the following parking circumstances:
- Bay parking
- Parallel parking
- Leaving parallel parking
Note that Parking Assist doesn’t work for leaving a bay parking space.
It uses ultrasonic sensors in the front and rear bumpers as well as down the sides.
This article explains how the BMW i4 Parking Assistant Plus works. As always, read your owner’s manual first!
Table of Contents
Does every BMW i4 have Parking Assist?
Parking Assist isn’t available on every i4 model. It’s dependent on the national market in which you live and the optional extras selected at purchase.
In some cases (depending on your pre-existing hardware), it might be possible for a software upgrade to enable Parking Assist. You should ask your local BMW EV expert about that.
How to use the BMW i4 Parking Assist
Consult your owner’s manual before using Parking Assist. This is vital, as it contains the complete list of safety considerations.
The instructions below are a brief summary of the owner’s manual.
- Drive along the row of parked cars at less than 22 mph. You should be a maximum of 5 ft from the stationary vehicles.
- Activate the Parking View. Do this by either
- Pressing the Parking Assist button (on the center console); or
- Choosing Parking from the iDrive menu.
- In Parking View, you’ll see a (((P))) symbol when the i4 is actively searching for parking spaces.
- You don’t need to press anything to activate this. It does it automatically.
- As you completely pass potential parking spaces, the touchscreen will display them on-screen.
- Tap the parking maneuver you’d like to complete.
- The green steering wheel symbol will illuminate with a P next to it.
- This means the system is in control of your parking maneuver.
- Follow the on-screen instructions.
- If necessary, you can use the brake to slow down. Other interventions will cancel the parking maneuver (see below).
- The i4 should activate the parking brake. Double-check this before leaving.
The BMW i4 Parking Assist will focus on giving you – the driver – enough space to get out. This might make it more difficult for passengers or drivers of the cars next to you.
As such, consider manually readjusting your position.
How to cancel the BMW i4 Parking Assist
There are a few ways to manually cancel the Parking Assist mid-manoeuvre. These include:
- By pressing the Parking Assist button; or
- By pressing the accelerator pedal; or
- By turning the steering wheel (or even gripping it); or
- By applying the parking brake; or
- By operating the gear selector.
Your i4 won’t engage the parking brake. You’ll be able to resume driving immediately.
Automatic canceling of a parking maneuver
Parking maneuvers also cancel automatically under certain circumstances. These include the following:
- If environmental conditions don’t allow (snow, ice, leaf build-up, etc.)
- On steep hills or at the edge of a sudden drop (such as a riverbank)
- If the road is uneven (such as gravel, stone slab, or cobbles)
- If pedestrians, animals, or other vehicles get in the way.
- When curbs are detected.
- When you hold the brake pedal for too long without moving.
- If you unfasten your seatbelt.
- Changing to another system in the iDrive.
- If the hood or trunk is open.
- If any of the other driver assistance programs intervene or turn on.
There’s also a maximum number of parking moves and a parking time that mustn’t be exceeded. In these cases, the maneuver will also cancel.
Resuming a parking maneuver after cancellation
If Parking Assist cancels, you can resume the maneuver (if safe and applicable) by following these instructions:
- Select the Park Assist button again.
- Follow the on-screen instructions.
When won’t BMW i4 Parking Assist work?
The BMW i4 Parking Assist can’t operate in many circumstances. These include (but aren’t limited to) the list below.
Of course, the i4 can’t park itself in special spaces (such as coin parking). It’s also crucial to remember that it parks based on surrounding objects – not the lines on the floor. This means it can’t park you if no other vehicles are present.
- Sharp bends or steep hills
- Angled parking spaces (those which aren’t perpendicular to the road)
- If you’re towing a trailer (of any kind)
A note on safety
The system has plenty of limitations. On certain occasions, it might not recognize suitable spots. It might also try to park you in an unsuitable location.
Overall, it can be summed up by stressing that this is an assist. It’s not a self-driving feature.
The BMW i4 Parking Assist doesn’t take away from your responsibility to always stay aware. Check all around you before using Parking Assist, and be ready to take control if necessary.
You can learn more about the BMW i4 Parking Assist in your owner’s manual, including the system limitations.
You’ll find a PDF copy of it below.