- caring car mode comes in a recent over-the-air update to bmw vehicles and is found on the idrive infotainment system's menu.
- drivers can choose to have their car adjust settings for a vitalize or relax experience.
- we tested this unusual feature on the 2019 bmw x7 xdrive40i.
self-care. it's a phrase that brings to mind different things for different people—and as one would assume, it's not the usual subject of car and driver automotive coverage. but in a recent over-the-air software update, bmw added its own version of self-care into its cars. bmw calls it caring car mode, and it's located as part of the infotainment menu.
bmw drivers now have the option to set their cars to vitalize or relax modes. the choice of setting automatically adjusts the temperature of the cabin, changes the music, and opens or closes the windows depending on what the driver is looking for.
vitalize mode lowers the air conditioning and pulses the fan speed, opens the windows (and sunroof if equipped), and plays canned music with a fast pace. relax mode does the opposite, playing soothing canned music, but with constant fan speed. the program automatically stops after three minutes, which is probably the point at which it might have stopped being relax and started being annoying.