Virtual reality is a bit of an over-used phrase. So far, it only really exists, perhaps, in hyper-expensive flight simulators.

We can get a taste of VR with googles and through the artificial feedback of console handsets, but really you need to be fully enclosed to get the real experience.

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And one place where we are fully enclosed is inside a car. Have no doubt, virtual reality is coming to a plush premium interior near you.

A couple of weeks ago I was pushed into the rear of a prototype 635d and driven around the Munich ring road. The car sounded like any other typical 635d – a sound I don’t find disagreeable.

Then the driver flicked a switch and the engine note changed to one more reminiscent of an M3. A refined, finely engineered sound. It was quite bizarre, but didn’t come across artificial. The new engine noise sounded entirely real. 

Do we need this latest innovation? The BMW blurb says ‘through Active Sound Design, diesel engines finally achieve the engine sound that their performance deserves’ but I can’t say the cultured straight six in the 6-series is in any way unpleasant.