BMW's autonomous luxury car will launch in 2021

A reminder that self-driving cars are a ways off for the rest of us.

During a shareholder meeting, BMW CEO Harald Krueger dropped some news about an upcoming autonomous car based on the already futuristic i8. The electric vehicle will be called the i Next and will launch in 2021. That date is a good indicator that most us won't see the benefits of self-driving automobiles well into the 2020s.

"In 2018, we will launch a BMW i8 Roadster. This will be followed in 2021 by the BMW i Next, our new innovation driver, with autonomous driving, digital connectivity, intelligent lightweight design, a totally new interior and ultimately bringing the next generation of electro-mobility to the road." Krueger said during the meeting.

BMW has recently been using the "Next" name for its futuristic projects. The Vision Next 100 concept vehicle shown above has many of the same features Krueger mentioned during the shareholder meeting. How close in design the i Next will be to that show automobile is a mystery.