By the time you're miles deep into a huge queue, traffic information on the radio or warnings on the sat nav can seem like a bit of an insult to your intelligence.
That's why the most effective solution is one that BMW will be offering to all new European BMW buyers as part of its ConnectedDrive technology, previewed on cars like the Vision ConnectedDrive concept
shown at the 2011 Geneva Motor Show. The Real Time Traffic Information (RTTI) system will be available at no extra cost for buyers specifying the BMW Professional navigation system with Bluetooth and telematics.
Current Traffic Message Channel (TMC) information isn't always quick enough to prevent you getting caught in a jam, but RTTI can deliver traffic information in real time to give you the best chance of planning an alternative route.
The info is updated every three minutes and is accurate to distances as short as a third of a mile, so you'll be able to see whether the traffic is improving or worsening.
This also allows the navigation system to pick alternative routes, accurately deciding which one will be most efficient for avoiding traffic congestion.
The system also delivers information to the BMW Routes website that allows users to plan journeys before they set off, available over any internet-enabled device.
BMW hasn't yet announced whether the technology will be available to buyers in the U.S. but ConnectedDrive options are becoming available all the time
- so it can't be too long before American buyers can avoid traffic just as efficiently as their European counterparts.