Using recaptured braking power to recharge batteries has been a staple of hybrid technology since their start. BMW, a company which has not released a hybrid model as of yet, plans to put into production a new type of alternator in their newest 5 series models which will recharge the battery in the car under braking. The system also includes a new type of lead-acid battery that can take the extra quick blast of electricity in stride.
BMW plans to improve the efficiency of all their cars shortly as part of their Efficient Dynamics Program. The program will focus on improving efficiency in areas such as aerodynamics, tire technology and engine stop/start features. Expect to see systems such as these and the regenerative braking on other BMW models shortly.
[Source: Fifth Gear via Jalopnik]