The Nissan ZEOD RC racer will see the first application of new rear-view camera technology
10 March 2014

Nissan has developed a rear-view system which allows the driver to switch between a conventional rear-view mirror and an LCD screen.

An LCD screen is integrated into the structure of the rear-view mirror and integrates with a high-resolution camera mounted at the back of the car. At the press of a button, the driver can switch between a conventional rear view ‘reflection’ and the screen showing a view unobstructed by the C-pillars, rear-seat passengers or luggage.

Nissan says the technology provides the driver with a “better view for a more comfortable driving experience”.

The 'Smart' rear-view mirror helps to provide a better rear view with a clear image possible in a variety of weather conditions, including rain and snow. The image-processing technology provides a glare-free image in sunrise or sunset conditions, or when being followed by a vehicle with main beam headlights.

Nissan chief Andy Palmer said it "offers the possibility of new and exciting designs for our upcoming models because 'Smart rearview mirror' is an alternative to a very wide rear window for good visibility. We'll have the flexibility to create new shapes, and to further improve aerodynamics for better fuel efficiency."

The first application of the Smart rear-view mirror will be in the Nissan ZEOD RC racer, which will compete at the Le Mans 24 Hour in the summer. The technology will launch in the Japanese market in the coming months.

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Comments
8

10 March 2014
Great idea what with the rear view via the standard mirror in modern cars being obstructed by headrests, as well as rear glass area being too small due to structural requirements.

Now, make it swivel vertically via a roller on the steering wheel so that it can show the area just behind the vehicle at ground level and it will be be gadget of the year; decade, even.

10 March 2014
Mirrors are outdated, their purpose can be better served by new technology. Hopefully wing mirrors will soon become a thing of the past. A camera and internal monitor will be better than a vulnerable external mirror that has become expensive with electrical heating and adjustment to minimise the deficiencies of something that gets covered in rain and dirt, plus raises fuel use and noise. It should be a cheaper system as well.

TS7

10 March 2014
...had a rear view mirror that (partially) converted to a viewscreen for the rear mounted camera when reverse was engaged. The tech on this is really nothing special.

10 March 2014
LCD screens last about 5 years (basic computer monitors) before being replaced as they become dull or start losing colour. And cameras, screens and electronics are alot more expensive than mirror glass, with a stick to adjust them once or twice a year.

So when the camera/screen breaks a few years down the the road, I wonder how many owners will be held ransom to a dealer fit repair for hundreds of pounds.

Worse, I wonder how many owners will just do without mirrors as they can't afford the repair.

Or maybe, they will retrofit a mirror!

I can't help feeling this complication is not for the benefit of the consumer, but the bank balances and profits of the dealers and manufacturers.

I wonder how long before cars become like cameras - disposable wen they break in 2-3 years.

10 March 2014
TS7 wrote:

...had a rear view mirror that (partially) converted to a viewscreen for the rear mounted camera when reverse was engaged. The tech on this is really nothing special.

Yes, Ford use a similar system, as do some others (Kia?), but I guess the difference here is that it offers an alternative to the full view of a rear view mirror. It will certainly allow manufacturers to forget about any rear visibility issues when styling their vehicles, but, personally, I prefer conventional mirrors and a decent glass area. As topsecret says, I think its more for the manufacturers benefit than the consumers.

10 March 2014
Its alright until the camera gets dirty......

10 March 2014
My KIA Optima already use something like this already. When reverse is selected the rear view mirror turns into a reverse camera. Not sure if using the camera all the time is a good thing or not but as a reversing aid its fantastic.

Optima2

11 March 2014
I have a feeling this system uses LED not LCD technology.
An OLED display can be transparent and could integrate a glass mirror panel. The quality is also better.
I would need to see more official specs from Nissan to be clear about it.

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