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June 3, 2019

Honda Will Use Cameras Instead of Side Mirrors in Their Production Car

Honda has confirmed that the side camera mirror system, seen on the prototype version of their first-ever all-electric vehicle, the Honda e will be standard when the car enters production. The technology, a first in the compact segment (and Honda) brings benefits in terms of styling, safety, aerodynamics, and refinement.

The technology, which Honda officially calls “Side Camera Mirror System” replaces conventional side view mirrors with compact cameras providing live images to two six-inch screens inside the vehicle. These screens are integrated at either end of the dashboard, ergonomically positioned to ensure a natural feel and vision for the driver.

The next-generation camera technology helps the car retain a modern, clean and simple design, and complements the stepless A-pillars and flush ‘pop out’ door handles also confirmed for the production version of the Honda e. Unlike conventional side mirrors, the cameras are contained within the width of the car and do not extend beyond the wheel arches.

As a result, not only is visibility improved, but also the compact cameras reduce aerodynamic drag by around 90 percent compared to conventional door mirrors—an approximate 3.8 percent improvement for the entire vehicle, benefiting its efficiency and range. Furthermore, there is a significant reduction of wind noise that’s normally generated by side mirrors at higher speeds.

The camera unit housings are also deliberately shaped to prevent water drops on the lens, with a water-repellent coating on the lens surfaces to deter any other residual water build up.

The optimal positioning of the Side Camera Mirror System cameras delivers a host of safety advantages, too. The driver can choose between “normal view” and “wide view” via the vehicle settings, extending the field of vision further than with conventional side mirrors and reducing blind spots by around 10 percent in normal view and approximately 50 percent in wide view. Further benefits are experienced when reverse gear is selected, guidelines appear on the side view screens in addition to an enhanced camera angle, expanding visibility.

Brightness levels on the interior displays are automatically adjusted based on the prevailing light conditions. Extensive testing and development have been undertaken to ensure that the system delivers superior visibility in poor weather, low-light, and night-time conditions with no dazzle or glare. This provides drivers with greater clarity and awareness of surrounding objects than conventional side view mirrors in all conditions.

Honda’s new compact electric car is a bold step for the brand in terms of design and technology, and forms part of the brand’s strategy to feature electrified technology in all cars it sells in Europe by 2025. It will feature a competitive range of over 200 kilometers and a ‘fast charge’ functionality providing 80 percent range in just 30 minutes.

Inside, the spacious, contemporary interior creates a comfortable lounge-like feel with an intuitive and customizable dual touch-screen interface to keep passengers engaged with their connected lifestyles. The car’s sporty rear-wheel drive set up, advanced electric powertrain and high-performance battery, delivers a fun, dynamic driving experience.

The production version of the Honda e will be unveiled later this year.

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