Mirrors are an important part of the user interface in cars. Mirrors serve as a critical visual aid that allows the driver to observe the surroundings of the vehicle, providing essential situational awareness and contributing to safe driving.
Therefore, mirrors are considered an integral part of the user interface in cars.
In a typical car, there are three main types of mirrors that form part of the user interface:
The rearview mirror is typically located in the center of the windshield or attached to the windshield’s upper edge. It allows the driver to monitor the traffic and conditions behind the vehicle without having to turn their head, enabling them to make informed decisions while driving.
Day/night mirror: Some rearview mirrors have a day/night switch that allows the driver to adjust the mirror’s brightness, reducing glare from headlights of vehicles behind during night driving.
Rearview camera mirror
Some vehicles come equipped with a rearview camera mirror, which uses a rear-facing camera to capture the view behind the vehicle and displays it on a screen embedded in the rearview mirror. This provides the driver with a wider and unobstructed view of the rear area, which can be particularly helpful when the rear window visibility is compromised, such as when passengers or cargo obstruct the rearview.
Side mirrors, also known as wing mirrors or door mirrors, are typically mounted on the exterior of the car’s doors on both the driver and passenger sides. They provide a view of the traffic and conditions alongside the vehicle, allowing the driver to change lanes, merge, and navigate in traffic safely.
Heated mirrors: Some vehicles have heated side mirrors, which can help melt frost, ice, or condensation on the mirror surface for improved visibility in cold weather conditions.
Power-adjustable mirrors: Many modern vehicles have power-adjustable side mirrors, which can be controlled electronically from inside the vehicle to adjust the mirror position for the driver’s optimal view.
Side-view camera mirror
Some vehicles also have side-view camera mirrors, which use cameras mounted on the sides of the vehicle to capture the view along the sides and display it on screens embedded in the side mirrors or the interior of the vehicle.
These cameras can help the driver monitor blind spots or provide a wider field of view for parking or maneuvering.
In addition they reduce wind restiance and therby increases range and reduces wind noise.
Interior or vanity mirrors
Interior or vanity mirrors are typically located on the sun visors or overhead console and allow the driver and passengers to check their appearance or view the interior of the vehicle.