Since the summer, an increasing number of trucks sporting the Mercedes star have been seen on the roads without the typical large exterior mirrors. Instead, small streamlined camera arms are mounted on the roof frame. What’s behind this? Since June 2019, Mercedes-Benz Trucks has been supplying the new Actros with the MirrorCam as a standard feature – as the only manufacturer in the industry worldwide to date. The digital rear-view mirror not only looks futuristic; the system can also do much more than conventional main and wide-angle mirrors and its performance far exceeds the legal requirements.
Patrick Hirth is a cab development mechanic at Mercedes-Benz Trucks and has already driven more than 200,000 kilometres with the new MirrorCam. He says: “After a short familiarisation period, drivers experience the advantages of the MirrorCam in many different situations for themselves. Overtaking, manoeuvring, driving in poor visibility and darkness, cornering and bottleneck situations – the MirrorCam makes all this safer and less stressful.”
Equipment and features: two cameras, two screens and more
The MirrorCam consists of two cameras mounted on the left and right of the roof frame, two upright monitors mounted on the A-pillars in the driver’s cab and control elements in the door module and in the secondary display. There are also buttons on the passenger side and by the bed to switch on the MirrorCam when the engine is switched off. The images transmitted by the cameras are transferred to the two 15.2-inch monitors with a resolution of 720 x 1920 pixels. Like the conventional mirror system, the monitor image is divided into a main and wide-angle field of vision.
Deletion of large mirrors provides for better all-round visibility
As the MirrorCam cameras are attached to the roof frame and the monitors are located inside the cab,
the driver has a much better direct view through the side windows. The view diagonally ahead, which was previously obstructed by the large exterior mirrors of a conventional mirror system in many situations, is now clear. This is particularly advantageous when approaching junctions and roundabouts, when manoeuvring and in tight bends.
See more to the rear thanks to wide-angle mode
The MirrorCam also assists the driver when reversing and the display then changes to a special manoeuvring view. In particular, reversing around corners is made easier as areas further away from the vehicle are also displayed in the usual size. This view is automatically activated when reverse gear is engaged and is still displayed when driving forwards up to a speed of ten km/h or until it is deactivated with a button.
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