Goodbye to the A pillar


Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) has revealed new technology that will give motorists an uninterrupted 360 degree view of their surroundings from the driver’s seat.

The Transparent Pillar concept unveiled by the British car maker on Monday uses individual screens embedded on the inside of each pillar to provide a live video feed of the outside area, “essentially making each pillar transparent”. The technology purports to eliminate blind spots traditionally created by the A, B and C pillars in a conventional passenger car.

“Pedestrians, cyclists and other vehicles would be visible all around the car – and by combining the transparent pillars with an advanced high quality Heads-Up display, the movement of other road users could be highlighted to the driver with an on-screen halo moving across the car’s virtual windscreen,” a JLR press release says.

A second technology relating to satellite navigate guidance was also unveiled by the car maker on Monday as part of its broader “360 Virtual Urban Windscreen” research. Dubbed the Follow-Me Ghost Car Navigation system, the function projects an image of a “ghost car” on the windscreen so that the driver can follow it through traffic instead of listening to turn-by-turn navigations or looking at a map.

JLR director of research and technology, Dr. Wolfgang Epple, said the technology had an inherent focus on improving road safety. “Our ultimate aim is to reduce road accidents and enhance the urban driving experience,” Dr Epple said.

“The Jaguar Land Rover research team is developing this technology to improve visibility and to give the driver the right information at the right time. If we can keep the driver’s eyes on the road ahead and present information in a non-distracting way, we can help drivers make better decisions in the most demanding and congested driving environments.”