Honda's new multi-view camera system makes driving safer

Honda in Japan announced they will equip their new Odyssey models (which go on sale in Japan next month) with a new multi-view camera system that displays images on the vehicles’ navigation system to enhance safety.

The system consists of a total of four wide-angle CCD cameras that are installed in the front and rear of the cars and on the right and left door mirrors. Drivers will see synthesized images on the navigation system’s screen, along with additional visual information such as projection and reference lines for making it easier to assess distances and view the cars’ projected trajectories.

The Honda system is supposed to assist drivers during parking, enhance visibility through the reduction of blind spots and avoid dangerous situations in narrow driving conditions.

Press release in English after the break.

Honda Develops New Multi-View Camera System to Provide View of Surrounding Areas to Support Comfortable and Safe Driving

TOKYO, Japan, September 18, 2008 – Honda Motor Co., Ltd. announced that it has developed a multi-view camera system which displays views from multiple wide-angle CCD cameras on the vehicle’s navigation screen to reduce blind spots, support smooth parallel or garage parking, and support comfortable and safe driving in a 3-way intersection where there is limited visibility or on narrow roads. This new multi-view camera system will be applied first to the all-new Odyssey which is scheduled to go on sale in Japan in October of this year.

The multi-view camera system includes four wide-angle CCD cameras located in the front and rear of the vehicle and on the right and left door mirrors. The new system synthesizes images from these cameras and displays the synthesized image on the navigation screen with additional information including a projection line, which shows the vehicle’s projected trajectory calculated based on steering angle information, and a reference line, which provides a reference for the distance between the vehicle and approaching obstacles. This provides support to the driver in parking, enhancing visibility, and avoiding contact in narrow driving conditions.

Based on its unique approach to safety, Honda has been researching and developing various visibility enhancing technologies from the standpoint of active safety. In 2001, Honda introduced a rear view camera system which enhances rear visibility while backing up; in 2003, Honda developed the Adaptive Front Lighting System (AFS) which improves nighttime visibility during turning; and in 2004, Honda developed the Intelligent Night Vision System which detects pedestrians that are in or approaching the vehicle’s path and provides the driver warnings during nighttime driving. These technologies are already being installed to Honda vehicles which are currently on sale .