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Head-Up Display, all about the fashion element in cars

If you’re in the automotive world, you’ve probably heard about the Head-Up Display (HUD). This is an element that has been gaining popularity in recent years in cars, but has been used for decades in the aeronautical sector. Its first objective is to make driving safer in a very simple way. We are going to give a complete review around this element.

What is the Head-Up Display?

The Head-Up Display is basically a system that is responsible for displaying information on the windscreen of the vehicle. The idea is that the driver has to look away from the road as little as possible to see details such as the current speed or the route of the navigator. As we said, this idea was first implemented in airplanes in the middle of the last century. Although for the jump to the cars had to wait a little more.

Its name follows all logic, because it literally means “head-up screen”, paying attention to the gesture of keeping an eye on the road. The first to use a Head-Up Display in their cars were General Motors in 1988. Those early systems were quite rudimentary and had little to do with what we have today, three decades later. The first color system appeared on the Corvette in 1998 and its quality has evolved since then.

Types of Head-Up Display

Although there is considerable disparity in this element and each manufacturer uses its own method. When entering some cars and giving the contact it is possible that in some cases it is surprising to see how a small surface of glass comes out. That is one of the types, known as Head-Medium-Display (HMD), in which the information is projected onto that transparent surface allowing the road to be seen through it as well.

This solution is usually the most economical option for mounting this element and is usually found in mid-range vehicles. Above it is the Head-Up Display, which projects the information directly onto the windscreen. It has a higher resolution, its position can be adapted and it is more natural for the driver. Its price is higher because the moon has had to be pre-treated, so it is often seen more in premium brands.

Vehicles that do not have this system among their standard or optional equipment can also opt for a portable Head-Up Display. For a very low price you can buy this type of accessory that is placed on the dashboard and does the same function as a HMD. In this case you can connect to the OBD port to have the vehicle information, but there are also simpler ones that connect to the smartphone.

Advantages of the Head-Up Display

At this point it can be seen that the advantages of the Head-Up Display will be important. By having this information on the windscreen, the driver does not have to be lowering his head to consult the instrumentation. Circulating in highway to 120 km/h every second that we do not look at the highway we will have crossed 33 meters of distance. That strip of time and space can be the one that makes the difference and saves us or involves us in an accident.

For this reason, with these systems the driver’s reaction time to unforeseen events is usually reduced. At the same time, your life is made easier by having all kinds of information available, including signals, if you go with cruise control or night vision if you have it. On the other hand, studies show that there are some aspects that are not so positive. HUD also diverts attention each time there is a warning and that there should be greater differentiation between notifications.

Future of Head-Up Display

All indications are that the Head-Up Display will continue to proliferate and will be the tonic. In the medium term more and more cars will assemble it and they will also be improved with a higher quality or a greater number of functions. It has already been researched with augmented reality in the HUD. Continental or Jaguar have already submitted their proposals, which included some interaction with the environment.

In the Head-Up Display it will be more than likely to show aspects such as the distance from the vehicle that precedes us or highlight the lines of the road (very useful in adverse weather). We could even see how an arrow is drawn on the roadway to facilitate GPS guidance. In the case of Jaguar, more focused on the circuit, it also allowed us to see the optimal trajectory or the ghost of the previous fast lap.

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