ATLANTA — Stoneridge Inc. announced it will accept more carriers in its ongoing fleet evaluation of the company’s MirrorEye Camera Monitor System, intended eventually to replace traditional mirrors.
The product provides blind-spot reduction, night vision, trailer panning, expanded fields of view using high-definition external digital cameras and digital monitors inside the truck cab.
The company is seeking approval from the U.S. Department of Transportation to allow the product on trucks as standard equipment, and last met with regulators about a month and a half ago, a company executive said.
“I was pleasantly surprised by their response to the thirst for this technology. They were very much interested and wanting to move this along,” said Stoneridge Product Manager Nathan Hodge.
Asked what the hurdle was that still has to be cleared, Hodge said, “I think it is really building their confidence in an electronic camera, over a static mirror” that has been used for decades.
Stoneridge made the announcement at the annual meeting and exposition of the Technology & Maintenance Council.
The camera system is approved for use in Europe, Hodge added, and has shown fuel cost savings of 2% to 3% per year compared with trucks with traditional mirrors.
Initial fleet trials in the United States have been underway for the past year with “three of the nation’s top safety-oriented fleets to study the plausibility that drivers will perform more safely if given better [visual] information while they are driving,” Hodge said. “What we have learned is drivers are ready for this technology.”
The trucks in the initial trial had the camera system and traditional mirrors, as will those in the additional trial.
Stoneridge has engaged Spangenberg Partners to support commercial fleet trials in North America.
Stoneridge, based in Novi, Mich., is an independent designer and manufacturer of highly engineered electrical and electronic components, modules and systems principally for the automotive, commercial vehicle, motorcycle, agricultural and off-highway vehicle markets, according to the company.