Digital Rearview Mirror with German Road Traffic Certification

Development Partnership between Kappa and Volkswagen AG

Concept car VW XL1 with digital rearview mirror

© Volkswagen Studie XL1 | VW XL1 with Kappa automotive cameras as digital rearview mirror

Driver assistance cameras have been used in countless variations, but there is as yet still no digital rearview mirror ready for mass production anywhere in the world. As a development partner with Volkswagen, Kappa optronics has developed an innovative, complex camera solution that represents a technical breakthrough on an international scale.

The goal was to develop a camera, eligible for certification under the German Road Traffic Ordinance, that can fully process the complex light relationships and physical operational demands of road traffic.

Development concentrated first and foremost on the highly integrated construction of camera and optics, qualification for extreme environmental conditions including skillful use of the camera’s own waste heat and the utilization of Kappa signal processing far beyond the current customary standards for cameras.


Digital Rearview Mirror for Volkswagen XL1

VW XL1 mit Kappa Automiotive Cameras als digitaler Rückspiegel, Interior

© Volkswagen Studie XL1 | Volkswagen Studie XL1

In future, the final camera/monitor system should fulfill all legal requirements and serve as an alternative to conventional rearview mirrors. Achieving this development goal has been challenging. One driving force in particular behind it is the potential energy savings from improved aerodynamics. The first incorporation into serial production will take place, with good reason, as e-mirror in the most efficient automobile on earth, the innovative Volkswagen XL1.

Kappa automotive camera for digital rearview mirror, board-level design

© Kappa | Kappa automotive camera, board-level design

As a new technology for vehicles of all types, the digital rearview mirror could positively influence road traffic — on the one hand, it offers significant energy and emissions savings potential using improved aerodynamics; on the other hand, it achieves increased traffic safety under difficult lighting conditions. In future, additional safety and assistance functions could be realized using digital rearview mirrors.




Anna Setale

Key Account Management

Tel.: +49.5508.974.190



Maurice Knapp

Kappa - The Americas

Tel.: +1.626.256.4343


Innovation Award

for the digital rearview mirror

The Innovation Award of the County Göttingen was awarded for the 10th time in 2013.

Kappa optronics was awarded a prize for the digital rearview mirror for Volkswagen XL1.



Digital rearview mirror VW XL1: innovation award Göttingen 2012, award ceremony

© Innovationspreis des Landkreises Göttingen 2012 | Digital rearview mirror VW XL1: innovation award Göttingen 2012