Land Rover is working on see-through trailer technology it says will make towing safer, both for the driver and the cargo being towed.
The sci-fi-esque concept is more straightforward than it sounds: software takes feeds from cameras mounted on the car (one on each side mirror, and a third on the tailgate, part of Land Rover’s surround camera setup) and the back of the trailer trailer and stitches together a virtual trailer-free view of what’s behind, displayed in the rearview mirror. Shift into reverse, and the tech provides on-screen guidance lines for the trailer.
Another piece of the system is called cargo sense. Pressure sensors in the floor ensure even loading of the trailer, and do double duty by indicating that the load has shifted, and horsey types may appreciate that it can also indicate whether an animal is moving around or potentially in distress inside the trailer. In either case, a ‘check cargo’ warning would illuminate, and live video from the inside of the trailer could be called up on the infotainment screen; the same tech could be used to send the driver a text message to say something’s up while the trailer is parked.
With those equinophiles in mind, Land Rover is, as we speak, demonstrating the ‘transparent trailer’ at the Burghley Horse Trials in Lincolnshire, England. The manufacturer doesn’t say when the technology might become available in a production vehicle.