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Brief Published: 14 Apr 2014

Land Rover Unveils ‘Invisible’ Car

Discovery Vision concept

Land Rover, a marque of UK-based automaker Jaguar Land Rover, has unveiled an augmented reality system that makes the front of the car virtually invisible to the driver, revealing the terrain below.

Cameras at the front of the vehicle send a live feed to a head-up display (HUD) in the windshield to create the illusion. Other virtual indicators such as slope angle and wheel position are also displayed.

The Transparent Bonnet technology is one of a suite of technological developments in Land Rover's Discovery Vision Concept car, which will be unveiled at the New York International Auto show later this month.

Wolfgang Epple, director of research and technology for Jaguar Land Rover, said: "As our vehicles become more capable and autonomous off-road, we will ensure the driver has the confidence to allow the car to continue to progress, over any terrain."

Live cameras are playing an increasingly important role in the transport industry. Rear cameras are replacing rear-view mirrors in many commercial vehicles, while US company Spike Aerospace is building a supersonic jet with live-streamed displays instead of windows.

Meanwhile, augmented reality and glass technologies are offering brands new ways to delight consumers. American soft drink brand Pepsi Max recently surprised commuters in London with apparently transparent bus-stop shelters showing convincing images of meteorites, charging tigers, and monsters under the pavement.

For more on transparent and interactive interfaces, see Transparent Futures. For the latest in concept motors, see coverage of this year's Geneva Motor Show.