Magna, an automotive supplier, presented lighting hardware that can be integrated into car body panels on Thursday. Magna announced in a press statement that the Breakthrough Lighting will be ready for production in 2023.
Magna will first demonstrate Breakthrough Lighting on the “Litgate,” a thermoplastic liftgate. Magna claims that the same hardware may be used on other car panels as long as they are constructed of a similar thermoplastic material.
The lighting elements in the demonstration arrangement are roughly where traditional taillights would go, but they are hidden until illuminated. Customers can select from “an enormous color pallet” for these lights, according to Magna.
Breakthrough Lighting appears to be intended as a design aspect, at least in part. Magna mentioned that the integrated lighting might be utilized for decoration. Designers may have more freedom if they do not have to design dedicated lighting elements.
Magna also noted “improved communication between the user, the vehicle, and the environment.” The use of external lights to flash signals to other vehicles and pedestrians has been suggested as a technique to increase safety, particularly with self-driving cars. Without human drivers to make eye contact or use hand gestures, those cars may need to communicate with other road users in different ways.
In the past, homologating this technology in the United States would have been impossible, but regulatory changes may have created an opening. Earlier this year, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) certified adaptive matrix LED headlights, finally catching up to other markets. With fewer constraints, the new legislation may enable the development of various innovative lighting systems.
“As the industry builds significant momentum around electrified and autonomous vehicles, we expect more desire for developments like this that are seamlessly integrated into exterior surfaces.”
Magna is more than one of the world’s largest suppliers in the automotive space. We are a mobility technology company with a global, entrepreneurial-minded team of over 161,000 employees and an organizational structure designed to innovate like a startup. With 60+ years of expertise, and a systems approach to design, engineering and manufacturing that touches nearly every aspect of the vehicle, we are positioned to support advancing mobility in a transforming industry. Our global network includes 340 manufacturing operations and 89 product development, engineering and sales centres spanning 28 countries.
II believe that as the EV business grows, more EV manufacturers will want to design their production vehicles with lighting that appeals to a broader audience.