Continental unveiled a giant display at CES that can be used for the future car dashboard. Speculation has emerged that Mercedes will be the first beneficiary of this technology, which it will implement on compact models built on the upcoming MMA platform.
Under the new electrification strategy, Mercedes plans to launch the new MMA platform designed as “Electric First” in 2024. It will underpin future compact class models (CLA, CLA Shooting Brake, GLA, GLB as A and B-Class will disappear) and the future C-Class.
The first model on the MMA platform will be the third-generation CLA. The MMA platform was designed primarily for the electric drive but can also accommodate a Plug-In Hybrid drive or Range Extender versions. In addition, the new models built on the MMA platform will have a more luxurious interior. According to the new strategy presented by Ola Kallenius, they will be more technologically advanced to position the new compact range higher.
The multimedia system plays a crucial role in this strategy. Mercedes already has its own experience with giant screens. The EVA platform for the luxury electric models uses the Hyperscreen, which spans a width of 1.41 meters and groups three screens under one glass pane. According to speculation, Mercedes also plans to use a giant screen in future models built on the MMA platform.
But the hyperscreen in the Mercedes EQE and EQE is very expensive. For the compact class, that price would be far too high. But at CES 2023, held earlier this month, Continental unveiled a TFT display it calls the “Curved Ultrawide Display.” It spans the car’s entire width and is smaller and more streamlined than the Hyperscreen. Its shape is very similar to that of the Honda E with the difference that it is curved (the radius of curvature is 4,200 mm) so that the driver can see the area to the passenger’s right.
The display presented by Continental is 1.29 meters wide (47.5 inches) and slightly narrower than the Hyperscreen because the interior width of the future Mercedes compact will also be narrower than the EQS or EQE. As with the Hyperscreen, there is not just one display but three displays under the same glass panel: one for the driver, one in the center, and one for the passenger.
The 47.5-inch display is illuminated by over 3,000 LEDs on a 7,680 x 660-pixel surface. Interaction with the pillar-to-pillar display is supported by an integrated control display that appears, as if by magic, only when needed. This unique display solution prevents unnecessary information from distracting the driver.
The driver can also control areas of the display that cannot be reached by hand, and haptic feedback allows operation without the driver having to take their eyes off the road. Covered by a semi-transparent surface, the display is seamlessly integrated into the dashboard, and when not needed, it becomes invisible to avoid distracting the driver.
Contacted by German auto motor und sport magazine, Mercedes officials declined to comment, saying it was “just speculation about future models.”
Continental has announced that the new extra wide screen will go into production in 2025 and, therefore, may not be offered at the beginning in the Mercedes CLA, which will debut in 2024.
The Continental display would fit perfectly in future Mercedes compact models. It would bring that high-tech touch Ola Kallenius wanted and would fit perfectly into the luxurious interior of a Mercedes. Plus, having a conventional, the rectangular shape would be cheaper than EQS’s very complicated geometrically shaped Hyperscreen.
Also, at CES 2023, Continental showed off its Driver Identification Display technology. This new tech allows the driver to be identified by facial recognition using a sensor and software. Mercedes currently has fingerprint identification on the S-Class, and this would be the next logical step.