Manufacturing and Technology

Auto supplier wins international innovation award

April 15, 2016
TAGS Gentex
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Gentex headquarters Zeeland
Zeeland-based Gentex, founded in 1974, is a diversified maker of products for the automotive, aviation and fire industries. Courtesy Gentex

An auto supplier in the region has won an international innovation award for a new product that enhances driver safety and visibility.

Gentex Corporation of Zeeland said this week that it was named a 2016 Automotive News PACE Award winner for its Full Display Mirror, or FDM. PACE stands for premier automotive suppliers' contribution to excellence.

The competition was open to suppliers across the globe that contribute products, processes, materials or services directly to the manufacture of cars or trucks.

The award recognizes automotive suppliers for superior innovation, technological advancement and business performance.

Gentex’s FDM is a rear-vision system consisting of a custom, high-dynamic-range imager that captures video of the vehicle's rearward view and streams it to a unique mirror-integrated LCD display.

The system enhances driving safety by optimizing the driver's rear visibility.

The FDM is distinct because of its bi-modal functionality.

In mirror mode, the product functions as a standard automatic-dimming rearview mirror. But with the flip of a lever, the mirror enters display mode, and a clear, bright LCD display appears through the mirror's reflective surface, providing a wide, unobstructed rearward view.

Fred Bauer, Gentex CEO, said the product has an “exciting future.”

Gentex's FDM earned the PACE Award following an extensive review by an independent panel of judges, including a comprehensive written application and a site visit.

Gentex said the Automotive News PACE Award is “accepted around the world as the industry symbol of innovation.”

The recognition marks the seventh time Gentex has received an Automotive News PACE Award. Two additional times it was named a finalist.

"It's an honor to again be recognized with a PACE Award,” Bauer said. “I'd like to thank and congratulate all the team members who played a role in its development.”

Automotive News, EY and Transportation Research Center presented the 22nd annual PACE Awards in Detroit.

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