Vehicle exterior rearview mirror system with indicator module

  • US 8,164,482 B2
  • Filed: 01/31/2011
  • Issued: 04/24/2012
  • Est. Priority Date: 07/06/2005
  • Status: Active Grant
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First Claim
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1. An exterior rearview mirror system for a vehicle, said exterior rearview mirror system comprising:

  • an exterior rearview mirror assembly configured for attaching to an exterior side of a vehicle equipped with said exterior rearview mirror system;

    a unitary indicator module disposed at said exterior rearview mirror assembly;

    wherein said unitary indicator module comprises a plurality of illumination sources and wherein said plurality of illumination sources is disposed behind an at least partially light transmitting portion of said unitary indicator module;

    wherein light emitted by any of said plurality of illumination sources passes through said at least partially light transmitting portion for viewing by a driver of the equipped vehicle when said unitary indicator module is disposed at said exterior rearview mirror assembly and when said exterior rearview mirror assembly is attached to the exterior side of the equipped vehicle;

    wherein said unitary indicator module is sealed so as to be substantially impervious to water;

    wherein said exterior rearview mirror assembly comprises a mirror casing and a reflective element adjustably supported within said mirror casing, and wherein said mirror casing has an inboard portion that faces generally toward the exterior side of the equipped vehicle, and wherein said unitary indicator module is disposed at said inboard portion of said mirror casing;

    wherein said inboard portion of said mirror casing is viewable by a driver of the equipped vehicle when said exterior rearview mirror assembly is attached at the exterior side of the equipped vehicle, and wherein said inboard portion of said mirror casing is substantially not directly viewed by drivers of other vehicles when the other vehicles are overtaking the equipped vehicle from the rear of the equipped vehicle at a side lane adjacent to the exterior side of the equipped vehicle at which said exterior rearview mirror assembly is mounted when the equipped vehicle is operated on a road;

    wherein said unitary indicator module is responsive to a control signal to indicate to the driver of the equipped vehicle a detected presence of another vehicle at least one of alongside the equipped vehicle and rearward of the equipped vehicle; and

    wherein said unitary indicator module is operable to indicate a degree of hazard at least one of alongside the equipped vehicle and rearward of the equipped vehicle.

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