Mirrorless cars are now legal in Japan

Nissan IDS concept car

Mirrorless vehicles are now legal in Japan since last month. The advantages of replacing mirrors with cameras are plenty.

Some advantages:

  • Less wind noise
  • Increased efficiency from better aerodynamics
  • Safer, no blind spots
  • Less chance of accidents, mirrors are the first thing to go in small road accidents, especially in cities with tight roads
  • Cameras allow thermal and night vision
  • Cameras have adaptive brightness


With more and more car’s cameras, drivers should be given the opportunity to use them to video recording. Useful in case of accidents or theft. This is the reason why dashboard cameras are so popular in Russia.

The aerodynamics improvement is very important to reduce gas consumption, but is especially important to improve range in electric cars.


Mirrorless plug-in hybrid BMW i8


This will boost the range of the upcoming Tesla Model 3 and second generation Nissan Leaf inspired by the IDS concept car.

USA, Europe and China should be next to approve mirrors replacement with cameras. Probably later this year. It would be a shame if new electric cars are released without mirrors only in Japan.


Mirrorless Tesla Model X


When thinking about increasing electric car’s range we tend to focus in more battery capacity and forget to improve the car’s efficiency. Weight reduction and aerodynamics should be given more attention.



First Generation Chevrolet Volt with moon discs

First generation Chevrolet Volt with moon discs for better aerodynamics


I think that when every automaker is selling electric cars, they’ll  start to focus in efficiency to differentiate themselves. We’ll start looking for the most efficient electric car, not the one with the biggest battery capacity. I’ll be happy when a 30 kWh electric car’s battery is enough for 300 km range at highway speeds.


Are you ready to let the mirrors go?



More info:


Pedro Lima

My interest in electric transportation is mostly political. I’m tired of coups and wars for oil. My expectation is that the adoption of electric transportation will be a factor for peace and democracy all over the world.

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5 years ago

I would prefer with mirros, looks a bit naked and I think its more expensive. We will see this year what remains from the IDS to Leaf 2.

5 years ago

Ready to let mirrors and ICE grills go…
I believe EU is supposed to swiftly follow Japans lead and the US in a couple more years…

5 years ago
Reply to  Pedro Lima

Mirror less cars are legal in the EU since Oct 2014.

Besides the law, there’s at least 1 EU mirrorless car for sale since 2014.

Ralf K
5 years ago

Volkswagen XL1 is a road-legal car in Europe, in which rear mirrors were replaced by cameras and internal displays.