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2018 Mazda 6 Active Driving Display

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2018 Mazda 6 Active Driving Display

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It isn’t very often I’m truly impressed with a new technology but the Active Driving Display is the 2018 Mazda 6 is one of those times. The Mazda sedan has done what only luxury marques like Mercedes-Benz have done, made an affordable heads-up display for a car that really works.

As far as I know, only BMW and Mercedes-Benz have made a big thing about their heads-up displays (HUD). Other automakers have them but don’t make much mention of them. The last time I saw one in action was in an S-Class and it looks exceptional. Now, thanks to Mazda, normal people can use one too.

Active Driving Display
The Active Driving Display does what the HUD was designed to do best. To provide the information necessary for you to complete your journey safely without having to take your eyes from the road.

The HUD is minimal. It displays your speed, the current speed limit and not a lot else. If the blind spot monitor picks up another vehicle it will show a WiFi-like icon. If you exceed the speed limit, a red box appears around your speed. If you’re approaching an intersection with a stop sign, you will see a stop sign icon. There are also late braking warnings, lane departure warnings and a Do Not Enter icon when you accidentally turn into a one way street the wrong way.

This was intentional design. The idea was to keep distraction to a minimum and to ensure your eyes don’t constantly have to wander over the HUD. Mazda also purposely didn’t include any infotainment or smartphone integration into the HUD for the same reasons. All that data remains on the centre touchscreen.

‘Mazda’s human-centred engineering process is focused on supporting the driver - and the in-vehicle technology is designed to minimize visual, cognitive, and manual distractions,’ says Matthew Valbuena, Mazda’s human-machine interface and infotainment engineer.

‘From the beginning, the content provided with the Active Driving Display was always focused on the driver’s most important task- the act of driving, which is why all of the content is driving related.’

There is a bright future ahead for the HUD. While we continue to drive our own cars there will always be a competition for our attention. The more technology allows us to keep it on the road, the better. Along with voice activation, the HUD goes a long way to making sure our eyes remain where they should be.

The Active Driving Display is an option on many Mazda 6 trims and comes as standard on the 2.5-litre Mazda 6 Signature. Visit Mazda of Hamilton, 1977 Upper James Street Hamilton, ON L9B 1K8 to learn more.

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