1. Attachments are working again! Check out this thread for more details and to report any other bugs.

Question re digital rearview mirror

Discussion in 'Prime Main Forum (2017-2022)' started by danielarichman, Apr 19, 2023.

  1. danielarichman

    danielarichman Junior Member

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2011
    26
    7
    2
    Location:
    Seattle, WA (Ballard)
    Vehicle:
    2023 Prius Prime
    Model:
    XLE
    I deplore the absence of a rear wiper on the 2023 Prius Prime (and I don't wish to debate its utility.)

    To get rearward visibility in rain and snow, I'm thinking of ordering the digital rearview mirror. However, because its camera is behind the rear window glass (which isn't wiped), won't the image be distorted or obscured by rain, snow, ice, dirt, etc., while the car is underway?

    I suppose one could apply Rain-X or something similar to the rear window over the area overing the camera (and on the entire rear window, for that matter). Or would the lack of a wiper require using a camera which you can't really use because there is no wiper?

    Could anyone with any experience (i.e., an informed opinion) weigh in on this?
     
    Zed Ruhlen likes this.
  2. RRxing

    RRxing Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2009
    2,518
    1,790
    0
    Location:
    NEPA
    Vehicle:
    Other Hybrid
    Model:
    Limited
    I have the digital rearview mirror on my Venza and it's distracting as all get out. I much prefer the regular mirror, although I do have a rear window wiper.
     
  3. Trollbait

    Trollbait It's a D&D thing

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2006
    21,851
    11,390
    0
    Location:
    eastern Pennsylvania
    Vehicle:
    Other Non-Hybrid
    It will depend on how much and where the road grime and weather gets deposited on the rear window. That depends on the specific car model. Since few new Prii have been delivered, the experience you need to answer the question isn't available now.

    My experience with Rain X on the rear window is thus, the water forms fine beads that will flow off the glass, but not without help. That help is airflow or enough water accumulates that the weight pulls the beads down. There is a cascade effect where water higher up that starts shedding pushes lower off. Water along the top edge can sit for longer than elsewhere. So Rain X with digital mirror should be as effective as Rain X with regular mirror. Though a camera at the very top of the window might be obscured for longer.

    My understanding for having a digital rearview mirror is in order to remove the obstructions inside the car(people, cargo, headrests) that can interfere with using the real mirror. An exterior mounted one could circumvent obstructions involving the rear window glass, but will need cleaning itself addresses. The back up camera is usually angled in a manner than weather is rarely an issue, but that doesn't help for distance viewing.
     
  4. fotomoto

    fotomoto Senior Member

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2009
    5,599
    3,774
    0
    Location:
    So. Texas
    Vehicle:
    Other Hybrid
    We have a prime and feel the same. We also have a DRM on our hybrid Sienna. It works GREAT in numerous situations: blocked rear view (entertainment screen, cargo, etc), don't want to see the rear passengers/privacy, and/or poor visibility. It works especially well at night to reduce typical blinding lighting conditions. It does take some time to get my eyes to adjust to it.

    The camera is located outside and has a washer. Sienna owners w/o this feature have found it fairly hard and expensive to DIY an OEM solution. DRM's have been short supply due to the chip shortage and from being shared across the lineup.

    I put a cheap aftermarket DRM with outside camera in a Honda CR-Z hybrid which has very limited sight lines. No washer feature so just like a regular rear view camera, I needed to clean the lens more. Not a big deal but I didn't have to deal with snow/ice. That DRM simply installs in front of/over the OEM mirror with adjustable straps.
     
  5. danielarichman

    danielarichman Junior Member

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2011
    26
    7
    2
    Location:
    Seattle, WA (Ballard)
    Vehicle:
    2023 Prius Prime
    Model:
    XLE
    Fotomoto, could you say more about your aftermarket DRM? Source, cost, installation, pros and cons?
     
  6. fotomoto

    fotomoto Senior Member

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2009
    5,599
    3,774
    0
    Location:
    So. Texas
    Vehicle:
    Other Hybrid
    Sure. I got one for a CRZ hybrid which has very limited rear views and to function as a backup cam which that car didn't have. I got it on Amazon about 4 years ago but there are so many new and different choices now I'm not going to make a particular recommendation.

    The two biggest pro's: better rear view 24/7 over a traditional backup cam which, of course, only works in R and NOT seeing (or seeing thru) the rear passenger section. The latter is more critical to a van or vehicle with a roof mounted flip-down screen or loaded with cargo, etc. Much less glare at night and auto-dimming. Price. Fairly easy installation, mounts on/over stock mirror. Higher video resolution camera (up to 4k) than OEM. Can see thru it to OEM mirror if it fails/loses power and very easy/quick to remove (rubber straps). Available with front/rear dash cameras/recorder for one stop shopping. Camera can be mounted inside when/if possible.

    Con's: Reliability (OEM 3 yr warranty), quality, installation/requires power, mounts over/on stock mirror, and no rear camera washer (like OEM). Some folks can have vision/focusing issues.
     
  7. daisy555

    daisy555 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2015
    1,342
    558
    0
    Location:
    CT
    Vehicle:
    2009 Prius
    Model:
    N/A
    For some reason I started obsessing about the fact that I didn’t order the digital mirror for my soon to arrive 2023 Prius. Glad to hear it annoys you. : } I just looked on Toyota’s website abs it doesn’t look like it was an option for the XLE AWD model.

    Past few weeks I’ve been driving my 2009 Prius with the rear view mirror positioned so I can only see out the top rear window. Doing this because I think it’s about the same view as what I’ll have in the 2023. There will be so much to get used to. I guess I’ll live without digital rear view mirror since I’ve never had one.
     
  8. Zed Ruhlen

    Zed Ruhlen Active Member

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2018
    230
    124
    0
    Location:
    Hood River, OR
    Vehicle:
    2018 Prius Prime
    Model:
    Prime Plus
    I totally agree with you. I can't STAND the view out my 2018 Prime. That rear window is such an asinine design it just boggles my mind. I've toyed with drilling a hole in the glass and mounting a rear wiper on the thing. Or trading it it. Leaning heavily toward the latter at this point. Just too many terrible design decisions in the name of being different.