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OLED is a new display and lighting technology - used to create thin, efficient and bright displays and lighting panels. OLEDs can be made flexible, and transparent, and so open the way for new, exciting display applications. One of the possible markets for OLEDs is the automotive industry.

Audi Swarm concept photoAudi's OLED swarm

Where will OLED be used in future cars?

We can see several applications for OLED displays and lighting systems in cars:

  • Dashboard displays (instrument clusters, navigation, media)
  • Heads up displays
  • Internal lighting
  • External lighting (tail lights, turn indicators)
  • Digital rear-view internal mirrors
  • More application we cannot think about today!

    OLED displays for cars today

    Currently we know of several car models that includes small PMOLED displays in the dashboard. The Lexus 2010 RX for example has a white OLED display, supplementing the main 8" display.

    Winstar automotive PMOLED photo

    Audi's latest race car, the R18, uses an AMOLED display as a digital rear-view mirror:

    Audi R18 OLED mirror photo

    OLED lighting in cars

    The automotive market is one of the most interesting markets for OLED lighting, and many believe this will be one of the first markets to adopt the next generation lighting technology. OLEDs provide soft, uniform area lighting and can be very company, safe, efficient and durable.

    Audi OLED concept

    In past years we've seen several car companies (including BMW and Audi) showcase car concepts that adopt OLED lighting panels (made by Philips, LG Chem, Astron FIAMM and others). In the image above you can see Audi's March 2012 concept that uses OLED lighting panels (made by Philips) to create rear lights, turn indicators, external lighted "decorations".

    Daimler's Smart Forvision concept EV uses transparent hybrid solar-OLED panels on the roof. Those hexagonal see-through panels generate energy during the day and provide internal lighting during the night:

    Daimler Smart Forvision photo

    According to some companies, such as Philips, OSRAM, BMW and Astron FIAMM, we should expect the first car that uses OLED lighting as tail lights on the road at about 2016. The first cars to use this new lighting will probably be a high end premium model, but as usually happens, OLEDs will gradually be adopted by more consumer level cars.

    OLED-Info's Automotive OLEDs Market Report

    If you're interested in this market, check out our market report on Automotive OLEDs. The report discusses the current OLED display and lighting automotive markets, with a complete list of OLED display and lighting makers that are involved with the automotive market, with personal contact details.

    The OLED Automotive Market Report explains:

    • What kind of OLED displays are currently adopted in cars
    • Why OLED lighting is exciting for car makers
    • The future of Automotive OLED display
    • OLED concepts and forecasts by BMW, Audi and others

    Read more here!