What is the rear-view mirror for?
As the term indicates, the rear-view mirror is to enable the driver to see what’s happening behind the car when driving. It thereby complements the wing mirrors
The first rear view mirror
was installed on a vehicle in 1911 however they only became standard equipment from the 1930s. Before that mirrors were hardly necessary given the fact that there were few cars on the road. To overtake drivers simply used their horn.
Today all cars are equipped with an interior rear view mirror
. What’s more, the rear view mirror is compulsory if your car has only one wing mirror on the driver’s side.
The glass of the rear view mirror varies from vehicle to vehicle. Some are prismatic, meaning it can be tilted so to avoid the glare of other car’s headlights at night. In addition the glass can be tinted or electrochromic. Electrochromic rear view mirrors
are similar to prismatic mirrors ans they detect light and dim the mirror to avoid the driver being blinded by other vehicles.