SOURCE: Gentex

September 30, 2009 16:10 ET

Gentex SmartBeam® High-Beam Headlamp Assist Offered on New European SUV

ZEELAND, MI--(Marketwire - September 30, 2009) - Gentex Corporation (NASDAQ: GNTX), the leading supplier of automatic-dimming rearview mirrors to the worldwide automotive industry, has announced that it is supplying auto-dimming mirrors with advanced electronic features, including the Company's proprietary SmartBeam® High-Beam Headlamp Assist system, for the 2010 BMW X1, a compact sport utility vehicle.

The X1 will be available in European markets beginning late this fall. In addition to offering an auto-dimming three-mirror system, other features, including digital compass displayed in the mirror, universal garage door opener and Gentex's SmartBeam® High-Beam Headlamp Assist system, will all be available as free float options. BMW refers to SmartBeam as High-Beam Assist, or the German translation, Fernlichtassistent. The compass feature utilizes Gentex's proprietary Z-Nav® technology, a highly-accurate sensor that determines the vehicle's directional heading.

SmartBeam uses a miniature camera-on-a-chip combined with algorithmic decision making to automatically turn a vehicle's high beams on and off according to surrounding traffic conditions. The system is designed to maximize a vehicle's forward lighting and to eliminate this repetitive and sometimes burdensome task.

"The X1 is the latest in a long list of BMW vehicles to offer the SmartBeam feature," said Gentex Senior Vice President Enoch Jen. "BMW is a longtime Gentex customer and continues to see the value of our products, as is evidenced by their increased availability on the majority of BMW models in countries around the world where BMWs are sold."

Gentex has been shipping its SmartBeam feature to various automakers since 2004, and more than a million of these camera systems are in operation on vehicles throughout Europe and North America. In calendar year 2008, the Company shipped approximately 295,000 SmartBeam units to its automotive customers, making Gentex the leading provider of automotive-grade camera-based active safety systems.

Founded in 1974, Gentex Corporation (NASDAQ: GNTX) is an international company that provides high-quality products to the worldwide automotive industry and North American fire protection market. Based in Zeeland, Michigan, the Company develops, manufactures and markets interior and exterior automatic-dimming automotive rearview mirrors that utilize proprietary electrochromic technology to dim in proportion to the amount of headlight glare from trailing vehicle headlamps. More than half of the interior mirrors are sold with advanced electronic features, and more than 96 percent of the Company's revenues are derived from the sale of auto-dimming mirrors to nearly every major automaker in the world.

Contact Information

  • GENERAL AND FINANCIAL MEDIA AND INVESTOR CONTACT:
    Connie Hamblin
    616/772/1800
    GENERAL MEDIA CONTACT:
    Craig Piersma
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    EXCHANGE: NASDAQ Global Select Market
    SYMBOL: GNTX
    WEBSITE: www.gentex.com