Mercedes’ New C-Class headlamp system, designed and produced by Automotive Lighting, confirms and underlines the trend to introduce multi-variants headlamps lighting, with increasing performance and enhanced styling to emphasise the appeal of the high end of the car range.
So C-class offers 3 variants: Halogen, Xenon, AFS
Differences in the 3 variants are centred on performance and appearance
1) The difference in performance, Halogen, Xenon and AFS variants:
– Yellowish light
– Narrow beam
– Bright white light
– Wide beam
– Higher range
– Xenon performances
– 4 additional functions
The differences in performance are illustrated here above and are characteristic of the different technologies used and declined from already existing models.
The Halogen projector module variant can be described as follows:
– Low beam from AL’s standard halogen projector module.
– High beam from a round halogen reflector of about 120mm diameter.
Xenon variant can be described as follows:
– Low beam from AL’s standard BiXenon projector
– High beam from the standard BiXenon projector plus a round halogen reflector with about 70mm diameter.
BiXenon projector system provides
– 1 000 Lm in Low beam with a hot spot of 65 Lx (40 625cd)
– 1 650 Lm in High beam with a maximum of 120 Lx (75 000cd)
Until now, AL have produced 10 million Bixenon systems
AFS variant can be described as follows:
– Low beam and High beam identical to Xenon version
– AFS Motorway obtained from raised low beam + higher voltage of the ballast
– AFS Bad weather obtained from low beams oriented to exterior of vehicle
– AFS Bending light obtained from modules oriented to the curves
– AFS Town light obtained from low beam turned down.
2) The difference in perceived quality, Halogen, Xenon and AFS variants:
Increasing perceived quality unveils increasing performances .
Innovations are mainly oriented to sustain escalation in perceived quality:
Example 1: Homogeneity of the position light
Low end: Halogen variant.
High end: Xenon-AFS variant
The perfect homogeneity is obtained from two reflectors and two internal Fresnel lens which surround the 2 blue bulbs
Example 2: Different bezels around the projector module
Halogen and Xenon have different appearances thanks to enhanced shapes and aspects of the bezels.
This analysis demonstrates that the automotive lighting continues to evolve along lines of performance, but the main target is increasingly centred on perceived quality, i.e., visual appearance. The sketch below shows the different parts of the bixenon projector. Functional parts represent a small part of the total component count, most of which involves appearance-related parts.