Sanyo's Rear View Backup Camera System claims to have a new twist on an old idea, "AirCam technology" that gives you a wide angle shot of whatever is behind you rather than some annoying fisheye image that's hard to look at. Mount the tiny camera on the corner of your license plate, wire it up, and it gives you a clear view of what's behind. It's also capable of a few clever tricks we hadn't seen in a backup camera before. This thing can help you park. It adds helpful visual guidelines to the screen, showing you exactly the best place to park in your garage, or it can give you some visual help when you're parallel parking. We're also digging the system's ability to give you an overhead view, measuring the distance between you and a nearby obstacle and showing you a graphic of the situation on screen. Okay, AirCam: we get it now.
Too bad Sanyo didn't include a display for the camera's video feed, relying instead on an in-dash GPS device or DVD screen you may already have installed. Although it might take some doing to wire up this sucker with composite video cables and $299.99 to buy it, saving the life of a little munchkin or pet could make it all worth it. [Digital 50]