Volkswagen announced this week that an innovative new windshield could help make vehicle ice scrapers a thing of the past.
The German automaker said that its new "climate windscreen" incorporates an ultra-thin transparent layer of conductive silver within laminated glass.
The system can quickly heat up and defrost a windshield without scraping the vehicle, waiting for fans to heat the glass or using metal filaments — the latter of which can disrupt a driver's vision in low sunshine or oncoming traffic.
The climate windscreen consumes no more than 500 watts and also prevents misting or icing during driving.
In addition, the silver layer reflects up to 60 percent of heat and allows more efficient air conditioning during warmer months. VW said that internal vehicle temperatures were up to 15 degrees cooler compared to conventional glass with green tinting.
The bottom of the windshield also features filaments that prevent windshield wiper blades from freezing to the glass.
Volkswagen said that it is offering the windshield as an optional feature on its Golf, Golf Sportsvan, Passat, Passat Variant, Sharan and Tiguan models. Prices start at about $360 and vary depending on the model.