For me, security of my person and personal items are one of my top priorities when building out vehicles. Understanding and being fully aware of my surroundings is a facet of having that prepared mindset. So when it came time for me to look into having the capability to see around my vehicle, it opened up a very limited amount of products that were out. Let alone products that would work properly with my vehicle. Fortunately for me, I stumbled upon a company that fit just what I was looking for.
The idea came to fruition when I was on the job in my personal vehicle doing an advance detail. I thought to myself, how great would it be to be able to sit covertly and have the ability to see all around my vehicle while providing protection for my clients. Being able to see what is coming up from behind without moving around the vehicle. So while my truck was on display with Magnuson at the Off-Road Expo, I went out on a mission to find a company and product that would fit my needs. That search led me to Brand Motion & Summit View.
The company was formed in 2005 as a spin-out of Tier 1 automotive supplier Johnson Controls, with a focus on integrating and distributing emerging safety, mobility and convenience features for cars and trucks already on the road. Brandmotion is a recognized brand among aftermarket installers of 12V mobile electronics and was awarded “2016 SEMA PRO Manufacturer of the Year” honors at the 2015 SEMA Show in Las Vegas. At BrandMotion, they solve the biggest problems in vehicle safety. They specialize in the design and integration of emerging automotive safety technology with their goal being zero deaths a year due to traffic accidents. The way they reach our goal is in helping automotive suppliers leverage and extend their technology into existing vehicles, and at the same time provide consumers with greater freedom of choice in choosing the features and content for their vehicles. BrandMotion is in its 13th year of working to make vehicles safer, faster.
I partnered up with them in setting the 4Runner up with a complete camera system, 5-inch monitor, and DVR. All camera would sync to create a 360° overhead view of the vehicle on one channel and then show all angle on the other. I mounted one camera inside my front grill, 2 cameras under my side mirrors (one on each side) and one on the rear of my roof rack. I mounted the 5in. monitor to my rear view mirror location and then mounted the brains of the operation to the driver side kick panel. I also received two extra cameras to mount and utilize as rock cameras. I will list all part numbers at the end of this review.
My first impressions were that they were very attentive to my needs and resolving those with the correct products. All the items came in within two days of agreeing on what was being sent and packaged extremely well. I tore that box open as if it was Christmas day. The camera build quality impressed me, the monitor was extremely crisp. So when it came down to installing, it took some thought in how best to run all the supplied wiring and harness. I will create another write up on install but I can go briefly over it here. I first mounted the front camera to the underside of the front valance and ran the wiring through the firewall. Next was pulling off the side mirrors, and placing the template on them to ensure proper cutting and mounting. After carefully drilling the proper mount points I mounted the camera and ran the wire through the door wiring harness and into the cab. The rear camera I riveted onto the rear of the Front Runner Rack, and ran through the rear hatch, down the headliner then down the B Pillar. When it came time to place the brains of the system, I wanted it still accessible to place and remove a flash drive where the videos save. So the best option with the wiring that was provided, was to place it on the driver side kick panel. It is a tad close to the E Brake so I have to be conscious of that but it works for me.
Next was calibrating all the cameras. Brand Motion and Summit View, provide a relatively large mat that you drive your vehicle on and it calibrates the cameras. Pretty cool part of the process. After that, you fire up the monitor and you should be good to go. You may need to make a quick change in the monitor if the image isn’t clear, but it is a simple change. Throughout the entire install, I had access to the company to ask questions and get them answered.
The unit so far has been one of my favorite additions to the vehicle. It has performed flawlessly and provided me exactly with what I was looking to accomplish. I am coming up on a change in vehicles and the question those that know of the change is, would you do another system? The answer, absolutely. It goes beyond my satisfaction with the product’s capabilities, it comes down to the people behind it. As with most companies I do work with, it comes down to the people behind the product that solidifies my choice in them. The team over there are extremely knowledgeable and helpful every step of the way. So I have to give a huge thanks to them and the opportunity that they have allotted to me and this build. I look forward to continuing the relationship on the next build, soon to be released. Until next time.
Equipment and Part Numbers: