BMW AG unveils a new system that it says can read speed-limit signs and shows the results in a vehicle’s instrument cluster or head-up display.

The new BMW 7-Series will be the first production car available with the system when it is introduced in Europe later this year.

A camera fitted near a vehicle’s interior mirror monitors speed-limit signs and compares this with the data saved in the navigation system. The system can read painted metal signs as well as dynamic digital displays.

BMW says the technology will help keep drivers aware of changes in the speed limit, especially important on roads that may have several different speed zones.

“The new BMW Speed Limit Display will significantly reduce the risk of drivers exceeding the speed limit by mistake,” BMW Group Australia Marketing General Manager Tom Noble says.

The technology is an information system only and does not intervene in the control or speed of the vehicle in any way, the auto maker says.

BMW’s head-up display system already allows drivers to view a range of information on the vehicle’s windshield, including navigation, cruise-control settings, speed and system warnings.