Detroit’s North American International Auto Show may start next week, but there’s another big show making news. Automakers are showing off their latest tech advances this week at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. Fiat Chrysler Automobiles unveiled the latest version of its Uconnect Access app-based connected-car system.
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New features include Vehicle Finder, Send Destination to Vehicle, Vehicle Health Report and Vehicle Health Alert. Aside from the added functionality, the app has been redesigned as well; FCA says that aside from a whole new look, the app is faster and more intuitive.
With Vehicle Finder, drivers can view their car’s location via map or satellite views. The app will then navigate to the car’s location or engage the car’s horn, depending on driver input. Kia’s UVO system offers a similar service.
The Send Destination to Vehicle tool allows drivers to send a location address from their smartphone directly to their Uconnect system’s touch-screen.
The Monthly Vehicle Health Report and Vehicle Health Alert tools act a lot like the diagnostic feature of GM’s OnStar system. With the Health Report, drivers get a monthly email informing them about their vehicle’s performance status, including powertrain, oil and fluids, brakes, suspension and safety systems updates. Health Alert is similar except that drivers will immediately receive an email alert if something needs attention.
Chrysler says the new app will be available during the first half of 2015 and compatible on model-year 2015 vehicles equipped with the 8.4-inch Uconnect system. The system must be registered or have an active Uconnect Access subscription; click here for more subscription information.