Times are changing. It's an old adage, but it's true. Factory navigation
systems in vehicles have been expensive and subpar for years now, with
cheaper standalone navigation devices often being superior in nearly
every way. But factory dash integration has its perks, and for years we
have wondered why the two couldn't be combined. But as Garmin's
popularity in standalone navigation devices has dwindled with the surge
in smartphone navigation systems, that company as well as TomTom have
been looking for ways to branch out.
In fact, TomTom already landed a deal with Sony in order to provide
navigational services in Xplod head unit devices, and now Garmin is
sneaking into the automotive industry. It's a move we wish would have
occurred years ago, but now is better than never. Announced this week, Garmin
's utomotive OEM division will provide a connected and integrated
navigation package for the 2011 Suzuki Grand Vitara and SX4 models,
including the SX4 Crossover, SX4 Sport and SX4 SportBack. In other
words, it's one of the first times that a factory navigation system has
used a well-known nav OS. The new navigator provides wireless online
information like Google
local search, traffic, weather, fuel prices, movie listings, flight
status, local events, and white page telephone listings – the first of
its kind to be offered in North America by any automaker.
The system is built around Garmin's nuvi 1690, a popular model that
holds 6 million POIs, Google search and more. Additionally, users can
look up local events and movie listings to find
interesting activities wherever they might travel, not to mention
real-time flight status checks. There's also dynamic traffic and
weather, helping drivers take the most efficient route. The first year
of wireless data services are free, and after that, the
subscription renewal price for data services is $60.00 per year.
Garmin® and Suzuki Offer First Connected Navigation Device In North America on 2011 Grand Vitara and SX4 Models
OLATHE, Kan./November 2, 2010/Business Wire — Garmin International Inc., a unit of Garmin Ltd. (NASDAQ: GRMN), the global leader in satellite navigation, announced today that its automotive OEM division will provide a connected and integrated navigation package for the 2011 Suzuki Grand Vitara and SX4 models, including the SX4 Crossover, SX4 Sport and SX4 SportBack. The new navigator provides wireless online information like Google™ local search, traffic, weather, fuel prices, movie listings, flight status, local events, and white page telephone listings – the first of its kind to be offered in North America by any automaker.
“Suzuki can now offer its customers an up-to-the-minute navigational experience with an industry-leading points of interest (POI) database, as well as helpful information like traffic, weather, fuel prices, and more – all with a customized installation,” said Dan Bartel, Garmin’s vice president of worldwide sales. “The 2011 model year marks our third consecutive year that Garmin has been offered as navigation equipment in select Suzuki models, and they can boast of being the first auto manufacturer to feature a connected navigation device in North America.”
Based on Garmin’s popular nüvi® 1690, users can access the device’s built-in six million points of interest, or find a destination with virtually limitless Google local search and white page telephone listings. Detailed search results are displayed for many POIs, including a location description, business address, phone number and popularity rating. Motorists can also search for an individual’s street address by their first name, last name or phone number.
Additionally, users can look up local events and movie listings to find interesting activities wherever they might travel. Real-time flight status takes the stress out of traveling to the airport with up-to-the minute arrival and departure information for major air carriers. And the dynamic traffic and weather data helps drivers ensure they’re taking the safest, most efficient route.
The Suzuki navigation system also features ecoRoute™, an innovative application that helps customers stretch their dollars and conserve fuel by creating routes that are optimized for using less fuel. When a user selects the “less fuel” option, the nüvi will determine a fuel efficient route based on fuel consumption rates, estimated driving speeds and vehicle acceleration data.
The unit sits in a fully-integrated mount, which provides power to the unit as well as turn-by-turn voice prompting through the vehicle’s sound system. Drivers can easily detach the unit for safekeeping or pedestrian excursions. The unit is also customized with a Suzuki splash screen and a preloaded database of Suzuki dealerships.
The first year of wireless data services are free, and after that, the subscription renewal price for data services is $60.00 per year. Suzuki’s full line of model year 2011 vehicles is arriving in dealer showrooms now. For more information about Suzuki’s versatile line up and to locate a dealer near you, please visit, www.suzukiauto.com.