UConnect Access Via Mobile, dealer-activated nav

This morning, Chrysler launched a new update to UConnect: UConnect Access Via Mobile. It builds on Chrysler’s philosophy of sensible connectivity — which has been all the more appreciated after Ford and BMW went for “feature lists” and ended up with harshly criticized (and, in Ford’s case, buggy) systems. The system is based on QNX, and many programmer interfaces are shared with BlackBerry OS 10; POSIX compliance should also make it easier to port from Android and IOS.

UConnect Access Via Mobile has not been announced before; it builds on UConnect Access, available in the 2013 Ram 1500 and SRT Viper.  UConnect Access includes one-touch 9-1-1 calling, remote door-locking/unlocking, and other features.

 Content is streamed through the customer’s existing smartphone data plan; the system uses the programs’ familiar symbols, e.g. Pandora’s “thumbs up” or “thumbs down” buttons, while steering-wheel controls enable easy song-skipping. Applications approved so far include:
  • Aha™ by HARMAN: Access over 30,000 “stations” of audio content including music services, news, entertainment, audiobooks, Facebook and Twitter newsfeeds, customized food and break stations, weather, and more.
  • iHeartRadio: Clear Channel’s digital music service, adapted to cars.
  • Pandora® automatically creates personalized radio stations based on songs submitted by the user; it is powered by the Music Genome Project®, a detailed, hand-built musical taxonomy, modified by listener feedback, with more than a million tracks included.
  • Slacker: millions of songs in hundreds of stations.


UConnect Access already provides fully integrated cloud-based voice-recognition technology to enable Voice Texting (creating text messages via natural speech) via Bluetooth-equipped smartphones that use the industry-standard Message Access Protocol (MAP).

The same capability supports an upgraded navigation system that accepts one-step voice-commands for destination entry, as well as voice-driven Internet searching to find points of interest and place hands-free calls to them or add them as a destination.

Dealer-Nav-Web Chrysler also re-announced the ability to activate a navigation system on a car that was not ordered with one. According to Marios Zenios (Vice President of Uconnect Systems and Services), this is an industry first, “…a ‘no-customer-left-behind’ attitude.” The  move will be especially handy for used-car buyers.

Dealer-activated navigation will be launched on the 2013 Ram 1500 full-size pickup, SRT Viper and the 2014 Fiat 500L, and will make its way to other cars. It has the features of standard in-car navigation, including junction views, lane guidance, speed limits, and spoken turn-by-turn instructions for “eyes free” guidance.

(See UConnect Access)

AMP version.

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What do you think of the “Chief” blue?

Jeep is set to launch a new color, “Chief,” according to James Mooney — who backed up his assertion with an image from the Jeep brochure available on-line.

The color hasn’t hit the Build & Price system yet. It seems to hearken back to the popular bright blues of the 1990s, but without the metallic glitter; similar colors were also available in the 1970s, and we have seen a 1920s Chrysler in a slightly more aquamarine,

Read the full story: What do you think of the “Chief” blue?  »

Mopar pushes for authentic parts


Mopar has started a campaign to inform owners of their right to request authentic Mopar collision parts.  The “Right to Request” ad is on Mopar’s YouTube page and at

Dealers and body shops are being sent guidebooks that show the superior fit, finish, performance, safety, and warranty coverage of OEM Mopar products.

Ross McGinnis, Vice President of Parts Sales and Field Operations,

Read the full story: Mopar pushes for authentic parts  »

FCA inventory under control


FCA has gotten inventory levels under control in the US, according to Automotive News.  The company has 73 days of stock, versus GM’s 79 days and Ford’s 80 days. It’s above any major import’s inventory, but the wide range of pickups tends to swell American lots.

As the car market drops, dealers have 19,900 Chrysler 200s and 16,500 Darts on their lots;

Read the full story: FCA inventory under control  »

Rendering the Grand Cherokee

DarkSky envisioned a somewhat Range Rover-influenced 2018 Jeep Grand Cherokee, keeping roughly the same body shape but altering the front. This design makes the front end both more conventional and more aggressive, while separating it from the Cherokee and Compass alike.

This goes along, somewhat, with the photos recently seen on a Jeep display, assumed by many to be a Wagoneer. Once the size is corrected for,

Read the full story: Rendering the Grand Cherokee  »

Where are Wranglers sold?

2015 Jeep Wrangler Altitude

The Jeep Wrangler is an American staple, but it’s sold around the world. Recently, as part of a recall, FCA revealed the sales distribution of the 2016-17 Wrangler.

The great bulk of vehicles — 182,743 — were sold or distributed to the United States. Around 10% of those, 18,011, were in Canada. Accounting for around 20% of the Canadian number were 3,087 in Mexico. Finally, 20,948 were sold outside North America — a bit over 10%.

Read the full story: Where are Wranglers sold?  »

What do you think of the “Chief” blue?
Mopar pushes for authentic parts
FCA inventory under control

Rendering the Grand Cherokee

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