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2013 Ram Gets Powerful New UConnect Infotainment System

Ram debuted a powerful new UConnect infotainment system for the 1500 pickup at the 2012 New York Auto Show this week. It includes wireless connectivity from Sprint via an embedded modem, as well as Wi-Fi capability and an exclusive app store.

The system also features direct connection to emergency services through a 911 button  on the rearview mirror. Drivers can also automatically receive vehicle health reports and  remotely lock or unlock truck doors, start the vehicle and flash its lights from any distance via the Web or a smartphone app.

Ram also claims that system will be updated with the latest features and services over the air and are downloaded directly to the Uconnect Media Center. Owners will also be able to download app updates or new apps as they become available directly to the Uconnect Media Center from inside the car via the 8.4-inch touchscreen.

Pricing hasn’t yet been announced.

Full press release after the jump

 

2013 Ram 1500 Debuts with
Next Generation Uconnect® System and
New Customizable Vehicle Information Center

  • All-new, next-generation Uconnect® Access debuts on the 2013 Ram 1500
  • Uconnect Access combines a new lineup of smart Media Centers with a powerful new wireless platform
  • With Uconnect Access, Ram 1500 owners will have multiple ways to access new connected services and applications  
  • Ram owners can manage their connected services and applications directly from the vehicle’s 8.4-inch touchscreen display or via the web
  • Next generation Uconnect system is designed to be forward-thinking, providing the freedom to upgrade to the latest features and services
  • Voice-recognition technology, steering wheel controls, touchscreen displays and traditional controls provide Ram 1500 customers with a variety of ways to interact with their mobile phones, music, navigation system and applications
  • Ram 1500 now available with a premium, customizable, full-color 7-inch vehicle information center
  • Addition of Powernet vehicle electrical architecture system allows new content with improved data speeds
  • Chrysler Group offers Ram 1500 customers an expanded SiriusXM Satellite Radio channel lineup, with exclusive programming including new SiriusXM Latino channels, an automotive industry first
  • Sprint has been selected as the strategic partner to bring wireless connectivity and service delivery to the vehicle  

The 2013 Ram 1500 offers a truckload of innovative, segment-exclusive technology, adding all-new features to an already best-in-class interior. New for the 2013, the Ram 1500 is the first to offer the next-generation Uconnect® system, called Uconnect Access, with a more powerful, in-vehicle connectivity system.

“Our Uconnect systems have received accolades from the automotive and consumer electronics industry because they are easy to learn, easy to use, responsive and accurate,” said Marios Zenios, Vice President, Uconnect Systems and Services — Chrysler Group LLC.  “We established these pillars as the foundation for Uconnect Access.

“Customers are provided with multiple ways to connect to portable devices, content, services and applications while remaining focused on the driving,” added Zenios.

 

New, Smart Uconnect Media Centers

Building upon base radio capability, two new Uconnect Media Centers will be offered to provide Ram customers with a range of features and connectivity options to best suit their needs, they include:

 

The Uconnect Media Center R3 features an 8.4-inch color touchscreen and offers customers the flexibility to purchase navigation after the vehicle sale. The Media Center also provides Ram customers with multiple ways to connect their truck; SiriusXM Satellite Radio; voice recognition technology to provide handsfree operation of mobile phones, music and texting and a variety of ways to access digital music content including SD, USB and 3.5 mm auxiliary input in the media console, all standard. Also, a CD player is located in the lower storage bin of the center console.

 

The Uconnect Media Center R4 features an 8.4-inch color touchscreen with standard navigation and provides Ram customers with multiple ways to connect their truck; HD Radio, SiriusXM Satellite Radio, SiriusXM Travel Link and SiriusXM Traffic; voice recognition technology to provide handsfree operation of mobile phones, music, texting and navigation; a variety of ways to access digital music content including SD, USB and 3.5 mm auxiliary inputs as well as a remote USB port in the media console, all standard. Also, a CD player is located in the lower storage bin of the center console.

 

Uconnect Access: A Powerful New Platform That Provides Multiple Ways to Connect

The Uconnect Media Centers R3 and R4 provide the Ram 1500 with a built-in cellular connection so vehicle occupants are automatically connected to a variety of new services.  For instance, the new Uconnect Media Centers provide a direct connection to emergency services when the new 911 button found on the rearview mirror is pushed. Ram 1500 customers also will automatically receive regular vehicle health reports and be able to remotely lock or unlock truck doors, start the vehicle, and flash lights from any distance via the web or a smartphone application.

 

Ram truck owners will be able to access select, certified in-vehicle applications.  Driving-relevant applications will be introduced over time and are designed specifically for in-vehicle use. The certified applications are easily controlled with natural voice recognition or steering wheel controls to keep drivers focused on the road. The responsive 8.4-inch touchscreen includes the award-winning user interface designed by Chrysler Group Human Machine Interface engineers, featuring large icons and visual cues allowing consumers intuitive control of system features.

 

Uconnect Media Centers Are Always Current

Ram truck owners will be confident to know their truck is designed to be forward-thinking, providing the freedom to upgrade to the latest features and services, without having to replace their factory installed Uconnect systems. Applications are updatable over the air and are downloaded directly to the Uconnect Media Center, so features remain current. Ram truck owners will be able to continually evolve their in-vehicle connectivity experience by downloading app updates or new applications as they become available directly to the Uconnect Media Center from inside the car, via the 8.4-inch touchscreen.

 

The Ram 1500’s new Uconnect Access system features best-in-class functionality, integrating new entertainment content and is the first time Ram will offer HD Radio to its customers. Ram customers also will have access to SiriusXM Satellite Radio, handsfree mobile phone operation, handsfree navigation, handsfree texting with compatible phones and handsfree control of music.  Additionally, new connected services and applications provide real-time access to information and content that Ram 1500 customers want and need while on the road. Uconnect is designed to provide drivers and passengers with relevant, focused and contextual information that is not distracting and easy to use, allowing drivers to remain focused on the road.

Also enhancing driver convenience, Uconnect features one-step voice command of navigation, the ability to check real-time fuel prices and listen and respond to text messages, combined with familiar knobs for climate and comfort controls.

 

A Variety of Ways to Control Your Content

Uconnect Access controls are placed on the steering wheel. Customer research has shown a preference towards audio controls located at the rear of the steering wheel and Ram was the first truck manufacturer to integrate these rocker switches for ease of use. Audio system controls, including next station, radio preset and previous station or track, are located on the left. Volume up or down and change audio source are located on the right. This means Ram truck drivers can keep their hands on the wheel while they enjoy a variety of entertainment content sources.

Voice Command
The available Uconnect Voice Command is a voice-activated communication system that allows drivers to control their mobile phone, music and navigation system while staying focused on driving.  When a compatible Bluetooth mobile phone is initially connected to the system, the phone book within the mobile phone is automatically downloaded, synchronizing as many as 1,000 phone book entries, which can then be selected by simply saying a contact name. The feature also allows drivers to switch radio modes, tune to AM, FM, HD and available SiriusXM Satellite Radio stations and request real-time information (such as fuel prices) from the available SiriusXM Travel Link using natural voice commands. The handsfree option promotes driver focus, freedom, value and flexibility.

 

SiriusXM Satellite Radio
Ram is the first in the automotive industry to offer its customers an expanded channel lineup from SiriusXM with new exclusive programming.  The new programming spans commercial-free music, plus sports and comedy, including Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Radio, ESPN’s SportsCenter, and Carlin’s Corner, as well as SiriusXM Latino, which delivers the most comprehensive Latin programming available in radio today. SiriusXM Latino includes 11 exclusive commercial-free music channels covering a deep selection of music genres, plus content from leading providers of Spanish-language sports, news, talk and entertainment, including ESPN Deportes Radio, MLB en Español, RadioFormula México, CNN en Español, and Cristina Radio featuring iconic talk show host Cristina Saralegui. Ram customers will get a 12-month SiriusXM subscription, included when purchasing a properly equipped 2013 Ram 1500.

 

Sophisticated Navigation System
The Uconnect Media Center R3 offers customers the flexibility to purchase navigation either at or after the vehicle sale. The Uconnect Media Center R4 offers navigation standard including 3D imagery of landmarks, city models and digital terrain. Both Media Centers utilize the large, 8.4-inch screen to deliver directions, lane guidance and points of interest. Directions are given audibly and also appear in the vehicle information center – so information is available when the driver needs it. The updated system features enhanced graphics and a one-step voice entry system so Ram customers can easily say the address and navigate on the go.

 

SiriusXM Travel Link
SiriusXM provides real-time information and entertainment. SiriusXM Travel Link can be operated via voice and is available on vehicles with the Uconnect Media Center R4. Travel Link provides premium data services and information to make every trip more efficient and includes:

  • Weather: shows coast-to-coast weather data, current conditions and five-day forecasts, detailed storm cell information, hurricane and tropical storm tracking, local wind speeds and even ski resort conditions
  • Fuel Prices: lists prices, locations and distance to more than 120,000 fuel stations across the United States, and can have the navigation system route to a selected fuel station location. The feature also can search for fuel grade, gasoline or diesel
  • Sports: in-game and final scores and weekly schedules from the NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL, NASCAR, golf, college football and basketball
  • Movies: uses listings from more than 4,500 movie theaters across the United States to help consumers plan movie times, theater addresses, ratings, and run lengths ahead of time. Passengers also may have the navigation system set a route to a selected theater location

SiriusXM Traffic
SiriusXM Traffic works with the vehicle’s navigation system to display real-time traffic speed and flow information along with accident information to assist drivers in routing around congested areas.


 

Media Console Offers a Variety of Options

Neatly integrated within the upper storage tier of the center console, a new multimedia input includes USB, SD card and auxiliary connections. The USB allows control of iPod or other media device through the large touchscreen displays and steering-wheel-mounted audio controls. A more powerful 2.5 amp, USB port and 12-volt outlet also provide mobile recharging for electronic devices. In addition, MP3 and WMA audio files on a USB memory device may also be played and controlled via the Uconnect system.

 

New 7-inch Vehicle Information Center

Filling the gauge cluster in front of the driver is an available 7-inch, color, premium vehicle information screen, featuring a new customizable function that enables Ram 1500 customers to personalize information inside the instrument cluster. Similar to the premium Uconnect Systems, select 7-inch instrument cluster background screens are branded with a Ram Truck theme. Ram’s new information display is designed to visually communicate information, using graphics and text, quickly and easily.
The vehicle information display offers drivers a wide range of customization options, from a basic digital speed read out to specific vehicle status information. Operation of the display is clearly communicated to users with easy-to-understand icons and instructions. Using buttons on the steering wheel, drivers can customize the screen with as much or as little information as they desire. The system is intuitive and can be arranged for a variety of views. Up to three analog vehicle status gauges can be added to the display. The main screens found inside the instrument cluster menu are: digital speed, vehicle information and fuel economy, trip A information, trip B information, trailer-tow information, audio, stored messages and screen customization. Additionally, the four corners of the display can be customized to show information at a glance, including current fuel economy, outside temperature, time and compass direction.

 

Once a main screen is chosen, it becomes the default setting, remembering the user’s selection upon restarting the truck. Vehicle concerns are instantly reported to the driver via pop-up warning messages on the display. Text warning messages are automatically stored so a driver can review the message at their convenience.
Alpine® Premium Audio Systems
The 2013 Ram 1500 offers an audiophile-quality audio system to immerse passengers in premium sound. Using Alpine high-performance speakers and an advanced digital signal processing (DSP) amplifier, the optional Alpine 10-speaker premium audio system includes:

  • A 12-channel amplifier with advanced DSP for 7.1-adapted surround sound
  • Three 3.5-inch speakers located in the instrument panel
  • Two 6 x 9-inch speakers located in the front doors
  • Two 2.5-inch rear surround speakers located in the headliner
  • Two 6 x 9-inch speakers located in the rear doors
  • One 8-inch dual voice coil (DVC) subwoofer positioned in a sealed enclosure under the rear seat

All-new Powernet Electrical Architecture
As the Ram 1500 continues to offer more feature content, it created the need for a technology that allows more information to be electronically communicated within the truck. The new Powernet system, used for the first time on a Ram 1500, allows both high- and low-speed data networks to be equipped with as many as 40 individual modules, all designed to improve vehicle performance and enhance the comfort and safety of driver and passengers. Within the Powernet high-speed network, each module (e.g., electronic stability control) processes its individual data and transmits the appropriate commands within the vehicle to activate any additional systems (e.g. anti-lock brake system and cruise control). Uconnect leverages Powernet to deliver fast response time, and share critical information between the 8.4-inch touchscreen and the Vehicle Information Center. The Powernet architecture also is the backbone that supports the Uconnect Access services and applications, including the Ram 1500 vehicle health report and remote services.

 

Sprint Provides Wireless Platform for Next Generation Uconnect Access

Sprint is the strategic wireless partner for the next generation Uconnect Access system. The integrated wireless technology inside the Ram 1500 enhances the driving experience by offering new connected services and applications. The services delivered through the partnership will be easy to learn, easy to use and will offer a seamless experience with the Ram owner’s digital life. An increasing number of features in the new Ram 1500 will rely on enhanced user interfaces including voice capabilities and commands to help limit driving distractions and keep the focus on the primary driving task.

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