FORD Expands availability of next-generation navigation to more than a dozen 2009 products<!--:-->

NOTICIAS DE LA INDUSTRIA AUTOMOTRIZ! FORD Expands availability of next-generation navigation to more than a dozen 2009 products

DEARBORN, Mich. – Customers can take their pick from a baker’s dozen of 2009 Ford, Lincoln and Mercury vehicles and experience the ultimate in in-car navigation.

Ford’s next-generation navigation system debuted on the Ford Flex and Lincoln MKS this summer. The advanced navigation system will now being offered in 11 other 2009 models, including the all-new Ford F-150, Expedition, Escape, Edge, Explorer, Super Duty, and Econoline; the Mercury Mariner and Mountaineer; and the Lincoln MKX and Navigator.

“Ford’s goal is to lead the industry into a new era of in-vehicle connectivity,” said Jim Buczkowski, director of Ford’s Electrical and Electronic Systems Engineering. “We’re accomplishing that by incorporating the best technology solutions from companies like Xanavi, Gracenote and SIRIUS®, connecting customers to the devices and information they need and bringing it to life through the latest in navigation technology.”

Next-generation navigation is loaded with a number of cool features and functions designed to provide customers a superior level of connectivity and information while on the road. The system is voice-activated and communicates with occupants using the most advanced voice-recognition software and the best text-to-speech voices in the industry.

“Ford’s next-generation navigation contains the largest text-to-speech engine of any automobile manufacturer today and any known planned system,” said Brigitte Richardson, Ford’s product development engineer for Voice Control Technology. “The quality of Ford’s navigation system’s text-to-voice voices is the best from any automobile manufacturer.”

The voice-activated next-generation navigation takes Ford’s previous award-winning navigation system to a new level of easy-to-use operation and offers a host of features such as an adjustable bird’s-eye 3-D map view and a 10GB music and photo digital jukebox.

The 3-D map has seven adjustable angles, includes a speed limit display for the area of road being travelled and provides dynamic route guidance. “The range of the system continues to expand rapidly,” said Jason Johnson, product design engineer, Ford Navigation Systems Engineering. “We have added digital map database coverage for Mexico, complementing existing databases for Canada, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico, Hawaii, and Alaska.”

Gracenote, an industry leader in media databases, is the engine behind the jukebox capability of next-generation navigation and delivered an industry-first interface to Ford, one that combined for the first time Gracenote’s voice control, playlisting and cover art offerings. “Through the use of these three technologies, Ford is dramatically improving the human-machine interface and transforming the digital music experience for drivers,” said Buczkowski.

The digital jukebox makes up 10GB of next-generation navigation’s 40GB hard drive, giving users plenty of space to make a personal footprint on the system. The jukebox can store approximately 2,400 songs and 32 images of 1.5 MB each. Users can tailor music playlists and browse music libraries via the screen or through voice activation (e.g. “Play Artist Miles Davis.”). In addition, the jukebox stores more than 700,000 licensed album cover art files for display. The 32 images can be uploaded from a CD or DVD and customers can opt to put their favorite family or vacation photo on the system’s home screen for a personal touch.

Occupants can ask the system to locate the nearest ATM, hair or nail salon, car wash, local hardware store, veterinarian or campground, among many other destinations – more than 149 different categories in total. In fact, there are approximately 3.5 million points of interest stored on the hard drive.

SIRIUS® Travel Link™

Next-generation navigation connects customers to another unprecedented suite of content and services with SIRIUS Travel Link, which is offered free – along with SIRIUS Satellite Radio – for the first six months to all new next-generation navigation owners.

With a quick touch of the screen or a simple voice command, SIRIUS Travel Link connects occupants to up-to-the minute information about traffic, weather, ski conditions, gas prices, movie listings, and sports scores

Users can quickly obtain real-time gas prices at the closest stations, weather and traffic reports, movie listings and sports scores for their favorite professional teams.

SIRIUS Travel Link is exclusive to Ford Motor Company for 2009.

A New Era

Next-generation navigation was developed with Xanavi, a leader in in-vehicle information systems, along with key Ford supplier partners such as SIRIUS and Gracenote.

Since next-generation navigation is a factory-installed integrated system it works seamlessly with other Ford features and connectivity technologies, including Ford SYNC™.