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Chrysler announced at the North American International Auto Show today that it is working aggressively to develop an advanced, in-vehicle wireless communications systems that go beyond current systems.

Chrysler envisions future GPS systems with satellite imagery downloaded from the Internet as well as automatic wireless map updates, real time weather information. Downloads to in-car entertainment centers can also include service reminders, Internet search, e-mail access, and online shopping

Chrysler’s technology roadmap for vehicle connectivity includes Cellular, WiFi and ultimately WiMAX. A short range network, WiFi transfers high-volumes of information wirelessly, even to download movies and music from the car. WiMAX will feature longer range than WiFi and higher speeds than today’s cellphone-based systems.

The following features will be coming to Chrysler, Dodge and Jeep vehicles over the next few years:

  • Turn-by-turn navigation combined with satellite imagery to provide more realistic maps
  • Automatic wireless map updates, to ensure that drivers will always have the most up-to-date map information. Real-time weather and hazard information will also be available
  • Electronic service reminders, delivered directly to the vehicle
  • Internet search
  • E-mail access, to include access to e-mail accounts, read-out of messages using text-to-text speech, and sending messages via voice command
  • The ability to make on-line purchases, view streaming movies and download music
  • Remote vehicle computer updating – Wirelessly download software updates for any electronic module
  • Wireless audio and video file transfer from home computer to car

Chrysler LLC unveiled three concept vehicles this afternoon, mixing edgy design with future, eco-friendly technologies including the Ecovoyager, Dodge Zeo and Jeep Renegade.

Chrysler’s electronics initiatives also include exclusive Sirius Backseat TV, the MyGig infotainment system, vehicle-to-vehicle communications, satellite connectivity and other wireless technology programs.

Last week at CES, Intel’s Julie Coppernoll gave a Mobile WiMax tour of Las Vegas using Motorola basestations with Clearwire spectrum – a clone of the Hillsboro trial setup in Oregon. The 3 sector base stations connected to Motorola Wi4 Diversity access points (pdf) plugged into Wi-Fi access points inside the vehicles.

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