The most recent struggle concerning the navigation app on Android Auto concerns the way Google Maps shuts down after the smartphone is disconnected from the head unit in the car.
In theory, Google Maps should automatically stop the navigation and close its services after Android Auto is running, but for some reason, this no longer happens for some users. I noticed similar behavior in my car as well, though, for some reason, this problem went away automatically a few updates ago.
And while it’s not yet clear if Google has at least tried to implement a fix, users here on Reddit claim they have to manually close Google Maps on their mobile devices after Android Auto shuts down.
In other words, Google Maps no longer does the whole thing automatically, even if obviously it should, and some users claim the navigation shows up in the notification center even if they didn’t launch it.
So basically, Google Maps must be manually closed even when the app wasn’t launched on Android Auto, and for many people, this is as confusing as it could get.
While some location services could indeed be used while using Android Auto (for various other features), Google Maps should still shut down automatically. And some users in the linked reddit discussion claim this behavior was introduced a few months ago after a recent update.
For now, Google is yet to acknowledge this problem or at least clarify why Google Maps shows in the notification center when the navigation isn’t used, so it goes without saying you shouldn’t hold your breath for a fix.