Toyota Launches Safety Connect, Telematics Program for 2009

Toyota today announced the launch of its own telematics system that is currently set to arrive on models included in the 2009 product lineup. The first vehicles equipped with Safety Connect are scheduled to arrive as soon as summer 2009, Toyota said in a statement released to the press, with the new technology especially intended to help bring its drivers “an added pace of mind.”

Basically, the new service is particularly aimed at vehicle safety, with multiple systems capable of tracking the vehicle and contact authorities in case of accidents or various hazards.

“We are proud to introduce these services and advance our relationships with our customers by providing them the features they need to feel safer and more secure while on the road,” said Jon Bucci, TMS vice president, Advanced Technology Department. “When developing our telematics systems, we ramped up our R&D efforts, intent on creating a system that reflects the voice of our customers and their clearly expressed strong desires for safety and security features on their next vehicle purchase.”

The new telematics program comes with four services, each of them intended to increase the safety of both the driver and the vehicle.

The Automatic Collision Notification (ACN) helps drivers contact authorities or emergency teams in case of collision or accidents. The system automatically transfers the vehicle location (provided by the GPS/navigation unit) and, in case there's no response from the driver, it automatically notifies the response center agent. The call is then treated as an emergency, with the nearest Public Safety Answering Point alerted about the coordinates of the vehicle.

The Stolen Vehicle Location (SVL) tracks the location of the vehicle and, in case the car gets stolen, it contacts the call center in order to provide the exact position.

The Emergency Assistance Button (SOS) allows drivers to get in touch with a 24-hour emergency assistance center by pressing a single button. This obviously means the driver is capable of communicating a potential accident in no time, with vehicle location and other information automatically transferred by the navigation units.

Last but not least, the Roadside Assistance function lets a driver contact the Safety Connect response center and request assistance such as towing, jump start, flat tire or fuel delivery.

Toyota says the first models equipped with the new telematics system will arrive in late summer 2009, with the whole package to be factory-installed but activated upon subscription at authorized dealerships.
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About the author: Bogdan Popa
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Bogdan keeps an eye on how technology is taking over the car world. His long-term goals are buying an 18-wheeler because he needs more space for his kid’s toys, and convincing Google and Apple that Android Auto and CarPlay deserve at least as much attention as their phones.
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