NR at the NYIAS-Inside Audi Connect


Numerous vehicles at the New York International Auto show boast about having the best new computers and gizmos. One of these systems stood out above the rest. Audi Connect debuted in 2012, and through a partnership with Google, has become one of the more fascinating and intriguing infotainment systems to hit the market. Thanks to the wide selection of cameras, in depth maps and smartphone connectivity, it’s never been cooler to ride in an Audi. Let’s take an insiders look into Audi Connect.

Like many other vehicles at the show, Audi advertised the creation of a wi-fi hotspot within the car for up to eight devices. While other manufacturers have developed systems where the car will use your phone’s 3G or 4G network to provide internet, your Audi actually has a SIM card mounted in the dash and provides the internet that way. You know how car companies are always giving you 6 months of free Satellite radio? Well through a deal with T-Mobile (who provides the SIM card and network for Audi Connect), you’ll get 6 months of wi-fi for free.

The car is hooked up with a 19 speaker, 1400 watt Bang and Olufsen sound system, with speakers that will raise and lower depending on whether you are listening to music or not. Close the windows and pump up the EDM and you just might be able to drown out that annoying teenager in the Honda Civic.


The 2013 Audi S8 has a night vision camera that works both during the day and at night and it will actually highlight pedestrians walking behind your vehicle with a yellow outline. The car also possesses a front camera, corner cameras and a “top view”. Thanks to the cameras mounted on the outside of the car, you’re able to see a 360-degree view around your vehicle from about 5 feet up. This would have been an ideal feature for Rick Grimes in the first episode of the walking dead but I digress. The vehicle also has 3 driving settings (Comfort, Auto, Dynamic) and numerous massage settings. Hello Shiatsu!

Map functionality is one of the most intriguing parts as not only do you have access to Google Maps and Google Earth but in certain major cities you have access to Google Street View. Not only will you be able to locate your destination on a map but you’ll be able to see whether it’s on the right side of the street, the outside of the building, if there are any parking lots in the area, etc. This is one of the best feature in the entire vehicle.


The car also has a touchpad, allowing you to spell out a contact or destination by simply drawing the number or corresponding letter. The voice controls of the car are equally as impressive and Audi has installed a speech training feature, so the car can “learn” your accent and better understand you in the future.


Other functions include an analog clock that will adjust when you change the time zone on your on-board computer, a news app that will give you one to two sentence descriptions of the top news story (When searching for news about Canada, the top news headline was ‘Justin Bieber’s pet monkey confiscated by German Police’. True story).

All in all the car was packed with exciting and useful features from trunk to front and was definitely one of the highlights of the show. With a twin-turbocharged 520HP engine, this car ain’t no slouch either (if, you know, you still wanted to actually DRIVE the car after reading the article). With all the talk of fully electric vehicles and self parking cars, it’s nice to see something that’s not only fun to drive but convenient too. Something Audi knows all too well.

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