Volkswagen will begin rolling out a new connectivity system across its range that will provide drivers with a number of convenience functions as well as important emergency services. Called Car-Net, the feature is similar to rival systems like General Motors’ OnStar or Ford’s SYNC with MyFord Touch but is unique in that all services are included in the minimum subscription cost.
Car-Net will be offered from the 2014 model year onwards, initially in select trims of Jetta, Passat, Tiguan, CC, Beetle, Beetle Convertible, and Eos models. Anyone buying a new VW will receive a free six-month subscription but to extend it they can choose monthly or yearly payment options. The monthly subscription cost is $17.99.
Using Car-Net will be familiar to anyone who has used one of the systems from rival automakers. Most of the features can be accessed via three different methods: in-car, via the dedicated Car-Net buttons on the overhead console; by visiting the Car-Net web portal (www.vw.com/carnet); or through a dedicated Car-Net mobile app designed for Apple products. VW said it’s working on an Android version of the app as well.
Important services include automatic crash notification, roadside assistance and stolen vehicle assistance. In most cases, contact between the vehicle owner and a Car-Net operator can be made and information about the vehicle’s status and location automatically forwarded.
Some of the convenience services include destination assist, where address information can be sent directly to the vehicle’s onboard navigation system (either by an operator, through the web portal or using the app), a parked car locator and a vehicle maintenance scheduler.
One of the features that you can use to show off to your friends is the remote vehicle status that allows you to check the status of your vehicle doors, lights, sunroof, hood, convertible top, and trunk via the Car-Net web portal or app.
Featured above is demonstration of one of the most useful services of VW’s new Car-Net system, roadside assistance.