The infotainment system of a car is a major consideration for most customers during their purchase. It is not something that is to be overlooked since even exotics like Maseratis and Aston Martins offer an intuitive infotainment system to operate various digital aspects of the car. According to this website, the Dodge Challengers and Chrysler 300s have always been a laughing stock in terms of infotainment, but no more. With the launch of the revolutionary new Uconnect 5, FCA has proved that it is ready to update its in-car technology for the next decade.
According to FCA’s press release, this new version of Uconnect is the most advanced iteration of the system to date. It uses Atlantis architecture for the electronic components of the system instead of the Powernet architecture used for the previous versions. This makes the system use the hardware into 3 tiers- presentation, data storage, and logic analysis, with all three accessible by both the client and server devices. In simple words, that means it is more efficient with utilizing data from the users.
For the hardware, Uconnect 5 comes with 6 GB of RAM and 64 GB of flash memory. This eliminates any lag or multimedia operational problems along with the ability to increase the compatibility of the system to all file types. The screen is upgraded to a 12.3-inch touchscreen display that supports Ultra HD. FCA claims the screen has a capacity of 15 megapixels, which is much better than most 4K displays. 50K MIPS chips will be used to increase the touch response speed.
For the navigation, Uconnect 5 will incorporate TomTom navigational units for supporting both online and offline access to updated maps for all routes. The One-Box-Search feature will also be included. This makes it easy to find a destination through text or voice input. Some additional features include Maps Over The Air(MOTA) and Last Mile Navigation. The system is also optimized to work with EVs and PHEVs to help the driver plan for the route with most charging stations, or to look for the nearest charging stations in case of low battery.
Uconnect will also work better with its mobile app, which will now add several features and easier remote access to the car’s systems. Things like remote start, lock/unlock, Family Driver Alert, and SOS will become standard. Valet Alert mode and Stolen Vehicle Assitance will also help with locating the vehicle, making it easier to entrust the car to someone other than the owners.
For those looking for more familiarity, Uconnect 5 includes supports full integration through Apple CarPlay or Android Auto, which was previously absent on some cars. This would allow customers to utilize phone apps wirelessly through the system without much trouble. Now that 4G LTE Wi-Fi hotspot is standard, you don’t need to worry about poor internet connection, either.
Uconnect 5 features dual-phone connectivity, which allows for two Bluetooth connections with the system at the same time. This makes for easier multimedia operation for people who carry more than one phone at a time or if the passengers need to connect along with the driver. The screen is multi-tasking, so both the phones can work on separate functions. For example, the driver can use the navigation while the passenger can play music, both at the same time.
A big problem with the previous systems was a large number of warnings and alerts that would pop up and distract the driver from the road ahead. Uconnect 5 will incorporate a card system that is customized to prevent redundant data from being displayed on the screen or the HUD display. This will also help set up profiles for up to 5 people with an additional valet profile to streamline the user experience. FCA has applied a Telematics Box Module(TBM) for system updates and cloud backup. This makes it easier to update the firmware if the data size is too large. It also helps with retaining user settings when the customer decides to switch cars in the future.
Voice recognition has improved by leaps and bounds. Just like a Mercedes-Benz system, you can order the car to do something through natural speech. Just say, ”Hey Chrysler” followed by the command and the system responds accordingly. It has also been tested with ambient noise like rain and traffic and works out without a hitch.
Still, it is not yet up to par with the Mercedes Meconnect system but is quite an improvement over previous versions. Although it is still years until we get gesture control and AI-based companions, it seems FCA will eventually come around in the near future.