Barcelona, 11/05/2017. – In the framework of Automobile Barcelona – the new name given to the classic Barcelona Motorshow in its updated, more connected version and which is being held from today until May 21st – SEAT is giving the public a close look at the developments in connected car that the company announced at the recent edition of the Mobile World Congress (MWC). This enables SEAT to take its cutting-edge technologies from a professional exhibition to the general public at a popular event such as the Barcelona motorshow.
Visitors to Automobile Barcelona can get hands-on demonstrations of technologies such as Digital Access, Parkfinder or a simulator that shows what future driving will be like, according to company President Luca de Meo during his keynote address today at the motorshow. In his speech, the President of SEAT announced that with agreements and projects such as Travipay and Waze, and with a centre of excellence like SEAT Metropolis:Lab Barcelona, with more projects to come, the company is accelerating the creation of its digital ecosystem in Barcelona. “For me this reflects the greatness of Barcelona, where innovation, progress and development find their ultimate expression” he stated.
In this sense, de Meo announced that visitors to the SEAT stand at the Motorshow can, for the first time, try out the new Waze for Android Auto, Google’s GPS navigation app. In the next few weeks, Google intends to launch the beta version of this new app, which will be compatible with all SEAT cars that are equipped with Full Link. With the addition of one of the most widely-used and best rated navigation apps in its cars, SEAT is taking another step forward in offering connectivity technology to facilitate mobility and enhance users’ driving experience.
“SEAT is increasingly strengthening its position as a front-runner in the connected car. Incorporating the new Waze app for Android Auto in our vehicles is in line with our goal of offering a driving experience that is easy, connected and personalised, and one which enables us to continue to make progress in configuring our digital ecosystem” pointed out Luca de Meo. “We are the carmaker with the youngest customer base, whose age is almost 10 years younger than the European average. Offering them Waze directly in their car is a great step forward in our commitment to connectivity”.
New SEAT app for Android Auto
In parallel to this agreement, at Automobile Barcelona SEAT presented its SEAT Drive App for Android AutoTM. With it, SEAT drivers with Android phones (running version 5.0 Lollipop or newer) and the Android Auto app can access information from the phone on the screen of the car, while driving and in a safe and attractive manner. The app, which will be available soon on Google Play StoreTM, will synchronise with the car and display information on its screen. With this app for AndroidTM and the iOS version which the company launched last year, more than 95% of users of mobile phones and other mobile devices can keep track of the status of their vehicle the last time it was synchronised.
Following SEAT’s participation at the last MWC, which highlighted a new form of interaction between cars, users and their environment as well as the company’s latest developments in the field of connectivity, the carmaker now invites the general public to experience its breakthroughs in integrated car systems such as Travipay, a mobile reservation and payment method of services, or Parkfinder, which facilitates navigation to available parking spaces. In addition, the SEAT stand has a simulator that was also featured at the MWC that lets visitor experience the SEAT ID, the gateway to the brand’s digital ecosystem. The electric Mii will also be on display at Automobile Barcelona, and available for test-drives and to allow people to test the Digital Access technology it is equipped with.
Three display areas for SEAT at Automobile Barcelona
SEAT will be present at Automobile Barcelona in three distinct spaces. The first, in the exhibition area, is an almost 1,300m² stand highlighting the brand’s product developments and technological breakthroughs in connectivity. At the motorshow, SEAT is presenting the sportiest version of the Ateca, the Ateca FR, which is the latest addition to the range of the company’s first SUV, as well as the new Ibiza and the new Leon Cupra. These are examples of SEAT’s ongoing product offensive, which this year features the Leon and the Ibiza, soon to be joined by the new Arona SUV crossover in the second half of 2017. The stand also has a simulator that shows what the future of driving will be like, next to a vehicle that pays tribute to the SEAT 600, a design exercise created by the company to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the iconic model. A Ducati motorcycle, the King’s Cup trophy and a 4D system of augmented reality round off SEAT’s presence in this area.
In addition, SEAT has a second stand in the Connected Hub, a dedicated space for new solutions in the area of connectivity, Smart mobility and new business trends and models. Here, the brand is displaying an eMii with Digital Access, a technology developed for collaborative economy environments which enables entry to the vehicle via the mobile phone, without the need for a physical key. The fleet of 10 eMii made available to workers at Pier01 will be equipped with this solution. A further exhibit is the My SEAT DataPlug, the dongle that enables vehicles not equipped to support digital technologies to access connectivity services. In this way, drivers of older cars can begin to experience these technologies before the connected car becomes available.
The Connected Hub also features an Inspiration Arena where the Demo Day was held for the start-ups that are participating in the SEAT Accelerator by Conector, the acceleration programme where the five innovative projects related with the automotive sector and mobility benefitted from support to promote their development. Following a five-month acceleration stage, they presented their projects to investors and experts, with emphasis on their business models and future challenges related with the market, product, turnover trends or investment needs, among others.
In this space, SEAT will be participating in an Industry 4.0 discussion panel, where experts from different carmakers with production in Spain will explain the progress their factories are making in digitalisation.
Finally, SEAT will also be present in a third space called Connected Street, where the public can get first-hand insights into the latest advances and innovations in connectivity. SEAT will give visitors the chance to drive the Ateca Smart City Car, which detects available parking spaces in the city, and the Parkfinder and Travipay apps, which reduce the time needed to find a parking space and streamline electronic reservation and payment. In addition, people will also have an opportunity to test-drive SEAT’s electric prototype, the eMii, and try out its Digital Access.
*Android Auto, Google Play, and Android are trademarks of Google Inc.