Print 8 comment(s) - last by MrCoyote.. on Apr 6 at 10:25 AM

Japanese market Honda Civic

Acura RL
Honda joins VW in supporting Google Earth mapping for in-car navigation

Edmunds is reporting that Honda will offer Google Earth Satellite mapping for its InterNavi Premium Club service. As of this writing, the Google Earth portion of the service will only be available to Japanese-market Honda Civics.

Honda's Floating Car Data system, which provides a basis for the advanced navigation sytem, has been in place in Japan since September of 2003. Real-time information including traffic jams and accidents is updated on the vehicle's navigational display. Edmunds adds:

In keeping with the high-style Japanese culture, Honda's system displays traffic information in three colors: blue for smooth traffic, orange for busy and red for congested. The initial service area only extends to 15 miles around the major cities of Tokyo, Nagoya and Osaka, but Honda says it will soon extend coverage throughout Japan.

North American customers forking over enough money for an Acura RL have already encountered a similar system called AcuraLink (minus the Google Earth mapping). AcuraLink works in conjunction with XM Satellite Radio satellites to provide real-time traffic updates in 20 major metropolitan areas including Los Angeles, New York, Detroit and Chicago.

There is no word on when the Google-enhanced system will be available (if at all) in the United States, but it's likely that we see it first on Acura models with it later filtering down to the rest of the Honda lineup. Volkswagen is also working on a similar system with the help of NVIDIA.

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Display it on a HUD...
By FoxFour on 4/5/2006 6:41:04 PM , Rating: 2
I'm not really sure how useful Google Earth will be in a car navigation system... I use it lots for planning routes before I travel, but at home I'm looking at it on a 23" monitor and I have a cable broadband connection. It doesn't seem like it would be really convenient on a small screen in a moving car, particularly in dense urban traffic. I guess it would be good if you have a co-driver...

RE: Display it on a HUD...
By czarchazm on 4/5/2006 9:24:31 PM , Rating: 2
I ahve used Acura's navigation systems. Not only are they among the best on the market, but they are super easy to use and voice interactive. That's right: they rock.

By QueBert on 4/5/2006 7:13:51 PM , Rating: 2
this will be pretty bleh unless they make big changes to it (I think they will...) Google Earth is cool on my pc, but in a car? Hell no, I want the Pioneer DVD navi, voice activation, talks to you and has real time high quality 3d views. If Honda or Google can get it close to that level it might have a chance. Even for people who don't need advanced navi, this is surely going to occure a montly access charge, if somehow it's free it will be sweet but I don't see how that's possible...

RE: ugh
By suryad on 4/6/2006 1:28:12 AM , Rating: 2
Top Gear did a review on that Pioneer system you talked about....had nice features but boy did it have a lot of mistakes in the database it was running on!

By Burning Bridges on 4/5/2006 8:52:37 PM , Rating: 2
Guys, they aren't going to have the home-computer GUI but on a smaller screen. They aren't dumb.

I think the will have a despoke GUI talored for use in the car, like all in-car satnav systems have.

By miahallen on 4/5/2006 9:19:31 PM , Rating: 2
Or in heavy urban areas in the states. I live just outside Tokyo and my nav monitors traffic as well, it's a pretty neat feature because of the way the raods are here (they're almost all two lane), but in the states I would see it as slightly less useful.

By hans007 on 4/5/2006 9:30:23 PM , Rating: 2
i have an acura now, and the nav is really good.

though google earth nav would be nice, since it could show landmarks that you'd be passing etc.

the traffic nav i dont have. but i could see how it would be useful in traffic in LA.

Quality Control
By MrCoyote on 4/6/2006 10:25:48 AM , Rating: 1
Instead of adding more "features", they need to step up their Quality Control here in the U.S. at the Ohio plant . Bought a new '03 Accord (Made in Ohio), and have had numerous problems. As of today, it's been in the shop fourteen times . I consider it a lemon, but unfortunately the lemon law in my state does not. Fourteen times is just too much over the past couple of years. I know this is atypical of Honda to have so many problems, but when it's my car, it really ticks me off.

"What would I do? I'd shut it down and give the money back to the shareholders." -- Michael Dell, after being asked what to do with Apple Computer in 1997
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