Auto Electronics

Suzuki selects Garmin navigation for sub-$16k SX4

Suzuki will include GPS navigation from Garmin International Inc. as standard equipment in the 2009 Suzuki SX4, marking the first time in America that a vehicle priced under $16,000 will include GPS navigation as a standard feature, the firms said.

The Suzuki T.R.I.P. (Travel, Real-time traffic, Information and Play) system, based on Garmin's nuvi 700 series, features a 4.3-inch touchscreen display and maps of North America with nearly six million points of interest (POI).

Suzuki is adding its own POI, marked with a Suzuki "Way of Life" icon on the navigation screen. Suzuki-recommended destinations and landmarks include hip music venues, popular surf spots, offbeat road trip attractions and other activity-focused destinations. A dedicated community site will also be launched to support the sharing and downloading of user-generated recommendations for destinations and drive routes among Suzuki SX4 owners.

Dan Bartel, Garmin's vice president of worldwide sales, said the navigation device includes an integrated mount that allows for elegant mounting inside the vehicle and also makes it easy-to-remove for adventures on foot.

SX4 buyers can upgrade to a premium navigation device that includes dynamic content from the MSN Direct network, including up-to-date traffic information, fuel prices, and weather reports. The system also offers news and stock market information, local events, movie listings, and the ability to plan trips and look up destinations on a computer and then wirelessly send them to the device. Owners can pair most Bluetooth-enabled phones with the device, for hands-free calling.

Radio or CD audio will automatically lower when their navigation device gives a voice prompt or for an incoming Bluetooth-enabled phone call. The MSN Direct antenna is seamlessly integrated into the vehicle's existing antenna and continually collects up-to-date data.
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