Steve Jobs sadly passed before he could design his iCar, so the closest we’ve got so far is Siri Eyes Free on a bunch of cars and now the new VW ‘iBeetle’. The VW-designed tribute to all things ‘i’ is laid out in the gallery above and two more shots below…
Despite the name, the Apple inspiration is limited to the range of colors, a dashboard dock for the iPhone and an app for controlling various aspects of the car, well, just because it can, really.
When this special app is launched on an iPhone, it can either connect the phone to the Beetle via the docking station or wirelessly. Each option allows for different app functions to be accessed:
- Spotify: lets users stream media such as new songs, customized playlists or online radio stations into the Beetle. Those who wish can post their favorite music directly to friends. In addition, users in the Beetle can switch between “Spotify” and “iTunes” at any time.
- Expert: offers five functions which make the iPhone an extended on-board instrument of the Beetle, such as a G-Meter (for measuring lateral acceleration), oil and coolant temperature gauges for the engine, a chronometer, and a compass.
- Trainer: can be used to compare driving times, distances, and fuel economy values for different routes between any two destinations. Here, too, tips can be posted via social networks like Twitter and Facebook—such as which route is faster to the office.
- Reader: lists the latest messages from social networks like Facebook, and reads iPhone messages aloud.
- Postcard: Sends the current location of the Beetle to friends as a digital postcard with a map motif.
- Photo: Sends photos taken inside the car to numerous social networks. Simply activate it, and the app does the rest.
- Milestones: Available when the smartphone is undocked. Rewards its users with virtual “milestone stickers” for the Beetle when certain tasks have been completed.
It’s essentially the same functionality as Siri Eyes Free coupled to a basic car data interface and a few cute Beetle-specific apps like the postcard feature, but it will likely appeal to the car’s target market – people who like cute things – and does look suitably pretty.
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