LAS VEGAS--During his keynote speech, Audi chairman Rupert Stadler said that the most exciting area for consumer electronics was not in the home, but in the car. Every year at CES, car technology has become a bigger part of the picture. And this year, Ford actually unveiled an entirely new model at the show.
During his keynote speech, Ford CEO Alan Mulally brought out the Focus Electric, a new electric car due out from Ford by the end of the year. Not to be outdone, GM brought a small fleet of electric-powered two-seater pod prototypes, a model named En-v, although with no projected date for production. Powermat also showed off a Chevy Volt fitted with wireless charging pads for cell phones.
Cars were also used extensively to draw attention to booths. We saw a number of Tesla Roadsters, two Audi R8s, and a number of cars showcasing stereo and video modifications. Check out the cars of CES.
Taking a different tack, JVC showed a video receiver that displays navigation from a smartphone with the MotionX GPS app, creating a cheap way to add nav. And Pioneer debuted an iPhone cradle enabled for smartphone navigation.
Nvidia also announced a deal with BMW to power its next-generation infotainment systems. We got a look at a prototype 3D navigation system in a BMW 550i.
In-car connected services are also becoming a big, new thing, as shown by some new telematics service news that came out of the show. Toyota showed off its new Entune app, which brings five Internet services into the car. Entune was so good that we named it Best of Show in the Car Tech category. Hyundai also demonstrated a new telematics service, called Blue Link, that can contact emergency services in the event of a collision or read out turn-by-turn directions.
Check out our full CES 2011 Car Tech coverage.