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Volvo using Google Lens tech for new XC40 EV ad

The electric XC40 is the first car to use Volvo's new Google-powered infotainment system.

Steven Ewing Former managing editor
Steven Ewing spent his childhood reading car magazines, making his career as an automotive journalist an absolute dream job. After getting his foot in the door at Automobile while he was still a teenager, Ewing found homes on the mastheads at Winding Road magazine, Autoblog and Motor1.com before joining the CNET team in 2018. He has also served on the World Car Awards jury. Ewing grew up ingrained in the car culture of Detroit -- the Motor City -- before eventually moving to Los Angeles. In his free time, Ewing loves to cook, binge trash TV and play the drums.
Steven Ewing
2 min read
Volvo Google Lens ad

This is like the 2020 version of an invisible ink decoder.


The upcoming XC40 Recharge, Volvo's electric SUV, will also be the first vehicle to use the company's brand-new Google Android-powered infotainment system. In order to get the buzz out ahead of the Recharge officially hitting dealers, Volvo is taking an interesting approach to advertising its partnership with Google, and on Thursday confirmed that an ad in this Sunday's New York Times Magazine will also be powered by a bit of the tech giant's software.

When readers open to Volvo's full-page ad, they'll find a picture of a vehicle's chassis and the text, "The first SUV with Google built in." Using Google Lens tech, readers can then hover over the ad with their smartphone to get more information about the XC40 Recharge -- like you see in the image above.

It's unclear if Volvo plans to use Google Lens tech for any of its future print advertisements.

We've already heard a lot about Volvo's new Android-powered infotainment software. It will support over-the-air updates, Google Assistant integration, access to the Google Play store and, of course, Google Maps . But don't worry, iOS users, Apple CarPlay is part of the package, too.

The XC40 Recharge is Volvo's first production EV. Based on the likable XC40, the Recharge has a 78-kilowatt-hour battery that drives a pair of electric motors, producing 402 horsepower and 487 pound-feet of torque. Official EPA range estimates are still pending, but when the SUV debuted last year, Volvo said the XC40 should be good for around 200 miles on a single charge. The Recharge is expected to cost around $60,000, and should go on sale before the end of the year.

Volvo XC40 Recharge becomes brand's first battery-electric car

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