Hyundai Blue Link screen interfaceEnlarge Photo
Hyundai doesn’t offer concierge services in the traditional sense, describing them more as assistance services. With the top-tier package, however, customers do have access to live operators who can deliver all kinds of information and service to the car’s navigation system or directly to the driver.
The Sonata Hybrid was the first Hyundai vehicle to offer Blue Link in June of 2011. Blue Link is being progressively rolled out on the rest of the Hyundai lineup, including the 2012 Azera, Sonata and Veloster and the 2013 Genesis Coupe.
The assistance services are part of the top-of-the-line Guidance package of Blue Link (after Assurance and Essentials) and costs $279 per year. Guidance includes all the features of Assurance and Essentials package plus turn-by-turn navigation, points of interest (POI) by voice recognition, POI web search and download, daily route guidance with traffic conditions, traffic alerts, gas station locations and gas prices, Eco coach, restaurant ratings and weather.
See more detailed information on the 2012 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid in this review.
2013 Infiniti JXEnlarge Photo
The Infiniti Personal Assistant has been a standard feature on every Infiniti model since the 2012 model year. It is an anytime-anywhere-anything true concierge service that owners of every Infiniti vehicle – from the least-expensive G25 to the most-expensive FX50 - get free of charge during the four-year warranty period. It is not mileage-based. After the original warranty is up, owners can continue the service for an annual $199 fee.
It is a service that anywhere your cell phone is during the warranty period of the car, you can dial the Infiniti Personal Assistant and ask them to do any kind of services that you might need, such as restaurant reservations, airline flight check-in, even asking to have an item you’ve left at a hotel retrieved for you.
The all-new 2013 Infiniti JX (see our review here) features Infiniti’s first telematics system in which the Infiniti Personal Assistant is integrated into the car. So not only can you call the service using the cellphone, you can also access it directly through the car itself.
Just push the button. The car is a phone, just like any other telematics that might be in the vehicle. Ask for the Infiniti Personal Assistant. Say you are in Peoria, Illinois, and you want to know where the nearest Moroccan restaurant is. The Personal Assistant tells you there is a Moroccan restaurant within 5 miles of you and then they would send the directions directly into your car, without you having to do a thing.
The next vehicle to get the telematics system with integrated Infiniti Personal Assistant will be the 2013 Infiniti M coming out this fall.
Lexus Enform App SuiteEnlarge Photo
Vehicles equipped with the available navigation system (standard on LX 570) feature Lexus Enform with Safety Connect, Lexus' in-car navigation and concierge service that debuted with 2010 model year vehicles. The all-new 2013 Lexus GS (see our review here) debuted the next-generation version of this system, which includes the Enform App Suite. This new suite adds connectivity safely and seamlessly and is also available on 2013 RX, LX and now ES.
Voice-enabled apps enable the user to perform local searches with Bing, make restaurant reservations through OpenTable, and get movie tickets via MovieTickets.com. Users also have the ability to check in on Facebook and search for business reviews on Yelp.
The system allows you to tap into Internet radio with Pandora and iHeartRadio, or use SiriusXM data services to obtain information on stocks, traffic, weather, sports and fuel prices. The system is updatable and upgradeable through over-the-air downloads, so new apps and content can be readily added.
A one-year free trial subscription for Lexus Enform with Safety Connect and SiriusXM data services is included. At the end of the free trial, owners can continue the service for $264.90 per year. Lexus Enform App Suite, also free for the first year, costs an additional $7 per month (with continuation of Enform with Safety Connect) thereafter.
The Lexus Enform advanced multimedia system connects to music, information and entertainment services through the user’s smartphone with the Enform Mobile App. The system works with iPhone, Android and Blackberry, all via Bluetooth. The following will sync with your mobile device:
Lexus Enform with Safety Connect includes: