OnStar has been a game-changer in the automotive industry. Offering a range of features like emergency assistance, hands-free calling, and turn-by-turn navigation, OnStar brought the in-car concierge to a mass audience.
In fact, OnStar has been so successful that, from May 6 through June 16, General Motors is offering its new OnStar FMV product for just $99. And yes, that fee includes installation.
OnStar FMV (short for "For My Vehicle") is an aftermarket product that offers most of the same benefits found in the regular, factory-installed OnStar system. OnStar FMV takes the form of a rearview mirror that replaces the one that arrived with your car, and it works on a wide range of makes and models. In addition to the typical OnStar features -- including stolen vehicle assistance -- there's talk of adding other options to FMV, like Family Link and access to the Relay Rides network.
According to GM, the biggest group of OnStar FMV purchasers have been Toyota owners, accounting for 15.6% of all sales. Coming in at second place are Ford owners, who make up 12.3% of FMV buyers. In a press release, GM says that over 30% of those Ford vehicles have had the not-entirely-user-friendly Ford Sync, which also offers hands-free calling.
GM's timing of this OnStar sale isn't coincidental: it's clearly meant to coincide with Mother's Day, Father's Day, and graduation season. And frankly, it seems like a pretty good gift idea -- particularly for parents worried about the safety of their kids, or vice-versa.
Remember, though: in addition to the $99 you'll pay for the hardware, you'll also need to sign up for a service plan. Those plans begin at $18.95 per month, or $199 per year.
OnStar FMV is available at a range of retailers, including Best Buy. For complete details, check out the OnStar FMV website.