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Connected Technology Takes Center Stage at 2014 Chicago Auto Show - DMR

Mark Bilek
Director of Communications and Technology
Chicago Automobile Trade Association
Office: (630) 424-6082
Cell: (847) 652-0632

Contact: Jennifer Morand
Senior Public Relations and Social Media Manager
Chicago Automobile Trade Association
Office: (630) 424-6084
Cell: (630) 391-1986


DIGITAL MEDIA RELEASE (this release contains links to HD video and hi-resolution photography)



Manufacturers Increase Connected Technology in Cars to Meet Consumer Demands

CHICAGO (February 12, 2014) – In a smartphone-centric world, automakers know that improved in-vehicle connectivity can help drive car sales. As a result, automakers are playing a major role in shaping the connected world’s future. Cars are becoming mobile hotspots that link the vehicle and the occupants to the outside world.

The 2014 Chicago Auto Show, the nation’s largest, is a destination for anyone seeking to understand the technologies powering our interconnected ecosystem. The show provides a great platform for manufacturers to display their latest technological advances, effectively becoming a bridge that allows automakers to reach potential customers. According to Forbes, by 2020, 90 percent of the vehicles on the road will be wired to the web and the connected-car market will hit $600 billion — making it the single largest market for connected devices and services.

“The integration of the connected car and home is the next big thing,” said Kurt Schiele, 2014 Chicago Auto Show chairman. “Connected technology plays a major role in the future of transportation, and we are glad to stand at the forefront to be able to connect consumers to technology here at the Chicago Auto Show.”

Cars today have more technological advancements than ever before. In-car connectivity applications allow vehicles to interact with other aspects of an owner’s life. Many of today’s cars have features that go beyond hands-free calling, allowing cars to read text messages aloud, stream music and podcasts and access social media accounts. Moreover, car connectivity is becoming a two-way street as vehicles are now also able to send pertinent information back to their owners via their smartphones. As technology improves, manufactures are incorporating the mobile connectivity into new models across the board. For example, Ford has incorporated the MyFord Touch infotainment system in nearly every vehicle to ensure customers remain connected to their devices.

“It really helps you manage your life, but lets you keep your eyes on the road, your hands on the wheel, lets you drive,” said Mark Schirmer, utilities communication manager for Ford Motor Company. “Hands-free, we think it’s very important.”

Additional connected technology features appearing in 2014 cars include:

  • Text to talk
  • Bluetooth streaming audio
  • 3D navigation
  • WiFi hot spot
  • An intelligent onboard system with personal communications (phone calls, email and voice mail)
  • Peripheral communications with GPS, toll booths, parking lots, road closures, traffic behavior, and emergency services
  • Vehicle charging and status updates
  • Multimedia entertainment options (Internet, movies, games, music and news)
  • A host of safety and diagnostic tools

To download HD-quality interviews with executives from each Chicago Auto Show product debut, please visit:

For hi-resolution images of the Chicago Auto Show debut vehicles, visit the following links:

For Chicago Auto Show logo assets for download, please visit:


About the Chicago Auto Show
The Chicago Auto Show is the largest on the continent, spanning more than 1 million square feet of production, concept, and exotic vehicle exhibit space. In addition to hosting multiple world and North American vehicle debuts, the Chicago Auto Show's First Look for Charity raises more than $2 million annually for 18 worthy Chicago organizations in a single night. The 2014 public show will be February 8-17. For more information, visit or Media can register for the Chicago Auto Show Media Preview at

About The Chicago Automobile Trade Association
Founded in 1904, the Chicago Automobile Trade Association is the nation’s oldest and largest metropolitan dealer organization. It is comprised of more than 400 franchised new-car dealers and an additional 150 allied members. The group’s dealer members employ nearly 20,000 people in the metropolitan area. The association has produced the Chicago Auto Show since 1935. For more information, visit

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