Ahead of the launch of its 2022 EV6, Kia has announced a new set of functions for its Kia Connect telematics system.
The new system builds on the catalog of features offered by its previous generation (called UVO) with new updates and added amenities, including Map Over the Air (OTA) updates, which will first become available on the new EV6. Kia Connect also provides owners with the newly-introduced Stolen Vehicle Recovery feature, which assists law enforcement in the recovery process with its location sharing and vehicle immobilization capabilities.
Along with its new name, Kia Connect is redefined through a redesigned Kia Access App on iOS and Android devices. It offers newly added compatibility through smartphones and smartwatches to access further system features, including remote climate control and door lock/unlock.
Dependent on the vehicle’s model and trim, Kia Connect leverages advanced embedded connectivity to deliver a variety of services and features – including an in-vehicle Wi-Fi hotspot capable of connecting up to five devices to 4G LTE internet. The system’s Connected Routing feature uses a cloud-based system to calculate the optimal route to the user’s selected destination. Real-time maps and predicted traffic info based on historical information and AI are used to learn the preferred routes of users.
In utilizing its connection with the Kia Access app, Kia Connect’s Last Mile Navigation provides walking directions to selected navigation destinations from up to one mile away through the app on compatible smartphones. Further consumer electronics integrations can be found in the Kia Connect’s Smart Speaker Integration. This allows customers to use Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant enabled devices to remotely control some vehicle functionality – such as remote start.
Connected Weather provides weather information for more than 25,000 cities, while Kia’s enhanced voice assist feature allows voice control of several vehicle functions. With it, users can control the vehicle’s climate, seat and steering-wheel heating, audio system, and more with their voice. The new telematics system also integrates the owner’s personal calendar and displays events in the navigation system.
Kia Connect also incorporates safety features – two of which are 911 Connect and Enhanced Roadside Assistance. The former automatically calls 911 via the built-in modem in the event of an airbag deploys. For non-emergencies, it can connect with 24/7 roadside assistance and share the vehicle’s location. Another is its On-demand Find My Car with Surround View Monitor. This uses the vehicle’s cameras to capture images of the vehicle’s surroundings and displays them in the Kia Access App or Kia Owner’s Portal.
Currently, connected car features are launched through the Kia Owner’s Portal and app updates. Customers will rely on OTA updates in the future as Kia adds this capability to new vehicles. The 2023 Sportage is the first Kia model to be announced with Kia Connect. Starting from model year 2022, one or more configurations of each Kia vehicle will have access to Kia Connect.