Honda Australia has announced the full suite of Honda Sensing safety and driver-assist technologies will be fitted as standard equipment across all next-generation models. The rollout of Honda Sensing is in fact already underway, with more than 20 per cent of current model variants equipped with the advanced technology systems.

Honda Sensing is the exclusive intelligent suite of safety and driver-assist technologies currently available in Australia on the Honda Accord, Civic sedan, Civic hatch, CR-V and Odyssey.

Honda Australia Director, Stephen Collins, said: “Australian new car buyers are becoming increasingly aware of the latest safety technology in vehicles across the board but there is confusion on how they work.

“Honda is committed to bringing cars to the Australian market that are as competitively priced and value-packed as possible, and having the very best in safety technology is one of our highest priorities,” he said.

“Honda is well known for its excellence in engineering and while we are not first to market with this technology, we strive to ensure we are best to market. I’m confident that our Honda Sensing package will provide Australian consumers with a system that is intuitive and effective in its role of driver assistance.”

The results of a Honda-commissioned survey of 1,200 new car buyers intending to purchase in the next two years, showed that there is a significant opportunity and need to educate the market on the importance and benefit of crash prevention technology.

While customers generally understood airbags, anti-lock brakes and safe body structures, their knowledge of many of the newer safety technologies available was quite low.

Lane keeping assist/lane departure warning/lane change monitor and accident avoidance/collision detection/warning signal technologies were only top-of-mind with a small proportion of the surveyed new car intenders (12 per cent and 10 per cent respectively).

However, once educated on each technology, the market appeal for the advanced safety features increased significantly.

“It’s clear that if you’re talking about the customer – and Honda is focusing on this – you have to approach this type of safety technology with a customer education message,” Collins said.

“With this knowledge we plan to stagger the rollout of Honda Sensing and at the same time educate customers, ensuring they walk the journey with us and understand how Honda Sensing will complement their driving experience.”

Stemming from Honda’s ethos of maximising human potential, Honda Sensing is designed to assist the driver in their role, not replace the driver in any way. Honda Sensing was born from the brand’s global safety concept of ‘Safety for Everyone’ aiming to realise a collision-free society in which everyone, not only vehicle occupants, can share the roads safely.

Honda Sensing consists of six technologies all designed to assist and support the driver, while keeping driving fun.

The Honda Sensing suite includes:

  • Forward Collision Warning (FCW)
  • Collision Mitigation Braking System (CMBS)
  • Lane Departure Warning (LDW)
  • Lane Keeping Assist System (LKAS)
  • Road Departure Mitigation System (RDM)
  • Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC) with Low Speed Follow (LSF)

More than 20 per cent of current Honda model variants are already fitted with Honda Sensing as standard equipment.

Existing Honda model variants already fitted with Honda Sensing as standard equipment:

  • Accord VTi-L and V6L
  • Civic VTi-LX sedan
  • Civic VTi-LX hatch
  • CR-V VTi-LX
  • Odyssey VTi-L

Standard new technologies are set to make the Australian-developed 2017 Ford Ranger even more compelling as the four-wheel-drive model has pulled within 310 units of Hilux 4X4 in year-to-date sales.

The standard features include rear view camera and reverse parking sensors across the entire 2017 Ranger pick-up range (excluding XL Plus), front parking sensors on XLT, SYNC 3 for XLT and Wildtrak models, a suite of driver assist technologies for Wildtrak and an automatic transmission for the 4X4 XL Super Cab Chassis with 3.2-litre engine.

“Standard new features such as rear view camera and SYNC 3 will help our customers get more done at work while staying better connected to their lives,” said Graeme Whickman, CEO and President, Ford of Australia. “These innovations combined with Ranger’s unsurpassed towing and hauling capability will help continue Ranger’s momentum as we continue closing the gap on Hilux. In particular, Australians are being drawn especially to the XLT and Wildtrak variants, which now account for 62 per cent of all Ranger’s sold this year, up from 51 per cent in 2014.”

Designed and engineered in Australia, the Ranger updates illustrate how Ford’s local R&D investment of nearly $2 billion over the past six years continues delivering more innovations to make consumers’ lives easier and better.

Standard tech:
The 2017 Ranger will see the introduction of the following new features as standard:

XL (Excluding XL Plus)

  • Rear view camera (pick-up models only)
  • Rear parking sensors (pick-up models only)
  • Automatic transmission for 4X4 XL Super Cab Chassis 3.2L (previously available as manual only)

XLS

  • Rear view camera
  • Rear parking sensors
  • 2nd key fob

XLT

  • SYNC 3^ with Apple CarPlay® and Android AutoTM#
  • Rear view camera
  • Front parking sensors
  • Black fog lamp bezel

WILDTRAK

  • SYNC 3^ with Apple CarPlay® and Android AutoTM#
  • Adaptive Cruise Control with Forward Collision Alert, Driver Impairment Monitor, automatic high beam control, Lane Keep Assist and Lane Departure Warning

All Variants

  • The 2017 Ranger will feature a minor powertrain upgrade to meet Euro 5 emissions standards.

SYNC 3 highlights:
SYNC 3 is Ford’s new in-vehicle communications and entertainment platform that features faster performance, more conversational voice recognition, intuitive smartphone-like touchscreen and an improved graphic interface over the current SYNC 2. It incorporates the best features of the outgoing system but includes new technologies designed to help customers stay better connected.

Highlights of SYNC 3 include:

  • New ‘Home’ screen with clearer layout and large icons for quicker access to functions including audio system, climate control, smartphone (including compatible apps) and satellite navigation (where fitted)
  • Upgraded 8” touchscreen with capacitive touch technology allows ‘pinch and swipe’ capability on select features (similar to a smartphone or tablet)
  • Apple CarPlay® and Android AutoTM integration includes ability to access Apple Siri and Google Now#
  • Compatible apps include Spotify, Pandora, Google Maps+
  • More customisable and easier-to-navigate settings and user preferences

SYNC 3 will replace the current SYNC 2 infotainment system on 2017MY PX Ranger MkII XLT and Wildtrak.

Other product updates:
Exterior prestige paint colour changes, effective from July 2016:

  • ‘Jet Black’ replaces ‘Black Mica’
  • ‘Meteor Grey’ replaces ‘Metropolitan Grey’

Going Further for Australia and Australian Customers:
The 2017 Ranger builds upon the enviable response Ranger has enjoyed since its introduction, with the vehicle awarded numerous accolades including Ford Ranger XLT taking out Drive’s Best Ute 2015, Carsales Best Tradie Vehicle 2015 and Carsales Best Offroad 4X4 2015.

Ranger’s development demonstrates how local innovation and high-tech design continues to be expanded locally through Ford’s extensive product development operations. Ford is home to 1100 innovative engineers and designers, with the company set to become the largest auto employer in the nation after 2017.

^Not all SYNC™features are supported on all phones and/or require additional data services and equipment.
#Local laws may prohibit the use of this function. Apple CarPlay and Siri are trademarks of Apple Inc. registered in the US and other countries. Android Auto is a trademark of Google Inc.
+ Local laws may prohibit the use of this function. PANDORA, the PANDORA logo, and the Pandora trade dress are trademarks or registered trademarks of Pandora Media, Inc. Google Maps is a trademark of Google Inc.

The ŠKODA Fabia sets a new standard in its class in terms of connectivity and technology with the debut of SmartLink™. For the first time, the Fabia’s infotainment system can be conveniently connected to a smartphone via SmartLink™ (Apple CarPlay/Android Auto). This standard feature provides access to the smartphone’s intelligence via the car’s display. The new ŠKODA Fabia is better connected than ever before, thanks to SmartLink™. SmartLink™ includes Android Auto as well as Apple CarPlay and enables the simultaneous display and operation of SmartLink™-compatible smartphone apps on the infotainment system screen.

SmartLink™ adds a new dimension to the use of personal music or data services. Connection is quick and easy: simply pair the smartphone and the infotainment system via a USB cable. Certified smartphone apps can then be mirrored on the infotainment system’s screen. Listen to and control music on the smartphone, navigate or call contacts, send text messages using voice commands and view maps with audio navigation – with the standardised interfaces all of this can be done on the infotainment screen or via voice control for certain functions. SmartLink™ is a safer more convenient way to use your smartphone in the car.

SmartLink™ (Apple CarPlay and Android Auto) will be progressively offered across the SKODA range. From model year 16, SmartLink technology will also be available in the award-winning Octavia range.