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 DETROIT, Jan. 4 /PRNewswire/ -- Oldsmobile will be the first automotive manufacturer in the United States to offer its customers the opportunity to use one of the most advanced navigation/information systems in the world. The system, which will be available country-wide within the next two years, goes on sale in California this spring. It will, initially, be available on the Eighty Eight LSS model.
 An Oldsmobile exclusive, the all-new, high-tech Navigation/ Information System offers motorists immediate, accurate route planning information, with easy-to-read graphics and clear audible instructions, in the comfort and security of their own vehicle.
 The system combines state-of-the-art automotive electronics technology, high-quality satellite communications and a sophisticated roadway data base. It is the first production system in the United States to plan the most efficient route and then guide the driver to a given destination, using clear, concise graphics and "turn-by-turn" audible instructions.
 A practical tool, which has applications both for business and pleasure, the system provides a definite enhancement both to effective time management and personal security.
 The Oldsmobile Navigation/Information System
 Easy to operate, the Oldsmobile Navigation/Information System uses Global Positioning System (GPS) satellites and advanced dead reckoning techniques, to determine a precise location. Utilizing information supplied by the driver, a sophisticated on-board computer calculates the most convenient route to a given destination.
 The display unit, incorporating a four-inch active matrix color LCD screen, is attached to the instrument panel in a central location to allow both driver and front seat passenger access to the system and the information it provides.
 The LCD screen displays information in color for ease of recognition, and the unit's fascia panel incorporates the seven input keys required to operate the system.
 The unit can be quickly and easily removed and stowed for safe keeping when not in use.
 Operating the System
 Operating simplicity was a major design criteria throughout the system's five-year development program.
 Activating the Navigation/Information System requires the touch of a single key. The operator is then prompted, through a menu screen, to enter details of the desired destination. These details can be either a specific address; a road intersection; a place of public interest -- tourist attraction, major business premises, hospitals, schools, service stations, etc. -- or even the destination of a previous journey held in the computer's memory.
 The system will also permit the user to select a preferred routing method, utilizing expressways, for example, whenever possible.
 By guiding the cursor and pressing an "enter" key, the operator pinpoints the required destination. The on-board computer, which is constantly aware of the vehicle's current location, calculates the most efficient route for the proposed journey in a matter of seconds.
 The LCD screen will then display a map of the area with the proposed route highlighted in color. As the driver begins the journey, the distance to and direction of each turning maneuver is displayed on the screen in bold, easy-to-read graphics.
 A unique feature of the Oldsmobile Navigation/Information System is a voice prompt which advises the driver as the desired turn approaches. This important feature ensures the driver's attention is not diverted from the road, allowing time to concentrate on signs and traffic conditions.
 If a turn is missed, or cannot be taken, due to road construction work or traffic congestion, the system can re-route the journey at the touch of a single key.
 Oldsmobile at the Leading Edge of Technology
 The first application of the Oldsmobile Navigation/Information System will be in a fleet of Eighty Eight LSS models offered by Avis Rent A Car in San Jose, Calif. Public reaction to a pilot program run by Avis at that location has been so positive that the company intends to bring 100 Oldsmobile Eighty Eight LSS models into service in the San Francisco Bay area over the next few months.
 John Forsythe, vice president - Operations, Avis Rent A Car, talking about the pilot program, said: "The Oldsmobile Navigation/Information System has been well-received by our customers. Its ease of operation and uncomplicated routing instructions help create a much more relaxed environment. The system assists users to reach their destinations quickly and efficiently and that is an important consideration in our business.
 "One of the major advantages of the system is its ability to pinpoint places which are of particular importance to newcomers to an area -- tourist attractions, airports, retail stores, hotels, restaurants and gas stations, to name but a few -- and, of course, the safety aspect of the system is critical."
 Forsythe concluded: "In today's highly competitive market place we are setting ourselves apart by ensuring that our customers can count on having the opportunity to benefit from the use of the very latest technology."
 The "national" introduction of the Oldsmobile Navigation/Information System will work in tandem with the expansion of the sophisticated roadway data base on which it depends. The entire United States will mapped by the end of 1995.
 John Rock, Oldsmobile's general manager, said: "The new Oldsmobile Navigation/Information System is an exciting application of the very latest navigation technology.
 "We see the potential market for this device in both the business sector -- Realtors/traveling sales persons, where additional revenue could be generated through a more efficient use of time -- and within the tourist industry, which would benefit from an easy-to-operate, in-car route planning and guidance system. In addition, and for all the same reasons, we also see interest from individual customers.
 "We continue to offer our customers the opportunity to enhance the driving experience with applications of technology which support today's lifestyles. We tend to travel greater distances and have all experienced the frustration of entering new cities and getting lost in a maze of streets and signs."
 Rock concluded: "The introduction and use of the system will help ensure that getting lost when driving in unfamiliar surroundings is very much a thing of the past. The ability to move directly from one place to another, without the need to spend time studying road maps, has a number of implications both in terms of efficiency and personal security. We are confident that the new Oldsmobile Navigation/ Information System will quickly prove itself to be an invaluable tool, not only to the business community and the leisure industry, but to all those who have the opportunity to experience its capabilities."
 -0- 1/4/94
 /CONTACT: Gus Buenz, 517-377-4430, Jill Witzenburg, 517-377-6287, or Miriam Carroll, 517-377-5661, all of Oldsmobile/

CO: Oldsmobile Division; General Motors Corporation ST: Michigan IN: AUT TRN SU: PDT

ML-SB -- DE010 -- 8870 01/04/94 11:37 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Jan 4, 1994

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