• Jan 25th 2011 at 10:28AM
  • 24

Dodge sees an opportunity to deepen its cars' connection to their owners with new smartphone applications that are, of course, available for free. With the new apps, available first for iPhones and then coming soon to BlackBerry and Android smartphones, drivers have an instant connection to Customer Care and 24-hour roadside assistance. The apps are also loaded with product feature demonstration videos and even owner's manual information.
Maybe by putting this stuff at people's fingertips, owners will actually read the manual, but more likely they'll utilize the ability to connect with other Dodge owners on social media sites instead. Dodge can also push-publish updates to owner's manual information, keeping the apps far more up to date than the paper or DVD user guides that are included with the cars currently.

A two-way communication between the manufacturer of a product and its end users is an increasingly common practice, and Dodge is hoping to show its buyers that they're important by getting on board. Press release after the jump.
[Source: Chrysler]
Show full PR text
Dodge Brand and Mopar Introduce Vehicle Information Smartphone Applications

-Free new feature available for all Dodge vehicles
-New Mopar apps offer access to Customer Care and 24-hour road-side assistance, product-feature video demonstrations and connections with fellow owners via the company's brands on social media sites
-One-stop spot for general information about customer's Dodge vehicle, including operation, maintenance and warranty information
-App available for download to smartphones powered by Android, iTunes or BlackBerry platforms

January 20, 2011 , Auburn Hills, Mich. -
The Dodge brand and Mopar are making it easier than ever for owners to connect with their vehicles, giving electronic information at their fingertips with a free, new smartphone application.

The new Mopar apps provide vehicle operation, maintenance and warranty information, as well as product feature video demonstrations, connections with fellow owners via the company's brands on social media sites and access to customer care and 24-hour road-side assistance. Because the system is digital, it also allows Dodge to make updates to the "electronic" owner's manual in real-time.

"Dodge vehicles feature the latest technology to keep our active customers connected and on the move," said Ralph Gilles, President and CEO - Dodge Car Brand. "This is an example of how we are better connecting with our Dodge owners, responding to their needs and growing our relationship with them."

New Dodge Durango and Charger owners can now download vehicle information applications to select personal smartphones. The new Mopar feature, developed by Michigan-based Tweddle Group, is designed to support vehicles in the U.S. market. The applications will first be available for iPhone and later for BlackBerry and Android devices on major mobile carriers. Applications for the Avenger, Journey and Grand Caravan will be available in mid-January 2011.

"Dodge's new vehicle-information application is part of our company's customer care initiatives and creates a convenient, on-demand channel of communication with our customers," said Pietro Gorlier, President – Mopar Service, Parts and Customer Care, Chrysler Group LLC. "This communication will enhance customer experience with a source for owners and potential owners to learn about Dodge products."

Application Features
These new Dodge smartphone vehicle information apps will complement existing user guides and DVDs that are currently provided with each vehicle. Each vehicle-information app will allow the consumer to browse functional categories and view detailed topics of interest relative to their specific vehicle.

Key feature categories include product information, vehicle operating instructions, vehicle maintenance schedules, service contract details, warning lights and controls, warranty information and customer assistance. Other features and benefits include links to Mopar parts and accessories, product brand gear and merchandise and social media sites. The app will also contain high-resolution product information images and videos.

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 4 Years Ago
      Its kind of a neat idea, but really it will probably end up being just another App that someone downloads and never uses.

      If they were smart, they would link in some kind of maintenance schedule into this app. Let you track miles and mileage and even schedule an appointment with a dealer for service when certain XX,XXX mile service is needed.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Theoretically, if the phone interfaced with the car, stuff like mileage (as well as any CELs) could be kept up-to-date automatically, and not have to rely on the driver doing it (since, lets me honest, it will never get done).
        • 4 Years Ago
        Thats a great idea. I think another function that would be good would be recall notification and warranty coverage. Mainly when certain components are no longer covered, assuming if the customer keeps the miles current in the app. I wonder if any other automakers plan on joining in?
        • 4 Years Ago
        This technology to get info on your car, realtime is already available with OnStar. You will know fuel economy, gas remaining in your tank, tire pressures, oil life, status (doors locked or unlocked) It also has a pad to lock and unlock your doors, activate your horn and lights, you can start and stop your car as well as a link to your preferred dealer and roadside assistance. Along with this app is a parking reminder, incase you forget where you parked as well as a parking meter timer. Also is a section on the owners manual. Very useful relevant info, perhaps Chrysler will impliment something.
      • 4 Years Ago
      do dodge owners have the IQ to operate this though?
      • 4 Years Ago
      I like it how the iPhone only has 1 bar. Pretty accurate.
        • 4 Years Ago
        I like how they have the Motorola Droid shown as AT&T.
        • 4 Years Ago
        And I like how the Blackberry and the Android both have the iPhone OS. These are the most irresponsible Photoshop jobs I've ever seen from a big company.
      • 4 Years Ago
      As a car guy I get a big kick out of reading my owners manual from front to back because you become so educated on YOUR car and in the long run you can save a lot of money doing stuff yourself that the owners manual explains in detail. I recently bought an additional key fob on ebay, Ford explains it pretty easy how to program additional fobs and keys in the manual, but for kicks and giggles I asked my dealer how much they charge (a flat $98 fob/programing). The key fob on ebay was $12...But this is a great way to get "regular people" to learn about their vehicles.
      • 4 Years Ago
      where's the challenger app!? If I missed it, then stupid me. If Dodge decided that there are more Journey enthusiasts that would utilize something like this more than Challenger owners, then stupid them, IMHO
      • 4 Years Ago
      I downloaded it for my 2010 3500, and it is actually really handy.

      If a light comes on the dash, and you don't know what it is you just grab your phone, click the matching symbol, and it tells you what to do.

      Pretty cool.
      • 4 Years Ago
      A good idea, but I wonder how having such a huge file downloaded to your phone will affect it. Ive downloaded some big apps/files before, and they slowed down my phone to the point of frustration, at which point I uninstalled them immediately.
        • 4 Years Ago
        When did they think their knuckle-dragging owners could operate such a contraption?
        • 4 Years Ago
        The owner's manual is probably also available in .pdk format which can be downloaded to a Kindle.

        Smartphones, meh.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Especially since it says Verizon on the lower right of the phone itself...
        • 4 Years Ago
        Great idea. But their Photoshop people should really do some homework on which phones are current and run on what network. The Verizon Motorola Droid from last year running on AT&T 3G, really?
        • 4 Years Ago
        Same here... makes me speak much much slower on the phone. Very frustrating.
      • 4 Years Ago
      dont buy a dodge us taxpayers want our money. ford did not take any tax dollars
      ford = frist on race day
      • 4 Years Ago
      Caravan has it but no Challenger ?
      • 4 Years Ago
      Makes a lot more sense that giving buyers an i-pad.
        • 4 Years Ago
        So true and the average buyer of that Hyundai is probably an older (55+), wealthy, and retired individual who don't know what an iPad is or how to use one.
      • 4 Years Ago
      I'm sure it's been pointed out already, haven't read all the comments, but you have to love the photoshop of the verizon droid that's apparently on AT&T's network. haha
      • 4 Years Ago
      I kinda want to buy a Dodge now. Seriously.
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