Hyundai adds tech to Blue Link, offers it free for 3 years

That's a savings of $750 off subscription costs.

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Hyundai has not only thrown more technology at its 2018 lineup, the tech will be less expensive. At the New York Auto Show, the South Korean automaker announced that Blue Link remote services will be free for three years on the 2017 Ioniq and on all 2018 models, starting with the Sonata, Elantra GT, and Santa Fe Sport.

The remote services include all three packages currently offered as options with a Blue Link subscription: Connected Care, Remote, and Guidance. Among the included features are automatic collision notification, a monthly vehicle health report, remote lock and unlock, stolen vehicle recovery assistance, and remote start with climate control. That last function gets an update for 2018 that allows control of the rear defroster and heated side mirrors on the coming Sonata and Elantra GT. The whole shebang tallies 10 features in the Connected Care Package, 12 features in the Remote Package, and 3 features in the Guidance Package.

But wait, there's more: the SD-card-based navigation maps get free downloads for three years.

Blue Link subscribers can already access remote functions with a smartphone and a smartwatch. For 2018, Amazon Alexa (via the Tap, Echo, and Echo Dot) and Google Assistant (via the Google Home speaker) become control devices. You can tell either gadget to start your car and set the climate control, to send an address to the navigation system, or start and stop the charging of an Ioniq.

Right now, if a new buyer subscribes to Blue Link, he gets three free months of the Remote and Guidance packages, and a free year of the Connected Care Package. After the trial, each package costs $99 per year. By offering the packages free for three years, Hyundai dangles a savings of nearly $750 in front of those who can wait for the new models.

Be sure to read this accompanying post about the Sonata's design.

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