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Businessweek Archives

For The 007 That Lurks In Your Soul (Int'l Edition)


BusinessWeek Lifestyle: Travel

For the 007 That Lurks in Your Soul (int'l edition)

The latest in high-tech accessories for the car

Remember James Bond's Aston Martin, with its lethal array of high-tech gadgetry? These days, you don't have to be a special agent--or a dot-com millionaire--to put neat devices in your car. Here's a sample of what's on the market:TELEMATICS KITS: These gadgets, which stream traffic and navigation information over your mobile phone and onto a control panel in your car, are already standard in top-of-the-line Mercedes-Benz and BMW models. They use satellite technology to pinpoint a car's location. Germany's ADAC automobile association offers a kit for $375. Phone 49-180-510-1112, or visit www.adac.de. Or try Trafficmaster, Britain's traffic information service, at 44-908-24-9800.FLAT-PANEL DISPLAYS: The answer to screaming children on a road trip. Flat-panel displays, on which games or movies can be shown, are likely to be a common feature in new models in a few years. But you can put one in now for $4,000. They come in a 31-cm version that folds down from the ceiling or a 16-cm screen fitted into headrests. Call Clearline, a German specialist in auto multimedia, at 49-7044-43630.MOVABLE MOBILE-PHONE ARM: Perfect for drivers who gab behind the wheel. Unlike earpiece cords, which produce a crackly effect, this contraption combines hands-free operation with normal sound quality. It's sold for under $30. Call German auto parts supplier Richter at 49-7231-168-282.NIGHT VISION: Us-ing thermal-imaging technology developed for the U.S. military, this device detects objects in the road and projects them in the driver's line of sight on a transparent screen. It's offered by Cadillac (www.cadillac.com) for now. It's the closest today's driver can get to playing Bond.By Matthew KarnitschnigReturn to top

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