smart, the iconic automotive brand, has joined forces with Orange to build a car with integrated Bluetooth handsfree phone technology for safer driving, it was announced today.
This special edition Orange smart city-coupé makes it possible for the driver to answer a call without direct contact with the telephone handset or handsfree attachment.
The pioneering initiative between two forward thinking brands comes ahead of government legislation banning the use of hand held mobile phones whilst driving, to be introduced on 1 December 2003.
The Bluetooth technology directs the call from the handset through the speakers without the need for wires. By pressing a button on a remote control, positioned near the rear view mirror, it is possible for the driver to answer an incoming call without losing concentration on the road. To make an outgoing call, the driver uses voice recognition technology by saying the name of an entry in the phone book.
Jeremy Simpson, Head of smart in the UK, said: "This partnership between two dynamic brands has resulted in a tangible benefit for those techno-savvy customers we share. Putting this innovative phone technology into the revolutionary smart product demonstrates our commitment to the future of safer motoring ahead of the new legislation due out at the end of the year."
The special edition Orange smart city-coupé has jack black body panels and passion trim. It has a black TRIDION, leather seats with seat heating, air conditioning, remote central locking, electric windows, RDS radio/CD player and unique Orange badging and includes an Orange pay monthly Sony Ericsson T610 mobile phone and Bluetooth handsfree kit. The Orange smart city-coupé costs from £8,995 on the road, and is available in smart showrooms from 6 October.Published 8 October 2003