Chrysler Group’s Mopar parts and accessories brand will offer mobile TV broadcasts into Chrysler, Jeep, Dodge Car and Ram Truck vehicles this year.
Chrysler claims to be the first automaker in the United States to offer live mobile TV to consumers with the capacity for as many as 20 channels.
“FLO TV Auto Entertainment” will be available in late December for $629, plus installation, which also includes a one-year subscription. College and professional sports, breaking news, children’s shows, prime time sitcoms, reality TV and daytime dramas are offered.
The latest auto add-on will debut next week at the Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) Show in Las Vegas, Nevada.
FLO TV offers live and time-shifted programming from CBS Mobile, CNBC, Comedy Central, Fox News, MSNBC, MTV, NBC 2Go and Nickelodeon.
The entertainment package will be available as a dealer-installed option on 2008-2010 model year vehicles with factory DVD entertainment systems: Chrysler Town & Country, Jeep Grand Cherokee, Jeep Commander, Dodge Grand Caravan, Dodge Journey, Dodge Nitro, Ram 1500 and Ram 2500/3500.
The service also can be added to some 2008-2010 model-year vehicles when new Mopar headrest or seat-top DVD entertainment systems are purchased.
The TV option includes a 3-year/36,000-mile warranty for new vehicles, and 12-month/12,000-mile warranty on used vehicles.
“We want to offer our customers the ultimate in entertainment,” said Pietro Gorlier, President & Chief Executive Officer, Mopar Service, Parts & Customer Care.
The challenge for mobile TV installations is delivering high-quality, uninterrupted coverage in urban environments and at highway speeds. Existing mobile TV systems in the United States either offer limited channels or require large satellite dishes on vehicle roofs – and a large price tag to match, according to Gorleir.
How it Works
Television signals are delivered through a dedicated multicast network. By the end of 2009, the FLO TV should be available in more than 100 major markets and many interstate driving corridors. The service is not available in some rural areas.
Audiovox Corp., of Hauppauge, NY, supplies hardware that integrates with Chrysler, Jeep, Dodge Car and Ram Truck vehicles’ existing entertainment systems and new Mopar 7-inch DVD screen systems.
A small antenna, about the size of a laptop mouse, is mounted on a vehicle’s roof to deliver the digital TV signal. Inside the vehicle, the receiver and wiring are installed under the interior trim of the vehicle and are not visible to occupants.
Both wired and wireless remote controls allow viewers to easily surf channels, similar to TV systems at home.
Mopar distributes approximately 280,000 parts and accessories in more than 90 countries and is the source for all original equipment parts for Chrysler, Jeep, Dodge Car and Ram Truck vehicles.
Mopar parts are said to be unique in that they are engineered by the same teams that create factory-authorized vehicle specifications for Chrysler, Jeep and Dodge Car and Ram Truck vehicles – a direct connection that no other aftermarket parts company can provide.