Geneva 2012: Mercedes A-Class interior
* New Mercedes A-Class interior revealed * New smartphone media integration system * Full unveiling at Geneva motor show 2012...
These are the first pictures of the new Mercedes-Benz A-Class, which will be unveiled at the Geneva motor show in March.
The interior shots were released today as Mercedes announced its new iPhone-integrated media system.
Mercedes hopes the technology, which involves hardware called Digital Kit Plus and a Digital DriveStyle App, will appeal to a younger generation of drivers. Audi A3 and BMW 1 Series buyers are being targeted.
The new system has social media at its heart, providing virtually complete connectivity with the user's iPhone, including access to Facebook and Twitter accounts, contacts, SMS, email and music library.
It also has personalised internet radio, which works in a similar way to Apple's Genius tool, allowing you to choose music by genre or artist, and listen to recommended playlists based on personal taste.
Navigation is catered for by Garmin mapping and internet-streamed traffic updates.
Further functionality comes in the form of Siri-style speech-recognition, a feature of the iPhone 4GS, which allows users to use converstional language to make calls, arrange appointments, and check the weather, news or even stock prices.
The digital media system will be available on the new A-Class as an option, and is expected to cost around 150. It will be offered as an addition to Mercedes' standard Audio 20 system and as an enhancement of the optional Comand online multimedia system.
Given that Comand costs 1995, however, most buyers, providing they have an iPhone, are expected to opt for the much cheaper DriveStyle.
Ralf Lamberti, director of infotainment and telematics at Daimler, and the man responsible for developing the system, said compatibility with Android and Windows smartphones will follow, but no date for this has yet been set.