OnStar on the job

US readers will be familiar with OnStar.  It’s a safety system that monitors your car and lets people know when you’re in trouble.  If an airbag deploys, for example, an OnStar operator will try and call you and will also call emergency service workers etc.

Here in Australia we just tie a note to the nearest kangaroo and hope it hops into a hospital.

Anyway, here’s a story of OnStar being on the job when a jerk, distracted by the conversation he was having on this cell phone, drove through a stop sign and spun a 9-3 Convertible around and around.  He flipped his SUV.  Sucker.

Gaffney, who was cited for going through the stop sign at Southeast Thornhill and Whitmore Drives, told police he was distracted because he was on his cell phone and apologized to Gonzalez moments after the accident. It happened just before 3 p.m.

"When I went through the stop sign and saw (Gonzalez’s) car, I knew we were going to crash," said Gaffney.

Gonzalez’s 2003 Saab convertible spun out and landed on the swale along Thornhill, facing west. She had been heading east on Thornhill when the accident, literally, turned her around. The air bag blew open and an operator with OnStar, a car safety and security system, asked her if she was OK and called police.

"Thank God for OnStar," Gonzalez said.

GM, I’ll give you a free ad, OK.

GM are having another big ‘Hot Button’ promotion where you roll up to your GM dealer, have a chat, have a coffee, and while you’re there, press a blue OnStar button.  You might just win yourself a car.  In addition, GM is taking $1,000 off the sticker price of nearly every vehicle – that’s in addition to other incentives already offered.

You Yanks are unbelievable.

The Hot Button article from Detroit Free Press (linked above) also discusses some of the challenges facing GM’s sales and market share at the moment.  It’s not Saab-specific so I won’t repreint the whole thing here, but here’s a snippet that rings quite true as far as Saab is concerned:

"It isn’t that the cars are bad — it’s just that people don’t realize they’re there," he said. "If we get the floor traffic, we’ll sell the cars."

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5 Comments

  1. Challenge……

    What does the acroynm AACN stand for?

    Have you ever made a phone call using voice-activated calling from your vehicle?

    Did you know you can hook your cell phone to your OnStar and share your minutes?

    When something new comes to market, I see a number of people who adopt and an even larger amount that gloss over. Stop glossing over one of the best things to happen to GM in the last 10 years. Stop glossing over the technology that actually benefits you. Take a look at the http://www.onstar.com website and take the interactive demo. Learn a little about the future of automobile technology. You will be surprised how much there is still to learn and thought you actually knew.

  2. Russell, I’m not sure what got glossed over here. All I’ve done is post an article about Onstar at work and doing it’s job properly. This isn’t an OnStar blog, it’s a Saab blog, so the emphasis is on Saab and it’s ongoing journey. Onstar is part of that.

    In addition to that, I live in Australia and we don’t have Onstar here. I did mention where I lived in the article, but perhaps you glossed over this fact 😉

  3. Only if you’ve got Verizon can you link your cellular to your car. For the rest of us it means it’s about 10x harder to install the Saab mobile phone kit.

    I haven’t placed a voice activated call, but that doesn’t mean I haven’t played with the white dot.

    “Ready”
    “Dial”
    “Number please?”

  4. gm has it backwards–it _is_ about the cars, and _not_ about “foot traffic.” make better cars and people will come buy them. (the “foot-traffic” will take care of itself.)

    gm is in denial.

  5. i can’t see all the wizbang features of onstar being of any intererst to people who who actually know how to fuction without using a cell phone every few seconds.

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