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Toyota confirms smartphone-mirroring upgrade

Plug and play: Fifth-generation RAV4 owners will soon be able to visit a Toyota dealership to add smartphone-mirroring technology to the mid-size SUV’s infotainment system for free.

RAV4 to be first Toyota to receive no-cost Apple CarPlay/Android Auto retrofit

Toyota logo8 May 2019

TOYOTA Australia has confirmed that it will add smartphone-mirroring technology to select models, including the fifth-generation RAV4 mid-size SUV that has just entered showrooms, from the fourth quarter this year.
 
While Apple CarPlay and Android Auto support will be progressively rolled out as standard equipment, owners of the current-generation Corolla small car and Camry mid-size car, as well as early adopters of the new RAV4, will be able to have it retrofitted.
 
The Japanese brand said the retrofit will be available via its dealer network with only a “quick visit” to a local dealership required to have it installed.
 
Unlike its rival Mazda Australia that offers a similar service for about $500, Toyota Australia said its version will come at no cost to RAV4 owners, but it is still evaluating if existing Corolla and Camry owners will also receive it for free.
 
Brand T said more details about the retrofit will be released later this year, but it will only be compatible with the latest version of its infotainment system, which is currently only fitted to the Corolla, Camry and RAV4, all of which ride on the TNGA platform.
 
As such, the C-HR small SUV and Prius small car are set to miss out due to their older infotainment system, despite using the TNGA architecture.
 
Even the reborn Supra sportscar due later in 2019 is a contender for smartphone-mirroring technology given that the third-generation BMW Z4, its twin under the skin, is offered with wireless Apple CarPlay. It does not, however, support Android Auto.
 
Toyota Australia vice-president of sales and marketing Sean Hanley said Apple CarPlay and Android Auto support will build upon the Corolla, Camry and RAV4’s “already sophisticated” infotainment system.
 
“We know that today’s customers want to be able to access their smartphone apps anywhere, anytime and these systems offer a safe and convenient means of doing that directly through the advanced in-vehicle multimedia system,” he said.
 
Toyota Australia’s move leaves Nissan as the only other top-10 brand to not offer Apple CarPlay and Android Auto support with any of its models, although it is understood that the Leaf battery-electric vehicle will be its first model to have it when it arrives in July.
 
In the segment above, Toyota sister brand Lexus does not have either of the smartphone-mirroring technologies, while rivals Mercedes-Benz, BMW and Audi have at least one of them available across their line-ups.

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