Audi to offer Apple CarPlay in European models starting in 2016

Audi will begin offering Apple’s CarPlay in 2016 model year vehicles in Europe.

Talks between Apple closed last week, and the deal was confirmed Monday, Audi spokesman Brad Stertz said. CarPlay-equipped Audis are expected to hit U.S. showrooms by 2016.

Stertz said CarPlay will be an added feature for cars equipped with Audi Music Interface, and is not expected to add to the price of the vehicle.

CarPlay connects the driver’s Apple devices to the vehicle’s built-in controls -- accessing phone calls, messages, Apple Maps and music -- which can minimize distraction. Drivers will have access to both the CarPlay features and Audi infotainment features, and can switch over as needed.

Audi hasn’t decided which vehicles will be outfitted with CarPlay, Stertz said.

Audi announced last week that it will also include Android Auto technology, which debuted at the 2014 Google annual technology conference in San Francisco, in some 2015 models.

You can reach Nora Naughton at nnaughton@crain.com -- Follow Nora on Twitter: https://twitter.com/NoraNaughton

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