Toyota Motor Sales said today that it is launching a telematics system similar to General Motors OnStar that will be available on some Lexus and Toyota vehicles in late summer.
At the Consumer Electrics Show today in Las Vegas, Toyota detailed its plans for the system, which has different features for each brand.
On Toyota vehicles, the system will be called Safety Connect; on Lexus models it will be called Enform.
In the event of an accident with airbag deployment, an operator will call the driver. If the driver doesnt answer, the operator will call 911 and report the cars location. As with GMs OnStar system, Safety Connect- and Enform-equipped vehicles will have a button that vehicles occupants can press for emergency help.
The vehicles location can be determined by the cellular and GPS technology embedded in the vehicle, according to Toyota.
The Lexus system offers the same safety services but adds convenience features such as weather reports, route guidance and the ability to send and receive data.
The automaker plans to introduce the system in late summer and give a one-year free trial. After that, customers will have to subscribe to the service, as do OnStar customers.