Fleet News

Citroen plans voice-activated technology at a budget price

CITROEN UK is aiming to be Britain's first fleet supplier to offer a budget-price car with equipment which responds to commands from the driver's voice. A move to add the model to the French firm's right-hand-drive product line-up was revealed as the parent company announced a limited production run of an advanced new 'mobile office' version of the Xsara hatchback range at the Frankfurt International Motor Show.

Badged Windows CE, the car features a wide range of voice-activated gadgetry which national fleet sales manager David Coop wants to be made available to company car drivers in Britain. 'This is a breakthrough development which has the potential to give our brand a distinct advantage in a very competitive market place. The ability to make phone calls and arrange navigational assistance while on the move makes it the perfect companion for anyone who makes a living out on the road, he said. 'I can't think of another product which is more effective in helping fleet drivers put their time behind the wheel to better effect and in complete safety.'

Pricing has yet to be announced, but company officials at Frankfurt estimated a premium of about £1,000 for the package, which includes a combined radio and CD player. Windows CE buyers in France will also have access to Citroen OnLine, a new call centre being developed to provide an information service which the company claims is soon to be expanded to include an hotel reservation facility.

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