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GM News: General Motors Urges Their Dealers To Setup A Tech Center


William Maley

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William Maley

Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com

October 31, 2013

More and more vehicles are coming equipped with elaborate infotainment systems that can do pretty much everything from giving directions to playing music off your phone. But these systems aren't always user friendly. A number of OEMs saw their ratings drop in Consumer Report's Auto Reliability survey because of their infotainment systems. General Motors wants to change that and is asking their 4,300 dealers about adding a customer Connection Center, a place where consumers can learn more and ask about in-vehicle technology and infotainment systems.

GM spokesman Klaus-Peter Martin tells The Detroit News that the center give customers and the dealers’ certified technology experts a dedicated place to answer questions about technology. The center would also help improve customer loyalty and retention. A handout given to dealers says that 94 percent of customers believe there is a need for tech support, and 57 percent of customers would use it.

“It’s another effort on our journey to provide this overall customer experience,” said Martin.

This a voluntary move for all Chevrolet, Buick, GMC and Cadillac dealers as GM readies a roll-out of embedded 4G LTE mobile Internet access in most of its 2015 vehicles that will be sold in the U.S. and Canada.

Source: The Detroit News

William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster.


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This is very true, until baby boomers move past the driving phase of their life, they are still challenged with learning new technology. I think dealerships will only help retain customers by having tech overview and support.

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Sad state of affairs when customers don't know how to use a feature, who was asking for all this "infotainment" crap in the first place? To go to such great lengths to educate the customer indicates a failure across the industry. These systems simply are not needed.

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I could send Albert back to the Buick dealer so he can learn to use Intellilink....

there are a lot of customers that honestly do not either have time, patience or skill to master the in car electronics now. It is not really their fault. It's a great customer service opportunity. GM could get a jump on the curve and lead in this. It would pay off in surveys. Surveys in the auto world are top importance. If the constant panning of cars as non quality in surveys dues to electronics keeps on, it could damage the brand real fast. Not because the car is not sound mechanically.

I spent one half of a saturday away from selling once to get XM set up in someone's car (who did not have an easy to set up radio system). I was so pissed, i can only imagine the people who have to try to use myfordtouch without help. i couldnt freaking figure out MFT in the focus i had a drive in that one time. It seemed like it would take forever to get smooth with that.

Maybe GM could partner with a verizon or something for tech support on site or something.

Edited by regfootball
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Look at the IQS ratings on the ATS and XTS. They aren't rated so poorly by JD Power because the doors fall off- it doesn't take a monkey to figure out that if you're going to saddle these types of systems for cars, you have to:

A) For the love of mike put in enough processing power to operate them in a desirable fashion.

B) Develop some sort of experiential learning system for getting new owners comfortable with the operation of said systems that goes beyond tossing them an iPad and an app.

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Von is right, but costs come into the equation. Ideally, you get the best chips AND you streamline the code so that the infotainment system is not sluggish and reduces the possibility of it crashing. What GM and others should do is allow one vendor to do the whole infotainment system so that it no longer has performance issues. Basically they could call Apple to have them do this well.... or maybe Google.

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Service is top as we all agree, GM could not only lead but clearly set a standard for top notch service. They need this, I have come across many under 40 people that have not had any issues with using the electronics in auto's yet this is not the large buying group that is having issues.

40+ crowd is a mixed bag of peeps that enjoy driving, know what a freedom machine is about and yet with all the tech no babble systems, many are challenged to use their new auto's to the fullest.

1) start with better testing by the auto makers for cars. The software quality sucks and is not getting proper QA testing.

2) During the Mule stage of the auto, they also need a mule stage of the Electronics systems they plan to put into the auto to make sure the public is on board with what is being proposed / built.

3) Independent quality check by an outside 3rd party of said electronic systems.

This will improve quality of the products, reduce support costs, reduce warranty costs, improve company image and over all increase sales due to a better customer experience.

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