Hyundai releases DIY Android updates

  • Free Android Auto software download available at
  • How To video can be found at Hyundai USA YouTube channel
  • Android Auto reduces driver distraction by integrating the driver’s smartphone with the vehicle’s screen and controls
  • Hyundai is the only automaker to have Android Auto available today

Fountain Valley, Calif. – Owners of a 2015 Sonata with Navigation can now get the Android Auto software update free of charge at The software is also available for free at Hyundai dealerships nationwide. Hyundai is the only automaker to have Android Auto on production vehicles today, starting with the Sonata and soon expanding to other models.

“This is the first time we’ve made a software upgrade available using the MyHyundai portal,” said Michael Deitz, senior group manager of Connected Care, Hyundai Motor America. “Sonata owners can add more value with Android Auto in an easy-to-do upgrade that takes less than an hour. Hyundai is continuing to offer the best user experience possible by leveraging its MyHyundai platform, so customers have the option to update their car – their way.”

The Android Auto compatible Navigation system with an eight-inch touchscreen display is available on the Sonata Sport, Eco, Limited, Sport 2.0T and Limited 2.0T models. Consumers can watch the How To video ( , which is available on the Hyundai USA YouTube channel, for instructions on how to download the software and install it in their compatible vehicles.

Android Auto download tool on

Android Auto download tool on

Android Auto download tool on

To obtain the software, customers need to visit the MyHyundai owner’s site( If the owner does not have a MyHyundai account, they need to click register. To register, owners will need their name, e-mail address, zip code and Vehicle Identification Number (VIN). Once the owner has a MyHyundai account, they can login by entering their account ID and password. Upon login, the owner must perform the following steps:

  1. Select 2015 Sonata on the drop-down menu in the top left of the navigation bar.
  2. Once the owner gets to the Sonata 2015 screen, they can select downloads in the navigation then the Android Auto downloads drop-down.
  3. On the Android Auto downloads page, the owner must agree to the terms and conditions to activate the download button.
  4. Once the download button is active, clicking it will start the download.
  5. Once the download is complete, the owner opens the downloaded file and selects run.
  6. Upon completing the download, the download tool will start.
  7. At this point, the owner connects a compatible USB driver to their computer.
  8. The download tool will automatically extract the downloaded files and put them on the USB drive.
  9. A confirmation screen will appear when the download is complete.

Vehicle Software Update steps:

  1. Park the car in a well-ventilated area and start the engine.
  2. Connect the USB drive with the vehicle software on it to the USB port in the Sonata.
  3. Press the setup button near the radio controls.
  4. Scroll down and tap the System Info icon on the touch screen.
  5. Tap update at the bottom of the touch screen.
  6. The Software Update will begin automatically.
  7. Enable Android Auto. Navigate to Connectivity Settings in the Setup menu to find the enable Android Auto on/off switch.

Installing Android Auto on the Phone

  1. Connect an Android Auto compatible phone to the Sonata via a micro USB cable and download the Android Auto app when prompted.
  2. Then the customer needs to hit the Android Auto icon on his or her touchscreen and Android Auto is ready.
Android Auto in the 2015 Hyundai Sonata

Android Auto
Android Auto not only brings a high technology experience to Hyundai owners, but also improves safety. For example, at any given daylight moment across America, approximately 660,000 drivers are using cell phones or manipulating electronic devices while driving, a number that has held steady since 2010. Android Auto helps keep drivers’ eyes and attention on the road by integrating the advanced driving-related functions of the user’s smartphone with the familiar centralized screen, physical controls and microphone of their car. Furthermore, the smartphone’s screen becomes “locked,” so drivers are not tempted to look down and interact with their phones directly while Android Auto is in use.

Owners will need the Android 5.0 “Lollipop” operating system or later, and the Android Auto companion app on their compatible phone to utilize Android Auto in the Sonata. A micro USB cable is required to connect the phone to the car’s USB port. The first time an owner plugs his or her phone into their parked Sonata, the phone will prompt the download of the Android Auto companion app from the Google Play. Users of Android Auto will instantly recognize familiar Android phone applications, such as Google Maps, Google Now, messaging, phone calling and Google Play Music upon connecting their Android phone to their Hyundai vehicle. These applications can be controlled by voice, steering wheel controls and touchscreen. Android Auto also will offer many popular third-party audio apps that owners have on their phones, including iHeartRadio, Spotify, TuneIn, NPR, Stitcher, Slacker, Skype, TextMe and many more. Owners can find out up-to-date information about phone compatibility at Google Support for Android Auto (
Advantages of Android Auto

  • The Google Now card-based experience provides suggested locations and travel times based on the user’s searches, calendar entries and home and office locations, as well as weather information and “now playing” information for music streamed via the phone
  • App software (navigation, streaming music, etc.) is automatically updated because the apps live on the phone
  • Natural voice recognition with Talk to Google
  • Owners can easily bring their personal reminders, suggested destinations, calendar appointments and music preferences with them when they get in their car
  • Android Auto automatically pairs with the Sonata for phone calls through Bluetooth when connected for the first time via USB
  • Android Auto has familiar interfaces that are easy to use and have almost no learning curve

Lego scale modeling goes big time

legoscale_sample_137BY GERRY MILES

If you’ve ever had to pick up the many pieces of Legos after a failed project you well know the burden and number of them that are staggering yet enable fertile minds to create real-life like renditions of landmarks, planes, trains and automobiles.

A book due out in September, “The Art of LEGO Scale Modeling” showcases intricate models of real vehicles that Lego fans have built.

In The Art of LEGO Scale Modeling (No Starch Press, $29.95, 204pp., Sept. 2015), authors Dennis Glaasker and Dennis Bosman, two veteran builders who have been scale modeling with LEGO since the 1970s, are releasing a stunning coffee table book for the legions of Lego fans everywhere.

legoscale_sample_060For the first time, 24 of the most talented LEGO scale modelers, who showcase models like the Tyr Viking, a four-foot-long ship constructed from more than 20,000 LEGO elements; a Caterpillar bulldozer complete with two motors; locomotives with lights, horns, operable doors, and smoke effects; United States military aircraft; a five-foot-long Peterbilt 379 and MAC end dump trailer; popular Toyota, Ford, and Volkswagen vehicles; Ferrari and Renault Formula 1 race cars; and Harley Davidson classic motorcycles and custom choppers show off their creations.

“What I love about LEGO scale modeling is that it’s so complex, you can always be improving your work,” explains Glaasker. “By choosing new subjects, and with LEGO’s continuous introduction of new pieces, there are always new challenges ahead; it’s an endless medium for exploration.”

According to No Starch Press founder Bill Pollock, “As we continue to develop art-quality books for serious LEGO fans, I’m excited to release this new book that, for the first time ever, highlights and unites the work of these incredible builders.”

legoscale_sample_018The Art of LEGO Scale Modeling will be available in bookstores everywhere this September.

Lexus unveils Hoverboard

The Lexus Overboard

The Lexus Hoverboard


With apologies to Marty McFly in “Back to the Future,” the hoverboard is here.

The Lexus Hoverboard that is.

What was pure sci-fi in the movie industry has come to life after Lexus has revealed a successful testing phase which took place in Cubelles, Barcelona.
MarkTemplin, Executive Vice President at Lexus International said: “Embarking on this project, we set out to push the boundaries of technology, design and innovation to make the impossible possible. With this project we call ‘SLIDE’, we collaborated with partners who share our passion for creating enjoyment out of motion. Even through combining our technology and expertise, we discovered making ahoverboard isn’t an easy process. We’ve experienced the highs and lows and have overcome a few challenges, but through mutual determination we have created a demonstration of our philosophy in design and technology to create Amazing in Motion.”The Lexus Hoverboard project began 18 months ago through a collaboration with a team of scientists from IFW Dresden and evico GmbH, who specialize in magnetic levitation technology. Following extensive testing with pro skateboarder and hoverboard test rider Ross McGouran, in Dresden, Germany, the team were determined to push the hoverboard to its limits and conduct further tests within dynamic surroundings.”I’ve spent 20 years skateboarding, but without friction it feels like I’ve had to learn a whole new skill, particularly in the stance and balance in order to ride the hoverboard. It’s a whole new experience,” said pro skateboarder and hoverboard test rider Ross McGouran.Since the Lexus Hoverboard was unveiled in June, testing has been carried out in a specially constructed hoverpark, combining elements from skate culture with technology within its architecture. Up to 200 meters of magnetic track was transported to Barcelona from the Dresden facility to lay beneath the hoverpark surface in order to create the dynamic test, offering Lexus the opportunity to demonstrate tricks no skateboard could ever perform, like travelling across water. Lexus has captured the final ride footage and released it as a film led by award winning director Henry-Alex Rubin.

The Lexus Hoverboard technology features two “cryostats”—reservoirs in which superconducting material is kept at -197 degrees through immersion in liquid nitrogen. The board is then placed above a track that contains permanent magnets. Dr. Oliver de Haas, evico CEO, said: “The magnetic field from the track is effectively ‘frozen’ into the superconductors in the board, maintaining the distance between the board and the track—essentially keeping the board hovering. This force is strong enough to allow the rider to stand and even jump on the board.”

The Lexus Hoverboard film called “SLIDE” features the high performance GS F and is part of the fourth project in the Lexus “Amazing in Motion” campaign series that showcases creativity and innovation from the Lexus brand.

Survey: Car buying takes twice as long as customers think it should


Too much time on my hands is not just the name of a hit song by the rock group Styx in 1981, it’s what a car buying customers feel while completing the purchase process.

People think they spend too much time in car dealers when buying a car.

People think they spend too much time in car dealers when buying a car.

According to a recent JD Power survey, customers feel buying a car shouldn’t exceed 2 hours from the time they walk into a showroom and drive off the lot in their new steed[1]; however, industry data finds the median amount of time actually spent completing a new-vehicle purchase is four hours,[2] according to the June 2015 PowerRater Consumer Pulse.

PowerRater Consumer Pulse is a monthly analysis developed jointly by J.D. Power and DealerRater. An alliance between J.D. Power and DealerRater integrates each company’s capabilities to gather comprehensive vehicle shopper feedback based on J.D. Power’s customer satisfaction research and DealerRater’s customer ratings and reviews of car dealerships.

Key Findings

  • More than two-thirds (67%) of luxury and 62 percent of mass market buyers indicate it should take no more than two hours to complete a vehicle purchase from the time they enter the showroom. Half of the buyers from each segment indicate the ideal duration is somewhere between one and two hours.
  • Slightly more luxury vehicle buyers than mass market vehicle buyers prefer to spend less than an hour in the dealership (18% vs. 13%, respectively).
  • According to the J.D. Power 2014 U.S. Sales Satisfaction Index (SSI) StudySM, buyers who use the Internet to shop for their new vehicle prior to visiting the dealership spend more time overall completing their purchase than those who do not research online.  In addition, buyers that used the internet are more than twice as likely to have compared prices from different dealers, and are more likely to know the expected price before they visit the dealer, than those that didn’t.

“Many retailers are expending enormous amounts of energy and capital to achieve a one-hour transaction time frame for their sales process. While this quest is noble―and customers do want to spend less time than they are currently―buyers tell us that one to two hours is a very reasonable time window,” said Gary Tucker, chief executive officer of DealerRater.

According to the J.D. Power 2014 SSI Study, most of a vehicle buyer’s in-dealership experience is currently spent on selecting a vehicle for purchase and negotiating the deal (60 minutes each, on average). This is followed by an average of 30 minutes to discuss and sign the necessary paperwork and an additional 30 minutes to take delivery of the vehicle. This leaves the remainder of the overall time spent waiting both before and after the paperwork process, a key area to focus on in terms of creating a more seamless and efficient process flow.

“From a generational standpoint,[3] Gen Y buyers spend more time negotiating than other generational groups , as they are more likely than the other generations to conduct research online prior to purchase and to have concerns regarding affordability, which emphasizes the importance of the negotiation phase for Gen Y,” said Chris Sutton, vice president, U.S. automotive retail practice at J.D. Power. “Both Gen Y and Gen X buyers spend less time taking delivery, likely because they need less instruction on the features and functionality of their new vehicles.”

“It’s important for dealers to be efficient with customers’ time. Customers will value specific parts of the process, such as finding the right vehicle, understanding features and controls and understanding how much and for what they’re paying,” Sutton said in a press release. “The dealer needs to strike an effective balance between educating the customer and efficiency.”

The 2014 SSI Study data finds that time spent in the dealership has a significant impact on overall customer satisfaction. While satisfaction among new-vehicle buyers who spend less than two hours in the dealership averages 861 on a 1,000-point scale, satisfaction declines to 844 among those who spend between two and three hours in-dealership and drops to 807 among those spending four to five hours to complete the purchase process.

Where Improvements Can Be Made

To improve customer satisfaction with the buying process, dealers should develop more efficient processes during the different phases of the buying process (vehicle selection, negotiation, paperwork and vehicle delivery). Reducing the amount of time a customer has to wait when purchasing a new vehicle is a key opportunity for dealers.

[1] Based on a survey conducted between May 5 and May 19, 2015, of 8,810 consumers who wrote a review on after recently purchasing a new vehicle

2 Source: J.D. Power 2014 U.S. Sales Satisfaction Index (SSI) StudySM

3J.D. Power defines generational groups as Pre-Boomers (born before 1946); Boomers (1946-1964); Gen X (1965-1976); Gen Y (1977-1994); and Gen Z (1995-2004)


Clean up on your trade-in with these 10 easy fixes


Yeah, sure we never wash the rental car, you don’t spit into the wind, and never mistake someone’s silence as a sign of weakness. You KNOW those things. And you also KNOW that a cleaned, well-prepared car at trade-in time, presents a well-kept image, and returns a higher value at the sale.

With that in mind, the folks at Coverhound put together 10 easy fixes that will erase any concerns about your maintenance habits (you do change the oil and backup your PC every day, too, right?) when you sell your vehicle.

  1. SEE THE LIGHT(S). If the brake lights, headlights and high beams don’t shine, it’ll will make prospective buyers wonder what else you haven’t fixed.
  2. CAR MATS. Replace any floor mats that have seen better days and hit carpeted areas with a upholstery cleaner.
  3. BUMPERS. Back-to-black bumper cleaner will help remove the remnants of bumper stickers past.
  4. DASHBOARD. Wax will help restore some shine to that faded dash. THere’s a number of cleaners in easy to use containers to restore luster and remove dirt and dust. Think of what you’d think if you were seeing your vehicle for the first time.
  5. PAINT SWIRLS. Color polish will help remove those unsightly swirls and restore brightness to sun worn paint.
  6. PAINT CHIPS. Pick up a touch-up kit that includes primer, paint and lacquer that match the color of your vehicle.
  7. DENTS. Rather than doing this one yourself, call a paint-less dent repair service.
  8. SCRATCHES. Scratch repair products can help remove lighter scratches, but deeper ones will need to be filled and repainted by a professional.
  9. WINDSHIELD. Talk to a professional about whether any cracks can be repaired or if replacing the windshield is the only option.
  10. TIRES. Use wax or a paint-on product to get rid of that scuffed-up look. There are many products in an easy to use spray bottle – probably the same stuff the reconditioning shop at the dealer uses to make them look shiny and race ready. Use it, please.

Pre Sale Car Prep