Take that, BMW. Just one week after the Bavarian brand announced it would allow owners to control their vehicles with Amazon's Alexa later this year, Hyundai's Genesis division says you can do the same on its cars starting today.
The service enables owners of the Genesis G80, formerly known as the Hyundai Genesis, to issue commands to their cars using spoken-word commands through Amazon's Alexa service, a Siri-like virtual assistant built into the dot-com company's suite of Echo electronics. Using Alexa, Genesis owners can lock or unlock their cars, turn their G80s on or off, or set the temperature. They can even use remote voice commands tp flash the lights and honk the horn, should their Genesis wind up surrounded by an gang of curious raccoons that need to be scared away.
The rash of Alexa commands will also be available on the Genesis G90, the full-size luxury sedan replacing the Hyundai Equus which The Drive recently drove in Vancouver. Buyers of the G90 will even score an Amazon gift card that can be used for picking up an Echo...though we suppose you could spend it on kitty litter and bulk-sized bags of Hershey's miniatures if you'd rather. (Not that we frequently buy those on Amazon Prime, mind you.)
The Genesis/Alexa hookup works through the wireless connection that comes included in the cars' suite of connected services, which the carmaker is offering free for three years on every new vehicle. Owners who don't have the voice-activated Amazon program can still use the Genesis Connected Services, as the luxury division calls the system, to lock or unlock their car, start or stop it, or adjust the interior temperature—they'll just have to do so through a smartphone app instead of using their voice.
Sadly, it does not seem that the Amazon system has access to the car's stereo, so it seems our dream of asking Alexa to make a Genesis play a song by Genesis will remain unfulfilled for some time.