Sunday 25 February 2024

Audi Tradition at many international events in 2024

Audi Tradition is poised to participate in over a dozen international events in 2024 as the classic car season begins. Mainstays of the event calendar include the Goodwood Festival of Speed in England (July 11–14), two classic car rallies at Audi’s home sites – the Donau Classic (June 27–29) in and around Ingolstadt and the Heidelberg Historic (July 11–13) in Neckarsulm – as well as the Sachsen Classic in Dresden and Zwickau (August 15–17). For 2024, the Audi museum mobile, as always, has a varied program in store. In addition to special exhibitions on the history of aerodynamics, the museum of the brand with the four rings will continue its series of lectures and again take part in International Museum Day (May 19) and the Night of the Museums (September 7). For Audi Tradition, the 2024 event season kicks off early this winter: The Ice Race in late January in Zell am See, Austria, will be followed by the Bremen Classic Motorshow (February 2–4), where Audi Tradition will showcase a first-generation Audi RS 4 Avant at a joint booth with the Volkswagen Group brands. Visitors can head there for advice on spare parts for their classic cars. One weekend after the trade fair, Audi Tradition will be on the road in the Rockies and the Alps: An Audi 90 quattro IMSA-GTO and Michèle Mouton’s 1985 Audi Sport quattro S1 Pikes Peak will represent Audi Tradition at the Aspen Ice Race (February 8–10). The historic Histo-Monte winter rally will take place simultaneously, taking participants on the trail of the legendary Monte Carlo Rally. At the event, Walter Röhrl will pilot the Audi Sport quattro S1 E2, the original rally car he drove in the 1986 Monte Carlo Rally. Röhrl will start in Cannes and cross the Col de Turini on stages 8 and 9 before meeting the fans waiting for the four-time Monte winner and the other riders at the finish in Monaco. Two weeks later, Audi Tradition will take to the ice again at “The Ice” (February 24–25) in St. Moritz, Switzerland. One week later, at the “Amelia Car Week” (February 29 – March 3), Audi Tradition will present the Sport quattro S1 Pikes Peak, in keeping with the Pikes Peak theme. There will also be several highlights for spring and summer on the Audi Tradition calendar. In mid-May, in partnership with Audi France – and with beautiful, streamlined Wanderer and Horch vehicles in tow, Audi Tradition will head to the Vintage Revival Montlhéry (May 11–12) on this circuit south of Paris. At the Goodwood Festival of Speed (July 11–14), Audi Tradition will enter and present numerous racecars and legendary drivers from Audi’s Le Mans and rallying past. Reminiscent of Audi’s rallying era of the 1980s, Audi Tradition will join this year’s Eifel Rallye Festival (August 15–17) in Daun and treat fans and spectators to a journey back in time through the history of rallying. The International Edelweiß Bergpreis on the Roßfeld in Berchtesgaden (September 27–29) will round off the event season. In keeping with the theme “Racecars of the Stuck family”, Audi Tradition will enter an Auto Union Type C racecar with dual tires. Article source:

Sunday 18 February 2024

Ice Race in Zell am See: Volkswagen offers a first glimpse of the new Golf R

Volkswagen started the anniversary year of the Golf in a very sporty and spectacular way at the Ice Race in Zell am See (Austria). The new Golf, which will be launched in time for its 50th birthday this year, had its public premiere at the traditional motorsport event on ice and snow. Volkswagen also provided a first impression of its sportiest model: the Golf R – camouflaged, with all-wheel drive and unmistakably R. The future flagship Golf model will celebrate its world premiere in mid-2024. The traditional Ice Race was the ideal place to celebrate the past, present and future of the sporty Golf variants. Spectacular, a bit wild, but totally down-to-earth, the track on ice and snow became the big stage. Racing legend Hans-Joachim Stuck and six-time World Rallycross Champion Johan Kristoffersson showcased various Volkswagen vehicles in true style by driving at the limits. The cars included the Golf I GTI, which celebrated its premiere in 1975, and the Golf IV R32 from 2002, the forerunner of all performance variants bearing the R brand logo. Volkswagen also presented other historic exhibition vehicles: a rally version of the Golf I GTI and two rally versions of the Golf II. According to Reinhold Ivenz, Head of Volkswagen R, “Volkswagen R is Volkswagen’s premium performance brand and has stood for sportiness and dynamic performance for more than 20 years. Here at the Ice Race, the past meets the future. We can hardly wait for the Golf R, still disguised here, to celebrate its premiere this summer.” New Golf in action The new Golf was on display in Zell am See in four variants – not only as an exhibit, but also in action. Alongside the Golf R, the Golf GTI, Golf eHybrid and Golf GTE completed the line-up. Hans-Joachim Stuck says: “The Ice Race is a real spectacle. Other drivers would be putting on snow chains in these conditions, but for us racing drivers, this is when the fun really starts.” Stuck is a two-time Le Mans winner, former Formula 1 and sports car driver and German touring car champion. “At the Ice Race, you meet true motorsport fans and also many people who otherwise have little contact with motorsport – but go home with a lot of enthusiasm for it,” says Stuck. Johan Kristoffersson says: “I love driving a powerful all-wheel drive car on ice and snow – especially if it’s an R model.” The Swede won five of his six World Rallycross Championship titles with Volkswagen. He reveals: “It was great fun to sit in the brand-new Golf for the first time. I can only say that even though the Golf R has not yet been revealed, there is a true sports car under the camouflage that fans of the R brand can already look forward to.” About the Ice Race The Ice Race can look back on a long history that started with skijouring, a daring leisure activity pursued by Nordic and Alpine farmers who let horses pull them over the ice on skis. Skijouring became a sport, but also bolder and more spectacular: motorbikes and cars replaced the horses. In 1937, a course for this was prepared for the first time in Zell am See; the event then took place again from 1952 and became a regular motorsport spectacle until 1974. In its current form, the Ice Race is already a second revival: it was held again in 2019 for the first time since 1974. In 2024, the fourth edition of the contemporary Ice Race presented not only traditional skijouring, but also spectacular racing cars and production vehicles on ice and snow. About Volkswagen R Volkswagen R is Volkswagen’s premium performance brand and is responsible for the sportiest vehicles that complement the product range. Customers currently have a choice of five performance-boosted and enhanced production vehicles – from the extremely dynamic Golf R to the brand’s top model, the Touareg R eHybrid. With more than 35,000 vehicles produced, 2023 was a record year for the Volkswagen R. A total of more than 300,000 R models have been delivered since 2002. The Volkswagen R is now realigning itself for the future. Based on the four pillars – performance, design, innovation and quality – the portfolio will gradually see a shift to all-electric R models by 2030. Article source:

Sunday 11 February 2024

Historic victory for Audi at the Dakar Rally

Audi makes history: for the first time, a low-emission prototype with an electric drive, high-voltage battery and energy converter wins the world’s toughest desert rally with the Audi RS Q e-tron. The Spaniards Carlos Sainz/Lucas Cruz secured Audi’s first victory in the Dakar Rally after around 7,900 kilometers with a lead of 1h 20min. Mattias Ekström/Emil Bergkvist also crossed the finish line. “Congratulations to Team Audi Sport on winning the Dakar Rally,” said Gernot Döllner, Chairman of the Board of Management of AUDI AG. “Audi has once again set a milestone in motorsport. Winning the world’s toughest desert rally with an electrified drive is a visible ‘Vorsprung durch Technik’ and points the way to our electric future.” The Audi RS Q e-tron has electric all-wheel drive. The energy supply is ensured by a high-voltage battery and an energy converter that runs on residual fuel-based reFuel, thus saving 60 percent of CO2 emissions compared to conventional fuels. “With our revolutionary electrified drive, we have overcome one of the biggest challenges in motorsport after just three years. We are thus continuing a long series of pioneering achievements that have always characterized Audi in four decades of motorsport. I would like to thank the entire team for this outstanding performance in a particularly tough edition of the Dakar Rally,” says Oliver Hoffmann, Member of the Board of Management of AUDI AG, Technical Development. At the Dakar Rally, Audi was up against the two brands Toyota and Ford as well as the experienced opponents from Prodrive, who proved to be tough challengers. Carlos Sainz/Lucas Cruz secured their big lead after having been in the lead without interruption since the sixth stage. For the two Spaniards, who finished first in 2010, 2018 and 2020, this is their fourth success with a different brand, including the second from the Volkswagen Group. However, two-time World Rally Champion Sainz and his experienced co-driver could not be sure until shortly before the end. With Sébastien Loeb/Fabian Lurquin from Team BRX, they had strong pursuers who continued to close the gap until their car suffered damage on the penultimate day. “That was an overwhelming team performance,” said Head of Audi Motorsport Rolf Michl. “Everyone pulled together to make this historic result possible for Audi. A big thank you to this wonderful team. Today we have written a new chapter for Audi, but also in the history of the Dakar Rally.” Daily stages of often more than 400 kilometers, two marathon stages with limited or even no service, as well as 4,600 timed kilometers and 7,883 kilometers in total characterized the 2024 Dakar Rally. Sharp scree and gravel roads, but also towering chains of dunes in the Empty Quarter of the Arabian Peninsula and often difficult navigation demanded everything from the teams. Carlos Sainz, who at 61 looks back on a rally career spanning around four decades, recorded a total of eight days in the lead with Lucas Cruz on the twelve stages. The two other Audi crews had also put in a strong performance early on. The Swedes Mattias Ekström/Emil Bergkvist won the prologue at the beginning and improved to second place behind Sainz/Cruz by the rest day after six stages. However, a defect on the rear axle on the seventh stage cost them all their chances. Stéphane Peterhansel, record holder with 14 Dakar victories, was in sixth place shortly before the halfway point after his 50th stage win in the car and his 83rd overall. A defect in the hydraulic system threw him and his French compatriot Edouard Boulanger back to 22nd place on the sixth stage. Both teams then put themselves at the service of Team Audi Sport. Head of Audi Motorsport Rolf Michl and Sven Quandt, Team Principal of the entry partner Q Motorsport, implemented a perfect strategy in a demanding 46th edition of the rally. Whether it was tactically dropping back before the second marathon stage to avoid having to open the route or supporting the leaders Carlos Sainz/Lucas Cruz, the management was able to rely on its strong driver crews at all times. The team personnel also worked tirelessly and reliably during the physically demanding, long and tough rally. Ekström/Bergkvist finished the event in the top 50. Audi Sport has let the highly efficient Audi RS Q e-tron mature so that it is capable of winning within just three years. Under the technical direction of Dr. Leonardo Pascali, Audi Sport set the next historic milestone with the innovative drive: after the quattro all-wheel drive changed rallying forever in the 1980s and subsequently clinched victories and titles galore on the circuit, Audi demonstrated great innovative strength at Le Mans. The efficient TFSI drive, the electrified e-tron quattro all-wheel drive and individual technologies such as the LED matrix light and the Audi laser light stand for a high level of innovative strength and “Vorsprung durch Technik”. Audi’s first all-electric racing car then made its debut in Formula E, before the brand took on the extreme challenges of the Dakar Rally and successfully completed it as the first manufacturer with an electric drive. Article source:

Saturday 3 February 2024

From quattro to e-tron

Audi positions itself as the sportiest manufacturer in the premium segment and has a perfect basis to do so: motorsport. Sportiness, advanced technology and emotive design are the basis for the success of the Audi brand. The genes for this have their origin in racing, since 1980. The success story began with the Audi quattro Excluding the era before the Second World War that included the legendary Auto Union Grand Prix race cars in the 1930s, the motorsport history of AUDI AG began with the Audi quattro. The dominant victories and two manufacturers’ and two drivers’ titles achieved with the “original quattro” in the World Rally Championship between 1982 and 1984 were an important factor in the market success of the quattro drivetrain. quattro victorious in circuit racing as well After Audi had turned rallying upside down and stormed up Pikes Peak (USA) with the Sport quattro in record time on three successive occasions, Audi also made the quattro drivetrain fit for circuit racing: initially with the Audi 200 quattro and the Audi 90 quattro IMSA GTO in the United States, in 1990 and 1991 with two championship titles for the Audi V8 quattro in the German Touring Car Championship (DTM), and ultimately also with the A4 in the production-based super touring cars. In 1996, the Audi A4 quattro won the championship titles in seven countries. Between 2012 and 2016, the all-wheel drive system returned to the race track as the e-tron quattro. Audi R8 most successful Le Mans sports car in present-day racing After the dominant quattro drivetrain was banned from touring car racing, Audi switched to sports prototypes and also underpinned its slogan “Vorsprung durch Technik” in this motorsport category for 18 years. Audi, on making its debut at Le Mans in 1999, the toughest endurance race in the world, immediately managed the leap onto the podium, finishing third overall. In the following years, the Audi R8 was in a class of its own. From 2000 to 2002, Audi achieved a historic hat-trick, not least thanks to the TFSI technology that debuted in 2001 and then also subsequently made its way into production. In 2004 and 2005, customer teams clinched two further overall victories for Audi. The R8 secured its spot in motorsport history with a total of 63 victories in 80 sports car races. Title wins following the return to DTM Following Laurent Aiello’s victory with the Abt-Audi TT-R in 2002, Audi returned to the DTM with a factory-backed commitment in 2004 and instantly won the title with Mattias Ekström. In 2007, the Swede triumphed again, followed by Timo Scheider in 2008 and 2009, making Audi the first and so far only automobile manufacturer in DTM history to have managed a title hat-trick. In the 2011 season, Martin Tomczyk completed the success story of the Audi A4 DTM with another title, the fifth in total for the Audi A4 DTM. In 2013, Mike Rockenfeller, diving the Audi RS 5 DTM, clinched the ninth DTM title for Audi. René Rast caused a sensation in 2017 when he clinched another title for Audi in his rookie year. Audi took home the manufacturer’s championship crown in the same year. In 2019 and 2020, Rast won the prestigious title two more times. Audi drivers have thus already won the DTM drivers’ title twelve times. Added to this are six manufacturers’ and eight teams’ titles. Technologically, Audi has mastered one of the biggest upheavals in the history of the racing series with flying colors: In the two years of the DTM turbocharged engine era, the Audi RS 5 DTM, with its highly efficient two-liter turbo engine, was the benchmark with 28 victories, 95 podium finishes, 29 pole positions and 28 fastest race laps, as well as all six of the championship titles. Since 2021, the DTM has been exclusively held for GT3 sports cars. Pioneering achievements with TDI technology With TDI technology, Audi achieved a pioneering feat and, at the same time, demonstrated “Vorsprung durch Technik” once again. In 2006, the Audi R10 TDI featuring a new concept was the first sports car with a diesel engine to triumph in the legendary Le Mans 24 Hours. In total, TDI technology came out winning eight times at Le Mans. In 2007 and 2008, Audi was again victorious with the R10 TDI at La Sarthe. In addition, Audi won the American Le Mans Series with the diesel-powered racing sports car three times in succession and, in 2008, the European Le Mans Series as well. With the R15 TDI in 2010, Audi celebrated a one-two-three result in the fastest Le Mans race of all time and set a new distance record that has not been broken to date. In 2011, 2012, 2013 and 2014, Audi TDI power was again victorious at Le Mans. In 2014, the brand celebrated its 13th victory in just 16 participations. Audi also demonstrates “Vorsprung durch Technik” in terms of energy efficiency. During the entire TDI era, Audi reduced diesel consumption by a total of 46 percent within the space of one decade. First hybrid winner at Le Mans On clinching the first victory with a hybrid race car in the 2021 Le Mans 24 Hours, Audi achieved another pioneering feat in the world’s most important endurance race. The Audi R18 e-tron quattro remained unbeaten at Le Mans for three consecutive years (2012, 2013 und 2014). Many other innovations such as Audi Laser Light have been added to these pioneering feats in technology. The drivers’ and manufacturers’ titles won with the hybrid sports car in the 2012 and 2013 FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) complete the track record in Audi’s sports car era that ended in 2016. Success with electric drive concepts The company systematically continued the electrification of its motorsport program, which began in 2012 in endurance racing. Following the LMP program with the R18 hybrid sports car, Audi was the first German car manufacturer to compete in the all-electric Formula E racing series in the 2017/2018 season. With four victories and a total of eleven podium finishes, Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler clinched the team championship after twelve races. The brand with the four rings entered the famous Dakar Rally in 2022 with an innovative prototype. Audi made history in January 2024: the Audi RS Q e-tron was the first low-emission prototype with an electric drive, high-voltage battery and energy converter to win the world’s toughest desert rally. Entry into the premier class of motorsport Sustainability also plays an important role in the premier class of motorsport. From the 2026 season, Audi will be competing in the FIA Formula 1 World Championship with its own factory team. The development of the drive unit (“Power Unit”) is in full swing at the Neuburg a. d. Donau site. Thanks to open competition, Formula 1 serves as a technology driver for both electric mobility and sustainable e-fuels. Article source:

Thursday 25 January 2024

Around 4.87 million vehicles worldwide: Volkswagen brand increases deliveries in 2023

The Volkswagen brand significantly increased its deliveries last year, with: around 4.87 million vehicles handed over to customers worldwide. The figures exceeded the previous year’s numbers in all regions. In total, the increase in deliveries was 6.7 per cent. Demand for electric mobility also grew: Volkswagen handed over about 394,000 fully electric vehicles to customers worldwide in 2023, which corresponds to an increase of 21.1 per cent compared to the previous year. Imelda Labbé, Volkswagen Board Member for Sales, Marketing and After Sales: “The delivery figures show that we are on the right track as a brand and that our cars are well received by our customers. We expect the market environment to remain challenging in 2024. But with our revised and attractive product portfolio, we are in the right position.” All-electric ID. models in high demand worldwide Volkswagen was able to increase sales of its fully electric vehicles by 21.1 per cent to about 394,000 units in 2023. The largest markets for all-electric cars for the Volkswagen brand – in absolute figures – were China, Germany, the US, the UK, Sweden, France, Norway and Belgium. In Germany, for example, about 30,000 ID.4 models were delivered (+ 62.9 per cent). Volkswagen’s first fully electric ‘world car’ was also well received in the US: about 38,000 examples of the ID.4 were delivered to customers here, which corresponds to an increase of 84.2 per cent compared to 2022. The ID.3 all-electric compact car was particularly popular in China: more than 75,000 were delivered in 2023 there – a over 200 per cent increase compared to the previous year. T-Roc once again best-selling Volkswagen SUV in Europe The SUV trend also continued in 2023: the share of SUVs in total Volkswagen deliveries remains very high at 54.2 per cent (+ 14.9 per cent compared to 2022). In the US, more than 81 per cent of Volkswagen cars sold were SUVs. In Europe, the T-Roc remains Volkswagen’s best-selling SUV: the model set a new delivery record in Germany, the UK, Spain and Turkey. Forty-eight years and 20 million units after its debut, the Polo remains one of the most successful cars in its class: in Brazil, more than 110,000 of them were handed over to customers, which is a new record. In Germany, the number of Polo deliveries was about 33,500 – 44.1 per cent higher than in the previous year. Volkswagen starts the new year with numerous newly launched bestsellers Volkswagen is anticipating dynamic growth in demand due to new editions of some of its most important bestsellers: deliveries of the new generations of the Passat and Tiguan as well as the visually and technically enhanced T-Cross will begin in the first quarter of 2024. The ID.4 and ID.5 also recently received a major update with a completely new operating concept and new drive system. The new ID.7 Tourer, the estate version of the all-electric top model ID.7, will also launch this year. To meet the high demand for SUVs, Volkswagen is planning to produce a fully electric SUV in the high-volume A-segment from 2026. Another highlight for 2024 will be that, 50 years after the first Golf, Volkswagen is presenting the next evolution of its eighth generation, which offers impressive visual refinements, new assistance systems and drive systems as well as next-generation infotainment and software. Pre-sales are scheduled to start in spring 2024. Article source:

Sunday 21 January 2024

Škoda Auto launches production of the all-new Kodiaq in Kvasiny

Škoda Auto announces the launch of series production of the second-generation Kodiaq, its SUV flagship model, at the plant in Kvasiny, Czech Republic. In preparation, the company has made considerable investments into modernising both the production line and welding shop. By transferring the production of the new-generation Superb from Kvasiny to Bratislava, Slovakia, the Czech carmaker has created additional capacity at Kvasiny to manufacture the successful Kodiaq and Karoq SUV models. It was with the Kodiaq that we began our SUV campaign began back in 2016. The fact that this successful model is entering its second generation today is a very special event for the entire team. Countless hours have gone into the thorough preparations for the production launch. And by investing 49 million euros into modernising the manufacturing facilities, we have made a substantial contribution to future-proofing production at our Kvasiny plant. My heartfelt thanks goes to everyone involved. Their expertise and dedication are the reasons we can now write the next chapter in the success story of our flagship SUV.” Andreas Dick, Škoda Auto Board Member for Production and Logistics Investment of 49 million euros, producing up to 410 Kodiaq SUVs a day The new Kodiaq will continue to be produced on its original production line. In a strategic move to future-proof the Kvasiny plant, Škoda Auto has invested 49 million euros in modernising the production line and welding shop. This investment also encompasses preparations for the production of the new Kodiaq iV, featuring a plug-in hybrid drivetrain. Key enhancements during the production line conversion include updates to manipulators, chassis assembly, conveyor technologies, and the refinement of robot functions for applying window glue. Until recently, the production line at the Kvasiny plant was also used for the Škoda Superb. In a strategic move to increase SUV production capacity, Superb production has now been relocated to the Volkswagen plant in Bratislava, coinciding with the launch of its fourth generation. This effectively frees up capacity at Kvasiny, enabling the plant to produce an additional 150,000 units annually of the Karoq and Kodiaq SUV models. Consequently, the plant is primed to build up to 410 Kodiaqs a day. The Škoda Kodiaq’s success story Škoda Auto began its SUV campaign with the world premiere of the Kodiaq in September 2016. This milestone was followed by the launch of the compact Karoq in 2017, the Kamiq city SUV in 2019, and the all-electric Enyaq SUV in 2021. The Kodiaq RS, introduced in autumn 2018, marked the first SUV in Škoda’s sporty RS family. To date, the combined efforts of Škoda’s manufacturing facilities in the Czech Republic, Ukraine, China, and – until early 2022 – Russia, have resulted in over 870,000 units of the first-generation Kodiaq. These vehicles have reached customers across 60 markets around the world. The model has enjoyed widespread popularity among customers and journalists alike, earning more than 40 prestigious international awards for the first-generation of this large Škoda SUV. Škoda Auto unveiled the second-generation Kodiaq in Berlin on 4 October. This presentation showcased the manufacturer’s advancements in sustainability and efficiency, as well as introducing the first elements of its new Modern Solid design language. The new Kodiaq reflects Škoda’s traditional emphasis on spaciousness, incorporating sustainable materials and innovative elements like Škoda Smart Dials, while the exterior boasts the latest generation of LED matrix headlights. The vehicle offers five different powertrain options, ranging from 110 kW (150 hp) to 150 kW (204 hp), with the higher-tier engines equipped with all-wheel drive as standard. Additionally, the Kodiaq is now available in a plug-in hybrid variant, offering an electric range of over 100 kilometres – a first for the series. Article source:

Sunday 14 January 2024

Škoda Auto enhances user experience by integrating “ChatGPT” into its vehicles

Škoda Auto announces the integration of the AI-based chatbot ChatGPT into its Laura voice assistant. This important step will enhance the in-vehicle experience of many customers and help to make everyday life easier. Škoda models based on MEB GP and MQB EVO platforms will benefit from this new feature. They will be able to access a vast AI database and have content read out to them while driving. This new function is powered by Cerence Chat Pro from technology partner Cerence Inc., offering a unique, automotive-grade ChatGPT integration. Personal data and vehicle information are protected at all time. “Enriching Škoda voice assistance with artificial intelligence makes our cars an even better everyday companion. Drivers and passengers will have easy, verbal access to worlds of knowledge while on the road. Integrating ChatGPT into our voice assistant Laura is just the latest way that Škoda adapts advanced technology to improve the driving experience. Everything remains hands-free for the driver, and data security remains a priority. I am confident that customers will appreciate this modern new feature.” Klaus Zellmer, Škoda Auto CEO New functions for an enhanced in-vehicle experience The new chatbot will be offered together with the latest generation of infotainment systems from mid-2024. It will be available in the following models based on the MEB GP and MQB EVO platforms: selected versions of the Škoda Enyaq, the new-generation Škoda Superb and Kodiaq and the updated Škoda Octavia. Enabled by Cerence Chat Pro, the integration of ChatGPT into the Laura voice assistant introduces a variety of new capabilities that go far beyond the previous voice commands. The Laura voice assistant can be used, for example, to control the infotainment, navigation and air conditioning and answer general knowledge questions. In the future, AI will provide additional information in response to questions that go beyond this as part of its constantly growing capabilities. This can be helpful during a car journey: Enriching conversations, clearing up questions, interacting in intuitive language, receiving vehicle-specific information, and much more — completely hands-free for even more safety for driver and passengers. Data protection as a top priority The operation remains straightforward for the driver: the voice assistant is activated with “Okay, Laura” or the respective steering wheel button. If the request cannot be answered by the Škoda system, it is anonymously forwarded to the AI. ChatGPT does not access vehicle data or personal information. All interactions are immediately deleted after processing to ensure the highest standard of data protection. This new feature will also be available in further models of Volkswagen Group brands. Article source: