As a factory-installed option, wireless CarPlay has been primarily limited to premium brands like BMW and Porsche, but Fiat Chrysler Automobiles this week introduced its redesigned 2021 Chrysler Pacifica minivan with a standard 10.1-inch touchscreen that supports both wireless CarPlay and wireless Android Auto.
Wireless CarPlay is a feature of Fiat Chrysler's new Uconnect 5 infotainment system, standard across the new Pacifica lineup. Fiat Chrysler says Uconnect 5 is up to five times faster than Uconnect 4 and features built-in Amazon Alexa voice control, a revamped user interface, support for up to five user profiles, and more.
CarPlay is Apple's in-car platform that enables drivers to access a range of iPhone apps from the dashboard, such as Messages, Apple Maps, Apple Music, Podcasts, Overcast, Spotify, Pandora, WhatsApp, and Downcast. Since iOS 12, third-party navigation apps like Google Maps and Waze are also supported.
Wireless CarPlay works over Bluetooth and Wi-Fi, eliminating the need for the iPhone to be connected to the infotainment system with a Lightning cable.
Fiat Chrysler says the 2021 Pacifica will be available to order in the third quarter of 2020, with the vehicle slated to arrive to dealerships across the United States and Canada in the fourth quarter. Pricing has not been disclosed.
Ford is also introducing wireless CarPlay in select 2020 vehicles through its SYNC 4 infotainment system, while aftermarket wireless CarPlay systems are available from brands such as Alpine for do-it-yourself installation.