The control and display system of the new Audi A3 is powered by the latest generation of the modular infotainment platform, MIB 3. Its computing power is ten times higher than that of its predecessor system, MIB 2. The new MIB 3 works with the Online Connectivity Unit (OCU), which is equipped with an integrated eSIM and a Wi-Fi module for the passengers’ mobile devices. The OCU performs all connectivity-related tasks, for example fast data transfer. Individual settings can be stored in up to six user profiles – from climate control and the seat position to frequently selected navigation destinations and frequently used media.
More precise: the navigation
Upon request, Audi delivers MMI navigation plus, which features the same functions as the full-size class. The navigation system can make intelligent route suggestions on the basis of the journey history. In doing so, it takes statistical empirical values based on time of day and traffic density into account, as well as real-time data on the traffic situation. Should the data stream be cut off, for example when driving through a tunnel, onboard route guidance, which runs in parallel, steps in.
The basic services from Audi connect add online traffic information to the navigation, enrich points of interest with photos, opening hours, and user reviews, and provide a weather forecast for the navigation destination. In combination with the Audi connect navigation & infotainment plus package, high-resolution satellite images from Google Earth and detailed 3D models of many major European cities make orientation easier. Another highlight – and new to the Audi range – is the online traffic information plus service, which will follow soon. Here, forecasts as to how the traffic situation will develop make route guidance even more flexible and precise. In addition, the navigation system can specify the lanes in which stationary or free-flowing traffic can be expected.
The connect portfolio also includes multiple car-to-X services that make use of the swarm intelligence of the Audi fleet. Provided the local infrastructure is available, they help with finding free parking spaces on the roadside or allow the driver to surf the green wave by communicating with the city’s main computer. The information on the traffic light phases is displayed to the driver in the Audi virtual cockpit. This allows drivers to adjust their speed preemptively, which increases efficiency and improves traffic flow. The onboard camera and the vehicle sensor system also detect hazardous areas and speed limits and communicate them to vehicles with the corresponding equipment. Communication takes place via the cellular network.
Synchronized: the myAudi app
Many Audi connect functions are bundled in the free myAudi app, which connects the customer’s smartphone to the A3 Sportback and the A3 Sedan. It can be used, for example, to transfer navigation routes to the MMI and to stream music. Moreover, the driver can find where his car is parked, get directions to it, operate the optional auxiliary heating, and call up many items of status information.
The multitude of innovations also includes the optional Audi connect key. It allows up to five users to lock and unlock the car as well as start the engine with the start/stop button via an Android smartphone. Another option is the convenience key, which uses ultra-wide band technology (UWB) to communicate with the vehicle.
Intensified: the entertainment
The new A3 models come with DAB+ digital radio as standard, while online radio and hybrid radio can be installed upon request. The former provides access to online stations that are available worldwide, while the latter automatically switches between FM, DAB, and the online stream to ensure optimum reception at all times.
The Bang & Olufsen Advanced Sound System delivers fascinating surround sound. It drives 15 loudspeakers with a total output of 680 watts. Four of these loudspeakers are located in the instrument panel and use the reflections of the windshield to create the 3D sound. An algorithm that Audi developed in collaboration with the Fraunhofer Institute adds breadth and depth to the sound.
In order to connect the smartphone to the MMI, the A3 Sportback and the A3 Sedan are equipped with the Audi smartphone interface upon request. It establishes contact with the customers’ iOS and Android smartphones and transfers their Apple CarPlay or Android Auto environment to the MMI display. This will even work wirelessly in the future. The Audi phone box charges the smartphone inductively, couples it with the car’s antenna, and offers a top-quality hands-free function with HD Voice and LTE.
Further functions in the Audi connect navigation & infotainment plus package will follow at a later date, including online media streaming. The Amazon Alexa voice assistant provides access to many thousands of skills as well as to smart home devices. It can stream music and audiobooks via Amazon Music and Audible.
All terms in blue in the text are explained in detail in the technology lexicon at www.audi-mediacenter.com/en/technology-lexicon.
The equipment, data and prices stated here refer to the model range offered for sale in Germany. Subject to change without notice; errors and omissions excepted.