Continental has launched radios with CAN connectivity, expanding its product portfolio of audio systems for off-highway vehicles. The devices can be operated with an external display already installed in the vehicle or by using steering wheel buttons.
The radio can also be installed in not-so-accessible locations and this is a definite advantage, especially in the cabs of construction and agricultural machinery where space is at a premium. “Our CAN bus radios give manufacturers more freedom and flexibility when it comes to integrating radio functionality. And drivers also benefit, because all the information they want is clearly displayed,” explained Alain Vaillant, the product manager responsible for the new line of radios in the special vehicles team of the Continental business segment Independent Aftermarket. The company is also offering a wide range of solutions for digital radio reception, even for retrofitting, so manufacturers and fleet owners will be prepared for the new European digital-terrestrial radio standard. Continental will be presenting its radio product portfolio at Bauma 2019 in Munich, Germany. Visitors can find them in hall C5, booth 403.
Continental’s latest CAN radio portfolio offers vehicle manufacturers new options in the design and equipment of cabins in off-highway vehicles – and in the future, they will also be able to integrate radio functionality into tight spaces in instrument panels. An external, multifunctional touchscreen already installed in the vehicle will also display the information shown on the radio’s display, so the driver can control all of the radio’s functions right there. The radio itself can be placed anywhere, behind the driver or at their side – it can even be completely hidden, since it doesn’t need any dashboard space. Another advantage is that the driver receives all the information in one place on his multifunctional display.
Drivers can also connect their smartphones to the CAN radio via Bluetooth, so they can dial a number using the display and see the name of a caller, for instance. Audio files can also be streamed from smartphones – the sound comes through the vehicle speakers. “This connectivity increases comfort and safety levels for the driver,” said Alain Vaillant. Up to two smartphones can be connected simultaneously, so drivers can access both their company and private devices, or two drivers of a vehicle can pair their own smartphones.
The CAN radio portfolio also includes versions with buttons and keys, so manufacturers who do not use touchscreen displays can still rely on Continental’s CAN technology for their radios. “We offer vehicle manufacturers every option to adapt the radios individually to their requirements, all the way to complete system integration,” said Vaillant. All products of the CAN radio portfolio can be ordered as of now.
Due to Continental’s certified radio range, manufacturers and fleet operators can also equip and retrofit their vehicles with future-proof digital radios: The company offers devices with digital-terrestrial reception (DAB and DAB+) for both the standard radios and the new CAN versions. Digital radio is establishing itself as the new standard throughout Europe and it will eventually replace analog FM reception, said the company. The European Parliament adopted the mandatory digital radio standard for all vehicles at the end of 2018. All EU member states must incorporate the regulation into their national legislation by the end of 2020. “There’s a lot going on here right now. With a DAB+-capable radio, manufacturers and fleet operators can be sure that their off-highway vehicles can also be used worldwide with no restrictions on radio reception,” said Vaillant.
In addition to its radio portfolio, the company also offers its customers antennas and loudspeakers, so they can purchase complete audio systems from a single source.
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