Even though it is still running TV ads for it, Hyundai is about to put
the kibosh on one of the most important features of its Equus luxury
car: the Apple iPad that serves as a high-tech owners manual in its
glove compartment, Drive On has learned.
The free iPad won't come with the Equus anymore with the start of the
2012 model year. The new cars start arriving next month. Instead,
owners are going to have to depend on their old standby, the
voluminous paper version of the manual, says spokesman Jim Trainor.
Trainor says the iPads were only intended as a one-year promotion. The
Equus only went on sale in the U.S. about a year ago. Oddly, Hyundai
has mostly confined its television ads for the Equus only to the fact
that it has an iPad as an owners manual, without talking about any
attributes of the $58,000 car itself. The ads are narrated by actor
Jeff Bridges, of course.
The electronic owners manual, brainchild of Hyundai America CEO John
Krafcik, seen at right , is kind of a wonder. It has lots of
interactive features like showing how the car's headlights can be
steered from side to side -- with the slide of a fingertip.
"We got a lot of mileage out of it. People are talking about
it," he says of the iPad. Now, "Every Equus has a (paper)
owners manual in the glove box."
For Equus buyers who want the electronic owners manual for their own
iPads or other tablets, Trainor says it will be available for
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