GMC IntelliLink Enhances Terrain’s Connectivity Capability

Small SUV’s voice-controlled interface helps drivers safely use mobile electronics


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NEW YORK – GMC, the brand known for professional grade capability and engineering excellence, is taking in-vehicle connectivity to the next level on the 2012 Terrain. The small SUV with segment-leading fuel economy will expand its already-extensive list of standard and available features in late 2011 with a simple-to-use, customizable infotainment system and expanded wireless capability.

The 2012 Terrain will be the first vehicle to offer GMC IntelliLink, which uses Bluetooth or USB to connect the driver’s smartphone to Terrain’s new seven-inch, high-resolution, full-color touch screen display radio. IntelliLink expands on the current Terrain’s Bluetooth and USB capabilities to allow smartphone control via voice activation and steering wheel-mounted controls, and streaming stereo audio from the phone through services like PANDORA® internet radio and Stitcher SmartRadio®.

Most importantly, IntelliLink enables seamless integration of stowed portable devices with Terrain’s infotainment system, allowing drivers to keep their hands on the wheel and eyes on the road.

“Today’s car buyers don’t want to settle for mass market radio, and they don’t have to,” said John Schwegman, U.S. vice president of GMC Marketing. “They expect to have access to personalized media wherever they are, and the introduction of GMC IntelliLink on Terrain makes media personalization easier than ever.”

Consumer interest in onboard connectivity is rising with smartphone sales. Apple sold 16.2 million iPhones in the fourth quarter of 2010, and Android sales jumped 886 percent from 2009 to 2010. Two and a half years ago, only one in 10 Americans had a smartphone. By the end of 2013, there will be 1.1 billion smartphones, with annual sales of 300 million units, according to research firm Parks Associates Industries.

“About 70 percent of all new car buyers want some form of connectivity,” said Micky Bly, executive director leading GM’s infotainment engineering efforts, citing GM research. “Whether it’s because they want to listen to their favorite music or hear movie times on the way to the theater, today’s car buyer expects so much more out of their time in a car.”

One doesn’t need a smartphone to benefit from IntelliLink. The system works with a Bluetooth-enabled cell phone, USB flash drive or digital audio player. Even without a mobile device, GMC owners will benefit from IntelliLink’s enhanced voice recognition technology and OnStar’s on-screen turn-by-turn directions.

The new benefits provided by GMC IntelliLink include:

  • Enhanced hands-free voice control system powered by Nuance®, which allows simple voice commands to initiate phone calls and select radio stations or media from portable MP3 players and smartphones. A tap of a button on the steering wheel enables intuitive verbal control of many radio features like “play (artist name)” or “call (name of contact)”. When a smart phone is connected you can say “tune (internet radio, station name).”

PANDORA internet radio and Stitcher SmartRadio allow users to create personalized radio stations based on favorite artists or genres and enables access to thousands of audio programming choices allowing customers to build a personalized listening experience. IntelliLink integrates control of both of these apps for a driver-directed listening experience.

Gracenote® identifies the music collection on the driver’s USB device, MP3 player or smartphone and presents information such as artist name, genres and album cover art on the IntelliLink screen and enables users to select similar music to the tunes they love. Gracenote also improves the accuracy of IntelliLink’s voice activation system by allowing users to access music using artist nicknames, such as “The Boss,” “The Stones,” or “Snoop” using IntelliLink’s voice control interfaces activated through the touch-screen or steering wheel buttons.

Upgraded USB connectivity adds the ability to play music files directly from flash memory devices, and gives the customer the ability to update IntelliLink with future feature enhancements.

GMC IntelliLink retains all the capabilities of today’s entertainment units, and adds to Terrain’s comprehensive list of standard and available features, which includes purposeful technologies such as:

  • Standard rear-vision camera that provides a view of objects or people directly behind the vehicle
  • Standard USB audio connectivity and MP3 playback for your portable music player – plug it in and control the features right from the radio or the optional steering wheel controls and USB thumb drives or (say USB enabled storage devices)
  • Standard XM Satellite Radio, which provides coast-to-coast tunes
  • Programmable power liftgate that can be set to open to a lower height, clearing garage obstructions or making it easier to reach for those of shorter stature
  • Remote vehicle start that can be used to automatically heat up a cold Terrain on a January morning, or cool it down on a hot August afternoon.

GMC IntelliLink’s designers drew inspiration from the intuitive, easy-to-use interfaces found on many popular consumer electronics. The influence can be seen on the home page with application icons that animate when activated. The touch screen’s structured, technical graphics and red-and-grey color combination evoke GMC’s “professional grade” personality and Terrain’s bold exterior styling.

The debut of GMC IntelliLink extends the OnStar experience from safety and security to information and entertainment by seamlessly integrating the capability of a smartphone into the vehicle so that hand-held phones may be safely stowed while driving.

When OnStar debuted in 1996, it pioneered in-vehicle connectivity with the auto industry’s first embedded telematics system. It has grown from primarily offering automatic crash notification and security features to include remote vehicle diagnostics, turn-by-turn navigation and the ability to slow down stolen vehicles. In November 2010, OnStar released a smartphone application for all 2011 GMC vehicles that incorporated remote start, lock/unlock, and vehicle status checks.


GMC IntelliLink will be available on Terrain before expanding to other vehicles in the GMC lineup over the next 18 to 24 months.



About GMC

GMC has built trucks since 1902, and is one of the industry's healthiest brands. Today GMC is evolving to offer more fuel-efficient trucks and crossovers, including the Terrain small SUV and Acadia crossover. The new GMC Sierra Heavy Duty pickups are the most capable and powerful trucks in the market.  Innovation and engineering excellence are woven into all GMCs, including the Yukon and Yukon XL and full line of Sierra pickups. Today, GMC is the only manufacturer offering three full-size hybrid trucks. Details on all GMC models are available at, on Twitter at @thisisgmc or at


About OnStar

OnStar, a wholly owned subsidiary of General Motors, is the leading provider of connected safety and security solutions, value-added mobility services and advanced information technology. Currently available on more than 40 MY 2011 GM models, OnStar soon will be available for installation on most other vehicles already on the road through local electronics retailers, including Best Buy. OnStar safely connects its more than six million subscribers, in the U.S., Canada and China, in ways never thought possible. OnStar Stolen Vehicle Slowdown is a recipient of the 2010 Edison Award for Best New Product in the technology category. More information about OnStar can be found at