Volkswagen has created a new climate control system that starts itself before you enter the car, runs voice commands and monitors the position of the sun to hone in on certain areas of the cabin.
The system will debut in Volkswagen’s upcoming ID.7 electric sedan, which was previewed at CES earlier this month and will be launched in China and Europe this year, and the US in 2024.
ID.7 can activate the A/C before the passenger gets into the vehicle, by detecting the key in your pocket. Then when the doors are opened, the car’s vents begin to forcefully blow either cool or hot air throughout the interior to counter the temperature of the outside environment, which the car tracks.
This is the evolution of a system that works from a smartphone app to remotely cool or heat the cabin.
Climate control functions are located in the toolbar on the 15-inch infotainment display, so they’re always visible, and the red and blue sliders that change the temperature are now backlit – addressing a big criticism of the new Golf.
Volkswagen’s digitally controlled air conditioning can also be activated by voice control, so a phrase like “Hello Volkswagen, my hands are cold” prompts a blast of warm air on your hands for five minutes.
The climate control’s Auto mode – where the system maintains a set temperature – is designed to be more precise than other systems by using external sensors to track the angle of sunlight, thereby identifying internal hot spots and sending more cool air to those pockets.
MORE: Volkswagen brings back the push-button steering wheel
MORE: Volkswagen’s CEO said the fix is coming for the infotainment, touch control issue