Škoda has announced that it is going to integrate the AI-based chatbot ChatGPT into its Laura voice assistant, enhancing the in-vehicle experience for customers and help to make everyday life a little easier.
Models based on MEB GP and MQB EVO platforms will initially benefit from this new feature, with customers being able to access a vast AI database and have content read out to them while driving.
Powered by Cerence Chat Pro from technology partner Cerence Inc, this new function offers a unique, automotive-grade ChatGPT integration. However, Škoda insists that personal data and vehicle information are protected at all times.
Škoda Auto CEO Klaus Zellmer, says:
“Enriching Škoda voice assistance with artificial intelligence makes our cars an even better everyday companion. Drivers and passengers will have easy, verbal access to worlds of knowledge while on the road. Integrating ChatGPT into our voice assistant Laura is just the latest way that Škoda adapts advanced technology to improve the driving experience. Everything remains hands-free for the driver, and data security remains a priority. I am confident that customers will appreciate this modern new feature.”
Operating the system is very straightforward. All you have to do to activate the voice assistant is by saying “Okay, Laura” or by using the respective steering wheel button. If, however, the request cannot be answered by the Škoda system, it is anonymously forwarded to the AI. ChatGPT does not access vehicle data, or any personal information and all interactions are immediately deleted after processing.
The new chatbot will be offered together with the latest generation of infotainment systems from the middle of this year. It will be available in the models based on the MEB GP and MQB EVO platforms, which includes selected versions of the Škoda Enyaq, the new generation Škoda Superb and Kodiaq and the updated Škoda Octavia.
The integration of ChatGPT into the Laura voice assistant introduces a variety of new capabilities such as controlling the infotainment, navigation and air conditioning as well as answering general knowledge questions. For more information on which models will be fitted with ChatGPT and when, please visit: www.skoda.co.uk.
Simon Burrell is Editor of Our Man Behind The Wheel, a professional photographer and former saloon car racing driver.
Photographs courtesy of Škoda Auto