Rivian, the US-based sustainability focused auto manufacturer, recently revealed that they will be utilizing Amazon's virtual assistant, Alexa, in their vehicles. Rivian's electric R1T truck was shown to have Alexa functions including voice commands to help use all of the vehicle's features.
The company showed a video where a Rivian employee, Christian Hubbel, shows off the voice commands.
“Alexa, open the hood,” Hubbel said to a remote device, explaining “what it’s gonna do is invoke our smart home function. It’s gonna open the front hood, and then we’re gonna be able to put [in] any groceries, packs, gear, you name it.” The R1T hood opens up as instructed.
This was all shown off at Amazon's re:MARS 2019 event in Las Vegas which was put on to showcase connected technologies, AI, robotics, and other new technologies, including autonomous vehicles.
Rivian attended the conference after announced their attendance on Twitter, stating that they would announce something important with a potential demo with their R1T truck.
Currently, the company didn't reveal what else Alexa might be able to bring to their vehicle functions. Their R1T vehicle was displayed at recent auto shows to have several potential features that could be boosted by Alexa functionality. Alexa could open and close the hood or trunk, close the truck's tailgate, lower or raise the suspension, or change the truck's glass roof's color. The R1T truck and Rivian's R1S SUV will begin production this year and should be available by the end of next year.
Rivian's information about what kind of technology could be included in their vehicles was still sparse, but the potential is still pretty high. Amazon has already been apart of a $700 million investment round into the automaker, and the company's appearance at re:MARS 2019 shows how closely the two companies could be working together from now on. Other Amazon investments into companies like Aurora, an autonomous technology company, could prove to be beneficial as well. Rivian's cars currently boast a Level 2 autonomy level but can be upgraded to Level 3.
Join us in Madrid, November 12-15 for the Global Online Marketplaces Summit.