San Antonio — The Progressive Retailers Organization was at the Westin La Cantera Hill Coun
PARK RIDGE, N.J. —Sony is offering a free MD Walkman with the purchase of its car MD recorder/player. Through Jan. 31, customers who purchase an MDX-C800 receive via mail a free MZ-E60 MD Walkman, which has a value of $149. Sony is also running two car audio rebate promotions through Dec. 31. Customers who purchase an Xplod head unit, amp and subwoofer or speakers (at the same time) will receive a $50 rebate. A $30 rebate is available for purchasers of a CDX-434RF RF changer. In addition, customers who purchase a CDX-6363, 737 or 838 changer, plus any one of 17 Sony head units with changer controllers, will also receive a $30 rebate.
DETROIT —General Motors recently announced it will spend $10 million to study how phones and other devices distract drivers. The three-year study will be conducted as part of a "SenseAble Driving" campaign that GM plans to roll out following a six-month pilot program in Michigan. As part of the campaign, GM will pay for educational materials, public service announcements, advertising, a website and research into driver-distraction issues. Government statistics show distracted drivers play a role in 25 percent of the 6 million vehicle crashes that occur annually in the United States. About 40 percent of the nation's drivers have phones in their cars, and 85 percent of all cellphone subscribers use them while driving.
HILDESHEIM, GERMANY —Blaupunkt announced it will offer XM radio as both OEM and aftermarket equipment in the United States. The company is in the process of building prototype XM radios but noted it was too early to tell if it will be unveiled at CES, said T.O. Wiese, Blaupunkt general manager. The announcement brings the total number of XM suppliers to 13, including Alpine, Audiovox, Clarion, Delphi, Eclipse, Mitsubishi Electric, Motorola, Pioneer, Sharp and Sony, along with Korean OEM brands Autonet and Bontec. XM will launch its two satellites between December and February, with retail sales expected to begin in the May/June time frame. Competitor Sirius radio expects to launch its third and final satellite this month, with retail sales to begin in the second quarter next year. Sirius licensees include Alpine, Audiovox, Clarion, DelphiDelco, Jensen, Kenwood, Mitsubishi Electric, Panasonic, Pioneer, Sanyo and Visteon.