We here at Automotive.com have more than once mentioned that you sometimes have to look overseas to see what the automakers may be planning for the U.S. market. Toyota, for example, may be releasing a four-cylinder model of its Lexus RX down under sometime later this year.
The latest item that may be arriving on America’s shores is the OPC PowerApp. This program, covered expertly by our car enthusiast colleagues over at Automobile Magazine, taps into car’s “brain”, or Controller Area Network, and downloads car enthusiast-oriented data like engine boost pressure, engine torque, and lap-time recorder; you know, useful data when driving the streets of Los Angeles like it was the German Autobahn or the famous Nurburgring racetrack. Enthusiasts can review the app’s data in realtime or store it for later for comparison with friends’ data, which is a great way to pass the time while awaiting your hearing on reckless driving charges.
Currently, the OPC PowerApp is available on the 2013 Opel Astra OPC where it costs 0.79 euros (roughly one U.S. dollar). It’s not surprising if you’ve never heard of vehicle or even the brand: it’s only sold in Europe and a part of the General Motors European division, which includes Vauxhall. The closest American model to the Opel Astra is the Buick Verano. We queried GM about the Apple iPhone program to see if it will be bringing the app across the pond but have not received a response at the time of this post. We can see the appeal for Chevrolet Camaro and Corvette owners; who wouldn’t want to know the g-force figures of their ZR1 blasting down a runway? Most though will probably give the OPC PowerApp a pass.
Source: General Motors/Opel, Automobile Magazine