Toyota will be releasing their new 2015 Sienna minivan with a feature that will give parents the ability to shout at their kids in the back seat, via microphone.
The feature is called “Driver Easy Speak.” It uses a built-in microphone to amplify a parent’s voice through speakers in the back seats.
Toyota says it added Easy Speak “so parents don’t have to shout to passengers in the back.” But chances are many parents will yell into the microphone anyway.
This new feature is an option on the 2015 Sienna, which is also being refreshed with a totally new interior. The minivan also has an optional “pull-down conversation mirror” that lets drivers check on kids without turning around.
Plus, the Sienna will have its dual-view entertainment system for the backseat passengers, letting them view two separate things at once.
Other high-tech options include a 7-inch touch screen display to the right of the driver, as well as a 4.2-inch display on the instrument panel, which can show things like turn-by-turn directions. A panoramic backup camera now comes standard, with virtual guidelines to help navigate.
Automakers have been trying to come up with new creative ways to make the minivan more appealing, said Jessica Caldwell, senior analyst at the Edmunds.com automotive website. Last year, Honda unveiled a vacuum cleaner built into the back of its new Odyssey minivan.
“Such features are important because there’s little automakers can do to make the practical but bland vans more stylish,” Caldwell said. “I think they’re on the right lines of trying to find these features that people are going to talk about.”
Toyota is unveiling the new 2015 Sienna mainly through social media and at a Baltimore arts festival this weekend. It’s due to hit showrooms in the fall.
2015 Toyota Sienna Commercial- ‘Sienna Submarine’
Official 2015 Toyota “Action Kid” commercial featuring the 2015 Toyota Sienna.
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