If you own a recent Chrysler product and an iPhone, you’re in luck. Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) is releasing a software update that adds Siri Eyes Free voice control to models that left the factory a while ago, for free.
FCA says the update is available for nearly two million vehicles, spanning 12 models built between model years 2013 and 2015. Owners can download the update from the support website for FCA’s Uconnect infotainment system after entering a car’s VIN. Dealers can also install the software if customers don’t want to do it themselves. Ford launched a similar software update late last year, for vehicles going back as far as the 2011 model year.
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Like Apple CarPlay, Siri Eyes Free adds a layer of Apple-specific content to a feature already available in most cars. Instead of a generic voice-command system, drivers get Siri, but use the car’s built-in controls rather than their phones to access it. Carmakers believe systems like this offer a workable compromise between the compulsion to use phones while driving, and the safety issues that arise from that practice.
Siri Eyes Free requires an iPhone 4s or later, and Chrysler only offers the feature with its Uconnect 8.4 infotainment system. This is the highest level version, and includes an 8.4-inch touchscreen. The free download can be applied to most recent Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep, and Ram models with that system.
Compatible models include 2013-2015 Ram 1500, 2500, and 3500 pickup trucks, the 2013-2015 Dodge Viper, 2014-2015 Dodge Durango, 2015 Dodge Challenger and Charger, 2014-2015 Jeep Cherokee and Grand Cherokee, 2015 Jeep Renegade, and 2015 Chrysler 200 and 300.
Later this year, FCA will also roll out an upgraded Uconnect system that includes Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility. Those systems probably won’t be added to older models, and won’t be available across the full FCA lineup until at least the 2018 model year.