Today, Amazon is taking a bigger step towards the car by integrating Alexa into Lamborghini’s Huracán EVO and not just asking questions or controlling your home remotely – it gives the assistant the ability to control the settings in the car hands-free. The partnership was originally announced last year as part of Amazon’s push into cars, but the integration goes beyond Alexa’s usual box of tricks.
By integrating Alexa, users can “control climate and comfort settings, including air conditioning, heating, fan speed, temperature, heated seats, defroster, and airflow direction, as well as lighting,” says Lamborghini. (A screen can also be displayed showing the vehicle’s torque vector and traction controls.) Of course, Alexa also has its own capabilities for interacting with your smart home devices, playing music and podcasts, and basic navigation.
If Alexa integration means less time for the Huracán EVO’s center console, I think that’s a win for everyone. Image: Lamborghini
The Huracán EVO has a few physical controls on the steering wheel and driver’s door, but a large part of the vehicle’s features are set through a screen in the center console. Giving Alexa more control of the actual car means less time chasing and browsing menus – “Alexa, I’m hot” is apparently enough to get the air conditioning on – and more time with your eyes on the road, what safety and comfort could be an asset.
It’s not that Alexa is driving your car, but give it time.
The shift in the automotive industry from controls like buttons and dials to fully touchscreen-based displays continued, and we even ran a series of tests a few years ago examining in-car displays as gadgets. Amazon has tried to make the transition easier with the Alexa-enabled Echo Auto in the past, but we found in our review that the accessory worked best as a simple speakerphone and Bluetooth adapter – tasks that required location knowledge or a consistent cellular connection , were bad. The Huracán EVO’s implementation of Alexa with all the benefits of real control over a connected car could be a better version of the idea.
Amazon and Lamborghini aren’t the only team of automakers and tech companies addressing the integrated car software problem. Volvo’s Polestar 2 was launched in 2020 with built-in Android Automotive and Google Assistant integration to control settings similar to air conditioning, which was not part of the old Android Auto. We liked the Polestar’s software developed by Google, although, similar to Lamborghini, it comes at a high price.
New Huracán EVOs should have the function of the jump, but Lamborghini says that all existing Huracán EVO customers can be upgraded for free with support for Alexa.