Third Generation Audi MMI Makes First US Appearance in Q5

Audi Q5
Audi Q5

Better graphics and improved functionality set system apart

When the all-new Audi Q5 arrives on U.S. shores this spring, it will have more than just sporty moves and Audi's signature luxury going for it. The Q7's little brother is also the first North American Audi to be equipped with the upgraded third-generation Multi-Media Interface (MMI) infotainment system. Less frustrating to use than BMW's iDrive or Mercedes' COMAND systems, MMI has been upgraded with a host of new features.

The new MMI has been improved with better graphics courtesy of an LED-backlit seven-inch screen with 800 x 480 resolution. Colors are brighter and contrast is better, even in low light. The navigation system's maps now have building outlines in most large cities, to assist in navigation. Rather than a traditional map view, this system practically draws an animated rendering of the area you're in. MMI now offers a choice of two- or three-dimensional map views, as well.

An eight-direction joystick has also been added, to give the driver a greater range of navigation choices. Point-and-click control adds a new dimension to MMI's ease of use. The voice-recognition navigation system has also been improved; it's able to recognize whole words rather than requiring the driver to spell out destinations.

An integrated DVD player allows Audis to play movies. The system is also able to play music from multiple-format CD and SD cards.

Additionally, there's more information. MMI is equipped with a 40-gig hard drive, up to a quarter of which can be used to store music. MMI's phone directory can store up to two thousand entries, and its improved speech-to-text engine no longer requires a unique voice tag for each record.

Of course, you're probably more interested in the performance of the standard 3.2 liter direct-injection V6 and six-speed transmission. Quattro all-wheel drive is also standard.

Source: Audi
Published Jan 29th, 2009 11:30pm By Christopher Jackson

The next generation MMI from Audi: top-level multimedia and communication

- Introducing a new generation of the market's best system
- Even higher performance and easier operation
- First appearance stateside in the all-new Audi Q5

Audi is increasing its lead in infotainment technology even further. A new generation of the MMI, the supreme solution for multimedia, communication and operation, has been announced. With a high-capacity hard disk, a DVD drive and an automotive grade NVIDIATM chip for graphics processing, it is much more versatile and its performance is higher than ever before. The new MMI's first appearance will be in the all-new Audi Q5.

New joystick control- The basic operating principle has been retained, but the innovative joystick makes it even more convenient. This joystick is located on the central knob and can be moved in eight directions within the navigation map screen - with high precision and the sense of quality that the Audi driver expects. For example, now you can easily navigate to a location on the screen and just point and click for directions.

New Display- For the new MMI, Audi has provided a large TFT display measuring seven inches from corner to corner. It is located in an ergonomically favorable position high up on the center console.

With the very high resolution of 800 x 480 pixels and LED backlighting, this monitor supplies an exceptionally sharp image with plenty of contrast. Even in poor light conditions, the colors are intense and the text is crisp.

3D map displays-The driver can choose between the conventional two-dimensional view and the new 3D images. These modes feature a birds-eye perspective of the map area, with plenty of carefully presented detail including real-time traffic information, and while in 3D orientation, the various topographies are shown throughout the entire US. Another new feature is that the outlines of buildings in many major cities are displayed to help with orientation while navigating. Additionally, the most important buildings in large cities appear in near-authentic-detail, as well as several branded point-of-interest icons.

Vocal Input- If the driver uses voice input to load a destination into the navigation system; this can now be done without spelling out the individual letters. The new MMI understands complete words in a number of languages.

The same applies to the new high-performance telephone directory, which can store up to 2,000 entries each with five numbers for each user. The telephone is even more convenient to use with the new MMI. Additionally a speech-to-text engine is used so you no longer have to create voice tags for every name in your directory. A digital voice processor ensures the best hands-free quality; while voice outputs are through the car's sound system.

Music and Entertainment: the DVD drive-The new MMI has an integral drive for video DVDs; the new joystick function on the control knob is especially practical for this, as it enables you to quickly navigate title menus and screen selections. When played back with the optional sound systems, DVD soundtracks can be heard in Dolby Digital 5.1 multi-channel sound and other frequently used formats. For safety reasons, the picture is only displayed when the car is standing still. The system also plays music from CDs and SD cards, including those coded MP3, AAC and WMA.

Additional technical modules have made the MMI even more attractive. The optional Audi Music Interface makes a perfect connection with an mp3 player, for instance the customer's iPod. The complete menu structures and contents appear on the MMI display, and control is at the MMI terminal or the multifunctional steering wheel.

The Sirius Radio display has also been updated on the new MMI. Without interrupting music, or changing stations, users are now able to preview the artist and track title on other Sirius stations.

MMI Tech- One of its key components is the hard disk; 10 GB of its 40 GB capacity can be used as a jukebox, to store up to 2,000 tracks, all sorted for easy access. The hard disk also contains navigation data and an electronic logbook for the car.

Two processors, an 800 MHz chip and a 500 MHz digital signal processor, allow all applications - navigation, voice input, telephone and audio functions - to operate simultaneously. Using the 3D graphics processor from Californian 3D chip manufacturer NVIDIATM gives the MMI access to the third dimension. Audi has used this chip's outstanding performance with graphics for the first time to provide a genuine 3D map display - a 'digital topographical model'. With this processor, the screen display sets new standards with its attractive display layout, high resolution, and presentation quality, smooth animation and cross fading.

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Comments (9)

childofElohim childofElohim
I think I know the answer but my dad thinks volvo and audi are by the same maker. Volvo I think is by sweden and Germany makes audi. Is that true?
Feb 15th, 2009 12:28pm
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Honest1 Honest1
tootall... No there is no weather warning system available for the UK market. This may be an option eleswhere. But cannot say 100%.
Jan 31st, 2009 7:17pm
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Honest1 Honest1
I am not really a great fan of MMI Or BMW'S I Drive. I think now that TOUCH SCREEN Technology is here this is the way forward. I work for Audi But have also worked for Lexus is the past. The Sat Nav In the Lexus to use is Light Years Ahead of the Audi. Please Note. Unless you have tried both Systems "Be Open Minded" This is my own opinion.
Jan 30th, 2009 9:38pm
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tootall tootall
Honest1. Since you work for Audi.... You would not mind telling me if this system is capable of performing up to date, real time weather forecast like the Acura's. Because I think that feature is a good one and it would be cool if Audi's MMI came with that option.
Jan 30th, 2009 10:12pm
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wjaprep wjaprep
Whatever happened to normal radios and navi systems...?
Jan 30th, 2009 6:37am
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Kepe Kepe
They evolved into this. Of course this is just an optional extra and I'm pretty sure it won't be cheap. I miss the cars that have DIN slots for media players so that customers can get proper aftermarket players... OH and thank you so much WCF for giving us an EDIT-button finally! This is the best improvement to the site since I began using it ;)
Jan 30th, 2009 7:23am
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BabyMilo BabyMilo
Kepe, i think that MMI, is standard on the Q5 and all the Audis about the A3
Jan 30th, 2009 8:08am
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Kepe Kepe
I just checked the Audi homepage in Finland. The MMI system costs 4500e plus you also have to pay 220e for the display. So it definitely isn't standard.
Jan 30th, 2009 12:01pm
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BabyMilo BabyMilo
Kepe In AU it is standard, i think that is becuase we only get the higher spec cars here.
Jan 31st, 2009 7:34am
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