Hyundai Creta-rivalling MG Astor Announced; To Get A Personal AI Assistant

Published On Aug 18, 2021 02:41 PM By Tarun for MG Astor

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It’s not your regular connected car technology, but a robot-head type device with artificial intelligence

MG Astor

  • The MG Astor is essentially a facelifted petrol-powered ZS EV with visual enhancements inside and out. 

  • It is the first car in India to get a personal AI assistant that turns to face the person speaking. 

  • It can mimic human behaviour, give latest updates and information, and perform in-car commands such as opening the sunroof, windows or navigation. 

  • The Astor will also get ADAS autonomous level-2 technology, featuring autonomous emergency braking, adaptive cruise control, lane-keep assist, and forward collision warning like the XUV700.

  • It will mostly be powered by a standard 163PS 1.3-litre turbo-petrol engine, paired to 6-speed manual and automatic transmissions. 

MG has officially announced the Astor compact SUV, which is expected to be launched around Diwali, and revealed the new AI (Artificial Intelligence) technology that will debut with it. 

The MG Astor is essentially a facelifted petrol version of the ZS EV. It has been partially unveiled, revealing a large new grille, a redesigned front bumper, and refreshed sleek LED headlamps. The interior should get a new fully digital instrument cluster, similar to that of the Hector and a dual-tone black and tan theme.

The Astor will be the first car in India to feature a personal AI assistant, which comes in the form of a robot-head installed on a dashboard. It’s an external device and not just integrated into the infotainment. Once activated by saying ‘Hello Astor’, it will turn towards the person speaking. 

The personal AI assistant can mimic human behaviour and even display emotions. It will give you the latest news, answer all your questions even if it means referring to Wikipedia, and also crack jokes. Plus, you can also use the in-car commands to open the sunroof as well as navigate. 

Another important highlight will be ADAS (Advanced Driver Assistance System) with level 2 autonomous technology. It will feature adaptive cruise control, forward collision warning, automatic emergency braking, lane keep, departure assist, high-beam assist, and blind-spot detection. Safety will be covered by a 360-degree camera and electronic stability programme (ESP). 

MG has partnered with several companies, including Jio, Map My India, and Park+, to offer Jio Saavn, real-time traffic updates, navigation, parking reservation in malls, and other related services. 

It is also expected to feature a panoramic sunroof, a 10.1-inch touchscreen infotainment unit with wireless Android Auto and Apple Carplay, up to six airbags, wireless charging, and ventilated seats. 

The Astor is likely to get a single engine option in India: 1.3-litre turbocharged petrol. The engine produces 163PS and 230Nm, paired to 6-speed manual and torque converter automatic transmissions. 

It will be priced from around Rs 12 lakh range, rivalling the Kia SeltosSkoda KushaqMaruti Suzuki S-CrossHyundai CretaRenault DusterNissan Kicks, and the upcoming Volkswagen Taigun. Not to forget, the 5-seater Mahindra XUV700 which gets the same autonomous level 2 features, at a killer price!

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