Cadillac Escalade
Cadillac sold just over 50,000 Cadillac Escalade SUVs in 2004. The recommended retail price for the satellite TV receiver option is $2,695.
updated 4/19/2005 4:25:18 PM ET 2005-04-19T20:25:18

KVH Industries Inc., a maker of satellite TV receivers for cars, boats and trucks, Tuesday said its system will be offered as an option in Cadillac Escalade SUVs, the first deal of its kind.

Previously, car owners who wanted to install satellite TV systems had to buy them from electronics stores, then have them installed.

“This accessory application at Cadillac is a major milestone in our overall plans to widely offer satellite TV to the light vehicle market,” KVH Chief Executive Martin Kits Van Heyningen said in a prepared statement.

The agreement makes KVH’s TracVision A5 system available to buyers as an option. Chris Watson, a KVH spokesman, said the recommended retail price for the option is $2,695, including an extended warranty.

Customers who get the option will need to buy a subscription from DirecTV Group to get programming.

Cadillac sold just over 50,000 Cadillac Escalade SUVs in 2004, said Kelly Wysocki, a Cadillac spokeswoman.

KVH has been a major supplier of satellite TV receiver systems to boats since the 1990s and to recreational vehicles since 1999, but has eyed the larger car market for some time now.

Recent technological advancements allowed the company to create a smaller antenna that can fit onto smaller vehicles such as SUVs and minivans. The company has been selling its thinner profiled antenna, the TracVision A5, in electronic stores since September 2003.

“This new relationship with GM is a strong operational win for KVH and should further sales of the A5 antenna system,” Mike Hickey, an analyst at Janco Partners, said in a note.

According to J.D. Power & Associates, a marketing information company, more than one-third of SUVs and minivans sold in the United States last year came equipped with video screens.

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