Valet Parking? New Corvette Option Keeps an Eye on Your Car

/ Source: Associated Press
Image: Valet Mode on the touch-screen panel of the 2015 Corvette
This photo provided by General Motors shows Valet Mode on the touch-screen panel of the 2015 Corvette. Data and video from the valet mode can be viewed instantly by the owner on the screen when the car is parked or it can be downloaded to a computer.AP Photo/General Motors

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Face it. If you own a luxury or sports car, whenever you hand the keys to a valet, you imagine the car going on a high-speed joyride like the Ferrari in the 1980s cult movie "Ferris Bueller's Day Off." Now, General Motors has an option on the 2015 Chevrolet Corvette that takes those worries away. The latest version of the sports car, due out in September, has a feature that records where the car goes with a camera mounted in the windshield trim. It also captures audio in the cabin as well as speed, engine revolutions per minute, gear position and G-force.

GM says it's the most extensive attempt by an automaker to thwart valet joyriders, although it's not the first. The automotive website Edmunds.com says Hyundai and Mercedes offer "geofencing," a feature that sets a perimeter and then notifies the owner's smartphone if a car goes beyond it. With the Corvette, once the owner activates the feature with a four-digit code, the touch screen tells the driver it's in Valet Mode. But it doesn't warn the valet that he's being recorded. "Think of it as a baby monitor for your car," Corvette Product Manager Harlan Charles said in a statement.

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