GM to offer radios with ports for music players

/ Source: The Associated Press

General Motors Corp. says it will offer optional radios with USB ports for personal music players on some of its 2009 models.

The new radios will allow customers to play music from iPods or MP3 players while charging many of the devices through a USB port like the ones found on most computers.

The new radios are available now on the Chevrolet Cobalt and HHR and the Pontiac G5. By the middle of the model year, they will extend to the Pontiac G6 and Solstice, the Saturn Sky and Aura, and the Chevrolet Malibu.

On many of music players, including inexpensive ones, customers will be able to browse through the player's library using the radio controls and electronic display.

GM began offering auxiliary input jacks for MP3 players and other audio devices two years ago, but those inputs didn't allow the device to recharge or allow the vehicle's radio to control the music player.

Several other automakers have had USB ports in their vehicles for a year or more, including Ford Motor Co.'s Sync system developed jointly with Microsoft Corp.

Pricing of the new GM radios will vary by model. Specific figures were not available.