The 2011 Buick lineup exudes luxury and refinement, but another key component to this brand’s success is cutting-edge safety and technology. Features like Bluetooth® hands-free calling, connections for your MP3 player and navigation are available across the entire Buick Lineup, while StabiliTrak® with Traction Control, anti-lock brakes with Brake Assist, crumple zones and a full complement of airbags keep occupants safe. But there is one standard feature on every Buick that described as both a technological marvel and a safety feature that gives owners the security of knowing that there is always someone there to help: OnStar.
If, for example, you’re driving to work and you experience a sudden medical emergency, help is at your fingertips: press the red emergency button and an OnStar adviser will send help to your exact destination, whether you're able to communicate or not. The same button can be pressed if your car breaks down or if you need to report a crime. The owner of any Buick with an OnStar subscription can even press the emergency button if other motorists were in an accident. In short, whenever help is needed, the emergency button is there to help.
The emergency button can be a life-saver, but what happens when the accident is so severe that you can’t push the button? That’s when OnStar’s Automatic Crash Response system steps in to alert an OnStar advisor on your behalf. That trained advisor can give first responders your exact location, bringing help to you faster and with more precision.
When you’re in your Buick and the unexpected occurs, help is there with the press of the blue OnStar button. A flat tire or an empty fuel tank could be an inconvenience, but when you press the blue OnStar button for Roadside Assistance, an advisor will call a tow truck or a local dealership and provide your exact location for speedy assistance. That way you’re back on the road before you know it.
Sometimes, OnStar can assist even when you’re not inside the vehicle. Whether you locked your keys in the car or you can’t remember where you parked your car, call an advisor on your phone; your door can be unlocked and OnStar can activate the lights and the horn so you find your vehicle.
Remote assistance can also be called upon in the event your vehicle is stolen. When this happens, the OnStar advisor can locate your vehicle, lock the ignition so restarting the vehicle is impossible and work with law enforcement to safely and gradually slowing the vehicle when it’s on the road.
OnStar can also be an effective maintenance tool, providing vehicle diagnostics emails for its owners. For example, if your tire pressure is low, you need maintenance or your antilock brakes aren’t working properly, OnStar will detect the issues and alert you. Further, OnStar can check your engine and transmission, airbags and emissions hardware without ever pulling into a dealership.
Also available to OnStar subscribers is turn-by-turn navigation. All you need to do is push the little blue button, tell the advisor where you’d like to go and the advisor will map out directions directly to your vehicle. You don’t have to wait for the magic voice to appear for the next direction, as the vehicle information display will tell you the next turn or detour well in advance. With OnStar’s turn-by-turn service, you don’t need an exact address and you don’t even need to know the name of the place you’d like to go. For example, if you want a good pizza, simply ask for local pizza parlors, and the OnStar advisor will map you to the location of your choice.
With cell phones in every car, distracted driving has become a real problem. But with OnStar you can simply press the phone button, determine the appropriate contact and talk; with both hands on the wheel and your eyes on the road. OnStar also boasts fewer dropped calls than cell phones, since OnStar uses satellites instead of cell phone towers.
OnStar is available right from your cell phone with the new MyLink app. This handy tool gives you the ability to start your vehicle remotely, unlock or lock the doors or even honk the horn and flash the lights to help you find your vehicle. You can even access your OnStar diagnostics reports right from your phone. MyLink works no matter where you are, even if your vehicle and your phone are miles apart.
Whether you’re interested in OnStar as a safety device, cutting-edge technology or you just want it for your own peace of mind, it’s standard on every new Buick. The subscription service is available for six months at no charge to you.