Slow down! This Corvette is watching you. In the movie, "Ferris Bueller's Day Off," three teens and a parking attendant took a Ferrari (like this red one) for a joy ride. (- AP photo / Reuters)
Slow down! This Corvette is watching you.
Lexile

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. That all helps the car tattle on any valet who doesn't take a slow, direct route to a parking space.

GM says it's the most extensive attempt by an automaker to thwart valet joyriders. But 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 smart phone if a car goes beyond it. Chrysler has a valet mode that caps engine speed and horsepower, while Audi lets owners limit engine speed for valets.

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. The feature also locks the glove box and a storage compartment in the dashboard and shuts down the infotainment system.

"Think of it as a baby monitor for your car," Corvette Product Manager Harlan Charles said in a statement. "Anyone who has felt apprehension about handing over their keys will appreciate the peace of mind of knowing exactly what happened while their baby was out of sight."

Data and video from the valet mode can be viewed instantly by the owner on the car's 8-inch color screen when the car is parked, or it can be downloaded to a computer.

The system could go into more mainstream models if feedback is good on the Corvette, GM spokesman Monte Doran said. The feature is paired with a navigation system and costs $1,795. A 2015 Corvette starts at just under $54,000.

Critical thinking challenge: Why do luxury car owners care how parking valets drive their cars? Have you ever seen Ferris Buellers Day Off?

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COMMENTS (13)
  • hannahsmith
    8/26/2014 - 08:35 a.m.

    Auto-makers have made a new device that lets you monitor your car. It's a great idea, especially when you own a luxury vehicle. If someone is willing to pay for a new sports car, then it's a good idea to go to more extensive measures to keep it safe. However, navigation systems are expensive, and some people who already own a luxury car may not be able to pay for it.

  • Tanner.mm2014
    8/28/2014 - 11:56 a.m.

    Awesome car, the blues okay but the red man I love that red convertable it's the bomb perfect car for the summer.
    Ferrari (SWAG MASTER)!! I wish i could afford it, but i cant. :( Ill remember not to give my keys to a valet wouldnt want my car to get crushed by someone who I don't even know.

  • BobbyH-Wit
    9/02/2014 - 10:10 a.m.

    This system is gonna help you not worry about your 80,000$ car. You can just have a good time and the valet parker won't even know they are getting watched.

  • GSteven-Cas
    9/10/2014 - 04:19 p.m.

    I think this is a good idea and yet could be bad in certain ways. A good part about it is if you don't trust someone to park your car for you, you can see what they did when they parked it. But a way it is bad is the government could use it to spy on you. I fell like in a way it violates your privacy.

  • chrisr-Koc
    9/15/2014 - 02:02 a.m.

    I think luxury car owners care about how valet drives their car because they have spent a lot of money on it and don't want their car to be wrecked just because of some stupid valet driver.

  • shannons-Koc
    9/18/2014 - 02:52 p.m.

    The other day I was thinking to myself why would someone spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on a sports car when accidents or grand theft auto can happen. It makes sense to me know that if you have the money to spend on a $100,00 sports car you might as while buy a $1,000 surveillance system. This is a very good idea for most car owners. Especially to the ones who spends a lot of money on a car. I think these security systems should be available for more cars. I know if you woke up one morning to find someone hit your car you could easily find out who did it. This technology inst just for protecting against valet drivers, but also help when accidents do happen to figure out whose fault it was.

  • elliotja-Fre
    9/23/2014 - 01:04 p.m.

    Wow a car that has a camera in the windshield trim. I have never heard of anything like it. I also like that it controls your speed. No car has anything like that, but now it does. I wish I could get that car but it is too expensive at $54,000. it would still be cool to have.

  • elliotja-Fre
    9/23/2014 - 01:04 p.m.

    Wow a car that has a camera in the windshield trim. I have never heard of anything like it. I also like that it controls your speed. No car has anything like that, but now it does. I wish I could get that car but it is too expensive at $54,000. it would still be cool to have.

  • brandenwb4
    10/09/2014 - 02:08 p.m.

    This is amazing i have gone to many five star hotels and restaurants and i feel very nervous on what the valet does with car if you do not give them a good tip or if they are just pure jerks i want to know that they are not topping out the speed of the car or doing burnouts.

  • brandenwb4
    10/09/2014 - 02:09 p.m.

    This is amazing i have gone to many five star hotels and restaurants and i feel very nervous on what the valet does with car if you do not give them a good tip or if they are just pure jerks i want to know that they are not topping out the speed of the car or doing burnouts.

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