OnStar FMV Hits Best Buy Shelves on Sunday

Best Buy will sell and install the OnStar FMV, allowing owners of non-GM vehicles to access OnStar's services, including roadside assistance and automatic crash response.

Richfield-based Best Buy Company, Inc., on Monday announced that the OnStar FMV-a rearview mirror that includes a blue button for accessing OnStar services-will hit store shelves on July 24.

The product can be pre-ordered from Best Buy stores, and it costs $299.99, plus a $75 installation fee. It can be purchased at Best Buy stores and installed throughout the company's network of more than 1,000 auto bays across the country. According to the company's Web site, Geek Squad experts perform auto installations for Best Buy. Service plans start at $18.95 per month, or $199 a year.

OnStar is built in to more than 30 General Motors models, allowing users to contact trained advisors in the event of a roadside emergency and to receive GPS directions, among other services.

The FMV-which stands for “For My Vehicle”-offers the same primary features as the OnStar service that is available in new General Motors vehicles, but it is compatible with about 90 million older vehicles, Best Buy said. (Customers can check here to see whether their vehicles are compatible.)

The service includes an automatic crash response, which connects the vehicle to an OnStar emergency advisor in the event of an accident. The advisor can locate the vehicle via GPS, even if its occupants can't respond.

A blue button on the rearview mirror initiates “turn-by-turn navigation,” which gives drivers spoken directions for reaching their chosen destination. The FMV also features hands-free calling, sends a GPS signal to OnStar in the event that a car is stolen, and summons OnStar emergency services or roadside assistance at the push of a button.

Several media reports from January indicated that Best Buy was gearing up to become a new player in auto technology. OnStar President Linda Marshall said in a news release that the company unveiled the Onstar FMV at the Consumer Electronics Show earlier this year. “Now, through Best Buy, [customers] can enhance their Fords, Toyotas, Chryslers, and other brands with the power of OnStar,” she said.

Best Buy is Minnesota's third-largest public company based on revenue from its 2010 fiscal year, which totaled $49.7 billion. The company reported $50.3 billion in revenue for its most recently completed fiscal year.