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Chinese company creates ‘world’s first smartcar’ with Roewe RX5 SUV

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Chinese e-commerce and technology firm, Alibaba, has created what it claims to be the world’s first ‘smartcar‘, complete with its own integrated operating system.

Using the Chinese-market Saic Roewe RX5 compact SUV as its base, the Alibaba smartcar runs the company’s YunOS operating system, allowing it to automatically pay for fuel, parking, and tolls.

Joining other ‘smart devices’ such as the smartphone and smart TV, the Roewe RX5 smartcar will be available in China from August starting from RMB 148,000 ($29,395). It’s unclear, however, if this program will occur in partnership with Roewe, or as part of a reseller program.

Other features include online services such as navigation, booking and entertainment.

Each smartcar equipped with Alibaba’s operating system has its own unique ID that allows the vehicle to recognise different users and make suggestions for the climate control, music and nearby restaurants based on previous journeys.

YunOS will also be made open to developers, which allows for third-party apps to be installed and provide even more functionality at the driver’s fingertips.