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Corvette 'valet mode' records video to bust unauthorized joyrides

by Justin King

General Motors has highlighted the 2015 Corvette's new 'valet' mode, which allows owners to immediately confirm if their baby has been taken for an unauthorized joyride.

The system is described as a "baby monitor for your car," taking advantage of the Corvette's existing Performance Data Recorder technology to serve as a black box that records video and audio. Playback also shows performance data, such as engine RPM, gear position, speed and g-force.

Unlike other data recorders that are designed solely for crash investigations, the PDR system provides immediate playback inside the car. As soon as the valet staff returns the keys, their drive to and from the parking area can be reviewed on the infotainment system. If the trip happens to have included a few burnouts or drifting atop the parking garage, the video can be downloaded to a computer.

"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," said Corvette product manager Harlan Charles.

The mode can be activated by punching in a four-digit code, which simultaneously locks the storage bin and glove box. The infotainment system and radio are also disabled.

The feature will be available on all 2015 Corvette models.

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