Out in Japan, the Nintendo DS is a very popular handheld video game system, having sold over 33-million in its home country since its release in 2006. So it’s no surprise that Toyota has teamed up with the Japanese video game maker to add DS functionality to the Japanese automaker’s in-car GPS system.
Through a new Smart Navi GPS unit found in Toyota’s Estima Hybrid minivan, a Bluetooth-equipped DS with the Kuruma de DS cartridge becomes an in-car GPS remote and allows passengers to enter directions from the back seat. The cartridge also has some fun trivia, hand-drawn map notes, and tourist info to keep passengers entertained on the road.
You can also utilize the car’s stereo system to output the DS’s audio while Mii characters speak out text information.
All of this isn’t cheap though, even though the DS price has dropped since the release of the 3DS. The Smart Navi option is a tad over $2,500 while the Kuruma de DS cartridge runs over $90 bucks from Toyota. It might not be worth the investment, but the novelty of the idea is fresh to see considering everything these days revolve around a smartphone.