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Pioneer AVIC-Z2 adds "smart routing algorithm" and not much else

Cyrus Farivar

One year ago, the Pioneer AVIC-Z1 debuted at CES 2006, with its in-dash navigation setup. You know the one -- it's got a 7-inch touchscreen, a 10GB hard drive, voice recognition, CD/DVD player, FM, XM and an iPod interface. This year Pioneer's taken things to the next level, by raising the model number by a single digit. That's right, the AVIC-Z2 does everything its predecessor did, except that this time around it apparently can "learn" roads that the driver takes frequently and uses that data to influence suggested routes. Although, as we mentioned last time, we're not really sure that anyone who drives the same route on a regular basis needs a GPS device to tell him/her how to get there. The new "smart routing algorithm" also apparently takes into account things like speed limits, number of turns and even "lane information" for 50 different spots around the nation. In short, if you already have a Z1, it may not be worth spending the $2,200 you'll need by April to get this one for your car. But if you don't already have one, and you really, really need a piece of gadgetry to tell you how to get to work every day, by all means, put in an order.

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