NASHVILLE -- ASA Electronics announced a Jensen Heavy Duty JCV2015BT stereo radio that integrates with a truck’s electrical system and can be Bluetooth-linked to smart phones, which then are operated by the radio so drivers can put aside their phones to comply with DOT regulations.

When plugged into the OEM connector, the radio’s functions can be controlled by steering wheel buttons and sleeper-mounted controls in many trucks, and its front-panel dims to match dashboard illumination settings, said , said Justin Garver, a national accounts manager, during an announcement at the Technology & Maintenance council annual meeting.

The JCV2015BT maximizes driver safety by automatically muting all other audio when incoming messages are being relayed from a phone. Once the message has been received in full, the stereo resumes, allowing drivers to keep their attention on the road.

Drivers can safely and intuitively answer phone calls and control their favorite music apps directly from their steering wheel while enjoying the conveniences offered by high quality Bluetooth streaming audio.

The JCV2015BT is SiriusXM-ready, has a CD player, front panel USB port, iPod and iPhone integration and charging, a 3.5mm input, a rear RCA aux input, and a seven-channel NOAA weather band tuner. A standard DIN 1.0 connector hooks to the truck’s wiring.

In the works is an app for smartphones that will allow them to remotely control the radio, eliminating the need to mount controls in the sleeper.

The radio can be electrically tied to the seat-belt warning light so the audio system won’t work unless a driver clicks the belt into place, encouraging its use and preventing CSA penalties, he said.

In May the JCV2015BT will be available for factory installation by Freightliner, International, Kenworth and Peterbilt. It can also be purchased for installation in existing trucks.

The radio merits its heavy-duty designation through thorough shielding against shock and vibration, dust, salty air, and other threats to its integrity, Garver said. Extensive testing is done at ASA’s facilities in Elkhart, Ind. ASA supplies radios for construction, agriculture, mining and marine applications where environments are even more harsh than those in heavy trucks.

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