LEEDS, ENGLANDA new type of vehicle tracking system is based on a single, intelligent mobile-communications unit. The system (see figure), which comes from Masternaut, comprises a Mobile Communication Centre (MCC) that combines vehicle tracking, Global Positioning System (GPS) satellite navigation, hands-free mobile communications, and real-time job scheduling and messaging. As a result, it eliminates the need for separate satellite navigation, mobile phones, and hands-free equipment.

The unit is designed for quick and easy installation, which reduces vehicle downtime. There is no software to install, as the MCC links to the web-based Masternaut service. That service is updated instantly and wirelessly without disrupting the user.

The system is available with Masternaut's optional CANbus engine-management application, which monitors driving behavior and detailed engine activity in real timeincluding revolutions per minutes (rpm), fuel usage, vehicle speed, journey distance between stops and duration, and braking and acceleration levels. The secure Masternaut mobile collection unit, which is the brain of the MCC, continues to track the vehicle even if the touchscreen is damaged or stolen. In addition, a speaker allows drivers to continue to communicate in the event of an accident or loss of vehicle power. A button pad includes a microphone for hands-free telephony. It also has a privacy button, which allows drivers to switch between personal and business use for mileage recording.