The idea at first would seem viable: Install a hidden feature in your expensive new sports car to record the car’s performance and humans speaking when you, the owner of the car, is not operating the vehicle.
But there are legal complications to such a device, particularly the fact that many states prohibit the voice recording of individuals who have not been given prior notice.
General Motors is telling Chevrolet Corvette buyers and owners not to use the car’s “Valet Mode,” a component of the Performance Data Recorder in the 2015 Corvette.
It allows owners to record conversations in their cars and the auto’s “performance data” when they’re not present inside the vehicle, as when it is being parked by a valet.
GM apparently didn’t take note of that legality issue in many states regarding secretive recordings.
A notice to dealers explaining the problem was posted last week on CorvetteForum.com, a website for Corvette owners.
“To help our customers use the Performance Data Recorder (UQT) consistent with legal requirements that pertain to audio recording devices, we will be requiring a very important update to the system of each affected vehicle in the near future,” the notice says.
Meanwhile, the notice says, “You must advise any customers who take delivery of an impacted vehicle that they should refrain from using Valet Mode until the update takes place.”