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New Mercedes iPhone App: Hands On

Mercedes knows its drivers may lose their keys or even their cars but never their iPhones. Lose your giant luxury SUV at the mall? There's an app for that. Click through to see how it works.

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The main screen for the iPhone version of the app (the Blackberry version is boring) looks just like a Mercedes key fob and, essentially, works the same way. Unlock/lock the car or even locate it.

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The locate feature use's the car's GPS and the phone's GPS to provide instructions for how to get back to your car. And in case you're worried the wife is going to find you riding dirty, the system overrides if you're more than a mile away from the car. Philander in peace, Tiger.

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Don't want the kids getting their grubby hands on your M-Class? Lock the ungrateful rats out.

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The "mbrace" system isn't OnStar, Mercedes will tell you, but it's OnStar. Access all those features without having to crash your car from your phone.

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Screw up your CLK because you were too busy playing on your iPhone and left the parking brake on? The system will locate the nearest dealer to help fix your car and take a million dollars off your hands.

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Forget the Mercedes dealership with a staff you actually like? You can find your selling, local or preferred dealer.

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You must be moderately wealthy to live by all these Mercedes dealerships.

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Developed by Hughes Telematics, this is rolling out on all new models and requires a monthly subscription.

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DISCUSSION

You know what rocks? Being on the ball enough to remember where I parked my car. That's cool. Takes next to no time at all. Look where the lane is, look where my entrance is, see what store's next to it. Even at the Mall of America, it gets the job done.

You know what else works great? Feeling the keys in your hand. Feel the keys, shut the door. Step 1, step 2. Easy to do, even in the rain, even with hands full. Number of times I've locked myself out in 25 years: 0.

You know what sucks? Crutches. Being so messed up you can't walk right and have to hold yourself up with something. They complicate stuff, get in the way. Boy they're great when you need them, but the doctors will tell you, after you've been on them for a while, okay, time to walk again. That's enough crutches. Your legs work, so no more crutches for you.

Your brain works, so no more iPhone app for you. Remember your keys. Take note of where you are. If you can hold down a hot enough job that you can afford a Benz, you can keep track of your car and its keys.