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Cutting-edge technology for well-being on board

Travelling in the new Musa is always an exciting experience, thanks to the airy interior, the pleasant surfaces and the wrapround comfort of its ergonomic seats. The raised driving position and ergonomically arranged controls make a living space that is easy to dominate all the more enjoyable. The whole effect is made even more interesting by the adoption of numerous exclusive features typical of Lancia: from the panoramic sunroof to the dual-zone climate system, Bose® Sound System and DFN gearbox. And finally, to maximise well-being on board, the new Musa adopts the best equipment available today in terms of soundproofing; the new sound-absorbent ceiling, which is made of an innovative polyester-based material, attenuates the sound inside the passenger compartment by approximately 2 dB, an improvement that is perceptible to occupants.

Dominating space and the road

The new Musa is a car in which to relax and travel safely. Its interior was designed to accommodate passengers in the best possible way: as you discover when you get in, sit down, adjust the seats and open and close the large sunroof. The new model meets the demand for roominess from a population whose needs are growing in step with its height: the passenger room coefficient is 99.5%. At the front, occupants varying in height from 1.50 to approximately 2 metres will find the adjustment that suits them. And even when the driver is very tall, a passenger of a similar height seated behind him will still be very comfortable. Roominess at shoulder height is excellent in the front and rear, and by adjusting the sliding seats, the luggage compartment capacity can be increased to 460 litres.

The interior roominess is excellent for this segment, both in absolute terms and in relation to the dimensions of the car. But, for Lancia, the ‘quality of the welcome’ is even more important than the physical measurements. The airy environment creates a new dimension to life in the car, and the pleasure of being on board. The car’s versatility offers plenty of space, but above all it offers space where you need it, letting you choose how to organise the space and which of the 32 possible configurations to adopt.

Where ‘dominion of the road’, is concerned, the new Musa was designed and built to meet motorists’ desires and their new demand for mobility. The driving set-up is extremely modern: seats are raised for better control of the road, a sensation that is helped by the generous glazing. The gearshift is positioned at the centre of the facia, the steering wheel adjusts for height and rake, and the driving seat also adjusts for height. The instrumentation at the centre of the facia is easier to read because of the optimal distance of the digits and the linear graphics. All the (analogue) instruments are rear-lit with an orange light, and the ergonomic driving position guarantees excellent dynamic responses.

The suspension on the new Musa was designed to guarantee control and comfort: independent wheel MacPherson system at the front, and interconnected wheels with a torsion beam at the rear. The combination of the two systems provides handling worthy of an up-market model. The sense of protectiveness conveyed by the car is not only the psychological effect of the care, elegance and ‘domestic’ familiarity of the furnishings: it is also the result of an objective element: the fact that the car meets precise safety criteria.

The panoramic sunroof

The new Musa is a sunny car: in addition to the generous glazed surfaces, it also offers a large opening sunroof, made of two glass panels (one of which opens) and two sunblinds that slide independently towards the rear of the car. When both blinds are open, the transparent surface accounts for 70% of the roof. This latest generation device opens and closes very rapidly: the front glazed panel opens in just seven seconds. That is not all: it also changes your relationship with the environment. The alternative is not just between an open roof or a closed roof: the Musa offers passengers the option of being perfectly protected from the elements but with the interior bathed in light through the ‘window on the sky’. But the front panel can also be opened to an intermediate position on its aluminium runners; you only have to release the control button to stop the movement in the desired position. And finally, the opening mechanism incorporates a safety system that reverses the movement of the glass if it encounters an obstacle.

Dual zone climate system

The climate inside the car is one of the main factors of comfort during a journey, and it is also important for preventive safety, because temperature, humidity and ventilation affect the driver’s well-being and therefore his attention level. The system on the new Musa incorporates a highly sensitive automatic control unit that adjusts the temperature, air flow, the air distribution between driver and passenger, and activation of the compressor and the recirculation function. It is a ‘dual-zone’ system, capable of supplying a different temperature on the left and the right side of the passenger compartment.

The new Musa also adopts an ‘equivalent temperature’ climate control strategy. A number of sensors assess the sensation of thermal well-being perceived by the passenger in relation to the set temperature. This makes it possible to keep the interior climate constant even when outdoor conditions change. The customer can modify the temperature gradually, by half a degree at a time, until he reaches optimal climatic comfort. The knob allows a range of 16°C, with a maximum difference between the left and right of the car of 7°C. The system is entirely automatic, but manual selections always take precedence over the automated settings, and it is always possible to deactivate the system entirely. The ‘dual-zone’ climate system incorporates a device known as the Air Quality Sensor (AQS) which verifies the quality of the air. The sensor automatically triggers the recirculation function and blocks out the outdoor air when the car is travelling in an area with a high level of smog.

The Bose® Sound System

Any welcome would be incomplete without the pleasure that comes from music. And on the new Musa, the Bose® Sound System revives the emotions of a concert hall, with a sound that envelopes all occupants completely. The system was developed by the American company that is leader of the acoustic Hi-Fi market, and it guarantees realistic reproduction with crystal clear high notes and full rich basses. The incredible sense of depth experienced by passengers is the result of complex acoustic planning, which designed the passenger compartment of the car and the audio system together.

The Bose® Hi-Fi Sound System includes an audio power amplifier with 6 independent channels. An equaliser automatically guarantees perfect electronic balancing of the output on all frequencies, as well as great balance and clear tones throughout the audio range. A total of 7 diffusers are built into the car: two 165 mm broadband speakers in the front doors with 50 mm tweeters, two 150 mm mid-woofers in the rear sides and a Bass-reflex dual-coil subwoofer with a diameter of 130 mm in the rear, plus two tweeters in the front pillars. Besides the Bose® Sound System, the new Musa offers a choice of two more audio systems, built into the design of the dashboard.


As an alternative to the Bose® system they can both adopt six speakers, with a power output of 4x30 Watt, and they incorporate RDS (Radio Data System) and the TA function (traffic news). One offers a CD player, while the other also reads MP3 files. All the audio systems feature automatic volume adjustment according to the vehicle speed, and can be linked to the hands-free kit of the GSM telephone. They are also protected against theft thanks to a communication protocol with the electronic unit that manages the electrical system (body computer). When the ignition is turned on, the body computer checks the radio code, and only activates it if the numerical sequence is correct. Stealing it is a waste of time as the system cannot be used on another car.
The customer can also install a CD-changer for up to ten CDs on his new Musa, which can be activated by the steering wheel controls.

The DFN gearbox

The DFN gearbox is a robotised gearbox that controls transmission automatically, and is available with the 1.4 16v and 1.3 Multijet 16v engines. The device makes driving in town traffic particularly convenient due to the automatic mode, perhaps after having enjoyed a dynamic, sporty driving style with the manual transmission. The DFN gearbox automates the clutch and gear lever controls by means of an electrohydraulic servo, but maintains all the advantages of a dry clutch and a mechanical gearbox (weight, sturdiness and reliability, low energy consumption).
There are two operating modes: semiautomatic (manual) and automatic. The first is more similar to manual operation, and gears are engaged using the joystick on the tunnel. Because there is no clutch pedal, the device is controlled simply by moving the lever: forward to change up (towards the ‘+’ symbol), back to change down (towards the ‘-’ symbol). A simple push is sufficient to ensure the transmission makes a fast, accurate gear change. The second mode offers two settings: Normal and Economy. The Normal setting provides outstanding driving comfort, with brilliant acceleration and gear changes in all conditions. The Economy setting, on the other hand, is used to reduce fuel consumption, while still maintaining outstanding handling and comfort. With both settings, the system extends the rev speed to the higher ratio reached when the engine delivers maximum torque or power. And in automatic mode, the system recognises the road gradient and modifies the gear shift point to ensure the best possible compromise between the driver’s needs, ground conditions and the vehicle situation (speed and engine rpm).

The DFN has another advantage over conventional manual and automatic transmissions: it can ‘interpret’ the driver’s requests and adapt to his driving style. To do so, it examines the mapping of the pedal position and the engine revs (interpreted as requests for power). And to guarantee safety and prevent incorrect gear engagement, the system engages neutral automatically when a door is open with the engine running. The device also prevents errors that might damage the engine or gearbox, by notifying the driver of emergency situations or incorrect manoeuvres with warning lights and beeps.

In automatic mode, the robotised electronic management of the DFN gearbox allows the gear changes to be set when the engine reaches its maximum efficiency. This exploits the power and torque of the 1.4 16v and 1.3 Multijet engines in full with a net improvement in acceleration compared to a manual gearbox. In automatic mode, with the Economy key engaged, the new Musa consumes less than with a manual gearbox: on the combined cycle, the 1.3 Multijet engine returns consumption of 4.6 l/100 km compared to 4.7 l/100 km with a manual gearbox; for the 1.4 16v engine, the figures are 6.4 l/100 km compared to 6.6 l/100 km.

The engineers have succeeded in calibrating a gear change management system that does not detract from performance, or from the enjoyment of driving the car, but does lower consumption. And all these technological features are available at a price that is significantly lower than that of a conventional automatic transmission.

The ‘Blue&Me’® system

The new Musa can be equipped with the innovative ‘Blue&Me®’ system, based on the Windows Mobile technology, developed by Fiat Group Automobiles and Microsoft, which changes the communication, information and entertainment paradigms in the car, improving comfort and the quality of life on board. The device is easy to use and Bluetooth® technology allows you to make and receive telephone calls and listen to music simply and safely as you drive, communicating with the outside world from the car via your own personal devices such as cell phones and PDAs.
Other, more evolved devices will be available later, giving access to the many novelties that technology will make available in the coming years: from complete multimedia operation to satellite navigation, and a set of services will also be offered to make using the car more convenient, safer and easier. The Blue&Me® device incorporates a refined hands-free system with voice recognition, which guarantees maximum driving safety in all conditions and in full respect for the law, because the driver can use it without taking his hands off the wheel. The system allows a customer with a Bluetooth® cell phone to use it without taking it out of his pocket or bag, and it automatically lowers the radio volume (if this is on) and transmits the interlocutor’s voice through the stereo speakers. What is more, the system is compatible with all the cell phones on the market today, and may be upgraded to comply with new standards and future telephones.

The Blue&Me® device is built into the car and the control keys are on the steering wheel, so that you can search for a number in the phonebook by scrolling through the display on the instrument panel, or ‘mute’ the communication for a more confidential conversation. The main features include the fact that a cell phone only has to be registered once on the system, and the whole phonebook can be transferred to the car, being automatically updated every time the system recognises the cell phone.

Privacy is guaranteed because access to the phonebook is only granted when the telephone registered with the system is present. The display shows the number or name of the person calling if this is recognised by the phonebook, and it is possible to formulate a number ‘vocally’ by dictating it digit by digit, or to call a person by saying his or her name, if it is memorised. And thanks to an advanced voice recognition process, no voice learning process is necessary. The device is able to memorise up to 5 cell phones, thus granting several users of a single car immediate use of the hands-free system; the programming can obviously be modified whenever necessary. And with the hands-free system with voice recognition, it is even possible to reproduce personal telephone call tones through the car radio.

This is the hands-free system with voice recognition, but there are other features to the innovative Blue&Me® system: it allows you to listen to your favourite music recorded on a cell phone, new smart phone, an MP3 player or a USB pen drive. This is made possible by the presence of a USB port on the tunnel, which can connect to any digital device with a similar connection. This allows musical audio files (MP3, WMA and WAV) to be played through the stereo system. And because all the information is visible on the instrument panel display, the user can browse the system archive (divided by type, album, artist, etc.) either vocally or using the steering wheel controls, and select the music he wishes.

Report & Photos: Fiat Auto