LITTLETON, Colo. — PassTime USA announced it has launched an Elite product with the help of its partner, Wavecom. The updated program uses a global system for mobile communications technology to offer wireless and GPS-based functions for its dealer and lender clients, officials explained.

According to executives, dealers or lenders who install the Elite solution can broaden the range of customers they finance due to the increased security of the loans, or the ability to track the asset if payment issues arise.

"We are excited to be the heart of this exciting application," said Anders Franzen, Wavecom's chief operating officer. "Our partnership with PassTime is a prime example of cooperative development and demonstrates our ongoing commitment to supporting our customers through their development process."

In fact, PassTime said it is one of the first Wavecom customers in the U.S. to "fully utilize C-GPS Open AT Plug-In via Opus technology from eRide and Wavecom Q2687 Wireless CPU."

"Working with Wavecom has been a huge help in developing this cutting-edge solution," said Chris Macheca, PassTime's chief operating officer. "Wavecom offered a great deal of interaction with our developers, and I know they pulled a lot of late nights helping us pull off an aggressive schedule for this product."

Sue Karlin, chief information officer for PassTime, added, "PassTime Elite will change the way lenders collect money. This is the greatest technologicial innovation for collectors since the invention of the telephone."

At the recent National Auto Dealers Association's convention in Las Vegas, Stan Schwarz, chief executive officer of PassTime, explained to SubPrime Auto Finance News how his company's payment protection devices can help dealers buy deeper and gain more lenders in the subprime marketplace.

"More and more lenders are asking dealers to put these on their vehicles," he said. "It ensures the collateral can be found and collected if needed. Some lenders won't even work with dealers unless they use these devices."

Officials said the company currently has more than 3,500 customers and 500,000 devices on the road, protecting more than $1 billion in assets. Executives said they expect the new Elite solution to surpass volumes of 100,000 units, with the potential to reach as high as 2  million units over the next five years.

Finally, Schwarz hinted at more developments to be announced from his company in future months.

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