“The vehicle represents a huge opportunity to become the new connected device every American family owns, and both Apple and the automakers realize that potential.”

Gigaom

In the next 12 months, Apple’s(s aapl) popular virtual assistant Siri will start conversing with us through our car speakers. Among the many new iOS 6 features Apple announced at WWDC was Siri’s new Eyes Free feature, which will essentially replicate the iPhone’s Siri button on the car steering wheel.

Automakers are lining up to support Eyes Free. Apple showed a slide at WWDC highlighting nine car companies that would be integrating the feature: Audi, BMW, Chrysler, Honda(s hmc), General Motors(s gm), Jaguar, Land Rover, Mercedes and Toyota(s tm). Not on that slide was Ford(s f), which just happens to be the most aggressive automaker when it comes to integrating connected-car technologies such as voice command and control.

It’s not that Ford doesn’t love Apple. In fact, the iPhone is a core device in its Microsoft-powered(s msft) connected-car platform, Sync, which requires a smartphone to connect to the Internet

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