A couple of days ago I had the opportunity to visit the Denver Auto Show, and check out the latest additions to the market by the different car manufacturers. It wasn’t the best or more extensive presentation that could be but, hey…it’s Denver, not Paris!
Besides the usual new models that will replace the actual ones now on the road, there were some nicely restored collector cars (two or three), some very aggressively adapted pick up trucks (those you need a ladder to get inside), and a couple of chrome and leather carrying bikes…you know…those that like to imitate thunder in a sunny day.
What surprised me the most was the very commonly added computer screens and extensive array of buttons and controls over the center console in the majority of the vehicles. It seems the convenience of centralizing all kind of information (GPS, vehicle status, environmental information, climate control, music selection, etc) has become the norm for the new models, only denied to those basic and cheaper models of the line. Those vehicles also had several buttons located in the steering wheel to control the stereo and the cruise control system.
Do we read the owner’s manual in every device we buy? At the other hand, is it a car or the Millennium Falcon?
I can understand the need for information; personally I like to know what’s going on with the car at all times while driving, but it seems too much for the majority of trips people make (including myself).
It becomes like a very expensive and technological decoration, to make the car look and the driver feel of driving the “latest”, no matter what it is. Driving around with a very cool screen ON in the center console of the car and a complete array of buttons and knobs, surrounded by a tiny line of neon light: The future is here!
Does anybody use all the possibilities those system gives?
I must admit, it looks pretty futuristic; the perfect console to impress friends, family and sporadic new acquaintances! But the point is; are all these new systems a necessity or just the elements to turn a transport device into a luxury toy that appeals to our child senses? Has it become a way for us to show off when there’s no other element of pride to show?
Do we buy our pride in comfortable monthly payments?
Makes me wonder…
What’s your take on this?