I think you did a fantastic job of reviewing the car as an electronics editor. It did not bore me to read the article, and the introduction was somewhat thought provoking. Thanks for the great read, and I am going to make an appointment to take one of these for a test drive soon.
William - http://www.jensenrvdirect.com
Ilove how the critical button was labeled "Close". Rather like shutting down Windows with the Start icon.
I may wind up with a veritable antique, so much do I hate the proliferation of features in new cars. When a friend got one of the first Prius (what should that plural be?) he just couldn't get enough of showing off the display, which showed one how the vehicle was doing clever things with electricity and internal combustion etc. It made me very nervous.
Nevada apparently just passed legislation to allow self-driving cars on their roads. They still require a licensed driver in the seat in case of problems and that person can't be intoxicated, so no rolling out of a bar, passing out in your car and expecting to get home.
I expect that the driving factor behind this is to make the state more R&D friendly - get some dollars when auto manufacturers set up camp to test out their robot cars.
I had a similar experience while riding a Mercedes car. I was accompanying my MD to a party and he asked me to load a CD. After struggling for almost 15 minutes , I was excused by my boss as he himself was driving that car for the first time and was not completely familiar with its dashboard panels.
@sharps_eng: don't trust the built-in algorithm: get a Bluetooth OBD reader and read it on your phone. YOu can display all engine parameters, including instantaneous and averaged MPG. You can get them for around $20 on eBay.
Re: controls, I was ambushed this way when I rented a car in England. I picked it up in a dark garage, and couldn't find the light switch. Because it was dark.
Replay available now: A handful of emerging network technologies are competing to be the preferred wide-area connection for the Internet of Things. All claim lower costs and power use than cellular but none have wide deployment yet. Listen in as proponents of leading contenders make their case to be the metro or national IoT network of the future. Rick Merritt, EE Times Silicon Valley Bureau Chief, moderators this discussion. Join in and ask his guests questions.