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Every car infotainment system is available in 2018



Today's car dealers have more choices than ever when it comes to entertainment in the car. Far away are the days when you got a CD player was a luxurious upgrade. Car manufacturers add increasingly more features to make the pendulum easier and more relaxing.

With so many new infotainment options and different options depending on car models and trim levels, it is difficult to tell which system is right for you – and which offers your favorite or must-have features. Do you need navigation tools or will it suffice to connect your phone to the system? And does it offer Apple CarPlay Android Auto or both? How about satellite or internet radio? Often designating which vehicles meet your needs may require a frustrating dissection of car manufacturers' specifications and product guides.

We have broken it down with this guide to the features offered from every car brand sold today. You can also always find more detailed technical information on how each of these systems works in our new car reviews. At the moment, we have limited our list to common brands ̵

1; you will not find the details of the technology in a Bugatti or Koenigsegg for example.

2019 RDX introduces a new, 10.2-inch, single-screen infotainment system to the Acura brand.


Antuan Goodwin / Roadshow

Acura

Most Acura models use a two-screen infotainment system called an On-Demand Multi-Information Display. There is a 7 inch lower and 8 inch upper screen with a physical rotation and jog control and support for Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. The ILX sedan is an exception, with a 5-inch screen that comes standard and a single 8-inch screen optional at higher trim levels.

NSX supercar has a single 7-inch touch screen interface. The newest Acura, 2019 RDX crossover introduces a new infotainment system with a 10.2-inch screen and a "True Touchpad Interface", which uses a touchscreen touchscreen on the center console. Currently, it only offers Apple CarPlay, but Android Auto Support comes.

Generally, Acura's infotainment system is a bit dated, with so-so graphics and a cumbersome interface. Using the two screens and the physical control button is not as simple as many competing automaker infotainment systems. In the case of RDX new systems, we found it easy to use and much better over older Acura interfaces, unless a learning curve for using the touchpad is as expected.

Alfa Romeo's menu structure is easy to navigate via a controller in the center console, but response times to inputs are often slow.


Wayne Cunningham / Roadshow

Alfa Romeo

Alfa Romeo Giulia and Stelvio are both available with either 6.5 or 8.8 inch infotainment displays, operated via a rotary controller on the center console ( the screens are not touch-free). Both variants offer Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity, while navigation is optional in both systems. Satellite radio is standard on higher trim cars (Ti and Quadrifoglio) and optional on base models. 4C sports car has a minimalist alpine head unit with AM / FM radio, satellite radio, Bluetooth and USB connection.

The Giulia and Stelvio Infotainment systems use a proprietary software interface (meaning it is not a rebranded version of FCA software, Alfa's corporate parent) with a rather minimalist design. The menu structure itself is easy to navigate with the physical control, but the system's responses are slow and clumsy. The navigation system does not offer advanced features such as online destination search.

The 4C system feels like an aftermarket unit that you might have mounted on your own car. And while the Alpine system is an improvement over other similarly priced sports cars, it is still nothing special than the Parrot that was installed in previous models.


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Check the technology in 2019 Aston Martin Vantage



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Aston Martin

Older models like Rapide and Vanquish have a system called AMI III, which has navigation, text message integration and Bluetooth. Its functions are handled with a rotary control on the center stack. The two newest Aston Martins, DB11 and Vantage, use a Comand infotainment system with Mercedes-Benz, with an 8-inch non-touch screen in the dashboard and both the rotary and touch screen controls on the console. Rapide and Vanquish support Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, but are also not offered on DB1, DBS Superleggera and Vantage – but a spokesman says they do not offer these features "yet," but they suggested they could be added later.

Aston Martin's older infotainment system is unclear and dated by today's standards – hi, you buy these cars for their beauty and engines, not their technology, right? But Mercedes-sourced DB11, DBS and Vantage systems are as simple and modern as in other Mercedes models, a refreshing change from older cars.


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Check out the excellent technology in 2019 Audi Q8



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Audi

Most older Audi models use an infotainment system called MMI, which has a rotating knob with shortcuts used to access all information on the display. Many newer Audi models also allow drivers to interact with the infotainment system via Virtual Cockpit, a 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster powered by the steering wheel controls. In fact, TT and R8, as they are driver-focused, do not have a center screen and put all the infotainment interactions in the Virtual Cockpit.

Audi older MMI works well and fast with logically structured menus that we find easy to use while driving. But navigating Android Auto via the rotary knob instead of the touch screen takes a little getting used to. Virtual Cockpit is a must-function when it is available for its ability to present much information clearly and simply in the driver's view. A6 A7 A8 Q8 and the upcoming Q3 [19659000] and E-Tron all use a new and more advanced two-screen version called MMI Touch Response, with haptic feedback on the screens. The primary display is 10.1 inches above, while the lower 8.6 inch one is used to control the climate control and input information such as navigation addresses. Each Audi supports Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

We are impressed by the MMI Touch Response – actually we gave the technique a Roadshow Shift Award . The twin screen setting is nice to look at and both quick and simple in its function. Even with the climate controls on the lower screen, it is easy, without much waiting for the systems to start up when you turn on the car. Having said that, the glossy surfaces tend to attract many fingerprint jewelery.

2019 Continental GT uses a Bentley-skinned version of Porsche's infotainment system.


Richard Pardon

Bentley

Bentley Bentayga, Flying Spur and Mulsanne are equipped with 8-inch touch screens. In Bentayga you get a newer version with features like navigation, a built-in hard drive for storing music and Google Earth satellite images. The new Continental GT and Continental GT Convertible however, use the same 12.3-inch touch screen infotainment system available in the Porsche Panamera, as the two are based on the same base platform. To add a luxurious touch, it can hide behind the tree thanks to an extended rotating display mount. It has a Wi-Fi hotspot and supports Apple CarPlay but not Android Auto.

Bentley's older infotainment system feels good, but Bentayg's newer touch screen is kind and responsive. It also supports Apple CarPlay. Continental GT's system works just as well as in Panamera, with quick responses to user input that makes the car work abruptly.

The latest version of the BMW iDrive, in the 2019 3 series.


Nick Miotke / Road

BMW

Although there is a basic AM / FM / satellite radio with USB, Bluetooth and auxiliary connection, all BMW models can be upgraded to an infotainment system called iDrive. Most models are controlled by a rotating steering column on the center console, but some newer systems also offer touch screen support. You can "type" letters and numbers on top of the controller in some models, which can be useful when entering the navigation address. Apple CarPlay is supported, but you must pay an annual subscription to use the feature. Android Auto is not offered.

Most newer BMW models, including the 5 Series, 7 Series, 3 Series, 8 Series and X5, offer limited ability to recognize the gesture: You can turn your finger in the air to raise or lower the volume, for example. We are still not sure that it is useful, except as a way to impress your passengers. Other options include Wi-Fi hotspot and wireless charging, depending on the car.

Modern versions of iDrive are fast, responsive and intuitive with great functionality if you are stopped or traveling. We just want BMW not paid extra for a feature (CarPlay) that quickly becomes standard on much more affordable common models. 2019 X5 and X7 present a new version of iDrive (called version 7) that uses a 12.3-inch touch screen and a 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster. 2019 3 Series 2019 8 Series and 2019 Z4 also have iDrive 7, though with a 10.25 inch screen.

BMW also introduces a new Alexa-like feature called Intelligent Personal Assistant. Available in the 3 and 8 series, as well as the Z4 and X7, the technology for voice recognition can answer questions such as "Hello BMW, look for the nearest gas station" or "Hello BMW, I am cold". Just as with Mercedes-like function, we are not sold entirely on Intelligent Personal Assistant yet.

Buick's infotainment system is the same as what you find in Chevrolet and GMC models.


Nick Miotke / Roadshow

Buick

Buick's infotainment system runs the same basic software as other General Motors cars, including GMC and Chevrolet models, albeit with unique graphics and logos. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are standard on all models except the Cascada convertible, which uses an older version of Buick's infotainment system. The screen sizes are either 7 or 8 inches depending on the model, with optional navigation offered. Like most GM models, a Wi-Fi hotspot is an option.

As with Chevrolet and GMC models, Buick infotainment system works well : They respond quickly to the user's inputs and while the graphics are not very dotted, they are clear and readable. Unfortunately, Cascada's system is a generation behind other Buicks. We experienced slow load times and became frustrated by the button-high center stack needed to power it.

While the first generation of Cadillac's CUE system was kind of chore to use, we like the responsive, easily accessible updated version.


Nick Miotke / Roadshow

Cadillac

Cadillac CT6, XT5 and Escalade use Cadillac User Experience (CUE) touch screen infotainment system, with built-in AM / FM / satellite radio, Bluetooth, USB and auxiliary connection, OnStar telematics support and optional navigation and a Wi-Fi threat spot. ATS, CTS and XTS have an updated version that can save a driver's settings to the cloud to be used in several vehicles and also has "predictive" navigation and an app store to add even more functionality. Both systems have Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity, as well as optional navigation. As with Chevrolet, the performance models (ATS-V and CTS-V) can be equipped with a Performance Data Recorder to capture your days' hero menus.

The newer XT4 XT6 XT6 ] and CT5 have a slightly updated infotainment system that adds a rotating jog controller to the center console.

Like other General Motors touchscreen infotainment systems, we find CUE to be easy to use and live with . All versions have simple menus that can be navigated in an instant while on the move, and CarPlay and Android Auto integration work well with the touch screen interface. The newer version of the CUE is especially faster in its performance response, and its graphics are a bit healthier and sharper as well.

Most Chevy models use this MyLink infotainment system, which is shared with Buick and GMC vehicles.


Jon Wong / Roadshow

Chevrolet

Branded MyLink, Chevrolet offers 7 and 8-inch touch screen infotainment systems on most models, with optional navigation, and built-in connection to the OnStar telematics system. AM / FM / satellite radio, Bluetooth, extra and USB inputs are all included. On performance models like Camaro and Corvette, you can even find an optional Performance Data Recorder that can record video and telemetry from your track gaps – the better you can send to YouTube later. Bolt EV has a slightly different infotainment system that focuses on providing information on battery charge time and other information, with a 10.2-inch screen. Every Chevrolet supports Android Auto and Apple CarPlay.

Chevrolet's MyLink system impresses with its simplicity, quick response and overall user-friendliness . The built-in navigation and other functions work well, like CarPlay and Android Auto integration. Its graphics are not the fastest, but overall great functionality still makes MyLink a good pick among common infotainment systems.

Chrysler Uconnect system is excellent, with crisp graphics and fast response times.


Wayne Cunningham / Roadshow

Chrysler

Chrysler 300 and Pacifica both offer the Uconnect 4 infotainment system on an 8.4-inch screen, with some Pacifica minivan trims offering a 7-inch version of the display. The system has Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity, as well as Bluetooth, satellite radio and aux and USB ports. Navigation with SiriusXM traffic and travel data is optional. In Pacifica specifically, the Uconnect Theater allows the viewing of movies on the kids' rear-screen (or older, probably-occupied) rear-view screens.

The latest version of Uconnect is better than ever with light and clear graphics, quick responses and easy to navigate menus. The use of climate controls is not always the smoother experience, but Chrysler provides redundant physical buttons for most of these operations.

Dodge vehicles use a slightly older version of Chrysler's Uconnect interface, but it's still one of our favorite systems.


Jon Wong / Roadshow

Dodge

Dodge Challenger and Charger offer buyers a choice of two touch screens powered by the company's Uconnect software, a 7-inch and an 8.4-inch. Both have Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity, as well as Bluetooth, satellite radio and aux and USB ports. The 8.4-inch screen can be selected with navigation that also includes SiriusXM traffic and travel data. The Durango SUV offers the same displays, but its 8.4-inch option is standard with navigation.

The journey is the oldest vehicle in the Dodge series and thus has the oldest infotainment features. A 4.3-inch touch screen is standard on base models, with AM / FM radio, Bluetooth plus AUX and USB ports, and satellite radio. You can select up to 8.4 inch screen that runs Uconnect 3 (a version behind other Dodge models), with or without navigation, and without support for CarPlay or Android Auto.

Performance models from Challenger, Charger and Durango also come with extra screen displays to adjust vehicle settings, monitor engine data or even record acceleration and brake times. Using the on-screen climate control is not always the smoother experience, but Dodge provides redundant physical buttons for most of these operations. The Journey's infotainment system is behind the times of the class, as well as the transition as a whole.

Ferrari smaller infotainment screen is, as we say, "minimal but functional."


Nick Miotke / Roadshow

Ferrari

Today's Ferraris offers mainly two different infotainment options. Portofino and GTC4Lusso have 10.2-inch touch screen systems with navigation. However, the 488 family and 812 Superfast and the new F8 Tributo have small color displays to the right of the infotainment system, controlled by dashboard buttons. Each Ferrari supports Apple CarPlay (although it is a paid option), but no one offers Android Auto. F8 Tributo can be selected with a small touch screen on the passenger side of the dashboard.

While we haven't had a chance to try the 10.2-inch system anyway, the 488 GTB's color screen is best described as "[ minimal but functional ."

Fiat's smaller version of Chrysler's Uconnect system looks and feels quite dated these days.


Antuan Goodwin / Roadshow

Fiat

Fiat offers various infotainment systems for each of its models. Standard 500 hatchback and convertible – either in bass or Abarth trim – have a 5-inch touch screen with Bluetooth, USB and AUX ports. Satellite radio and navigation are offered as an alternative. 500X crossover and 500L hatchback both get a standard 7-inch Uconnect 4.0 touch screen for 2018 model year. It includes satellite radio plus Apple CarPlay and Android Auto support, and can be used with navigation and SiriusXM traffic information.

Fiat 124 Spider is an interesting exception. Because the convertible is based on the Mazda MX-5 Miata, it uses the Mazda Connect infotainment system, with a 7-inch touch screen and rotary controls. Browse the Mazda section for our thoughts on Mazda Connect.

The 500's infotainment system looks and feels quite dated at this time, with little in the way of telephone integration. But the newer Uconnect system introduced this year for the 500X / 500L is light and responsive, with crisp and clear graphics .


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Check the technology in 2019 Ford Edge



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Ford

Basic versions of Ford products use a relatively basic non-touch screen radio with AM / FM, auxiliary and USB inputs, Bluetooth and Ford sync features. The upgrade option is Ford Sync 3, which uses 6.5 or 8-inch touch screens and adds features such as satellite radio, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto and any navigation. It can even be used to adjust the climate controls and the heated steering wheel in suitably equipped cars. And newer Ford models offer Wi-Fi hotspots that you can connect up to 10 devices at a time. When the touchscreen used to be embedded in the Ford car's center stacks, newer models, such as EcoSport and 2020 Escape have tablet-sized screens protruding from the dashboard. The new 2020 Explorer can in the meantime be equipped with a 10.1 inch touch screen in portrait mode.

Early versions of Ford Sync were inaccurate and difficult to use, but Sync 3 is fast and responsive in most situations with large and clear on-screen menus. It even has an AppLink app interface that enables integration of things like Slacker Internet radio or AccuWeather forecasts. The Ford cars also have a physical volume and tuner buttons, so you don't have to do everything via the touch screen.

The Genesis G90 has a crisp and bright display, but its infotainment lacks Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.


Nick Miotke / Roadshow

Genesis

Genesis G90 features a 12.3-inch touch screen with extra and USB ports, Bluetooth, AM / FM, satellite radio and navigation. While it contains Sirius XM traffic and travel information as well as charging of cordless phones, it does not offer Apple CarPlay or Android Auto Support.

In the smaller and affordable G80 then there is an 8-inch touch screen with standard navigation along with Bluetooth, satellite radio, XM traffic and travel information and support for Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Buyers have the option of adding a 9.2-inch screen with a rotary controller on the center console. G70 then, a Roadshow Shift Award winner also uses the 8-inch touch screen with CarPlay and Android Auto Support.

The basic software on the screen for the G70 and G80 is based on Hyundai's Blue Link infotainment software, which means the Genesis systems work well with fast response and simple menus. The lack of CarPlay and Android Auto on the G90 can be a downturn to some buyers, but the screen impresses with its size and clarity . Navigating the menus with the scroll wheel is quite simple.

Look familiar? GMC uses a reskinned version of the Chevy and Buick infotainment system.


Nick Miotke / Roadshow

GMC

GMC's infotainment system are rebranded versions of those found in the corresponding Chevrolet trucks or SUVs. Depending on the trim level, 7 or 8-inch touch screens are offered, with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto as standard. Built-in navigation is available as an alternative to high-trim models.


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Check the technology in 2019 Honda Pilot Elite



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Honda

Honda offers a basic 5-inch radio system that lacks satellite radio, Apple CarPlay or Android Auto. Both higher trim levels can be selected with a 7 or 8-inch touchscreen that adds these features, as well as the ability to read out text messages and integration with Pandora's Internet radio and any navigation. That means every Honda offers Android Auto and Apple CarPlay support, at least as an alternative.

Overall, Honda's infotainment system works well and is easy to use . Declines with most touch screens include a lack of physical volume and tuning buttons on many models, something Honda has corrected with the new Accord. The graphics on the 7-inch screen are also relatively raw, and some functions require jumping through several menus. The newer 8-inch screens have newer higher resolution graphics, especially with the new platform planning in newer models like Accord, Insight Pilot Pass and Odyssey.

Hyundai's infotainment system is easy to use and easy to navigate.


Hyundai

Hyundai

Hyundai uses either 7 or 8-inch touch screens depending on the model, with AM / FM, satellite radio, Bluetooth, USB and additional connectivity, as well as optional navigation. Each Hyundai supports Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Hyllai touchscreen may not be the fastest, but they are routinely among our favorites for their speed, ease of use and clean readability. The software on the screen works well, although it does not have the fastest or fanciest graphics on the market. The built-in navigation works well, and CarPlay and the Android Auto integrations are excellent.

While we like the extra functionality of Infinit's double screen installation, we wish that the two screens did not look like they were designed for two different decades.


Jon Wong / Roadshow

Infiniti

Q70 and QX60 have standard AM / FM / satellite, Bluetooth, USB and Aux systems as standard. The optional upgrade is an 8-inch touch screen with navigation. The QX30 comes standard with a 7-inch touch screen, while the QX80 has an 8-inch touch screen. Finally, the Q50, Q60 and QX50 have a dual screen system with a 7-inch upper and 8-inch top touch screen.

Functionality includes an AM / FM / satellite radio, Bluetooth, USB and AUX inputs, but you cannot find support for Apple CarPlay or Android Auto. All models also have a jogging roller in addition to processing support.

Infinit's single system has no real problems, but fails to stand out from today's best rivals: the navigation graphics are dated and the built-in functionality is not very impressive. The dual-screen configuration is frustrating because the lower screen has crisp modern graphics, the upper looks like "have been nicked from a Garmin installed in a 1995 Civic," we wrote. In addition, the functionality is slow and feels a step behind most rivals – especially considering the lack of CarPlay and Android Auto.

Jaguar's InTouch system is colorful and reconfigurable, but we often experience weak answers.


Emme Hall / Roadshow

Jaguar

An 8-inch touch screen is standard on most models, while Jaguar offers an upgraded navigation system and a 10-inch display that has light and colorful graphics. A Wi-Fi hotspot can be equipped, and new models, including the updated XE sedan can be equipped with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto .

Unfortunately, we are struggling to love Jaguar's infotainment system . Their response is sluggish, especially when you start the car or switch between menu structures. Although the home page's tiled layout can be reconfigured, the many sub-menus are difficult to navigate, which means that everyday functions (such as changing radio stations) are more of a character than in rival luxury systems.


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UConnect gives 2020 Jeep Gladiator one leg up



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Jeep

Depending on the jeep you buy, various infotainment systems are available, but all offer at least 7- and 8.4-inch touch screens with Uconnect 4, the latest version of the user-friendly infotainment system. It supports Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, and has optional navigation, SiriusXM traffic and travel information. Renegade, Compass, Wrangler and Gladiator also offers a much less impressive 5-inch touch screen on base models, with older Uconnect 3 software that does not support CarPlay or Android Auto.

As anyway, vehicles with Uconnect, The Jeep systems listed here work well with light and clear graphics, plus quick responses and easy to navigate menus. Using the on-screen climate controls (on vehicles with 7 or 8.4 inch screens) is not always the smoother experience, but the Jeep provides superfluous physical buttons for most of these operations.

The Kia K900's infotainment system reminds us a lot of BMW iDrive, and that's not bad.


Antuan Goodwin / Roadshow

Kia

Kia offers 7 or 8-inch touch screens in all its cars, with the upgraded UVO3 option with navigation and voice recognition. All systems have AM / FM, Bluetooth and satellite radio, and all Kia supports Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, as well as Pandora Internet radio. UVO telematics services, like many competitors, let you find the car with an app. 2019 The K900 then has a 12.3-inch touch screen with standard navigation and also has a rotary controller to control the interface.

Kia's touch screens may not be the most functional, but they, like siblings Hyundai's brand, work seamlessly and flawlessly. While not the best looking or most stylized, the screen is graphic and impeccable and easy to use at a glance while on the road. Using CarPlay or Android Auto with the touch function also works easily. The new K900 system has even smarter graphics and a revised menu structure that we believe lends much of the design of the BMW iDrive – it's not bad.

Lamborghini's new infotainment system, seen here in Urus SUV, is similar to Audi's new MMI Touch Response interface.


Chris Paukert / Roadshow

Lamborghini

Lamborghini Aventador has a full digital instrument cluster along with an infotainment screen powered by Audi-like buttons and a rotating knob. It supports Apple CarPlay but not Android Auto. The Huracan also has a full-digital instrument cluster and lacks a central infotainment screen, instead all functions shift to the display and use a rotating knob and buttons on the center stack. It also supports Apple CarPlay but not Android Auto. Urus SUV can label its car technology as the Lamborghini Infotainment System (LIS), but anyone who has been in the new Audi A8 will recognize the twin screen setting. Just like in A8 (and A6 and A7), a 10.1-inch primary touch screen with an 8.6-inch lower one works for things like climate control and navigation URL writing. It has Apple CarPlay and Android Auto support by default. Of course, its graphics have been rebuilt to fit a Lamborghini rather than an Audi.

While Aventador and Huracan's systems are dated, Urus works very well. Just like in the new Audis, it is nice to look at, quickly in all its functionality and easy to use.

Range Rover Velar's infotainment setup is a major improvement over Land Rover's older system, but it still doesn't come with Apple CarPlay or Android Auto.


Land Rover
                                                

Land Rover

En 8-tums pekskärm är standard, med ett valfritt 10-tums system som heter Land Rover InControl Pro tillgängligt med navigering. Range Rover Velar har ett mer avancerat infotainment-paket, kallat Touch Duo Pro, med dubbla 10-tums pekskärmar. Den nedre skärmen används, som i nyare Audi-modeller, för att styra sekundära funktioner som klimat och sittplatser. Land Rover also includes special menus with off-roading information including the vehicle's angle or four-wheel-drive status.

Though it looks stylish in the dashboard and has bright, clear graphics, Land Rover's infotainment system is often sluggish in its operations and cumbersome to use, especially taking time to boot up when you start the car or switch between menu functions. That can be especially frustrating when the system is needed for operating features like heated seats. The newer infotainment system in the Range Rover Velar seems faster to use than older models, and its graphics are an extra step forward in terms of crispness and prettiness. Land Rover is now adding Apple CarPlay and Android Auto support.

Lexus fits its cars with a large, bright display, but the Remote Touch control interface is absolutely infuriating.


Chris Paukert/Roadshow
                                                

Lexus

Lexus offers a basic infotainment display with AM/FM/satellite radio, Siri Eyes Free for iPhone users, Bluetooth, USB and auxiliary input and support for the Scout GPS navigation app. The optional upgrade is to an infotainment system with a 10.3-inch screen operated by what Lexus calls the Remote Touch Interface, a mouse-like controller on the center console. 

It features navigation and a Lexus Enform app suite that, similar to Toyota's Entune integration, allows for using certain apps that have been downloaded to your phone. The 2019 ES was the first Lexus to offer Apple CarPlay connectivity (it became available in October 2018), and it's also available on the UX crossoverthough no Lexus has Android Auto. An 8-inch screen is standard while models with navigation get a 12.3-inch display. Both use a touchpad rather than the hump-style touch controller on other Lexus models.

The Lexus Remote Touch Interface is one of the most frustrating-to-use systems in the car business. Convoluted menus and an ultra-sensitive touch controller make changing settings or even picking a radio station while driving a chore. In fact, many on-screen functions are locked out entirely while on the move, perhaps in part because manipulating them can be so tricky.


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Checking the tech in the 2019 Lincoln Nautilus
                



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Lincoln

Lincoln vehicles all use rebranded versions of the Ford Sync infotainment system. That means, like Fords, there's support for satellite radio, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, with navigation offered as an option. And just like those Ford models, the Lincoln systems work well in most situations.

It may be a Maserati, but that's Chrysler's 8.4-inch Uconnect touchscreen infotainment system.


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Maserati

As of the 2018 model year, all Maseratis use infotainment systems based on the Uconnect touchscreen interface found in FCA cars. That means you get a bright, clear and responsive 8.4-inch touchscreen — though it's been rebranded with different colors, fonts and graphics compared to similar systems in other FCA-brand cars. Both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are supported.

The Mazda Connect infotainment system will finally add Apple CarPlay and Android Auto functionality in late 2018.


Wayne Cunningham/Roadshow
                                                

Mazda

Every new Mazda comes with a 7-inch touchscreen that the automaker brands as Mazda Connect. In addition to the touch interface, the system can be operated by a rotary knob on the center console. Standard features include AM/FM radio, auxiliary and USB ports, Bluetooth, and support for Aha, Pandora, and Stitcher Internet radio services. Satellite radio and navigation are both available as options, dependent on trim levels. An 8-inch version of the screen is standard on the 2018 Mazda6 and on the CX-9's Touring trim level. Android Auto and Apple CarPlay have long been unavailable, but fortunately Mazda is now introducing support for those technologies across the lineup — as well as on older models sold since 2014.

Mazda Connect is reasonably responsive to inputsits graphics are sharp and the navigation looks good and works well. But the system lacks many of the more advanced features found in rivals, like online destination search for nav, for instance. Although Mazda is beginning to introduce CarPlay and Android Auto, the technologies' continued absence is a continued sore spot if you want to connect your phone to your system. While the screen is touch sensitive, almost all the touch controls are locked out once the car is on the move, so you'll find yourself primarily using the "Commander Control" knob instead.

We wish McLaren's Iris infotainment system was as awesome as the rest of the car.


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McLaren

McLaren's cars use a 7-inch, vertically oriented touchscreen running software called Iris. In addition to the touch controls, there are also buttons at the bottom of the display and a rotary knob for interacting with the system. Satellite radio and navigation are included, while a Track Telemetry app records your on-track exploits for later analysis on a computer. The feature can be upgraded with cameras, too. Iris doesn't support Android Auto or Apple CarPlay.

Unfortunately, the infotainment system is nowhere near as satisfying as the cars in which it's installed. We found Iris' graphics crude, its menus tricky to use and interact with and its overall functionality slow and lacking compared to rivals. It's sluggish in all operations.


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Checking the tech in the 2020 Mercedes-Benz GLE450
                



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Mercedes-Benz

Mercedes calls its infotainment system Comand, and while there are slightly different versions depending on the age and model range of each car, overall it's an excellent system to use. Operated by a rotary dial and, in some newer models, a touchpad controller, it offers navigation, Bluetooth, USB and auxiliary connectivity, as well as AM/FM/satellite radio. Both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are supported. Optional features include Wi-Fi hotspots and wireless phone charging. The SprinterA-ClassGLE-Class and CLA-Class — as well as all future Mercedes models — use an all-new touchscreen system called MBUX. It uses 7-, 10.25-or 12.3-inch screens, depending on model

Comand has a logical menu structure that is simple to navigate with the rotary dial or touchpad. The latter offers some simpler shortcuts for jumping between functions on the display. The screen's graphics, especially the 12.3-inch screens on newer models like the E- and S-Class, are pretty and legible, with stylish iconographic and images yet very straightforward controls. While we need to spend more time with it, MBUX proved impressive though its voice controls, intended to be operated by saying, "Hey Mercedes," did not always work as intended in our early testing.

The Mini Connected infotainment system is a reskinned version of BMW iDrive. It's just… cuter.


Antuan Goodwin/Roadshow
                                                

Mini

The Mini Connected infotainment systems are offered with 6.5-inch screens as standard and 8.8-inch ones as an option. It's operated either by the touchscreen or with a rotary jog dial on the center console, on top of which you can write letters or numbers for the navigation system. Built-in app support includes Pandora, Spotify and other internet radio choices, plus Siri Eyes Free. Navigation is optional, too, and there are some Mini-quirky features on-board, like flashing lights around the outer edge of the circular display that correspond to in-car actions (such as adjusting the volume.) Only the Countryman and Clubman support Apple CarPlay. No Mini supports Android Auto.

The Mini Connected software is essentially a reskinned version of parent company BMW's iDrive, with a fairly straightforward menu structure, albeit done in more fun colors and graphics than the BMW version. Though it's easy to bump the awkwardly placed control knob by mistake, overall the infotainment system is very good: easy to use, stylish and fast.

Mitsubishi's menus are straightforward, but we don't like the touchpad controller of this infotainment system.


Mitsubishi
                                                

Mitsubishi

Across most of its lineup, Mitsubishi offers a 7-inch touchscreen infotainment system as standard, with one USB port, AM/FM radio, and Bluetooth connectivity. Higher trim levels of the Eclipse Cross and Outlander (and standard on the Outlander Plug-In Hybrid) feature an upgraded system that Mitsubishi calls Smartphone Link Display Audio. It features Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, as well as satellite radio and two USB ports. It has a 7-inch touchscreen display and can also be operated via a touchpad on the center console. No matter the car or trim level, no built-in navigation is offered on any Mitsubishi. This year the refreshed Outlander Sport gets a new 8-inch touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto support.

The 7-inch system has straightforward menus, but we found that there's a bit of delay in response when touching the screen or using the touchpad controller. We also wish there were a real volume knob aside from the up-down buttons on the steering wheel and headunit. The lack of integrated navigation is probably not a deal-breaker given the availability of CarPlay and Android Auto.

Nissan uses several different infotainment systems across its lineup. This is the 8-inch display found in the Armada SUV.


Jon Wong/Roadshow
                                                

Nissan

Like Toyota, Nissan has a diverse variety of infotainment systems available depending on vehicle — and only a handful of them feature Apple CarPlay or Android Auto. The 370Z family, for instance, comes standard with a very basic AM/FM/CD system with few added features besides Bluetooth and auxiliary connectivity — though a 7-inch touchscreen with navigation is optional. The only vehicles with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity are the Altima, Kicks, Maxima, Murano, Rogue, GT-R, Titan/Titan XD and Leaf (as an option).

A 5-inch touchscreen is standard on many Nissans, including the Leaf, Frontier, Rogue Sport and Versa. Other models have larger displays: the Rogue, Versa Note, Kicks, Titan/Titan XD and Rogue Sport have 7-inch screens, while the Pathfinder, Armada, Murano and Maxima have 8-inch screens as standard.

The new 2019 Altima has an 8-inch touchscreen as standard, with Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, Siri Eyes Free, Google Assistant voice, Bluetooth and satellite radio. Navigation is offered as an option.

The Nissan GT-R and Leaf both have unique infotainment systems. For the GT-R, it's an 8-inch touchscreen with multiple special displays showing various vehicle and engine data. Other features include navigation, satellite radio and Apple CarPlay support. There's also a secondary rotary control knob for the system on the car's center console. As to the Leaf (SV and SL trims only), it uses a special version of Nissan's 7-inch touchscreen system that's designed for electric cars; things like Bluetooth, satellite radio and various menus for adjusting the Leaf's battery-charge status are standard, as well as Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. The Leaf Plus has an 8.0-inch screen as standard.

Most of Nissan's infotainment systems feel dated and perform slowly. Very few have modern connectivity features, too. That said, they're all acceptable for everyday use. The Leaf's infotainment system is an improvement, and we're looking forward to spending time with the Altima's new touchscreen later this year.

The Porsche Panamera's touchscreen is one of our favorites, even without the inclusion of Android Auto.


Nick Miotke/Roadshow
                                                

Porsche

On the 718 Boxster and  718 Cayman, you'll find a Porsche Communication Management system with a 7-inch touchscreen and a rotary dial controller. Built-in navigation is optional, while integrated functions include AM/FM/satellite radio, Bluetooth, auxiliary and USB inputs, as well as an optional Wi-Fi hotspot. The Cayenne, updated Macan911 and Panamera feature a new, more advanced system with a 12.3-inch touchscreen with navigation. Every Porsche offers Apple CarPlay but none offer Android Auto.

On the older PCM systems, physical shortcut buttons help make navigating the simple, somewhat plain menu structure simple; everything about the system works easily and quickly. The new 12.3-inch touchscreen is the Cayenne, Macan, 911 and Panamera has incredibly sharp, clear graphics on its wide display. A simple menu on the left-hand side of the display allows for jumping between different features and information pages; proximity sensors show or hide info depending on how close your hand is to the screen, and multi-touch functionality makes zooming maps a breeze.


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Checking the tech in the 2019 Ram 1500
                



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Ram

The new 2019 Ram 1500 features a 5-inch touchscreen radio as standard, with auxiliary and USB inputs and AM/FM. It's standard on the truck's Tradesman, HFE, Big Horn and Rebel trim levels. The next step up is an 8.4-inch touchscreen familiar from other Chrysler, Dodge and Jeep models. Equipped with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto support, as well as satellite radio, it's standard on the Laramie model and optional on Big Horn and Rebel. A version of that system with built-in navigation is standard on the Longhorn and Limited trims, and optional on Big Horn, Rebel and Laramie. Finally, the new Ram 1500 offers a new 12-inch vertically oriented touchscreen infotainment system. Because it is essentially two of the 8.4-inch screens combined, it can show two apps at once — though not, for instance, Apple CarPlay and the integrated navigation simultaneously. The 12-inch display is optional on Laramie, Longhorn, and Limited models. Need a tougher truck? The new 2019 Ram HD also offers the 5-, 8.4- and 12-inch screens, depending on trim level.

As on other Fiat Chrysler models, Uconnect's software is fast and responsive, and its screens are bright, crisp and highly legible while driving. The 12-inch display especially impresses, drawing comparisons to the massive tablet-like infotainment display in Teslas.

Rolls-Royce uses a version of parent company BMW's iDrive. Just, you know, fancier.


Rolls-Royce
                                                

Rolls-Royce

Rolls-Royce models use modified versions of BMW iDrive software, with a 10.25-inch screen and operated with a "Spirit of Ecstasy" controller on the center console. Users can even write letters and numbers on the top of the controller, or pinch-to-zoom like on a phone. Rolls notes, by the way, that a touchscreen is less than ideal for its cars because it, "might leave unsightly fingerprints at driver and passenger eye level." Navigation is included as standard, as well as Bluetooth phone integration, but you won't find modern proletarian touches like Apple CarPlay or Android Auto support.

With crisp, modern graphics and smooth performance, the Rolls-Royce infotainment systems perform very well.

The Smart Fortwo is a pretty basic car, and its infotainment system is similarly non-robust.


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Smart

The Smart brand is pulling out of the US and Canada at the end of the 2019 model yearso your chance to buy a new model is running out. The Smart Fortwo, whether in Coupe or Cabrio guise, has only a simple AM/FM radio as standard, with Bluetooth, an auxiliary port and USB connectivity. It can be upgraded with a $100 phone cradle that lets users pick music via an app called Smart Cross Connect. For $1,290, the Prime and Passion trim levels can be upgraded with a 7-inch touchscreen that offers more features, like TomTom-based navigation and Apple CarPlay or Android Auto integration.

Infotainment options are pretty basic in their functionality no matter whether you choose the base option or not. Poor screen quality and a tough-to-use built-in interface are letdowns even with the optional $1,290 system.


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Check out Subaru's Starlink tech in the 2019 Crosstrek
                



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Subaru

Subaru has made Apple CarPlay and Android Auto standard as part of its StarLink infotainment systems on nearly all its models, most recently the 2019 WRX. The BRZ is the lone exception: the Premium model's 6.2-inch display offers a CD player, auxiliary and USB ports, Bluetooth, satellite radio and connectivity for Stitcher, Aha, and Pandora Internet radio. If you want Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, upgrade to the Limited model, where it's standard and housed in a 7-inch touchscreen. All other Subarus now offer a 6.5-inch touchscreen as standard with 7-inch (BRZ, WRX/STI) or 8-inch (Ascent, Impreza, Crosstrek, Forester) versions as an upgrade. Subaru's 6.5-inch StarLink system boasts Bluetooth, USB and auxiliary inputs, as well as integrated Pandora and Aha Internet radio functionality. The 7- and 8-inch ones feature even more integrated apps, including Glympse social navigation, Stitcher and iHearRadio internet radio apps, Yelp and even eBird, a utility for birders (hey, it's a Subaru). Optional built-in navigation is powered by TomTom software.

The new 2020 Outback and 2020 Legacy offer an optional 11.6-inch touchscreen infotainment system and a Wi-Fi hotspot.

The newest Subaru StarLink systems use fast processors to deliver nearly lag-free performance. Bold, clear, colorful menus and icons make operation a breeze. We're not crazy about the integrated navigation options, but you can always connect your phone if you prefer Apple or Google mapping.

The Tesla Model 3's huge center screen isn't just for infotainment. Many key vehicle functions — like the wipers — are housed in here, too.


Tim Stevens/Roadshow
                                                

Tesla

The Tesla Model S and Model X use 17-inch vertically oriented touchscreens with Bluetooth, navigation, FM and HD radio, two USB ports and a built-in web browser. Like many electric cars, AM radio is not offered. The Model 3 and Model Y have just one 15-inch touchscreen that's used to control almost all secondary vehicle functions — yes, even the lights, wipers and mirror position. Neither of the systems supports Apple CarPlay or Android Auto.

The big touchscreen in the S and X looks great and is easy to usebut in our most recent drive of a Model X we felt that performance and responsiveness were lacking. It just wasn't as snappy as some competing luxury cars' touchscreens, and it doesn't have a particularly impressive feature set by today's standards. The touchscreen in the Model 3 frustrates at times because of how many commonly used features are buried in menus. The infotainment itself works wellbut the lack (in the S and X, too) of CarPlay and Android Auto support seems like a huge miss in expensive, technology-focused cars.

The 2019 Corolla Hatchback was one of the first Toyota vehicles to get Apple CarPlay.


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Toyota

Toyota's infotainment offerings vary greatly by model. Most models offer 6.1- or 7-inch touchscreens with features like Bluetooth, AM/FM, and USB and auxiliary inputs. Upgraded models add features such as satellite radio and the ability to use Scout GPS navigation via a connected phone. Specifically, the Yaris, Corolla, Tacoma, Tundra, Highlander and Prius all offer both 6.1- and 7-inch screens. The C-HR and 86 have only 7-inch screens. The 4Runner and Sequoia only offer a 6.1-inch screen. The Land Cruiser has a 9-inch display.

Several newer models use Entune 3.0, an updated infotainment system with a broad feature set that includes AM/FM, Bluetooth, auxiliary and USB inputs. Using the Entune app on your connected phone, you can access apps such as Pandora, Slacker and NPR One, as well as Scout navigation. Built-in nav is an option on higher trim levels. The Avalon has Entune 3.0 with a 9-inch display, the Sienna and Mirai have a 7-inch Entune 3.0 display, while the 2019 RAV42020 Corolla sedan, 2019 Corolla Hatchback and the Camry offer it with both 7- and 8-inch screens, depending on trim. Toyota also offers a Wi-Fi hotspot and Amazon Alexa integration on certain models.

Toyota's support for Apple CarPlay and Android Auto is limited. From the 2019 model year onward, CarPlay is available on the Avalon, Camry, Corolla Hatchback, C-HR, RAV4 and Supra, as well as the 2020 Corolla. Android Auto is offered on the 2020 4Runner and Sequoia SUVs, as well as the Tacoma and Tundra pickups, and we're told it'll eventually be offered on other Toyotas, too.

The Toyota Yaris — now offered as as both a sedan and a hatchback —  is an interesting exception: Because it's based on the Mazda2, it uses the MazdaConnect infotainment system. The Toyota Prius Prime is another exception. Though a 7-inch display is standard, a portrait-style 11.6-inch touchscreen is optional on certain trim levels (as well as on the standard Prius Limited). So, too, is the Toyota Supra's infotainment system an aberration: Because the reborn sports car is based on BMW technology, it uses iDrive software on either a standard 6.5-inch screen operated by a rotary controller or an 8.8-inch touchscreen.

All of Toyota's infotainment systems feel behind-the-timeswith cruder graphics and a smaller feature set than most rivals. That said, Entune 3.0 in the Camry and Corolla is a huge improvement. It may not be as feature-packed as some competing systems, but it is simple and straightforward to use on the road.

The eight-inch display in the Volkswagen Atlas has crisp graphics and is easy to use while driving.


Volkswagen
                                                

Volkswagen

Most newer Volkswagen models offer a choice between a handful of infotainment systems. A 6.5-inch touchscreen has Apple CarPlay and Android auto connectivity as standard (VW brands these features as "Car-Net"), as well as USB, auxiliary and Bluetooth connectivity. There's an 8-inch version of that touchscreen that adds a CD player and satellite radio, and then an optional upgraded version with built-in navigation. The older VW Beetle has a 5-inch display as standard, while the 6.3-inch option with CarPlay and Android Auto support is optional, and navigation is optional on certain models. Finally, Volkswagen is rolling out a full-color Digital Cockpit instrument cluster as an option on certain models: the E-Golf, Golf, 2019 Jetta, TiguanArteon and Atlas.

The newer 6.5- and 8-inch displays are bright and easy to use at a glance while driving, and though it's not quite as quick as FCA's Uconnect screens, responses are fast. On the downside, the gloss-black trim around the screens tends to pick up fingerprints easily. The 8-inch model especially is incredibly easy to view, but we think some of the menus and icons could be rearranged so navigating the many options and features is easier. Although the 6.3-inch display still works well, its smaller screen size means picking out icons and reading text is a little more difficult while on the move. In cars with Digital Cockpit, you can avoid the infotainment screen entirely because the color cluster provides so much information right in the driver's sightline.


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Checking the tech in the 2019 Volvo XC90
                



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Volvo

Every new Volvo uses a touchscreen infotainment system called Sensus, with a portrait-style 9-inch touchscreen mounted on the dashboard. Features include Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, navigation and some built-in apps such as Glympse, Pandora, Stitcher and Yelp. Volvos can also be equipped with wireless phone charging and a Wi-Fi hotspot, as well as a full-digital instrument cluster.

Though it is pretty and feature-richSensus can at times be very slow to boot up when you start the car and switching between functions can require more waiting than we'd like. That said, all model-year 2019 cars get a faster processor that does appear to improve performance. The system's basic three-page layout, with big, legible tiles and buttons and a high-contrast color scheme, however, is easy to view at a glance. Because Sensus controls most vehicle functions (climate control, car settings and so on), any delays in its start-up and operation can be frustrating. We wouldn't object to adding more physical controls to its operation. Right now pretty much just the volume and defroster still have real physical controls in Volvos.


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