Tag: Ergonomics

By on May 23, 2016

Mustang Toggle Switches with Hazard Light Switch, Image: © 2016 Jack Baruth/The Truth About Cars

Long-time TTAC readers will recall an occasional contributor to these pages who was kind of the Dave Barry of auto writing. He wrote articles with titles like “Has BMW Lost Its Mojo?” and “Has Audi Lost The Plot?” and “Has CarMax Lost The Invoice I Sent Them?” Unfortunately for him, however, there is a limited number of automakers in the North American market about which to generically speculate, so he eventually turned to a series of articles about “This Is The Worst Button On A Car Ever” and “This Is The Worst Warning Light On A Car Ever” and, just possibly, “This Is The Worst Turn Signal Lever Since The Dawn Of Time.” Articles like that are popular because they invoke a sort of Pavlovian response in readers. “Wait … that son of a bitch says the BMW temperature control blend knob is hard to understand? I’LL SHOW HIM!”

I tried to do something similar to get my clicks up and convince our august Managing Editor to pay for my next Kiton sportcoat, but he rejected my take on the formula, which was tentatively titled “How Can The New Camaro Ask The Mustang To ‘Step Outside’ When Cars Can’t Even Fuckin’ Talk Most Of The Time, Except For The Nissan Maxima, And Maybe The Frank Sinatra Imperial, And In Those Cases Weren’t The Cars In Question Restricted To A Fairly Basic Set Of Phrases,” calling it “thoroughly asinine and far too recherche for all but the most tasteful of search-engine spiders.”

That was the end of my career as a pure clickbait writer. Until this morning, when I looked down at the console of the Ecoboost Mustang I was renting in San José and realized I’d finally found the worst button ever!

There are four reasons why … and Number Three Will Blow Your Mind!

(Read More…)

By on September 23, 2015

 

saturn-ion-interior-2 (1)

Eye on Bad Design? (photo courtesy: http://www.moibbk.com/)

Seth writes:

Hey Sajeev,

I’ve always had an aversion to dashboards where the main gauges are in the center of the car (Mini, Yaris, etc.). I can see why an automaker would do it if they sell internationally. Once, back when I used to listen to the Autoblog podcast, one of the hosts said that having the gauges in the center made them faster and easier to read. No way! That just can’t be so. I think I stopped listening to the podcast right then and there.

Would you care to comment?

(Read More…)

By on December 9, 2014

 

p0wnage. (photo courtesy: Facebook.com)

I’ve been accused of Automotive Hipsterism for bragging about my bare bones Ford truck instead of aspiring to expensive vehicles. It used to be different, back when top-drawer dashboards were more Malevich and less Pollock in design. Because good design embraces Less is More, while poor design over thinks the solution.

Speaking of hipster, witness the design backlash on Gillette’s Facebook page, especially the red box.

(Read More…)

By on January 13, 2013

Question #1. TTAC commentator Seminole95 writes:

Sajeev, I have another question for you.

Why do auto manufacturers increasingly make cars with hard to read speedometers? I was thinking of buying a Mustang, but I could not tell easily how fast I was going. The new Accord speedometer is harder to read than previous models. (Read More…)

By on July 15, 2011

Unintended acceleration has been a huge topic in automotive circles over the last year or so, as the Toyota Recall Scandal brought new attention to that man-machine-interface problem. But did you know Mercedes has been receiving its own complaints about UA? Neither did we, as a post-Toyota Recall survey of NHTSA complaints showed Mercedes enjoying one of the lowest rates of UA complaints of all manufacturers. But, reports WardsAuto, the problem was indeed real.

Just about anyone who has driven a Mercedes-Benz in the past decade has experienced it: unintended sudden acceleration because of awkward placement of the cruise-control stalk on the left side of the steering wheel.

A driver may think he is signaling to turn right, when inadvertently he has pushed the cruise control lever upward to the “accel” position, occasionally sending the vehicle bolting forward instead of slowing down to turn at an intersection. This could happen if the cruise control was on but not active.

Left turns were somewhat less problematic because pushing the lever downward put the cruise-control system into “decel” mode.

(Read More…)

Recent Comments

New Car Research

Get a Free Dealer Quote

Staff

  • Contributing Writers

  • Bark M., United States
  • Chris Tonn, United States
  • Bozi Tatarevic, United States
  • Vojta Dobes, Czech Republic

Get No-holds-barred, take-no-prisoners Automotive News in your Facebook Feed!

Already Liked