: Are "features" on a Cadillac useful? Or just a gimmick?



Lord Cadillac
12-02-10, 11:16 AM
Things like rain sensing wipers, heated seats, cooled seats, massaging seats, heated steering wheel, bluetooth, navigation, iPod connectivity, satellite radio, automatic headlights (turn on in the dark and off in the day) etcetera - are they useful to you? Do you want them? Or are they just gimmicks to sell cars that you'd never use anyway?

hueterm
12-02-10, 11:31 AM
If they work, they're not a gimmick.

mhamilton
12-02-10, 11:36 AM
I love most everything you mentioned... heated seats (and wish I had heated steering!) are a must in the winter for someone with poor circulation (I'm always freezing cold). I always use twilight sentinel, Rainsense is very handy when driving not to have to fiddle with the delay as I change speeds. I love not having to slam my deck lid closed. Wish I had radar cruise control, bluetooth, remote start, and navigation. My next car will have these! lol

drewsdeville
12-02-10, 11:41 AM
I know I'll be outnumbered here, but I don't use them. There are only a few automatic goodies that I actually fully appreciate (climate control, heated seats for WI winters, and ELC for example). The others I just don't use and even turn them off if my car is equipped. I like to control my car, be one with it, rather than letting my car do it's thing.

Using your examples, satellite radio is like cable TV for me. Lots of channels to flip through, yet nothing to listen to. I tried it for a short while when I was driving full time, but quickly found that I didn't care for it at all. I've never ran into an instance where I wished I had navigation, so I guess I'm on the fence about that one, and I just plain don't like the automatic headlights and wipers.

Some of them may be gimmicky, but I guess that's the nature of the genre. I don't despise cars that have them or go out of my way to find cars without the features. I only use what I like.

Would I go and spend the money on a brand new car loaded with features I don't like? Hell no. But in the used market, where much of this forum resides, I don't think any of these features are dealbreakers one way or the other.

To each man his own. Just like I don't care for auto headlights or navigation, I'm sure there's more than a few on here who find ELC to be gimmicky and useless. However, it's a feature I greatly appreciate.

pontiaced25
12-02-10, 12:10 PM
I think having the top of the line, most features, etc. is part of having a luxury car. When i get myself a Caddy, I want it to have all these features. My Bonne has heated seats, Sat. Radio, ELC, etc. I love it.

MauiV
12-02-10, 12:13 PM
Wipers? I didnt see the point on a friends 200SX 20 years ago and still dont.

Heated seats? LOVE them on a cold morning

Heated steering wheel? Would use it as much as I use heated seats. A couple months a year.

Cooled seats? Much more useful than heated on leather since my car is hot many more times a year than its cold.

Bluetooth? Handy. I dont talk on the phone at all in the V since its a 6speed so I have gotten away from using a phone in other cars too, and thats a good thing.

Nav? Use it all the time. My wife moved here from out of state and Louisville ist huge but its quite big enough for her to easily get lost. I use it occasionally.

IPod? Love them. Use it all the time in the Jeep

Satellite? LOVE it, especially on cross country trips where I dont have to keep channel searching every 30 minutes. IPod for music, Sat for talk radio.

Auto lights? Another thing I dont see the point of. I hate the "headlights needed" and "ice possible" messages I get when i start the car int he garage or its cold outside. Duh genius.

Auto cruise? Never used it but I like the idea, I use cruise a lot when I can and nothing worse than an idiot with Ohio plates sitting in the left lane doing 63mph.

Thermal imaging? Looks good on paper but I would actually have to use it to see if it is advantageous.

Auto braking? This is one system I dont want to mess up. Im torn on it, again it looks good on paper.

His/Her shifters? Dont like em. Buy an auto or buy a manual, anything in between is just a gimmick.

OnStar? Never used it, but Big Brother is watching!

Massaging seats? A nap waiting to happen

parking assistance/backup camera? I guess if you cant drive and dont know how to use mirrors. Large SUV/Van may be useful.

Blind spot/lane assists? Never used them but I dont like the idea of having to use a blinker everytime I go to switch lanes at 90mph. The guy I just passed like he was sitting still doesnt run a risk from me coming back to the proper lane.

Rear seat entertainment package? Anything that keeps kids quiet is a good thing.

Lord Cadillac
12-02-10, 12:28 PM
parking assistance/backup camera? I guess if you cant drive and dont know how to use mirrors. Large SUV/Van may be useful.

Valet

Stingroo
12-02-10, 12:36 PM
I'm with drew on this one, honestly. I don't mind having to control my own wipers and cruise control. I thought these things were just part of the DRIVING experience. The reason people buy cars, to DRIVE.

I do like navigation, as my sense of direction is bad, but factory nav units are a joke and many aftermarket ones are significantly better, so if I were shopping for a new car I wouldn't pay $3-4k extra for what I can buy from Pioneer or Alpine for 1/3 that price.

Heated seats don't do anything for me, but I'm Floridian. Remote start does nothing for me, because I'm Floridian. Lane departure warning is stupid. That's why there's grooved shoulders on the road. If I'm in a hurry and I don't use a signal, BFD. I don't need a chime to tell me I'm not doing it. Bluetooth should NOT be an option in ANY car. I don't care how good you think you are, if you have a phone anywhere near you and are driving, you ARE distracted. And to hell with that parking assist crap. Learn to drive.

I'm on the fence. A lot of the shit thrown in cars these days IS gimmicky just for the sake of saying "Look what I can do!" That doesn't appeal to me. I'd rather spend that extra money on performance than glitzy electronics that are bound to break or become obsolete.

drewsdeville
12-02-10, 12:40 PM
If you take your expensive prized car to be valeted by some college student making minimum wage and he leaves a mark, that's your own fault, in my opinion. Take the "junker" next time.

I've only let someone valet my car a handful of times, most of them at a restaurant where I personally know the valet. Even then, I still take the junker, whether that be the Powerwagon or the Escort when I had it. He can shove the Powerwagons trailer hitch right into that shiny Mercedes if he wants, won't hurt my feelings.

Sadly, the 45 year old, $800 Powerwagon always gets more thumbs up, commentary, and general respect than even the most gussied up/expensive luxury car in the area. When I was making a habit of going out a lot (bad idea), it was even accumulating fans and and was usually recognized by at least somebody. For the record, the Powerwagon is ugly, brown in color, lots of rust, and has vinyl seats, rubber floor, no seat belts, no nav, no radio (let alone satellite), crank windows, manual transmission, shitty worn out glasspacks, and loads of personality and attitude...something even gimmicky options and features can't replace. If the gimmicky options are all about flash and style, the Powerwagon says they aren't required :p

Playdrv4me
12-02-10, 12:51 PM
Prepare for upcoming Rick-style postage (sorry)...

As Mike mentioned, if the feature actually WORKS properly I don't find it to be a gimmick at all. That's not to say there are not MANY of these "features" that do turn out to be gimmicky. For example, I've heard that Intellibeam, the Cadillac (re)innovation that automatically flips off the high beams when a car approaches from the other direction, is only marginally useful at best and tends to have a disappointing delay depending on the circumstance. Cadillac originally innovated this feature decades ago, dropped it, then re-introduced it. Still seems like a gimmick to me.

Some that are most definitely NOT gimmicks to ME:
1. Remote start: I REALLY appreciate that to date, GM has been one of the few, if not the only manufacturer that has integrated this as a factory option. For those who live in very cold or very hot climates pressing a button and having your vehicle perfectly climate controlled by the time you get in is nearly invaluable. I would put remote start FAR above heated or cooled seats from a comfort standpoint. I am one of the few who finds seat heaters and seat coolers to be marginal at best. Some cars are fantastic, others usually break anyway, or aren't very powerful. Remote start... NOT a gimmick.

2. Cell phone integration/Bluetooth Cell phone connectivity: As cell phones have nearly replaced land lines in this modern day and age, and with all the associated safety risks incurred from fiddling with a phone while you drive, what began as hard wired cell phone integration years ago and has eventually evolved into Bluetooth connectivity should be damn near standard on ALL cars. I haven't had a vehicle yet that has built in Bluetooth but every time I get into someone's car that does have it, and see how effortlessly they answer and terminate phone calls without ever taking their hands off the steering wheel or eyes off the road, I am envious. Bluetooth connectivity... NOT a gimmick UNLESS you are at the point in life where you don't even care for phone calls to begin with... lucky you.

3. Satellite Radio: This one will definitely be highly individual. Like Drew mentioned, for some people there's really just not a damn thing on there worth bothering with. For me, there's very FEW channels I use it for (I don't even use the music channels), but the talk channels I DO use it for make it invaluable to me on long trips. I love the Road Dog Trucking channel, Fox News Channel, and "Talk" Radio 165 and 158 for Coast to Coast AM and the Tech Guy with Leo Laporte. So basically, I use about 4 channels out of 170-something, and I still love having it. So Satellite Radio can definitely be a gimmick, but it depends on the listener. Fortunately, it is typically a "free" option on many cars anyway, and its up to you whether you want to continue paying after the free trial.

4. Navigation systems/LCD Screens/"Infotainment" : I have mixed emotions about this one. The truth is, that until recently, and by recently I mean in the last 2 years, Navigation systems have been only marginally useful to me at best. From a NAVIGATING standpoint, they are about 80 percent effective compared to the navigation software on my phone in the cars that I have had. But that's not actually why I still feel that Nav systems are a "must have" feature. The fact of the matter is that as Nav and Infotainment systems have become more commonplace, manufacturers have this nasty habit of making their NON Nav equipped dashboards uglier and uglier, and almost an afterthought. A good example of this is the dashboard in the base 2007+ Escalade and EXT. If you don't opt for Nav, you get a chintzy little slit of an LCD in black and white, living amongst a sea of plastic obviously designed to accomodate a huge Nav screen. The PREVIOUS gen trucks were an equally good example of a neutral dash and radio setup that looked fine to me either way. The older radios had plenty of buttons and high quality Vacuum FL dot matrix displays that made the Nav unit less needed. However, in the past couple of years the "glass cockpit" approach has become VERY VERY appealing starting with Mercedes-Benz and the S550. Along with a SUBSTANTIALLY improved interior for 2007, MB also added an EXTRA 7 or 8 inch color LCD to replace the location of the mechanical speedometer. In this LCD one can find every piece of information that would have typically been scrunched into a center stack display or tiny radio screen. And the information can freely move back and forth between those two displays. It is absolutely beautiful in execution. And before you crow about the loss of a "mechanical" speedometer, most people who get in the car would be none the wiser that the speedo is even missing because from almost ALL angles (it must be an IPS LCD), the representation of a speedo gauge looks damn near PERFECTLY matched to the tach and fuel gauges on either side, and moves smoothly. Considering that every speedo cluster these days is not TRULY mechanical anyway, complaining about the loss of a real needle isn't really merited.

So far, the ultimate example of TRULY USEFUL infotainment integration though is Ford with the evolution of Sync in the MKX and Ford Edge called "MyLincolnTouch" or "MyFordTouch". It takes the opposite approach to Mercedes and in addition to a beautiful 8 inch center stack LCD, it places two LCDs at either side of the speedometer to handle all the functions the single LCD on the S550 does. Everything from your radio station, to your fuel economy, who's calling you, gauge readouts etc. etc. And when you consider the effectiveness of Sync in communicating with the lion's share of mobile devices and its extremely powerful features (it will, for example, read your text messages to you aloud on a compatible phone), along with the immensity of available information the car can download from multiple sources, including things like movie times, weather alerts and much more, I think 2010 is FINALLY the year that these Infotainment systems have begun to mature. This is one of the few items that I can truly say if Ford managed to wrap a big RWD V8 powered something or other around it, it would VERY likely sway me from some other vehicle in the future.

That said, this is an area where technology moves so ridiculously fast, that ultimately manufacturers need to design these interfaces to rely more heavily on what the phone is capable of doing, and less on things they integrate which become dated extremely rapidly (making early 2000s Nav systems basically worthless from a usage standpoint).

5. Automatic Headlamps/Headlamp Technology: Back in the days when I first began driving, I found automatic headlights to be the single most fascinating and must have feature in my vehicles. I remember specifically wanting the higher spec versions of cars like the Jeep Grand Cherokee because the "cheap" entry level models didn't have this simple (and surely EXTREMELY cheap) feature. As I said in the other thread, the fact that this wasn't standard LONG ago baffles me considering how ancient the technology behind it is.

That leads me to another headlamp related discussion... Lighting technology. Anyone who has ever read my posts for any length of time KNOWS that I am an absolute headlamp nut. My headlamp must-haves began in the early '90s with the first car that integrated CLEAR lensed composite headlamps, the Honda Accord. Most recently it is Xenon headlamps. Driving around with ancient, dim, yellow headlights in this day and age seems to me the equivalent of rolling around on wagon wheels. Granted, there are some poor executions of Xenon integration *cough* Seville *cough*... but for the most part Xenon technology greatly increases both distance visibility, not to mention how cool the car looks coming down the road with them. Now the evolution of Xenon is LED lighting, which is even more awesome. The drawback to LEDs versus Xenons however, is the extremely high cost of repair should something go wrong. Xenon headlight parts may not be as cheap as a 9.00 bulb, but respective of the benefit they provide, they're still awfully cheap overall if you know where to find them. You can get replacement xenon burners ("bulbs") for as little as 40 to 50.00 each from the right source these days.

So yes, unless I am specifically seeking out a cheap, or classic car, I don't want a MODERN car without as much of these amenities as you can possibly throw in. The more the better, so long as they are useful.

hueterm
12-02-10, 01:30 PM
Bluetooth should NOT be an option in ANY car. I don't care how good you think you are, if you have a phone anywhere near you and are driving, you ARE distracted.


OK, if you're going to say this, then:

1.) you should NEVER use any of the above nav systems you mention (whether or not you can control them while driving) -- or look at a map for that matter....

2.) and forget any kind of radio/MP3/iPod, whatever.

3.) don't even THINK about drinking a drop or eating a morsel of anything....

4.) and not only do you have to be completely mute at all times -- any passengers in the car, have to be completely mute and catatonic as well, so as to not become a distraction...

5.) if you dare bring any pesky children in the car, they have to be Benadryled into a coma.

Distractions are distractions. Whether it's some tool shaving, or some bimbo putting on mascara -- or some overwhelmed mom with a DVD playing for her 3 screaming brats in the back seat throwing french fries all over the car while she spills her SuperGulp into the center console....at 75 MPH on the Interstate...

So until all of those above issues are rectified, and we all become zombies in our silent rolling caskets -- my cell phone needs to be left alone....

drewsdeville
12-02-10, 01:43 PM
OK, if you're going to say this, then:

1.) you should NEVER use any of the above nav systems you mention (whether or not you can control them while driving) -- or look at a map for that matter....

2.) and forget any kind of radio/MP3/iPod, whatever.

3.) don't even THINK about drinking a drop or eating a morsel of anything....

4.) and not only do you have to be completely mute at all times -- any passengers in the car, have to be completely mute and catatonic as well, so as to not become a distraction...

5.) if you dare bring any pesky children in the car, they have to be Benadryled into a coma.


Crazy talk.

With the exception of #5, which I agree with, most of those tasks can be done without devoting significant attention to the task. When most people munch and listen to music, they almost do it involuntarily - you can do it without thinking. Carrying on a conversation actually takes rational thought. You have to listen, comprehend, analyze, and respond...all are functions that are needed elsewhere, like the road. If eating and listening to music is enough of a chore for you that you need extensive use of those functions, you must find them to be very difficult and not enjoyable.

hueterm
12-02-10, 01:55 PM
Since you are difficult and not enjoyable, I will elaborate:

1.) If you're going to manipulate and/or pay attention to a Nav system, or fumble with and/or read a map -- you're taking your attention away from the road. No different than a cell phone. Your argument is fail.

2.) If you're going to manipulate a car radio (which have been distracting people far longer than cell phones) and the endless myriad of entertainment toys we have today -- it's no different than a cell phone. Your argument is fail.

3.) If you're going to try and eat a Big Mac w/glop falling all over your face, or try and drink a gallon size soda while driving that can spill at any moment -- it's no different than a cell phone. Again, fail.

4.) IF YOU'RE GOING TO TALK TO PEOPLE IN THE CAR, IT'S NO DIFFERENT THAN TALKING TO THEM ON THE PHONE. Not to mention when a car full of friends starts laughing and carrying on. Sorry -- mute, silent, and motionless is the only acceptable way. Fail.

And there are a hundred different scenarios. People cause accidents for endless reasons. They're drunk. They're tired. They're stupid. They're terrible drivers. They're speeding. They're reckless. They tailgate. They get distracted. They drive in bad weather. They get lost and run off the road while trying to figure out where they are.

Nannystate activists and their drones (like you) who think that we'll all be safe w/o cell phones are shortsighted to the extreme. Mind your own business and drive defensively.

Lord Cadillac
12-02-10, 02:01 PM
If you take your expensive prized car to be valeted by some college student making minimum wage and he leaves a mark, that's your own fault, in my opinion. Take the "junker" next time.

Some people don't like driving "junkers". Some people like taking their family or friends out to a nice restaurant and using valet service when it's raining (for example).

As for Bluetooth and cell phones, they're now a part of our lives. That's just the way it is. I'd much rather have people using Bluetooth and hands-free devices than looking for, grabbing and dialing a phone when they need to make a call. Times change. You can either use bluetooth, not use bluetooth, or just not use your phone. The option is entirely the individual's...

And I agree that using Bluetooth is about as distracting as having a discussion with another occupant in the car. Maybe we should all just stay silent. What a joke.

drewsdeville
12-02-10, 02:06 PM
Since you are difficult and not enjoyable, I will elaborate:

1.) If you're going to manipulate and/or pay attention to a Nav system, or fumble with and/or read a map -- you're taking your attention away from the road. No different than a cell phone. Your argument is fail.

2.) If you're going to manipulate a car radio (which have been distracting people far longer than cell phones) and the endless myriad of entertainment toys we have today -- it's no different than a cell phone. Your argument is fail.

3.) If you're going to try and eat a Big Mac w/glop falling all over your face, or try and drink a gallon size soda while driving that can spill at any moment -- it's no different than a cell phone. Again, fail.

4.) IF YOU'RE GOING TO TALK TO PEOPLE IN THE CAR, IT'S NO DIFFERENT THAN TALKING TO THEM ON THE PHONE. Not to mention when a car full of friends starts laughing and carrying on. Sorry -- mute, silent, and motionless is the only acceptable way. Fail.

And there are a hundred different scenarios. People cause accidents for endless reasons. They're drunk. They're tired. They're stupid. They're terrible drivers. They're speeding. They're reckless. They tailgate. They get distracted. They drive in bad weather. They get lost and run off the road while trying to figure out where they are.

Nannystate activists and their drones (like you) who think that we'll all be safe w/o cell phones are shortsighted to the extreme. Mind your own business and drive defensively.

#1: I thought it'd be assumed that you aren't actually programming your nav while you are driving. That's a given.

#2: Just about everything has steering wheel controls or voice activated controls now. No taking hands from the wheel or eyes off the road. Besides, don't they include the "scan" button anymore?

#3 Of course, there are limitations here. You shouldn't be eating thanksgiving dinner in the drivers seat either, but munching on a bag of chips or candy while on a trip is certainly feasible. Related, I'm sure your employer wouldn't mind if you had a bag of jolly ranchers on your desk but if you came in on Dec 26th with a bucket full of Christmas dinner leftovers, they probably wouldn't be pleased.


By the way, where'd the poor assumption about us being safe without cell phones come from?

drewsdeville
12-02-10, 02:10 PM
Some people don't like driving "junkers". Some people like taking their family or friends out to a nice restaurant and using valet service when it's raining (for example).



There's nothing wrong with using valet at a nice resturaunt, that wasn't the point.

This is why "junker" was in qoutes. It's relative. A junker doesn't have to be a rusted out piece of junk. However, most garages in the US house at least 2 vehicles. If you are going to be handing the keys over to the said young, careless, part timer earning a $200 check every week, it only makes sense to play it safe and take the "other" vehicle if you are THAT worried about it that you consider back up warning devices necessary.

Think about it this way: you could be handing over the keys over to ME and never know it. If you knew that, would you still take the said prized car?

Playdrv4me
12-02-10, 02:11 PM
As for Bluetooth and cell phones, they're now a part of our lives. That's just the way it is. I'd much rather have people using Bluetooth and hands-free devices than looking for, grabbing and dialing a phone when they need to make a call. Times change. You can either use bluetooth, not use bluetooth, or just not use your phone. The option is entirely the individual's...


And I think this is the key... It is going to happen regardless of what laws are or aren't there. I'd much prefer everyone who's going to do it use Bluetooth and minimize the necessity of actually looking away from the road and grabbing the phone. Evolution has invariably taken over and made using phones almost second nature, so I'm less worried about the activity once it's begun, than the risk that occurs from fumbling around for the thing in the first place as you approach my car.

Stingroo
12-02-10, 02:12 PM
Mike sometimes I think you attack Drew just to do it. I was the one that said cell phones and bluetooth were bullshit in the car - and I still believe that. You guys can think it's a joke all you want, but I've seen enough stories of people getting into accidents because of it, and even had a friend total a car because of it. It's not something I plan on doing, and if your conversation is so damn important that it can't wait until you get out of the car, you must be some kind of amazing person! I wish I were that cool.

Actually, no. I don't. Some of you guys take shit way too personally, I mean what the hell? It's the Internet.

drewsdeville
12-02-10, 02:13 PM
Mike sometimes I think you attack Drew just to do it. I was the one that said cell phones and bluetooth were bullshit in the car - and I still believe that. You guys can think it's a joke all you want, but I've seen enough stories of people getting into accidents because of it, and even had a friend total a car because of it. It's not something I plan on doing, and if your conversation is so damn important that it can't wait until you get out of the car, you must be some kind of amazing person! I wish I were that cool.

Actually, no. I don't. Some of you guys take shit way too personally, I mean what the hell? It's the Internet.

Wurd. All of it.

He talks like he hates it but he's so willing, I think he secretly enjoys it.
http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3064/3036839033_cf33ba1e81.jpg

Playdrv4me
12-02-10, 02:25 PM
This cell phone deal is pretty simple, really.

Most of us agree that legislating away the right to bear arms in the name of reduced crime is generally a poor solution because all that does is keep the guns IN the hands of the law BREAKERS and OUT of the hands of the law abiding citizen. They had the guns anyway, now they have the guns AND a powerless society.

The same really applies to cell phones in cars. If you pass laws to take the phone out of the car completely, then you will invariably have the idiots who will try to fiddle around and in ADDITION to the distraction of talking in the first place, are going to work on a myriad of ways to HIDE what they're doing and focus more attention on that whole fiasco than on driving. Now they are so much further distracted than they would have been with a hands-free solution, that their vehicle becomes a rolling missile. Many would be surprised to find out that in many places where anti-texting laws have been passed, the overall effect on traffic accidents has been minimal, if not undetectable.

Understand that I am not jumping into the discussion of whether or not the cell phone itself is too distracting to use in the car, I am simply stating that you will not legislate it out of the car no matter what you do, so minimizing its impact is the best you can hope for.

Lord Cadillac
12-02-10, 02:42 PM
Mike sometimes I think you attack Drew just to do it. I was the one that said cell phones and bluetooth were bullshit in the car - and I still believe that. You guys can think it's a joke all you want, but I've seen enough stories of people getting into accidents because of it, and even had a friend total a car because of it. It's not something I plan on doing, and if your conversation is so damn important that it can't wait until you get out of the car, you must be some kind of amazing person! I wish I were that cool.

Actually, no. I don't. Some of you guys take shit way too personally, I mean what the hell? It's the Internet.

Talking to someone on a phone via Bluetooth is the same as talking to someone in your back seat. Bluetooth is a good thing if you need to be on the phone for whatever reason you may need to be on the phone while you're driving.


There's nothing wrong with using valet at a nice resturaunt, that wasn't the point.

This is why "junker" was in qoutes. It's relative. A junker doesn't have to be a rusted out piece of junk. However, most garages in the US house at least 2 vehicles. If you are going to be handing the keys over to the said young, careless, part timer earning a $200 check every week, it only makes sense to play it safe and take the "other" vehicle if you are THAT worried about it that you consider back up warning devices necessary.

Think about it this way: you could be handing over the keys over to ME and never know it. If you knew that, would you still take the said prized car?

I have two vehicles and neither one of them is less valuable than the other. I want backup cameras and devices and whatever else that can help prevent a valet employee or another person simply driving my vehicles for whatever reason to have the extra protection. I appreciate the functionality. It's not for everyone, but it is for me.

gdwriter
12-02-10, 03:05 PM
There are some features I've mentioned before that I enjoy on my car, and there's only one thing it doesn't have (other than a sunroof) that I would like: a heated steering wheel. I park in my garage, so the car isn't that cold inside when I leave for work, but when it's time to head home, it's pretty chilly inside. That's where I appreciate the heated seats, but I've notice over the past couple of weeks how cold the steering wheel is. But if it's really cold, I can just put on a pair of gloves. For some reason, the heater on the Seville takes longer to warm things up than the heater in my old DeVille (which was quite ferocious, then automatically backed off once the interior was warm). So the heated seats make things comfortable until the heater catches up.

My sister has XM in her '06 Odyssey, and it's nice, but I have no interest in it. I've had an iPod for four years, and that's what I used 95% of the time. No commercials, and I know every song I hear is going to be something I like. I'd prefer a hardwired connection rather than the cassette adapter (at least there's a cassette deck), but when I tried that last year, the stereo store could not get it to work properly after several tries and a couple of different adapter kits.

For the most part, I don't like how nav systems are integrated into dashboards, but it's getting better (particularly on the CTS). I also hate how a lot of nav systems replace ordinary buttons for your stereo or climate control (as is the case with my other sister's '03 Maxima) and you have to navigate through menus to change the temperature. They're also overpriced in most cases. I have a Garmin I bought for road trips, but otherwise, it just stays in the glovebox. I've found it very handy for ETA and finding motels at night in an unfamiliar area with screwy frontage roads. But I don't need it for day-to-day driving.

As for valet parking, I hardly ever use it, mostly because I don't go to that many places that have it. So I think of it as a little indulgence. When I went to Bend on a business trip back in September, I stayed at a pretty swanky hotel downtown, so I used the valet (and the attendant was not a pimply faced kid; he was very professional and I tipped him accordingly). When I checked out the next day, it was nice to be standing out front and watch my gleaming Cadillac pull up to the curb. I have a nice car, and I'm proud of it.

Playdrv4me
12-02-10, 03:28 PM
The 1998-2004 Seville is actually one of the unusual cars where the factory audio head unit looks far better than the Navigation unit does in the same space. Whereas the radio HU looks purpose built for the car with its matching FL display, contoured buttons and clearly labeled functions, the Nav unit looks like an afterthought that was just shoved in with an aftermarket bezel kit (which is actually almost exactly what it is except for the factory system tie-in). The Seville is really the exception on this though rather than the rule.

Me and Austin were discussing how particularly horrible the C6 Vette's factory radio looks.

By the way Gary, if I am not mistaken there is an Aux input method available for these cars which removes the CD Changer (if you had it, and even if you didn't I think the connector is there) and gives you an Aux in the center console. While the sound quality won't actually improve THAT much (you'd be surprised how good that Philips cassette adapter actually is), the convenience of a clutter-free dash is a nice thought. I have considered looking further into it but for now the cassette method is fine.

Ranger
12-02-10, 03:44 PM
Too much to get into. Too many options to list. Short version: I like most of them, but there are a few I consider useless gimmicks. Bottom line is no one gives a damn what I think or like. It's all personal preference.

gdwriter
12-02-10, 04:28 PM
One gimmick I do not care for is the plethora of buttons on today's steering wheels. In every rental car I've had over the past year or two, I've had to actually study them at a red light to see what they were for, and I'd still hit the wrong one much of the time. A couple of buttons on the steering wheel are fine; the volume on my iPod can vary widely from song to song (I mostly keep it in Shuffle mode), so I use that button a lot. And cruise control buttons are far better on the steering wheel than on a stalk. I rarely use the fan or temperature buttons since the automatic climate control is so effective. But what's nice about the steering wheel on the Seville is the buttons are spaced out among the spokes. And they're big:

http://sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc4/hs707.snc4/62743_435280548093_776743093_4901013_5364474_n.jpg

Most cars now — certainly the newer GM cars I've driven — put all these tiny buttons side by side at the 9 and 3 spokes. And they're all marked with symbols, not actually words:

http://www.cadillac-cts.info/images/2010-cadillac-cts-steeringwheel.jpg

Lord Cadillac
12-02-10, 04:39 PM
I actually like all the buttons. I want more.. I'm not sure why. :p

Stingroo
12-02-10, 05:56 PM
Buttons annoy and confuse me. :noidea: I do wish I had cruise on my steering wheel though, and radio volume. That's all though. Anything more than that to me is overkill. I like things simple.

Aron9000
12-02-10, 05:59 PM
I like all the high tech features on new cars if they are actually intuitive and easy to use. For example, I'd never buy a last gen 7 series with the I-drive, that interface just infuriates me. I've never been able to figure out Audi's system either, which is pretty dumb because it puts a lot of the buttons on the center console where you have to take your eyes off the road.

I'm also going to go on a rant about the parking sensors that are now standard on the front and rear bumpers on most cars. The ones on the front bumper are totally useless, if you can't figure out where the front of the car is, you shouldn't be driving. Same thing for the rear sensors on smaller cars, I've been in a Mini Cooper than had rear parking sensors.

I do appreciate the things on larger trucks/vans/suvs, along with the backup cameras. But if you have the backup camera, there is no need for the sensors, a lot of cars have both now days. And it can be real annoying when towing a trailer, thing goes ballistic when you put it in reverse and it senses the trailer right there.

The main reason I hate the backup sensors though is all the visual clutter they add to the appearance, they usually look just tacked on, like an afterthought.

Jesda
12-02-10, 08:13 PM
It depends on entirely how reliable those features are and how well they work.

Rainsense, cruise control, and heated seats are awesome. Onstar is nice and works quite well.
Cadillac's parking sensors on the Seville are imprecise.

It also helps if the poorly implemented features can be turned off, or are cheap to repair. Of course with the Seville, nothing is cheap to fix, but when it works it generally works really well. However, if the car wasn't smooth, powerful, and quiet, all the toys would be purposeless.

Playdrv4me
12-02-10, 08:14 PM
LOL yea... I'm not sure who ever thought FRONT parking sensors were necessary. Maybe on a 1972 Cadillac, but a 7 Series? I don't see what the hell the point is. And I agree, the Germans, and BMW in particular like to put those sensors on ALL of their models small to large. I can only surmise this has to do with the lack of space in Europe and the fact that you are always parking on street sides with mere INCHES to spare between you and the vehicle ahead and behind you.

Still, there are plenty of GOOD things the Europeans get that we don't, so I don't see why the sensors have to be replicated across the pond on small cars and at the front of larger ones.

gary88
12-02-10, 08:30 PM
Still, there are plenty of GOOD things the Europeans get that we don't, so I don't see why the sensors have to be replicated across the pond on small cars and at the front of larger ones.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KbkNl8eWy7k

orconn
12-02-10, 08:45 PM
It depends on entirely how reliable those features are and how well they work.

Rainsense, cruise control, and heated seats are awesome. Onstar is nice and works quite well.
Cadillac's parking sensors on the Seville are imprecise.

It also helps if the poorly implemented features can be turned off, or are cheap to repair. Of course with the Seville, nothing is cheap to fix, but when it works it generally works really well. However, if the car wasn't smooth, powerful, and quiet, all the toys would be purposeless.

My sentiment completely, well said! One of the very good things I have experienced with American cars is that the accessories by and large work and are reliable over the long term. This cannot be said, in my experience, with German or British cars .... whose accessories fail on a regular basis and are inordinately expensive to fix. When I say "American" cars I really mean the better quality cars from GM; my experience with accessories on cars from other makers has not been as good.

hueterm
12-02-10, 09:10 PM
Some people don't like driving "junkers". Some people like taking their family or friends out to a nice restaurant and using valet service when it's raining (for example).

As for Bluetooth and cell phones, they're now a part of our lives. That's just the way it is. I'd much rather have people using Bluetooth and hands-free devices than looking for, grabbing and dialing a phone when they need to make a call. Times change. You can either use bluetooth, not use bluetooth, or just not use your phone. The option is entirely the individual's...

And I agree that using Bluetooth is about as distracting as having a discussion with another occupant in the car. Maybe we should all just stay silent. What a joke.


And I think this is the key... It is going to happen regardless of what laws are or aren't there. I'd much prefer everyone who's going to do it use Bluetooth and minimize the necessity of actually looking away from the road and grabbing the phone. Evolution has invariably taken over and made using phones almost second nature, so I'm less worried about the activity once it's begun, than the risk that occurs from fumbling around for the thing in the first place as you approach my car.


:thumbsup: Thank you!

hueterm
12-02-10, 09:26 PM
Mike sometimes I think you attack Drew just to do it. I was the one that said cell phones and bluetooth were bullshit in the car - and I still believe that. You guys can think it's a joke all you want, but I've seen enough stories of people getting into accidents because of it, and even had a friend total a car because of it. It's not something I plan on doing, and if your conversation is so damn important that it can't wait until you get out of the car, you must be some kind of amazing person! I wish I were that cool.

Actually, no. I don't. Some of you guys take shit way too personally, I mean what the hell? It's the Internet.


Ray, I know you were the one that brought it up -- and I responded with several, sometimes outlandish reasons why I disagree on cells and distracted driving. We are more than welcome to disagree.

I'm sure there are a lot of people that have had personal involvement with cell phones and distracted driving. But there are lots of things that are just as distracting -- or drivers that are simply idiots. One of my friends growing up (who is still an idiot at 40+) was an even bigger idiot at 17 and wrecked several of his mom's cars, one of which was totaled (w/no cell phone in sight).

The only cell phones around in 1987 were either hard mounted in the car, or those enormous Motorola brick cell phones like the one my Dad had that was $4000, about a dollar a minute, and had a 10 minute battery life. People were plenty distracted before cell phones...

I'm just going to say it -- there are a lot of people out there who are pretty much too stupid to live, much less drive down the highway 6 feet from you at 80 MPH....but that's the world we live in. There's not much we can do about it but be as safe as we can be.

W/regard to "attacking" Drew...unless I'm in a big hurry, I'm usually going to validate his day and respond to his smart ass comments. And sometimes I'll even come back to them and respond later, when I have time. I'm just that way. On the occasions that Drew doesn't have a smart ass comment, I usually don't say anything. And we have been known to agree on occasion...

hueterm
12-02-10, 09:48 PM
To expand on the thread's original topic:

XM = must have. I will soon have 6 licenses....I make a lot of road trips and love Fox News and the conservative talk radio channel (as I'm sure, does Gary...)

MP3 is growing on me -- I just had it installed in the DCM RMW, and it will soon go in the White RMW. I have a passable FM modulator that sort of works in the EXT, as the antenna is in the front fender, but it's useless in the DVC and ETC... However, I don't think I'll have an aux jack installed in any of the Caddys.

Heated seats, I like -- as I HATE wearing a coat. I usually leave them on a couple of minutes and then turn them off. I can live w/o them.

Heated wheel seems like overkill to me. But I just don't get that cold.

Cooled seats would be nice, until they break. Same for massaging seats, but I'd choose cooled over massaging.

Parking sensors are invaluable in the EXT -- it was one of the reasons I sold my Avalanche. In the cars, not so much. Even the wagons, which are remarkably easy to parallel park. I'd get them if they were an option, but they're not a deal breaker on a used car.

HID is nice, but not absolutely necessary. Silverstar Ultras are very close for a fraction of the cost.

I would love on board Bluetooth, but the Motorola speakerphones are pretty good as a fallback item.

If I were getting a very new car, then I'd want on board Nav, but the one in the EXT sucks and it's the Gen2 model. I'm sure the ones in the 98 Seville and 00 Deville are just as bad. Garmins are so good, so cheap, and so easy to use -- it's hard to justify a clunky old nav that will probably break. (I'm on my third in the EXT...)

Twilight Sentinel...yes

Adaptive Cruise, eh...I'd rather just pay attention.

Keyless Go (as M-B called it) -- NO. I like cheap keys, and lots of them, with separate remotes. $100+ for a key is ridiculous.

Nightvision, yeah, that worked so well for Cadillac....no

Jesda
12-02-10, 10:08 PM
Missed the valet discussion.
The point of going out with friends and family to a nice restaurant or theater is to enjoy the entire luxury experience. This includes everything -- what you wear, the table service, the venue, the people you're with, and the drive there. If you're driving your lesser car when you have a nicer one, then why bother spending money on the rest of the experience?

If I go to a big city and stay in a nice hotel in a nice area and pay a premium for it, then I'd like to enjoy the convenience of calling from my room and having my car waiting there, warmed up (or AC running) at the entrance. It depends on the location, but in an urban area it would be stupid to pay extra for a room with a view of the water, and then have to find a parking space in a parking garage and walk two blocks back to the hotel. Go big or go home, otherwise save your money and chill out at a Motel 6, which I often do. Some trips I take are about necessity, seeing relatives, or whatever, and some trips I take are purely about leisure. Valet service and nice cars are a part of that leisure experience.

Of course, you could say that luxury dining, travel, and entertainment are completely unnecessary, but some people have the means to enjoy such things, and this is after all a forum focused on luxury goods, some old and some new.

Ranger
12-02-10, 10:09 PM
most cars now — certainly the newer gm cars i've driven — put all these tiny buttons side by side at the 9 and 3 spokes. And they're all marked with symbols, not actually words:
I HATE SYMBOLS!!!! :cursin: Quit making these things for the illiterate lowest common denominator. If you can't read the @&%#ing buttons, you can't read the road signs and should not be behind the wheel in the first place. I hate being treated like an idiot!

Rant over.

Jesda
12-02-10, 10:15 PM
I hate the symbols too. They often aren't universal, so its just a pain referring to the manual or playing with them and figuring it out. Took me a few tries to understand the on-board computer in the 06+ DTS.

drewsdeville
12-02-10, 10:31 PM
Missed the valet discussion.
The point of going out with friends and family to a nice restaurant or theater is to enjoy the entire luxury experience. This includes everything -- what you wear, the table service, the venue, the people you're with, and the drive there. If you're driving your lesser car when you have a nicer one, then why bother spending money on the rest of the experience?


Oh I agree, I just thought worrying about valet damage was dumb. My point was that if you are that worried about it, then don't valet it. If you MUST valet it, then don't drive it. Some people are like that and it makes them happy (Sandy!).

gary88
12-02-10, 11:08 PM
In respect to symbols instead of words... you must remember people overseas speak languages other than English.

gdwriter
12-02-10, 11:11 PM
However, if the car wasn't smooth, powerful, and quiet, all the toys would be purposeless.Exactly. The toys certainly enhance the experience, though. As does the soft leather and gleaming wood trim. That's why I drive a Cadillac.

I'm glad my Seville does not have the rear parking sensors. I think they look like ass. I do, however, appreciate the auto dipping mirror on the passenger side; there are a few places in Corvallis where I parallel park, and it comes in handy making sure I'm close enough, but not too close to the curb. It also helps when I'm backing out in a small parking lot.

Playdrv4me
12-02-10, 11:21 PM
In respect to symbols instead of words... you must remember people overseas speak languages other than English.

Exactly. Personally I don't mind the symbols, and in fact there is something that bugs me about just seeing the plebeian word CRUISE light up on my dash instead of the little gauge symbol. I just wish they were a little better standardized between manufacturers.

hueterm
12-02-10, 11:22 PM
As a rule, I dislike using valets, but depending on the restaurant and the location, it's either expected or unavoidable. I'm not Ferris Bueller's Day Off paranoid, but especially w/the older cars, I'm always afraid they're going to slam the door and loosen trim....and my pet peeve -- SLAM THE POWER PULL DOWN TRUNK..... However, if that is done in my presence, they risk getting cut... Plus, the overhang on the wagons is about as long as a Smart car.

I would be much less concerned if I had some newer plain jane car I didn't care anything about. The wagons and the Concours may be old, but they're in excellent condition (at a sickeningly high cost) and parts are hard to find...

Ranger
12-02-10, 11:23 PM
In respect to symbols instead of words... you must remember people overseas speak languages other than English.
But these are American cars, bought, sold and driven in the U.S., not export versions. Those could be equipped with symbols just like right hand drives and export codes (DTC's).

hueterm
12-02-10, 11:25 PM
^^^ THIS! However, if English is barely taught in school anymore, requiring it in cars is just a pipe dream now...

Ranger
12-02-10, 11:32 PM
That's probably a good point judging by some of the posts I see. Paragraph long run on sentences, no caps or punctuations. All by people who are old enough to drive and thus should have had at least 12 years of schooling. Rather pathetic and does not bode well for this country.

Jesda
12-02-10, 11:34 PM
In respect to symbols instead of words... you must remember people overseas speak languages other than English.

And I've come to expect that in the Saab (which has the most confusing and idiotic climate controls ever), but in a 2007 DTS I don't see the point. That model doesnt even get sent to China.

Even the Japanese cars I've owned used English on the buttons and controls. And not "Engrish" :)

Stingroo
12-02-10, 11:55 PM
English not taught in schools anymore? Oh come on... give me a break.

hueterm
12-03-10, 12:04 AM
And I've come to expect that in the Saab (which has the most confusing and idiotic climate controls ever), but in a 2007 DTS I don't see the point. That model doesnt even get sent to China.

Even the Japanese cars I've owned used English on the buttons and controls. And not "Engrish" :)


:sneaky:


On another feature that we've discussed ad nauseum on the Forums, but I did always love the auxiliary blinker/headlight/high beam indicators at the edge of the fenders, say on an 80s model (C bodies may have had them as well) -- and the snake eyes for the tail/brake lights (my Concours has these).

They need to bring these back...

EChas3
12-03-10, 12:18 AM
'Gimimck's' are why I own a Cadillac STS. A fully-loaded one has more features for the money (3-year lease return) than any other car I found. It's an outstanding American car in almost every way.

Keyless entry and push button start spoils other cars for me. It's so convenient and safer for the car to lock & unlock itself.

Thanks to a heated steering wheel, I still don't need to wear gloves every day (usually needed in September here in Wisconsin!) Heated seats help make up for the cold of leather seats, I'd prefer cloth. Remote start is a big winner; as is the ability to raise the windows from my desk.

Automatic lights are another great safety feature. Automatic high-beams and wipers reduce the stress of night and poor-weather driving. Adaptive Cruise does the same and has been proven to reduce traffic congestion (Chrysler was invloved and the results were dramatic like 50% improvement).

I enjoy XM for several reasons. Mostly because I don't have to mute commercials. I have several favorite presets. The wealth of presets in my STS make it rare for me to have to seek or search. We code them for nearby markets so traffic reports and local info is easy to find.

Navigation systems make it much safer for my wife to travel on her own. She is not great with directions and I can pre-program a trip for her and the car finds the way. It's great on vaction for finding services (food & lodging) and points of interest. I've never used the buttons for Police or Hospital, but it's there.

Bluetooth raises an interesting concern. My work requires me to be on call. A call is a distraction but would be worse without Bluetooth. A phone conversation is NOT the same as speaking with passengers; it's more distracting. When talking on the phone, one doesn't have the non-verbal cues that make conversation easier. The other participant(s) don't see an approaching interchange, etc. The real issue isn't 'hands-free' it is one of 'keeping focused' and keeping distractions in their place.

The world is full of distractions. Each individual is responsible for their own control of those distractions. Attempts to legislate personal responsibility are not going to protect us from irresponsible people.

Common sense isn't common and isn't a sense!

Stingroo
12-03-10, 12:28 AM
'Gimimck's' are why I own a Cadillac STS. A fully-loaded one has more features for the money (3-year lease return) than any other car I found. It's an outstanding American car in almost every way.

Keyless entry and push button start spoils other cars for me. It's so convenient and safer for the car to lock & unlock itself.

Thanks to a heated steering wheel, I still don't need to wear gloves every day (usually needed in September here in Wisconsin!) Heated seats help make up for the cold of leather seats, I'd prefer cloth. Remote start is a big winner; as is the ability to raise the windows from my desk.

Automatic lights are another great safety feature. Automatic high-beams and wipers reduce the stress of night and poor-weather driving. Adaptive Cruise does the same and has been proven to reduce traffic congestion (Chrysler was invloved and the results were dramatic like 50% improvement).

I enjoy XM for several reasons. Mostly because I don't have to mute commercials. I have several favorite presets. The wealth of presets in my STS make it rare for me to have to seek or search. We code them for nearby markets so traffic reports and local info is easy to find.

Navigation systems make it much safer for my wife to travel on her own. She is not great with directions and I can pre-program a trip for her and the car finds the way. It's great on vaction for finding services (food & lodging) and points of interest. I've never used the buttons for Police or Hospital, but it's there.

Bluetooth raises an interesting concern. My work requires me to be on call. A call is a distraction but would be worse without Bluetooth. A phone conversation is NOT the same as speaking with passengers; it's more distracting. When talking on the phone, one doesn't have the non-verbal cues that make conversation easier. The other participant(s) don't see an approaching interchange, etc. The real issue isn't 'hands-free' it is one of 'keeping focused' and keeping distractions in their place.

The world is full of distractions. Each individual is responsible for their own control of those distractions. Attempts to legislate personal responsibility are not going to protect us from irresponsible people.

Common sense isn't common and isn't a sense!

THANK YOU. Good god. You're my hero.

I~LUV~Caddys8792
12-03-10, 01:01 AM
The sweet luxury car features are why I buy a luxury car instead of a plain jane full sized car. When I was buying my Roadmaster in '04, I was considering an LT1 Caprice Classic as well, but I looked at them, and they didn't have any of the cool luxury car features that the Roadmaster or Fleetwood did. They didn't have the auto climate control, the auto dimming mirror, electronic traction control, etc etc, and that's why I didn't consider them, as it was basically just a full sized family sedan that didn't have anything my dad's 97 Lumina didn't, other than power seats.

My favorite luxury features on new cars are heated seats, automatic climate control, heated steering wheels and the rearview parking assist/parking cameras. All the heated stuff is AWESOME in the Minnesota winters and automatic climate control is SO much better than having to constantly fiddle with the temp & fan speed dials. I love the rearview parking assist & parking cameras because I've got bad depth perception and it's hard to tell where cars end, especially a lot of ones where the hood drops off out of sight.


BTW, I talk on my phone all the time when I'm behind the wheel and find it far less distracting than having a car full of passengers, especially if you're having fun with your passengers. Trying to talk to 2-3 different people is far harder than it is to talk to one. That "no cell phones in cars" law is such bull shit to me. No blue tooth for me either. I just talk directly into my droid. When you're on the phone, your eyes are generally looking straight ahead, out the windshield. When you've got passengers with you, you're trying to make some form of eye contact when you're conversing.

hueterm
12-03-10, 01:14 AM
Agreed...although I do like BT for a long drive...

I~LUV~Caddys8792
12-03-10, 01:15 AM
Maybe I should look into getting one. I don't think it's that big of a deal, and it's another thing for me to have to put on and take off every time I get out of my car. I drive with nothing in my pockets, so everytime I'm in the car, the wallet and cell phone comes out.

gdwriter
12-03-10, 01:40 AM
I forgot about the auto-dimming mirror. Cruella was the first car I had with it, so I've simply gotten used to it after 5+ years. It certainly proves itself useful at this time of year when it gets dark at 4:30 in Oregon. Not only does my Seville have auto-dimming on the interior mirror, the exterior mirror on the driver's side is also auto-dimming. Considering my eyes are very sensitive to bright light (I'll often wear sunglasses outside even if it's rather cloudy), I certainly appreciate these features. Not Cadillac exclusive, but still standard on most contemporary Cadillacs.

I~LUV~Caddys8792
12-03-10, 01:42 AM
The auto-dimmer in the Buick doesn't work, it never has as long as I've owned it. I really miss one that works well though, that is a great feature.

gdwriter
12-03-10, 01:43 AM
Maybe I should look into getting one. I don't think it's that big of a deal, and it's another thing for me to have to put on and take off every time I get out of my car. I drive with nothing in my pockets, so everytime I'm in the car, the wallet and cell phone comes out.Since you spend such a large portion of your workday behind the wheel, I think it would be worth having. I keep my Bluetooth headset in the door pocket and bring it in every few days to recharge it. I don't make that many phone calls, in the car or otherwise, but it's nice to have (plus hand-held phones will driving are illegal in Oregon and many other states). Chad, do you remember that time you called me when I was driving and didn't have access to my headset? I had to put the phone in my lap while I drove past a Corvallis cop? :rofl:

Jesda
12-03-10, 01:45 AM
English not taught in schools anymore? Oh come on... give me a break.

I've seen some horrifically bad papers...

Playdrv4me
12-03-10, 02:38 AM
Maybe I should look into getting one. I don't think it's that big of a deal, and it's another thing for me to have to put on and take off every time I get out of my car. I drive with nothing in my pockets, so everytime I'm in the car, the wallet and cell phone comes out.

If you don't want to deal with the headset, I would suggest one of the auxiliary vehicle systems available at Wal-Mart. You can get something as simple as a Bluetooth speaker mounted low in the car, or, if you are willing to replace that broken auto dimming mirror, you can get a replacement BT mirror that will even display the incoming caller ID for you.

Where these "stop-gap" cheapo methods fail is that unless you get something more high end, like a Parrot Bluetooth system, you can't dial OUT from the device. You would have to dial with your phone, then transmit the audio to the speaker/mirror/etc.

Stingroo
12-03-10, 08:24 AM
I've seen some horrifically bad papers...

I have too, but that doesn't mean the language isn't taught.

drewsdeville
12-03-10, 10:01 AM
You can't teach something to someone who doesn't care to learn it. Bad papers don't necessarily suggest that English not being taught.

Lord Cadillac
12-03-10, 12:19 PM
Oh I agree, I just thought worrying about valet damage was dumb. My point was that if you are that worried about it, then don't valet it. If you MUST valet it, then don't drive it. Some people are like that and it makes them happy (Sandy!).

I don't worry about the valet guys hitting my car into objects because of the sensors and backup camera. That's the point.


A phone conversation is NOT the same as speaking with passengers; it's more distracting. When talking on the phone, one doesn't have the non-verbal cues that make conversation easier. The other participant(s) don't see an approaching interchange, etc. The real issue isn't 'hands-free' it is one of 'keeping focused' and keeping distractions in their place.


THANK YOU. Good god. You're my hero.

I entirely disagree, as I believe most people here do as well. A hands-free phone conversation is no more distracting than a conversation with a back seat passenger. Either way, you're still taking a little concentration off of your driving. Just like many other things do as we're driving - such as a horn beeping. There's nothing wrong with disagreements. We're all entitled to our opinions.

Cadillacboy
12-03-10, 12:46 PM
All the luxury cars should be benefited from techo gadgets and yes I find them very useful .My fave one is rain sensing wipers along with auto headlamps

MauiV
12-03-10, 12:51 PM
I am trying to find the video test where you sit with a drivers perspective and go down a basic city street. You are listening for certain key words that you must hit a certain key for acknowledgement (listening to the person on the other end of the phone) while also watching pedestrians cross in front of you at successive corners and count the number of people in a certain color shirt. Sounds easy.

I have a "3rd ear" that is a development required at work listening to several conversations in the room at once and on multi tasking while giving extreme attention my profession scores at the top right along with race car drivers and we are required to catch readback errors with the potential of life lost if we miss them and I can tell you I did MUCH better than the average but was still far from 100%

We all "think" we are better drivers than the idiot next to us that couldnt merge at the on ramp and the soccer mom doing 62 in the left lane with the phone to her ear but I have essentially cut using the phone out of my drives since I went to a 6 speed and I cant say I really miss it.

Stingroo
12-03-10, 02:53 PM
Yeah I've taken that test. It's an eye-opener for sure, but some people will always think they're better than everyone else.

I guess that's what luxury cars are about :rolleyes:

Jesda
12-03-10, 05:03 PM
I'm not fond of pedestrians anyway.

hueterm
12-03-10, 05:56 PM
I'm sure they have 800 tests for 800 things. In most conversations, I only pay attention to about half of what anyone is saying anyway -- and even if I weren't on the phone I couldn't remember the count of how many pedestrians I saw or what they were wearing. Mainly because...I'm watching the road so I don't hit them...

MauiV
12-03-10, 06:05 PM
The visual part of this test is just to observe the surroundings, as you would driving.

EChas3
12-03-10, 09:56 PM
THANK YOU. Good god. You're my hero.

You are too kind.

As I tell my friends, "I'm not getting smarter. But I have learned a thing or two."

billc83
12-03-10, 10:17 PM
To paraphrase Jay Leno:

"Men don't want to admit they're not great at driving or sex."

EChas3
12-03-10, 10:20 PM
I entirely disagree, as I believe most people here do as well. A hands-free phone conversation is no more distracting than a conversation with a back seat passenger. Either way, you're still taking a little concentration off of your driving. Just like many other things do as we're driving - such as a horn beeping. There's nothing wrong with disagreements. We're all entitled to our opinions.

Intelligent people can agree to disagree. We can also be friends. Too often, people feel like they have to agree to preserve comity or a friendly social atmosphere.

We do disagree on this one. A phone conversation, especially a technical one, requires higher levels of concentration and abstraction. We tend to picture our particpant and imagine what they are talking about. We attempt to put ourselves in their situation.

That's vastly different than exchanging comments with someone in the back seat. The shared experience of place and time make that much easier than speaking with someone in a different place and surroundings.

That's why I feel the issue with cell phones isn't so much one of having one's hands free. It's the ability to concentrate. I try to always ask, "Is this a good time?" when I'm calling. Conversely, I often will ask if I can call back or pull off and give a call the attention it merits.

Now, I'd bet we do agree on the idiocy of texting or reading while driving...

High Regards,

Charlie

Ranger
12-03-10, 11:02 PM
Yeah I've taken that test. It's an eye-opener for sure, but some people will always think they're better than everyone else.

I guess that's what luxury cars are about :rolleyes:
I suspect you might want to substitute ALL for SOME in that statement.

The thing that amazes me is that most people can have a conversation with a passenger while driving and have no problem, but as soon as they put a phone to their ear, their concentration switches from driving to the phone conversation and they become a deadly hazard to navigation.

mhamilton
12-04-10, 10:52 AM
Speaking of gadgets, I heard on CNN last night that some people (don't know who) are trying to get into legislation that all new cars have back-up cameras by 2014. Now that is one thing I don't understand in a car... vans and trucks okay, but a car? Whatever... electronics are cheap...

EChas3
12-04-10, 01:13 PM
Almost all sedans are now designed with the high 'tail' that make it hard to judge rear clearance. So I'd agree there is value in such systems.

What I don't like is the growth of regulations 'for our own good'. Far too many people have far too much time on their hands. With all the mandated features, cars are getting so expensive that the only inexpensive cars are so small and cheaply built that they are sh*tboxes.

If someone wants the feature, they can work hard and save for the car they want. I am disgusted by those who simply want to impose their ideas on everyone. This is another example of a some small group of people promoting their ideas and pressuring government to regulate private behavior.

We have become a system of Minority Rules.

Playdrv4me
12-04-10, 01:15 PM
as soon as they put a phone to their ear, their concentration switches from driving to the phone conversation and they become a deadly hazard to navigation.

Precisely illustrates my point.

Fortunately, for those of us who appreciate and are able to use our phones in our cars safely, wireless industry lobbies would probably prevent absolute banishment of the phone from the car from ever happening. Sad it has to come to that point but well, it works in our favor for once.

Jesda
12-04-10, 01:20 PM
I'd rather not ever be called by anyone. I despise telephone calls.

MauiV
12-04-10, 04:29 PM
Precisely illustrates my point.

Fortunately, for those of us who appreciate and are able to use our phones in our cars safely, wireless industry lobbies would probably prevent absolute banishment of the phone from the car from ever happening. Sad it has to come to that point but well, it works in our favor for once.

Which is exactly NO ONE

Playdrv4me
12-04-10, 06:10 PM
Which is exactly NO ONE

Gross generalities are not your friend. Remember that for each of your awareness tests, I can stack up just as many *objective* studies that have found that taking the cell phone out of the car has a negligible impact on traffic accident statistics. Does this mean that we are able to overcome the effects of decreased awareness over time? I have no idea, it really doesn't ultimately matter.

In fact, most of those studies don't even bother with TALKING on the phone, but what we would all ASSUME is the far more dangerous TEXT while driving. Even when that was abolished in certain areas, not only did the accidents not decrease, in some cases they increased. I'm not sure how that is even possible, but apparently that is exactly what happened.

And let's take this one step further. Ultimately the worst road going hazard, even worse than drunk driving in some cases (or at least on par with it) is drowsy driving. Now the newest vehicles come with driving awareness monitors that alert you if they detect you are falling asleep. Technically one could see this two ways. Sure it might prevent an accident from happening in the first place, but it also has the potential negative impact of becoming a security blanket for those who have a habit of driving this way. If they think the system will always be there to wake them up, they may just rely on it rather than the correct thing to do, which is pulling off and resting in the first place. So should we now implement the same standards for 4 wheelers that we do for truck drivers, forcing them to keep logs of rest stops and other activities to be checked by an officer at inspection points randomly placed on the highway? The nanny state... Give an inch, take a mile.

But again, everyone is focusing on some figure of just how much of a decrease in awareness the cell phone is. I'm simply saying that LAWS FORCING you to take the phone out of the car are a BAD IDEA, whilst technologies that reduce the effects of the phone are in turn a POSITIVE idea if the phones are going to be there ANYWAY. Why is this so hard to grasp?

hueterm
12-04-10, 07:50 PM
Which is exactly NO ONE


So then why don't the pilots you talk to all day all fall out of the sky as soon as they say something into their radio?

Flying a plane is far more difficult and requires paying attention to a lot more things than does driving a car -- and somehow almost all of them manage to take off and land without crashing into something...

MauiV
12-04-10, 09:25 PM
Just making something illegal doesnt make anyone stop doing it. Making texting illegal in a car is about as effective as making drinking a soda in yor car illegal. Whos gonna stop just because you should? We alL THINK we are the excetion. That WE are still scanning our mirrors, checking the blind spot, looking 40-50 yards ahead and not just at the tail lights in front of us. All that changes when you start in on a phone conversation, scold the kids in the back seat or reach into the passanger floorboard to retrieve the fast food bag thats now spilling on the carpet. Its all distracted driving.

And planes dont hit something for various reasons. If the pilot has a radio its because someone is telling him what to do and their whole purpose is to NOT have him trade paint with somone else. His plane also has TCAS, which also is a very good system to keep him from hitting another flying tin can. In commercial multipiloted aircraft the guy actually flying ISNT the guy on the radio talking. You also DONT talk to aircraft during critical stages of flight-- short final and takeoff roll. Their concentration and attention should not be breached at those times. Single piloted fast movers--fighters and attack type arcraft get their next frequancy change on the ground before they start takeoff roll PRECIESLY for the reason of they dont want to be messing with the radio buttons during climb out. The main reason planes dont hit is very simple, Big Sky-Small Plane theory. There isnt another plane 4 feet from each side of them them as they do 80mph down a restrictive piece of pavement and they have THREE dimensions in which to dodge one another. Standard IFR seperation dictates 3 miles lateral or 1000' vertical seperation between a/c. Its hard to hit anyone that way and thats the point. VFR rules dictate see and be seen and of course distracted pilots do run into each other, it happened in NY not so long ago. As long as there is room for humans to make a mistake you can bet someone will find a way to do it. I am in that group that feels I can talk on a phone, even holding the phone and drive just fine but over the last 3 years I have gotten away from it and I can say I feel like it was a SMART move and it wouldnt hurt my feelings at all if the technology existed that made a moving phone not work at all.

Playdrv4me
12-05-10, 12:25 AM
Just making something illegal doesnt make anyone stop doing it... it wouldnt hurt my feelings at all if the technology existed that made a moving phone not work at all.

What surprises me about this statement is that the first half absolutely validates my point, while the second half scares me a bit. Most on this forum are typically on the same page about government involvement in our lives, however when there is a single issue we feel strongly about, we welcome the tentacles of the government with open arms. Technology that causes a moving phone not to work is STILL a thinly veiled way of saying you want a higher authority to CONTROL someone else's activities. This is still nanny state politics.

So if we can all agree that these sort of draconian measures are generally a move in the WRONG direction, and we also agree that making something simply illegal won't stop people from doing it, then we are once again back at square one... Technology that MINIMIZES the level of distraction is the best you can hope for. I completely respect the viewpoint of those who think the cell phone causes too much distraction, but I VEHEMENTLY oppose any point of view that believes the government should dictate its use. You can not have it both ways.

Ranger
12-05-10, 01:08 PM
I try to stay out of these discussions, but I have to agree with Maui. Every time I see someone drifting or doing 20 under and causing traffic to avoid them, invariably they are on a cell phone (we've all seen it). NO call is so important that it cannot wait until you reach your destination or if it is THAT important, just pull over. How did we ever manage to get along without cell phones? Rules (and FAR's) are written in blood. When enough people die and there is a large enough out cry, then and only then will it change. It's easy to say, let the fools kill themselves until the day the phone call comes and you find out it was YOUR mother, father, brother, sister, wife or child that was killed by some distracted driver engrossed in a phone call. Suddenly every thing takes on a different view. You can't legislate stupidity, but you don't have to encourage it.

drewsdeville
12-05-10, 01:33 PM
How did we ever manage to get along without cell phones? Rules (and FAR's) are written in blood. When enough people die and there is a large enough out cry, then and only then will it change.

I agree, will change in law translate to change in practice? No. Blood is the only way to get through our thickheaded society.

The law doesn't stop anyone from proceeding with what they want, or feel they need to do (hell, how many political discussions here in end "I don't give a f***, I do what I want"<- Definintely some flawed logic there, but that's another discussion). If it did, the world would be crime-free. What criminal thinks about how the law feels about his actions before he goes through? None of them care, and neither does anyone with a cell phone in their hand. What can the law do, fine them? Who cares? It's just money, it's replaceable, and it's not an effective deterrent.

Food for thought: Why is it most DUI offenders end up with MULTIPLE offenses over their driving career?

We live in a selfish society in which most of the population has no concern for their fellow neighbor ("I don't give a f***, I do what I want") and sometimes as well as themselves, and the law CANNOT change that. The consequences by the law aren't enough. Everyone's living in the moment, for themselves and doesn't give a damn if it's you or their own mother next to them as they hurl down the road in a 2 ton guided missile at 70mph, concentrating on effectively delivering the oh-so-important fresh gossip heard over lunch break today.

It's unfortunate that most of those people can only learn the hard way, which, as you mention, could be the death of a loved one or even self destruction.

EChas3
12-05-10, 03:03 PM
I'd rather not ever be called by anyone. I despise telephone calls.

I agree. Unfortunately, I can't afford to retire (yet).

As to some members' contention that it is impossible to drive safely with distactions, I'd have to say, "Speak for yourself. Not me."

I exercise caution. By recognizing the risks presented by distractions, one can focus first on the serious business of driving. I haven't had a collision since I was a (stupid) kid. I did get a speeding ticket 15 years ago, but by itself, I don't consider 75 in a 65 MPH zone to be dangerous. (On the Tri-state Tollway around Chicago, the limit is 55 and any speed below 65 actually risks a collision from behind.)

Controlling life's distractions isn't always easy; but it is possible. Let the phone ring. Pull off if you have to. Concentrate on the things you can control and get there alive. We are all responsible for doing the same.

I~LUV~Caddys8792
12-05-10, 03:13 PM
Because I spend 1,000 miles a week on the road, I spend most of my monthly talk time on the phone while I'm on the road. I've never gotten a ticket, got in an accident or gone off the road because of a phone conversation I was having whilst driving. BUT, I never talk on the phone when I'm driving cars to the gas station or back for job #2, because I'm not as familiar with those cars as I am my trusty Astro or Regal.

It's really just common sense. Most of the driving I do is on flat, wide highways, with wide open spaces and not much traffic. If I was talking on the phone while driving in tight, fast moving traffic or during inclement weather, it would be harder, and therefore I don't place calls in bad weather or in tight traffic, but if I get a call and my hands are free and the conditions aren't too bad, I'll pick it up.

Most of the time, after a long work day, on my long drive home, I'll call a friend or family member to chat and pass time & miles. My iPod & talk radio gets old after a while and sometimes it's nice to talk to a friendly face.

BUT, whenever I see someone driving really slow on the highway or inattentive, they're usually on their cell phone.

Playdrv4me
12-05-10, 03:30 PM
Yea I really REALLY don't like holding the phone up to my ear while I am driving if I can at all avoid it because that DOES create a hazard in tying up one of your hands. I always like to be ready to grab the wheel for any reason so I would concede that the HOLDING of a phone can increase the likelihood of accidents. I also am not a fan of those dangly ear things so Bluetooth in a car for so many reasons is a really sought after feature for me.

Lord Cadillac
12-05-10, 04:48 PM
I'm not quite sure why but I find it much less distracting to use blutooth than hold a phone to my ear while driving. I actually HATE talking on a phone while I'm driving - but it happens from time to time. I hated driving with a phone to my ear ten times more...

Jesda
12-05-10, 07:01 PM
Well, to be clear, I don't mind when you guys call. There's usually something interesting or amusing to talk about.

But lately, I've just turned off my ringer and check my voicemails and missed calls online when I get home (youmail rocks! and its free).

gary88
12-05-10, 08:43 PM
Personally I am all in favor of a law here like in the UK where physically holding a cell phone while driving is illegal. Just on my drive back today there was some douche in a pickup texting and creating traffic. There's absolutely no reason you should be operating a vehicle while having one of your hands tied up with a phone. In September 2009 one of my friends who was walking on the sidewalk got hit by a taxi driver who blew a red light because he was texting, and to this day over 14 months later she is still re-learning how to walk, talk, and regain basic motor skills due to the brain damage she suffered. We really shouldn't have to pass laws that deal with common sense, but just look around you next time you're on the road.

orconn
12-05-10, 09:07 PM
It seems like every time I go out I get stuck behind someone who is so involve in the cell conversation they didn't notice the light had changed .... so we sat till halfway through the next interval. I do think hand held cell phones while driving should be barred. I'll still reserve my opinion of hands free conversations, it would seem ashame to prohibit their use in light traffic on limited access roads, but experience thus far doesn't confirm the wisdom of even their use while driving in traffic.

Playdrv4me
12-05-10, 09:32 PM
Personally I am all in favor of a law here like in the UK where physically holding a cell phone while driving is illegal.

A lot of localities have tried this and found it to not be all that effective. However, if push comes to shove and some kind of law MUST be employed, I would be ok with one that prevents holding the phone but allows hands-free use... that would be a regrettable, but acceptable compromise. I certainly haven't ever looked over and seen someone jabbering away on a hands-free solution that was moving slowly, whilst hand-holders can be a different story.

I~LUV~Caddys8792
12-05-10, 10:26 PM
Some people, my self included, cannot pull over every time we have to make a phone call while on the road, so the US (or hopefully, individual states) cannot ban cell phone usage entirely, but they could make it illegal if it's not hands free. I bet the bluetooth lobbies would be all for that.

Ranger
12-05-10, 11:09 PM
Personally I am all in favor of a law here like in the UK where physically holding a cell phone while driving is illegal. Just on my drive back today there was some douche in a pickup texting and creating traffic. There's absolutely no reason you should be operating a vehicle while having one of your hands tied up with a phone. In September 2009 one of my friends who was walking on the sidewalk got hit by a taxi driver who blew a red light because he was texting, and to this day over 14 months later she is still re-learning how to walk, talk, and regain basic motor skills due to the brain damage she suffered. We really shouldn't have to pass laws that deal with common sense, but just look around you next time you're on the road.
It happens all the time and that cab driver would have been the first to tell you that I exercise caution and I've never gotten a ticket, gotten in an accident or gone off the road because I was texting while driving...............until now. The sad part is HE walked away and SHE didn't. Now I know everyone will jump on me and say yeah, but he was texting, not talking. True and even worse, but it seems to be a fact that once the hand and phone go up to the ear, the mind turns toward the conversation. Now hands free should be no different than talking to a passenger and THAT just might be the solution.

Playdrv4me
12-05-10, 11:25 PM
Didn't this entire cell phone sub-topic start with those of us who listed hands-free Bluetooth as a "non-gimmick" technology in the first place? So getting the original topic back on track, it seems we all agree that Bluetooth hands-free is a GOOD thing even if we disagree on the role of cell phones in cars to begin with.