Re: "Integrated" radios in some cars prohibit upgrades

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On Tue, 28 Sep 2004 00:00:01 +0200, Nomen Nescio wrote:


There are so many electronic systems in modern cars that you need a common interface. The radio is a lousy choice but it's the only one that's standard at the moment. Ideally you want a large display and a decent input device like that found on navigation systems. Unfortunately nav systems are expensive options at the moment so car companies can't use them for other functions. In 5 years or so when nav systems are standard I expect that you will find that all of the user interface functions will migrate to that device and away from the radio. I also expect that by then the nav system display will be in the right place which is the instrument cluster not the center dash.
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| On Tue, 28 Sep 2004 00:00:01 +0200, Nomen Nescio wrote: | | > Its been reported in the press that some 60 2004 year model cars have | > tricked up radios that integrate the airconditioning system into a | > dealer-only supplied unit that cannot be pulled out and replaced with an | > aftermarket sound system. Some of these radios are also linked to the | > car's alarm and computer diagnostic system also. Presumably, the radio | > digital display is a multi-function display. It can display 870 kc or 78* | > F, depending on the mode. Behind the display may not even be a radio | > receiver! The components for the radio itself may be installed remotely | > from the display and there may even be room or attaching brackets for an | > aftermarket unit. You are screwed, in plain english. (On the other hand, | > who needs anything other than EOM sound anyways?) | | There are so many electronic systems in modern cars that you need a common | interface. The radio is a lousy choice but it's the only one that's | standard at the moment. Ideally you want a large display and a decent | input device like that found on navigation systems. Unfortunately nav | systems are expensive options at the moment so car companies can't use | them for other functions. In 5 years or so when nav systems are standard I | expect that you will find that all of the user interface functions will | migrate to that device and away from the radio. I also expect that by then | the nav system display will be in the right place which is the instrument | cluster not the center dash.
This is too funny for words. It's a car for cripe sakes! Why, all of a sudden, do cars need a "user interface"? So, I take it cars will be as easy to use as VCR's are...huh?! We all know from surveys that less than 5% of the population even know how to use their VCR. I guess that explains why my neighbor (after 3 years) still can't figure out how to make his lights (not the DRLs, but the regular lights) turn off on his LeSabre in the daytime. Look folks this is real simple. A multi-detent pull switch for the lights and one for the wipers (none of this "stalk" crap!). A couple of knobs for the climate controls and the radio. Bingo...you can drive anywhere now. Simple...huh?! Geesh..."user interface"...gimme a break!!!
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I agree. Except that he was right, cars need a user interface to display all computer input and output data, the logic behind it, and error codes. Unfortunately, they don't have it. Using the radio to control other, simplistic functions is just silly. It's the worst of both worlds. They don't want you to replace your radio, AND they don't want you to be able to fix an intermittent engine problem.
Fuel injected cadillacs actually had that engine computer interface built into them for years (not in the radio, it was in the hvac controls). I don't know if they still do or not, or if any other cars have it. But it was awesome and it's really needed.
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Look at all of the systems that are available in a modern car
1) The radio itself     It's not just AM/FM any more. It also has XM or Sirius satellite     radio. Instead of a couple of dozen stations you now have a hundred or     more. 2) Trip computer     These have been in cars for 20 years now. It's a separate device but it     doesn't have to be. 3) Diagnostic Information     There is a huge amount of computing power in todays engines. It's now     possible to determine detailed failure information. You need a place to     display it. The old check engine light was meaningless, if the engine     know that it has a problem it would be nice if it could tell you what it     is. 4) Blue Tooth Phone     Hands free phone operation makes it possible to use the phone safely.     It's less dangerous to use a truely hands free phone then it is to talk     to a passenger. For the phone to wrok well it has to be integrated into     the audio system of the car. Having the phone book a large readable     display would also be useful. 5) Navigation System     This is the biggest advance in years. Ideally you want a large clear     display as well as audio directions so that you don't have to watch the     display except for an occasional glance. 6) Instrument Cluster     This is the oldest display in the car, it can be easily integrated with     the other information.
The best way to handle all of this is one large LCD in place of the instrument cluster. I think the Pacifica already does this (I'm judging from the ads I haven't seen the inside of a Pacifica), but every other car still spreads these functions over a number of separate devices. When the nav system is standard then we will see a single integrated system, until then we will be stuck with a proliferation of separate systems.
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| Look at all of the systems that are available in a modern car | | 1) The radio itself | It's not just AM/FM any more. It also has XM or Sirius satellite | radio. Instead of a couple of dozen stations you now have a hundred or | more. | 2) Trip computer | These have been in cars for 20 years now. It's a separate device but it | doesn't have to be. | 3) Diagnostic Information | There is a huge amount of computing power in todays engines. It's now | possible to determine detailed failure information. You need a place to | display it. The old check engine light was meaningless, if the engine | know that it has a problem it would be nice if it could tell you what it | is. | 4) Blue Tooth Phone | Hands free phone operation makes it possible to use the phone safely. | It's less dangerous to use a truely hands free phone then it is to talk | to a passenger. For the phone to wrok well it has to be integrated into | the audio system of the car. Having the phone book a large readable | display would also be useful. | 5) Navigation System | This is the biggest advance in years. Ideally you want a large clear | display as well as audio directions so that you don't have to watch the | display except for an occasional glance. | 6) Instrument Cluster | This is the oldest display in the car, it can be easily integrated with | the other information. | | The best way to handle all of this is one large LCD in place of the | instrument cluster. I think the Pacifica already does this (I'm judging | from the ads I haven't seen the inside of a Pacifica), but every other | car still spreads these functions over a number of separate devices. When | the nav system is standard then we will see a single integrated system, | until then we will be stuck with a proliferation of separate systems. |
Makes one wonder how we ever survived all those years without all that stuff. ;-)
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On Tue, 28 Sep 2004 16:58:26 -0400, James C. Reeves wrote:

We survived without TV, personal computers and antibiotics, that doesn't mean that anyone wants to go back to a world without those things.
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| > | Look at all of the systems that are available in a modern car | > | | > | 1) The radio itself | > | It's not just AM/FM any more. It also has XM or Sirius satellite | > | radio. Instead of a couple of dozen stations you now have a hundred or | > | more. | > | 2) Trip computer | > | These have been in cars for 20 years now. It's a separate device but it | > | doesn't have to be. | > | 3) Diagnostic Information | > | There is a huge amount of computing power in todays engines. It's now | > | possible to determine detailed failure information. You need a place to | > | display it. The old check engine light was meaningless, if the engine | > | know that it has a problem it would be nice if it could tell you what it | > | is. | > | 4) Blue Tooth Phone | > | Hands free phone operation makes it possible to use the phone safely. | > | It's less dangerous to use a truely hands free phone then it is to talk | > | to a passenger. For the phone to wrok well it has to be integrated into | > | the audio system of the car. Having the phone book a large readable | > | display would also be useful. | > | 5) Navigation System | > | This is the biggest advance in years. Ideally you want a large clear | > | display as well as audio directions so that you don't have to watch the | > | display except for an occasional glance. | > | 6) Instrument Cluster | > | This is the oldest display in the car, it can be easily integrated with | > | the other information. | > | | > | The best way to handle all of this is one large LCD in place of the | > | instrument cluster. I think the Pacifica already does this (I'm judging | > | from the ads I haven't seen the inside of a Pacifica), but every other | > | car still spreads these functions over a number of separate devices. When | > | the nav system is standard then we will see a single integrated system, | > | until then we will be stuck with a proliferation of separate systems. | > | | > | > Makes one wonder how we ever survived all those years without all that stuff. | > ;-) | | We survived without TV, personal computers and antibiotics, that doesn't | mean that anyone wants to go back to a world without those things. |
Apples and oranges. Simple system/component controls existed on cars before a "user interface". Those on your list didn't exist. IF progress adds value, sure. Adding color, surround sound, etc to TV for example. But having 25 layers of menus to program lighting and wiper functions is just a bit much...don't ya think? When one needs to refer to a manual to control things that were intuitive before...that is, by definition, a "value-negative" proposition.
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In '86 the Buick Riviera came out with their touchscreen graphical interface which controlled the radio/climate control/trip computer/diagnostic info., etc.. That was a pretty cool set-up. It probably sold a ton of Rivieras.
Seems like it'd be easy to have a video monitor in the middle of the dash to control the climate control/radio/navigation/trip computer/diagnostic/DVD player, etc.. As far as the navigation system having to be standard to have this system as a standard, the nav system could simply be another program built into the in car PC/video system. If they don't order the nav system, then it simply won't contain it.
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And ride their bicycles over dirt roads and horse manure?
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wrote:

to
Worse than that - gravel roads. One of the biggest bicycle roads in the area is a twisty road built back in the early 60's called Leif Erickson Drive, that was constructed right before a huge section of the west hills was blocked out into Forest Park (which is one of the largest parks in the city limits of any city in the US, by the way) It doesen't even show on modern maps anymore. I have friends that remember as teenagers driving at high speeds down that road in the middle of the night, racing each other. Of course, as soon as Forest Park was created they blocked off both ends of it and prohibited vehicular traffic.
Anyway in the last 40 years it has disintegrated (roads in a forest without much bedding that aren't maintained tend to be rapidly destroyed by tree roots) but is still kept regularly graveled by the park service for use as a fire lane.
I rather uncomfortably discovered the current state of the road surface and it's infestation of bicycles after taking a Kawasaki 650 street bike down it one fine Sunday about 10 years ago. (I figured if the road was there I was going to ride it, rules or not) I barely stayed upright and was hissed and booed for mile after mile by bicyclists out for their Sunday ride, or whatever it is they do on gravel roads in the middle of the forest.
I do think that they avoid the cowpies, though, but you never know.
Ted
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wrote:

Thankfully You've got Chrysler's vaunted build quality to assure you that you won't have to do many repairs for the first 5,000 miles :-)
I Love the look & the driving feel of the LH's BUT when it came to spending my money on something that I'd actually have to own and maintain I bought an Olds 98. For the wife it was a Windstar to replace the Caravan.
On the whole I'd say that Chryslers are great cars.... to lease ! On the subject of messy dashboards. A standard DIN chassis makes sure that any radio change looks clean. I wish that on my car I could change the radio for something includes XM reception but the radio size and the controls in the steering wheel preclude a clean swap :(
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Yup, I'm in the same position on my 97 Taurus.. Gave you seen the oval dash inserts so you can put a standard radio in? ugh.. They look terrible.. really bad.
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"I'm Right" wrote in message news:

GM isn't the only, or even the biggest offender. Very few auto makers offer cassette players in their cars anymore. I too would prefer a cassette deck, but lotsa luck!
I'm not a big one for a lot of bells & whistles on a car myself. I just want basic transportation...reliable and roomy. Quality construction too...not some tinny pos like a Kia or a Hundai. I don't have the slightest use for climate control, remote keyless entry or any of the other doodads that seem to be standard equipment these days.
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| "I'm Right" wrote in message news: | | > I could not agree more. | > I want the bells and whistles in my car. | > | > I HOWEVER DO NOT WANT IT ALL COMBINED. | > | > | > There are customers that are forced to take a CD stereo in there new | > caddilac, yet the customer goes out searching for an add on CASSETTE player. | > And there ARE NONE MADE! | | GM isn't the only, or even the biggest offender. Very few auto makers | offer cassette players in their cars anymore. I too would prefer a | cassette deck, but lotsa luck! | | I'm not a big one for a lot of bells & whistles on a car myself. I | just want basic transportation...reliable and roomy. Quality | construction too...not some tinny pos like a Kia or a Hundai. I don't | have the slightest use for climate control, remote keyless entry or | any of the other doodads that seem to be standard equipment these | days.
I agree. How did we get to this place?
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New car buyers have driven these features, and today, new car buyers seem to be the most ill-informed about cars group of people there are.
Ted
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New car buyers don't have to worry about long term reliability or longevity of the product. They have a warranty. They tend to buy new cars when the warranty is finished.
Second owners are the ones to have to deal with the garbage gadgets stuck into the cars. New car manufacturers don't give a damn about second owners because they don't buy new cars. Manufacturers only have to appease the warranty crowd.
Second owners who get fed up of failing power windows, horribly expensive alternator replacements, inaccessable wiper motors etc etc eventually end up being new car buyers to get that warranty. However, in the process, second owners tend to move to better made foreign cars.
-- Denis Roy D. Roy Woodcraft www.ideasinwood.com

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Denis Roy wrote:

While certainly the new car buyer is the *primary* concern of the manufacturer, if the used car buyer quits buying the first owner's cast offs, the used car value drops, which will have some effect on purchasing decisions of new car buyers (i.e., anticipated low resale value can cause them to buy a competitor's product instead).

If that's true, then, again, the used market for the one-owner used so-called domestic cars dries up, negatively impacting prices/ saleability of both used and new. This being a Chrysler newsgroup, some here probably understand the impact on the market of a reputation for low resale value. 8^)
Bill Putney (To reply by e-mail, replace the last letter of the alphabet in my adddress with the letter 'x')
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| Denis Roy wrote: | > New car buyers don't have to worry about long term reliability or longevity | > of the product. They have a warranty. They tend to buy new cars when the | > warranty is finished. | > | > Second owners are the ones to have to deal with the garbage gadgets stuck | > into the cars. New car manufacturers don't give a damn about second owners | > because they don't buy new cars. Manufacturers only have to appease the | > warranty crowd. | | While certainly the new car buyer is the *primary* concern of the | manufacturer, if the used car buyer quits buying the first owner's cast | offs, the used car value drops, which will have some effect on | purchasing decisions of new car buyers (i.e., anticipated low resale | value can cause them to buy a competitor's product instead). | | > Second owners who get fed up of failing power windows, horribly expensive | > alternator replacements, inaccessable wiper motors etc etc eventually end up | > being new car buyers to get that warranty. However, in the process, second | > owners tend to move to better made foreign cars. | | If that's true, then, again, the used market for the one-owner used | so-called domestic cars dries up, negatively impacting prices/ | saleability of both used and new. This being a Chrysler newsgroup, some | here probably understand the impact on the market of a reputation for | low resale value. 8^) |
Since this thread is cross-posted to Ford and GM Newsgroups, they probably understand low resale value as well. ;-)
I must buck the trend...I keep most vehicles well beyond the warranty...10-15 years and well into 100K miles...yet I always buy brand new when the time comes. One recent exception was a 2003 Chevy Malibu LS I dumped on CarMax about a year ago after putting up with it for 9 months. The car had way...WAY..WWWAAAAYYYY too many "auto" features on it for my taste. Drove me nuts ever time I got in the POS! I buy low end $16K or less models because I'm basically a cheap B**tard ant those models are basic...like I like them (or so I thought). Who would have thought a low-end model like the Malibu would have so many annoying things about it. Thankfully the "auto" speed-sensitive radio volume control could be disabled!! If only all of the other "auto" stuff could have been too. That might have made the car tolerable to own ;-) (although it had several other significant "quality" issues too and spent some time at the dealer for those). Anyway, replaced it with a 2004 Sebring...going on 14 months and not a single quality problem and everything (but the tranny) is manual...I'm in heaven!! :-) Yes I already know that the 2.7 Chrysler engine it has will probably not last 100K+ miles. But the Malibu 3.1 had it's piston slap and intake manifold gasket failure problems too...so...
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"Denis Roy" <wrote in message news:

Yeah right. I only buy used cars, and I tend to avoid foreign cars because I've found that American ones seem to stand up better over time. They may have a few more initial problems, but that's not my concern since I don't buy new. If you think replacement parts are expensive for American cars, try foreign ones. You want a car that's miserable to repair with 'most everything inaccessible? Go Japanese. You're welcome to 'em.
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expensive
end up

second
are you referring to american built foreign cars, or foreign built american cars?
-a|ex
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