Cupra Formentor long-term test: report 4

The Cupra Formentor is great to drive and striking to look at, but how easy is it to live with? That’s what we’ll be exploring over the next few months...

Neil Cupra Formentor Infotainment

The car Cupra Formentor 2.0 TSI 310 4Drive DSG VZ2 Run by Neil Winn, hubs editor

Why it’s here To find out if a sports SUV is a better day-to-day companion than a traditional hot hatch

Needs to Offer the driver thrilling performance and impressive levels of practicality 

Mileage 3514 List price £40,640 Target Price £40,424 Price as tested £40,670 Official economy 30.1mpg Test economy 31.0mpg

9 July 2021 – Multitasking 

The other day, while scrolling through YouTube, I came across an old video of Steve Jobs answering a difficult panel question from an Apple strategy director at Apple’s 1997 Worldwide Developers Conference. His response was, ‘you've got to start with the customer experience and work backwards to the technology’.

In other words, when you’re designing a piece of tech, you need to think about the user, the task they want to carry out and the environment in which the task takes place. It’s a thought process that I think is seriously lacking when it comes to the design of modern car touchscreens.

Cupra Formentor Infotainment Screen

Take my Cupra Formentor’s, for example. As standard, you get a large, 12.0in screen with no physical buttons and an interface that isn’t especially intuitive. This isn’t a problem when you’re sitting in the showroom, because there’s nothing else to distract you. However, on the move, I often find myself taking my eyes off the road for sustained periods of time when trying to select the correct menu or just change the interior temperature.

But it doesn’t have to be this way. The iDrive system in the rival BMW X2 M35i, for example, knocks the Cupra’s set-up for six. Not only does it have more logical menus, but it also supplements its touchscreen with physical controls that are conveniently located between the front seats, and that makes it much easier to use while driving.

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