Adapting to a Formentor ?

Fozz57

Active Member
Feb 13, 2022
9
2
I hope that this is my last request as a non-owner ( after various delays, as ever, we hope to purchase very shortly).
I enjoy driving, always have done, used to do much of my own maintenance back in the day but things have moved on, as has my age.
I freely admit to being a very enjoyable 74 yr old, still like fast cars but just find some of the modern technology not easy to take onboard.
So, I come from cars with dials, switches, buttons to press etc in order to do things, ie hit the up button to increase fan speed and the down arrow to do the opposite etc, etc etc. I am sure you get the idea.
Now the Formentor VZ2 is just the opposite to my comfort zone, a touch screen to do most things I am led to believe. I suppose what I want to know is how have you found this transition, moving from the "traditional" car function controls to a more central touch screen ? I realise I will have to learn and find my way around it but was also wondering how useful the voice control is ( my son uses this facility a lot in his Skoda). Can voice control , for example increase air con temps/decrease them, change fan speed, demist the car in winter etc.... ?
It all seems very different now. How did you manage it ?
Thanks
Brian.
 

Supa Koopa

Active Member
Mar 13, 2022
138
105
To be honest it's not that difficult to get used to and shouldn't take you long at all. The problem is it can be a bit frustrating rather than difficult. So changing the temp or fan speed is easy but it isn't as easy as a dial would be. The problem is when you want to change something that you don't normally do and you have to go hunting around in the menus. This seems to be the norm until they realise a combination of both is better and safer. Unlikely though as it's much cheaper for a manufacturer to implement one screen in all their models rather than specific controls. I think the window demister is actually on the light switch, so completely sensible.

Unfortunately I also find the voice control completely useless so that's no help either. In the Beemer I had previously it worked very well, so saying something like take me to Tesco's would direct you straight there, saying the same in formentor is just a stupid idea. The best you get is it doesn't understand,normally it just sits there thinking as if you've asked what the meaning of life is. :ROFLMAO:
 

Agnes.Surrey

Active Member
Nov 6, 2020
767
415
Surrey
I thought I could get used to lack of buttons, but I was wrong. It was annoying to wait for screen to load, to switch off certain things or try to change something while driving. I'm not planning to get another car without buttons. I don't use voice control, I don't talk to machines.

Of course I will be told soon, I had negative view of Formentor, but I didn't have when ordering. I just didn't like lack of buttons and screen only operation.
 

Supa Koopa

Active Member
Mar 13, 2022
138
105
I do agree that it is frustrating at timesnand certainly not as safe, and can be very annoying having to pull over to try and do anything more complex so your attention remains on driving, but I'm also aware that most new cars are taking this approach. :cry:
 

/dev/null

Active Member
Nov 12, 2008
1,609
78
In practice it's not a bad thing, providing the UI has been properly designed and it works well.

Unfortunately in the Formentor, based on a lot of feedback from drivers in this forum, that isn't the case. So you're in a situation where you had a bad experience of something that pretty much controls the entire car. Previously it might have just been the sat navs which was a pain to use so wasn't as noticeable, however when it's everything, I can see it becoming very tedious.

I can see why manufacturers have done it though - it'll offer a big saving having everything in software, not only from the perspective of producing dashboards with physical buttons, but also standardising and reducing variations. I.e. you only need a single dashboard design which is common across all models.
 

Supa Koopa

Active Member
Mar 13, 2022
138
105
Is also setup for the pay for options route. 'You didn't specify something when you ordered the car well now you can have it if you pay us.' The option then magically appears on the dash rather than having to now fit a new button. All cars go out of the factory the same and options are either switched on or not is the future many manufacturers eluded to.

Unfortunately the infotainment really is the worst bit of the car and ultimately will be the reason I get rid of it. Is not the usage of it, although it is a bit pants at times, it's the fact it just does what it likes when it likes and you have no way to get round it. For example I've had heated seats and climate control just bugger off when it threw a paddy. :ROFLMAO:
 

Andy.M

Active Member
Mar 20, 2022
169
57
I hope that this is my last request as a non-owner ( after various delays, as ever, we hope to purchase very shortly).
I enjoy driving, always have done, used to do much of my own maintenance back in the day but things have moved on, as has my age.
I freely admit to being a very enjoyable 74 yr old, still like fast cars but just find some of the modern technology not easy to take onboard.
So, I come from cars with dials, switches, buttons to press etc in order to do things, ie hit the up button to increase fan speed and the down arrow to do the opposite etc, etc etc. I am sure you get the idea.
Now the Formentor VZ2 is just the opposite to my comfort zone, a touch screen to do most things I am led to believe. I suppose what I want to know is how have you found this transition, moving from the "traditional" car function controls to a more central touch screen ? I realise I will have to learn and find my way around it but was also wondering how useful the voice control is ( my son uses this facility a lot in his Skoda). Can voice control , for example increase air con temps/decrease them, change fan speed, demist the car in winter etc.... ?
It all seems very different now. How did you manage it ?
Thanks
Brian.
I suppose it will be related to how wound up you get with technology? The modern TV remote, your mobile phone, computer and internet at home etc.
I'm working on the premise that I will get used to it! (when my car arrives).
 

pkaps

vz310
May 10, 2022
95
35
It is kind of complex if you want to get into different menus and do things that cars with dials never do. If you want to do that it will take some time but not ages. We have to keep in mind that even in cars with dials we don't always play around with them. We set the temp cold or hot in a set value and we very seldom change it, the same with everything else. Even when changing values with dials you have to take your eyes off the road, so its not such a big deal with having to deal with a touch screen for the same functions. The climate control is very simple, one touch and you have the whole screen in front of you, you can set/change the temp very easy as well as the fan and as I said no one changes the settings all the time. If you want to keep it even simpler you set it to AUTO and you don't have to bother with it anymore, something that the majority of us does. As for the rest you also set your favourite screen/instrument cluster etc once and there you go, you don't have to do it all the time, I bet with dials you do just that, no options, so one screen/one instrument cluster configuration, right? So why would you want to keep changing them? Just because you can? I have set my instrument cluster once, with the round dials, like old school and I'm all done. The same with the clima, only a bit frustrating i would say is setting the radio stations, but once you do its easy to manage. I would rather prefer, as it is the case with the Formentor, to have all these choices and use one than having only one and not been able to use another as with traditional layouts and dials.
Mind you, I just turned 60, so I'm not a computer geek finding it easy to deal with all these electronics but surely I enjoy having them and in time to check more of them, however never while driving as my presently standard settings are more than enough and more than what I need, this car is all about driving and not about playing with the infotainment. It is good to be there the way it is but that's an extra bonus and not the main event.
So Brian, just go ahead and buy it, as Matt would say!
 
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Peyton

Active Member
Jan 20, 2021
452
211
While menus are complex, you don't really need to go into them to operate the car normally. I think you'll do just fine. Pick a dash look that you prefer (there is a view button on the wheel, it will cycle between options).

Set the AC on Auto (3 dots) and pick your temperature.

Enjoy the car. I know some people are annoyed with the lane keeping and other options, if that is the case for you you will need to do a bit more fiddling. I'd suggest to get used to it, lane keeping does not intervene if you use your indicator when changing lanes (I suspect this is major reason why some people are so affected by it), ...
 

/dev/null

Active Member
Nov 12, 2008
1,609
78
Lane departure warning is a PITA if you live in a semi-rural area where roads are clear enough to be reasonably fast, but to narrow for a parking layby, because you're constantly edging over the white line to pass parked cars etc. I know it can be switched off with the right tools, be that's another 100 quid or so expense to do so.
 
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Hizzards

Active Member
Aug 19, 2021
72
52
Lane departure warning is a PITA if you live in a semi-rural area where roads are clear enough to be reasonably fast, but to narrow for a parking layby, because you're constantly edging over the white line to pass parked cars etc. I know it can be switched off with the right tools, be that's another 100 quid or so expense to do so.

It’s two button presses.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

/dev/null

Active Member
Nov 12, 2008
1,609
78
It’s two button presses.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Two button presses every time you drive the car.
Drive to the shops... 2 presses. Drive home... Two presses. Stop for fuel on the way back... Another two presses... Forget to do it and only notice whilst driving? Now you're making a 2 press adjustment to settings on the infotainment screen whilst driving, as opposed to a simple button as previous which probably could be located without taking your eyes off the road.

It's tedious, and quite simply shouldn't be required. Every other car we've had recently in the household has remembered the setting. It's these little niggles which spoil the experience, and which I suspect the OP is referring to.
 

dashnine

Active Member
Oct 31, 2012
177
57
Warwick, UK
Setup the main central display in /// mode (i.e. three functions displayed, with a second screen of three available via swipe) with the main functions you want - so I have 'SatNav / Radio / Hybrid mode' set as the main three which saves going through other menus. Plus with the Shortcuts across the bottom of the screen you can get to most screens you need quickly.

So when you get the car, don't panic and you'll find you can setup the screen to what you need after a few weeks of using the car.
 

Gbbeesls

Active Member
Feb 11, 2022
85
74
We all need to get used to this type of tech as this is the way of the world. The safety systems are mostly dictated by EU laws and have little to do with individual manufacturers. Recently drove a Mercedes E class and its the same as the Formentor, when it comes to safety systems. They all default to on when you stop the car and then restart it. Also the lane assist in the Merc is way more intrusive compared to the Formentor. In all honesty, I personally do not have any issues with the system on the Formentor, no, I'm not an IT nerd but do understand technology and have spent a bit of time familiarising myself with all the features and functions of the car. Nothing really stops you jumping into the car and driving, as with any other car. Most new cars today are i-Pads with engines. and as stated by Dashnine, once you get your setup as you like it, its happy days.
 
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Sehanine

Active Member
Dec 18, 2021
21
10
I use Apple Car play for Google Maps and other apps and very little else I need to fiddle with. Lane assist is new to me, but it is not particularly aggressive compared to some cars I have driven. I was worried before I took the car that I would need a degree in IT, but in truth, I ignore most of the functions and just drive it. If you can use Apple, in my view, the rest is down to how involved you want to get. I have the same spec as you have ordered and I can guarantee you will have a blast. That's coming from someone the wrong side of 50 and my first high tech car.
 

/dev/null

Active Member
Nov 12, 2008
1,609
78
The problem is though, you really shouldn't have to use Apple Car Play to get a decent experience. Paying 30/40k for a car, the dedicated sat nav in it should be at least as good as, but ideally better than the one you run from your mobile phone.
 
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Supa Koopa

Active Member
Mar 13, 2022
138
105
The problem is though, you really shouldn't have to use Apple Car Play to get a decent experience. Paying 30/40k for a car, the dedicated sat nav in it should be at least as good as, but ideally better than the one you run from your mobile phone.
Completely agree, but as you've unfortunately eluded to, the internal one is really crap. Such as shame as the one in my S3 was the best one I've ever had.
 

dashnine

Active Member
Oct 31, 2012
177
57
Warwick, UK
Unfortunately an internal SatNav was never going to be as good as a app based one that can be updated much more frequently, and it’s maps continuously. Perhaps that can change now as OTA updates become the norm and allow more frequent updates to an internal based system. Or the internal system effectively evolves to become an app.
 

/dev/null

Active Member
Nov 12, 2008
1,609
78
Completely agree, but as you've unfortunately eluded to, the internal one is really crap. Such as shame as the one in my S3 was the best one I've ever had.
The one in my A4 was fantastic, and that was in 2016. In fact, my A3 in 2013 was too. In this day and age there is really no excuse for some car manufacturers to be pushing out the shite that they do. If Audi could do it 10 years ago then Seat/Cupra should be able to do it today.
 

Ninjakebab

Active Member
Apr 12, 2022
151
74
And again another thread turns into an echo chamber of negative subjective opinions...
Here are some positive subjective ones:
  • With the most recent updates the infotainment is quick
  • I actually prefer the built-in navigation over Google Maps, since the voice directions are more concise
  • Setup shortcuts in the /// startmenu (you'll understand when you get it) for the shortcuts you end up using the most
  • Use voice commands for the rest. Voice commands work perfectly for me - and yes, you can control temperature, A/C, fan speed, navigation etc.
I rarely have to look for anything in the menus with the the shortcuts I have setup, and for the rest I can usually get by with voice commands.
 
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