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    1. #1
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      Another Unnecessarily harsh review

      http://www.motortrend.com/cars/volvo...t-test-review/


      Saw this today. The guy just rails on how the infotainment in the s60(and of course xc60 and v60) is Soooooo dated and aging. I guess I don't totally get it. I realize that I am biased toward Volvo, but I really don't get it. The number keys are great to me...Makes it easy to dial numbers. We test drove a 2016 q5 the other day and I couldn't believe my eyes. The infotainment was a mess and it didn't even have a standard USB! The sales guy was like oh you can stream. Nope. Could not stream. What's worse is it was optioned with the high end b&o speakers. I was dumbfounded.

      I get that these things are kind of subjective, and id be lying if I said I didn't pine for the SPA touchscreens in my current 14 xc60. But really, is it that bad? It can't be be or xc60 wouldn't have just had its best year, no?

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    3. #2
      Senior Member JRL's Avatar
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      Well, it IS old and personally I HATE it, can't see the small buttons
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    4. #3
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      After having touch screens previously, i love the dial and button interface. Seems that most of the top brands are moving back towards dials instead of touch screen. Purely because they lag and fingerprints look like ****. Plus, unless its integrated like the new Volvos, then i don't want a iPad glued to the dash.

      The interface is quick and easy to understand, no lag between screens. The dial on the steering wheel can control EVERYTHING. The number pad is great for typing in addresses. There are quick buttons to switch from Nav to media. I love it.

      But i also loved my Windows phone, so i might be in the minority.
      2015 V60 T5e - Sport Chassis - H&R Springs - IPD Rear Sway Bar - Polestar Optimization - Polestar Exhaust - Polestar Filter - Polestar Rear Diffuser

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    6. #4
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      I agree on iPad being glued to the dash. That is our major beef with the newer Audi systems. It just looks like an afterthought. BMW executes that a little better, but it's till kind of sticks up in a funky way. Mazda is also going that route. Not sure why so many are building the screens sort of stuck out of the dashes but I would guess it makes them easier to work on and change technology over time? I dunno?

    7. #5
      Junior Member Sven787's Avatar
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      Yeah I have no major issues with it - I care far more about the "driving/safety" tech than the infotainment, and those features all work as-advertised and are on par with the competition. Frankly, it's nice that the infotainment interface bears some physical and functional similarity to my '07 XC90 so it's more intuitive when switching between cars, but it still has all the features (streaming/nav/etc) of a current system. I think the biggest issue is the fact that this "dated" car sits alongside the "uber-modern" SPA cars in a showroom so there's not a lot of synergy from a brand standpoint.

      Frankly I don't even understand why they're reviewing the current 60 series anyway - it's not like a glowing review would all of a sudden boost the sales, and it continues to do pretty well in the marketplace (mainly the XC60, but even the S60 has had some minor upticks in sales lately). We'll see what MT has to say next year when the new 60 series is tested
      Current Fleet: 2007 XC90 V8 Sport (Titanium Gray); 2016 S60 T5 Drive-E Premium Polestar (Black Stone, Sport Pkg, Convenience Pkg, BLIS, Tech Pkg)
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    8. #6
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      AlsoX as far as other cars touch screens, agreed, most suck. I haven't really seen one yet that comes anywhere close to being as well done as volvos, although admittedly my experience is with primarily rental cars.

    9. #7
      Junior Member SpeedeOak's Avatar
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      I'll give 'em that the UI isn't intuitive. It took a minute or two of hunting to set the clock to DST on Sunday morning. But I also found the "auto DST" setting so I'll never have to do that again.

      The thing is, UIs are necessarily complicated due to all the features and the requirement for limited control inputs in an automotive setting. Heck, just think how unfriendly any modern's car steering wheel and column are compared to 20 years ago, with all the various signal / cruise / pace / beams / intermittent / shift / volume / select / scroll / dial / speak functions are built in.

      20 years ago most cars were left / right / honk.

      My Flex has touch and I rarely reach for it. I literally have four ways to adjust the temp in that car, and most functions I can perform without touching the screen.

      Volvo's dialpad setup looks dated, but it's unbelievably easy to use.
      2016 S60 Inscription Platinum FWD — Crystal White & Beechwood w/ 19" Portia wheels

    10. #8
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      I think it makes more sense in cars that have their drivers seat on the right. This makes it closer to the driver.
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    11. #9
      Junior Member Denton's Avatar
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      Another Unnecessarily harsh review

      I love the Sensus Connect in the P3, easy when you learn it. Selling these, I get defensive and annoyed when someone new to the brand is dismayed by the number pad.

      SPA Sensus is laggy, smudges, and can't really use without looking at the screen or doing voice commands.
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    12. #10
      Yeah, it's that bad.

      Not much phone dialing for most people these days. If so, voice is much easier on new systems. And when was the last time anyone entered a destination on their nav system from the car (or even used it at all!) rather than use their phone?

      As for the screens sitting up on the dashes, it's good interface design - minimizes how far / how long you look away from the road. Mazda had a great YouTube video on it.

    13. #11
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    14. #12
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      Quote Originally Posted by poundsand View Post
      Yeah, it's that bad.

      Not much phone dialing for most people these days. If so, voice is much easier on new systems. And when was the last time anyone entered a destination on their nav system from the car (or even used it at all!) rather than use their phone?

      As for the screens sitting up on the dashes, it's good interface design - minimizes how far / how long you look away from the road. Mazda had a great YouTube video on it.
      On the weekend.

      In Australia its illegal to look at your phone while driving. If you are found touching your fine you are issued with a $300+ fine. In built NAV is a must for us.

      The nav directions displaying in the speedo is very useful as well.
      2015 V60 T5e - Sport Chassis - H&R Springs - IPD Rear Sway Bar - Polestar Optimization - Polestar Exhaust - Polestar Filter - Polestar Rear Diffuser

    15. #13
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      Quote Originally Posted by poundsand View Post
      Yeah, it's that bad.

      Not much phone dialing for most people these days. If so, voice is much easier on new systems. And when was the last time anyone entered a destination on their nav system from the car (or even used it at all!) rather than use their phone?
      Most phone calls for me are calling a contact and not just dialing some number that I happen to know.

      The hardest part about the nav is just getting an address entered, and that goes for voice or using the dial. Using a phone you ca give somewhat vague instructions like "navigate to the nearest Home Depot". With the car that is 100 times harder. Maybe it is better in Sensus when they added the modem/WiFi in 2015.5.

      If all you want is to see where you are, then the nav works fine.

      The funny thing is that I sometimes use the number pad just to navigate around the map and find points of interest. And if you want to navigate to a POI, it is relatively easy, I guess.
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    16. #14
      Member Wayne T5's Avatar
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      Quote Originally Posted by ptpatrick View Post
      http://www.motortrend.com/cars/volvo...t-test-review/


      Saw this today. The guy just rails on how the infotainment in the s60(and of course xc60 and v60) is Soooooo dated and aging. I guess I don't totally get it. I realize that I am biased toward Volvo, but I really don't get it. The number keys are great to me...Makes it easy to dial numbers. We test drove a 2016 q5 the other day and I couldn't believe my eyes. The infotainment was a mess and it didn't even have a standard USB! The sales guy was like oh you can stream. Nope. Could not stream. What's worse is it was optioned with the high end b&o speakers. I was dumbfounded.

      I get that these things are kind of subjective, and id be lying if I said I didn't pine for the SPA touchscreens in my current 14 xc60. But really, is it that bad? It can't be be or xc60 wouldn't have just had its best year, no?
      Auto writers are used to driving brand new platforms on a daily basis, very different than the rest of us. Some minor detail with the car that we've gotten used to because we are using it every day or a dash that we've been looking at every day is familiar to us. For an auto writer they will see the same stuff and think it's awful when compared to a brand new design. It's not a surprise to me that driving a car that is in it's seventh year, which is pretty ancient in the auto business is going to elicit that type of reaction. When I think back to the prior gen S60 (P2) and its last year ('09), IMHO the current car is a lot more current now than that car was then, so I guess Volvo is improving. Bottom line is that the amount of capital investment to update platforms is staggering and Volvo is trying to catch up after being behind the eight ball for several years.
      Past Volvos: '94 854, '99 S70 T5 SE, '99 S70 GLT, '04 S60RM, '12 S60 T5, '13 S60 T5, '15 S60 RD
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    17. #15
      Learned long time ago to read reviews just to kill time ... not when a purchase considerations need to be made. It's all about me, not what some journalists think, whether I agree with them or not.
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    18. #16
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      Being for touch screens or preferring buttons is subjective. Regardless, calling the review "unnecessarily harsh" is a little ridiculous. Don't be so sensitive, and do be so quick to dismiss dissenting opinions. They're no less valid than yours.
      2015 S60 T5, Drive-E, Premier Plus; Power Blue w/Beechwood; Climate Package; Sport Package (sport chassis w/Bors) - my first Volvo.

    19. #17
      I happen to like the dial-pad on my XC60. My XC60 does not have NAV so I don't ever fumble with the keypad to enter a destination so my interaction with the keypad is limited. I pretty much only use it use it for radio presets and in that use-case, it sure beats a smudged touch-screen that's blinded by glare all day long.

      Occasionally, I'll search for music when my iPhone is connected. It is reminiscent of T9-texting in the pre-smartphone days. :-)

      All that said, the infotainment in the current 60-series is quite dated compared to its competitors.
      2013 XC60 T6 AWD

    20. #18
      Quote Originally Posted by Darwin034 View Post
      Being for touch screens or preferring buttons is subjective. Regardless, calling the review "unnecessarily harsh" is a little ridiculous. Don't be so sensitive, and do be so quick to dismiss dissenting opinions. They're no less valid than yours.
      This. Also, a tendancy to ignore or resist critical feedback has been the downfall of many a business. Hopefully Volvo takes note of what its critics are saying and incorporates at least some of the suggestions from buyers and press reviewers. Refusing to adapt to meet the needs of a changing market is a sure fire way to make a product that fewer and fewer people will want, given other options that better meet their perceived needs. I don't want to see Volvo "pull a Saab", which in the end kept offering cars for as much money as their better competitors, without keeping up with their competitors' yearly improvements in refinement, tech, and styling. I think the SPA vehicles are going to bring the brand back up to speed, but anyone saying the older (current) S60 and XC60 vehicles are getting long in the tooth has every right to voice those opinions, and they are valid whether or not you like the current setup (which isn't terrbible, it's just dated and need of some streamlining). These cars are long overdue for some serious updates, no matter how charming they are to Volvo loyalists, currently. We are few and far between, as sales would seem to indicate. And there will be ever fewer of us in the years ahead if our needs can be better met elsewhere.

      Again, I like my S60, but I got it used for about 50% of what it would have cost new. I bought it for stripped MK6 GTI money, and it was the far better car at that price point. But there's no way I would have bought this car for the ~$50k it would have cost new, not when I could have gone shopping for a new or lightly used B8 S4, Chevy SS, Caddy CTS-V etc. for the same money.
      Last edited by Bunnspeed; 03-14-2017 at 04:58 PM.
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    21. #19
      Quote Originally Posted by MidnightSnooze View Post
      After having touch screens previously, i love the dial and button interface. Seems that most of the top brands are moving back towards dials instead of touch screen. Purely because they lag and fingerprints look like ****. Plus, unless its integrated like the new Volvos, then i don't want a iPad glued to the dash.

      The interface is quick and easy to understand, no lag between screens. The dial on the steering wheel can control EVERYTHING. The number pad is great for typing in addresses. There are quick buttons to switch from Nav to media. I love it.

      But i also loved my Windows phone, so i might be in the minority.
      I'm so similar to you. I really like the knob-and-button infotainment system. It's a lot less distracting and easy to use in cold weather when you're wearing gloves.

      I also had a Windows phone for many years and loved it. Maybe we're just weird people.

    22. #20
      Quote Originally Posted by MidnightSnooze View Post
      But i also loved my Windows phone, so i might be in the minority.
      Quote Originally Posted by bomgd3 View Post
      I also had a Windows phone for many years and loved it. Maybe we're just weird people.
      Haha there must be a pattern here. I still use a Windows phone and love it. I feel like the majority of my technology preferences fly in the face of what most people consider normal. My thought is that a non-touch screen system is much easier to manipulate while driving. You can feel for the buttons without looking at them before committing to press them.
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    23. #21
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      I find that most automobile journalists have a bias to a particular brand or brands (Audi/BMW). If I want an in-depth and honest review of a car, I look to Alex on Autos. His reviews are VERY detailed, he's very knowledgeable on the different options and specs of each vehicle he reviews, and he compares each vehicle with other vehicles in his commentary.

      Here's his review of the 2015.5 S60 T5: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WPk-yLp0bVY
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    24. #22
      Junior Member zemaitis's Avatar
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      [QUOTE=acee;5096697]Haha there must be a pattern here. I still use a Windows phone and love it. I feel like the majority of my technology preferences fly in the face of what most people consider normal. My thought is that a non

      Wow that makes 4 of us Windows phone users. Very nice! Won't get an Iphone as I don't want to buy a life support system for a battery!
      Cheers.

    25. #23
      I have also noticed a trend over the years for automotive journalists to be increasingly careful not to burn any bridges with automakers or their readers, so it can, in fact, be difficult to find articles that are overtly critical of any car. This isn't a good time to be an automotive journalist, as print media is rapidly disappearing, and the number of paying enthusiasts with in-depth knowledge of cars and not just a superficial interest in breezing through a flashy test review while toggling between social media sites, seems to be on the decline. In a business that presumably struggles to stay afloat, and relies on ad funding more than ever when print media doesn't sell and readers would rather read for free online, journalists rely on advertising instead of magazine sales revenue in order to earn a salary. That means they have to stay on good terms with automakers who, if the wrong toes get stepped on, could bring their ad revenue elsewhere, and who could deny journalists future access to their products.

      Journalists also have to also be mindful of creating content their remaining magazine buyers and online readership want to read about, and some brands or kinds of cars are more exciting to read about than others, or some companies may get more attention for introducing a bigger array of products in a given period of time, which creates more opportunities to review new cars by that automaker, or they may woo journalists by offering them more opportunities to test their products in exciting contexts. Journalists also have to be careful not to offend brand loyalists who might stop purchasing/ clicking on, or otherwise choosing their product, and the smaller the number of readers a magazine has, the less likely it will be that automakers will want to spend money advertising within their magazine or website. Finally, some cars are simply more exciting for enthusiasts to enthuse about than others. For example, a limited edition Racecar variant of a BMW M4 running low 12s is a helluva lot more exciting to test and write about than a slowish but pleasant Volvo T5 or T6 on old architecture with clunky tech. While the Volvo may be a really nice car in isolation, it isn't anything a journalist would get excited over, especially compared with the most modern, fastest, most refined products currently on the market. Journalists' opinions are formed by relating a product to whatever else they've driven, and what may seem harsh by our own standards may be a journalist hating a car because it doesn't measure up to standards set by the last handful of cars they just wheeled around the 'Ring.

      For these and other political and personal preference reasons, journalists are inclined to favor some products over others in their writing, which can come across as bias. I don't think that's the case here. They are calling a spade a spade, and we should be happy that it's still possible to find articles that aren't overtly pandering to their advertisers, where you can get objective information and informed personal opinions, about the good and the bad features of cars you may be considering for purchase. The last thing we want is for automotive journalism to turn reviews into the sorts of glorified infomercials that most automotive TV shows have become, where they flagrantly plug product after product with a lot of flash, loud noises, chest thumping, but no substance, no actual personal opinion, and zero objectivity.
      Last edited by Bunnspeed; 03-17-2017 at 12:14 PM.
      2011 S60 T6 with Polestar tune
      13.1 at 101 mph

      Current mods: KW V3 coilovers, DO88 fmic, Ferrita downpipe, Powerflex "race" torque mount inserts, more to come...

    26. #24
      Member Bmo Pete's Avatar
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      Quote Originally Posted by JRL View Post
      Well, it IS old and personally I HATE it, can't see the small buttons
      So you "HATE IT" because it is old and the buttons are too small? Your "daily driver" is a 2007 V70, your other cars are another 7 years older, and you call this V60 old? Hmm...interesting.


      Talk to me about small buttons?

      V70 2004-2007:


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    27. #25
      >> Bunnspeed said:
      >>While the Volvo may be a really nice car in isolation, it isn't anything a journalist
      >>would get excited over, especially compared with the most modern, fastest, most
      >>refined products currently on the market.

      In general, I agree with what you said. But, I did want to share this fun to read S90
      review where the journalist was excited over it just being really good at being a
      really good car:

      http://jalopnik.com/the-volvo-s90-is...-da-1790016282
      2011 S60 T6, Flamenco Red / Biege, Polestar Tune, JBL MS-8 DSP and sub-woofer;
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    28. #26
      Quote Originally Posted by krn View Post
      >> Bunnspeed said:
      >>While the Volvo may be a really nice car in isolation, it isn't anything a journalist
      >>would get excited over, especially compared with the most modern, fastest, most
      >>refined products currently on the market.

      In general, I agree with what you said. But, I did want to share this fun to read S90
      review where the journalist was excited over it just being really good at being a
      really good car:

      http://jalopnik.com/the-volvo-s90-is...-da-1790016282
      I look forward to reading that article. I had been talking about the P3 cars, but I do think the S90 and XC90 are enormously more marketable, and uuuuuge steps in the right direction for Volvo, where they can now match or better their competition on some fundamental levels instead of being *this* close to being competitive yet missing the mark by about 5 years in terms of refinement, aesthetics, and drivetrain engineering. The S90s and XC90s I've sat in at the dealership are beautifully crafted and thoroughly modern on the inside, with slightly bland yet very handsome looks that should sell well to the affluent buyers who value substance over flash. We aren't talking BMW 328 shoppers here, but the quietly rich buyer who might also happen to have a navy blue Tesla Model S 90 D as a third or fourth car in the driveway like it's NBD. I hope these new vehicles get the recognition they deserve and put Volvo back on the map as a household name and a desirable choice, not just a quirky one associated with your crazy aunt who is a cat lady with lots of Elizabeth Warren and organic farming bumper stickers
      Last edited by Bunnspeed; 03-17-2017 at 05:21 PM.
      2011 S60 T6 with Polestar tune
      13.1 at 101 mph

      Current mods: KW V3 coilovers, DO88 fmic, Ferrita downpipe, Powerflex "race" torque mount inserts, more to come...

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