If infotainment is a bit of a deal breaker for you, read on to hear more about five of the best infotainment systems currently on the market.
Audi MMIThe German brand's infotainment system is available right across the range, from the Audi A1 supermini to the R8 supercar. Although the system’s relatively similar across the range, it does change between certain models. For example, in addition to the outstanding Virtual Cockpit, the A8 has a new control system which is beautifully integrated into the car’s interior, while there’s a removable panel in the rear that gives passengers the ability to control media and entertainment options, as well as air conditioning, lighting and seat adjustments. For now, most models have a controller in the centre console with a variety of buttons and knobs, allowing you to steer through functions like a strong sat nav and Bluetooth. Audi Connect is another excellent feature, linking your smartphone to your car to provide a more seamless experience between the two.
BMW iDriveOne of the pioneers of the rotary dial control, BMW’s iDrive system is a real market leader. It’s smooth and sophisticated right across the range, whether you have a 1 Series or an X5. The future’s steadily taking shape though, after the 7 Series debuted gesture control in 2016, giving you the ability to do things like respond to phone calls and change the volume by performing gestures with your hand. Combined with touchscreens and handwriting recognition for things like phone numbers, contacts and postcodes, the technology will inevitably become more accessible and affordable in the coming years. That’s only going to add to iDrive’s appeal, which is based on quality and intuitive control, whether you’re using the sat nav, listening to music with Apple CarPlay or Android Auto, or calling your friends to tell them how great the system is.
Mercedes MBUXMercedes have finally replaced their COMAND system, which was first introduced around the turn of the century. It was starting to feel a little dated, whereas the new MBUX system brings the German giant back up to speed with a touchscreen operating alongside both a touchpad and touch-sensitive buttons on the steering wheel. Debuted on the new A Class in 2018, the Mercedes-Benz User Experience has two widescreen displays, with one replacing the gauge cluster and the other for infotainment right next to it. It gives the cockpit a thoroughly modern feel, while the touchscreen display you get for controlling your sat nav, media and phone is a massive upgrade from COMAND. There’s a digital assistant and voice control to look forward to, while you can customise your gauges between settings like Modern Classic, Sport and Understated.
Lexus EnformIf you want an infotainment system that’s full of great content, Lexus’s Enform could be your perfect match. Available across the whole Lexus range, from the imposing RX to the spine-tingling LC, the system blends standard expectations like sat nav and Bluetooth with a wide array of third-party apps. This allows you to fully customise your information and entertainment options, whether you’re after the latest news, a hotel room or the nearest petrol station. Your onboard connectivity also contributes to Enform's Dynamic Navigation, which is a real highlight of the system.
Jaguar/Land Rover Touch Pro DuoJaguar and Land Rover share the same breed of InControl infotainment systems, with the new Touch Pro Duo the flagship model. Available on cars like the Jaguar I-Pace, Range Rover Velar and Range Rover Sport, the system is so well-designed that it looks great even when it’s switched off. There are two 10-inch high-definition touchscreens which serve up almost unrivalled usability, allowing you to use one screen for something like your navigation and the other for playing media. With online media and DAB radio coursing through an epic Meridian sound system, there’s also an optional 12.3-inch interactive driver display, head-up display and a digital TV feature for viewing both in the front and rear.
If you’d like to take a closer look at our favourite infotainment systems, why not find your nearest Inchcape dealership and we’ll be happy to show you how they work.