• Jan 5th 2011 at 10:58AM
  • 16

Car and Driver
has found a couple of revisions to the Jaguar XF for 2011 that haven't really been crowed about. Anyone who's ever been tempted to punch the dashboard after poking at the unresponsive touch-sensitive glovebox "target" will feel gratified to see the new pushbutton Jaguar has put into the 2011 Jaguar XF. The mechanism is still electrically actuated, but the change to a real switch will likely make getting at the contents of the glovebox less like playing the slots.

An electrically heated windshield also makes its way to the Jaguar XF from the Land Rover encampment. Most significantly, the 2011 Jaguar XF lineup is exclusively powered by the 5.0 liter V8, previously an optional upgrade from a 4.2-liter base engine with the Premium package. Larger front brakes, also previously part of the Premium package, are now standard. And finally, 2011 XFRs will be easy to spot with their blacked-out grilles. Now, about that super-slow touchscreen...

[Source: Car and Driver]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 4 Years Ago
      I love the XF and I have always thought that feature was a gimmick that was not necessary. I had wondered how reliable that feature was.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Not sure what this drive for automakers to increase the technical gadgetry of the cabin is all about. Maybe just trying to keep up with the Jones?? Didn't we see automakers implement digital cabin technology in the 1980s, only to ditch it a few years later?? I think we're getting to the saturation point where more technology in the cabin is just that, "more", not necessarily better. For example, I would shy away from many new Ford models as I actually like and prefer the look of an analog dash vs the PacMan/Frogger/green leaf option.

      I wonder how long it will take when analog dials and physical switchgear will be looked at as a "premium" trim level in cars...
      • 4 Years Ago
      Super slow touch screen, lack of AWD and the textured metal, go back to nice veneer or at least as an option.
      • 4 Years Ago
      As a current XF owner......i cant begin to express how relieved I am that they are replacing this part. In the 1 year ive owned my car.....I was only able to successfully open the glove box ONCE. its very glitchy and very annoying.

      Although I think i might have had something to do with the reason it barely worked. The sensor works on body heat to detect being pressed.....my fingers were always cold. Id have to sit on the finger for a while in order for it to work.

      same goes for the stupid touch sensitive lights
      • 4 Years Ago
      Let this be a lesson to carmakers that are thinking about going with touchscreen or other electronic switches/buttons that offer no tactile feedback.
        • 4 Years Ago
        @ erh

        One positive thing about the Volts center stack is that it does have little embossed areas to give you an idea if you are on/near the button. There are also a few real buttons and a pair of dials. I hope it doesn't turn out to be a user interface disaster.

        • 4 Years Ago
        That's a pretty decent idea, but usually these new fad technologies are used for stupid things.

        Like, I am ALL FOR using technology in the engine bay to make cars more efficient, but something like a touch screen on the INSIDE of a car is idiotic, and down right dangerous. Most of the time when I change the radio station or heat settings, I can do it by feel without even taking my eyes off the road. Not possible if its some touchscreen control that offers no haptic feedback.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Capacitive sensing can be made to work through thin gloves, but no, it won't work with work gloves. To be honest, on the Volt the buttons are too close together anyway, so if you had on big gloves it wouldn't work even if they could make it sense the gloves.

        I don't agree that a condemnation of a single implementation means other implementations cannot work. Look at Apple, one of the pioneers of capacitive sensing. The first version they did was the Cube and it was garbage, it hardly worked under any conditions. But Apple made it work fine later, and with high fidelity. Also, years later, the Sony PS3 (non-slim) used almost the exact same setup with capacitive sensing (power button by the DVD slot) and it worked fine. So you can have better and worse implementations.

        That having been said, I don't think capacitive sensing is a good match for the center stack (like the Volt uses it). Many people will just accept it anyway, like with the iPod 3G, which was actually the first really successful iPod despite the non-feedback touch controls.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Agree - one of the key reasons we bought our XF over the 535 was that there are real, usable knobs and buttons controlling HVAC and stereo, the other was that 535s are everywhere.

        The screen IS slow to change, but since I mostly use the ACTUAL (rather than virtual) controls I don't find myself looking at the screen very often.

        That said, the target glove-thingy is not a feature.
        • 4 Years Ago
        I'm with you. These new technologies are being used for gimmicks in places where they don't work well. Is it all that hard to simply use new technologies in areas where they improve the user experience and not use them where they make it worse?

        For example, I bet people would be thrilled if you could touch the metal bar above the license plate on your wagon/SUV (you know the one many makers use as an accent) and have it open as long as you have your key in your pocket, especially if it works with your elbow. This would be great for opening the trunk when your arms are full.
        • 4 Years Ago
        This doesn't bode well for the Chevy Volt. The Volt's entire center console is capacitive touch like Jaguar's glovebox. No tactile feedback for the driver. Won't work while wearing gloves. If it's not good enough for a glovebox, it's certainly won't be good enough for HVAC controls!
      • 4 Years Ago
      They are just now adding a heated windshield to Jags? My 1992 Range Rover came STANDARD with that item. Still works like a champ!
        • 4 Years Ago
        Jags have always had heated windsheilds.....just not electric.....hot air would blow through the defrost vents
      • 4 Years Ago
      I don't get the reasoning for the slow touch interfaces that are in modern vehicles. There's no reason for it given the ridiculous amounts of computing power that are available these days for dirt cheap prices, even to the regular consumer. Are you really telling me that a couple GB of ram and a Core i7 wouldn't solve the issues, or be feasible for that matter?
        • 4 Years Ago
        Embedded computers used in cars encompass a completely different world from consumer electronics. Most of the systems in your car have gone through YEARS of R&D and testing before they are ever installed in a production vehicle. They need to be 99.99% reliable in a wide range of temps and humidity levels and meet strict EMI/RF compliance standards. This is why car tech always is behind the curve of consumer electronics.
      • 4 Years Ago
      how similar is that v8 to fords 5.0?
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