What To Do When the Buttons are Gone? - 2011 BMW 528i Long-Term Road Test
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2011 BMW 5 Series Long Term Road Test

2011 BMW 528i: What To Do When the Buttons are Gone?

August 01, 2011

bmw-528i-centerstack.jpg

It occurred to me while driving the 528i this weekend how little I used the dashboard controls. The iDrive more or less controls all the radio functions and the only climate controls I used was the temperature knobs since it's all automatic from there.

Looking at the dashboard, the only other major chunk of real estate was being taken up by the CD slot and some preset buttons -- two other features I don't use much.

Got me thinking about what would I want there if BMW decided to get rid of everything? You know, just clear the whole deck except for the main screen and few choice buttons/knobs. Would it look odd if there was nothing there at all? Would it look cool if there was one giant plank of wood across the whole dash?

I'm not really sure, but something tells me it'll never happen. They'll probably come up with some new feature that will need the space and it'll be back to wishing for a simpler setup all over again.

Ed Hellwig, Editor, Inside Line


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