2008 Hyundai Veracruz Long-Term Road Test

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2008 Hyundai Veracruz: Blue Light Blues

January 22, 2008

Looks cool, but isn't. The backlighting in our 2008 Hyundai Veracruz's interior is a bad idea.

It's said that the rods in humans' eyes are most sensitive to wavelengths in the bluish-green range, which tend to "bleach" out a person's night vision.

I'm not sure how effective night vision is when you've got headlights on, but I can say that the blue illumination in our Veracruz makes things tough to focus on. All of the numbers and letters printed on the dozens of buttons look very fuzzy when lit in blue, making them difficult to read. I'd hazard a guess that that's why automakers so rarely choose blue for dashboard lighting--it's simply the wrong thing to do.

So why not just crank up the brightness to compensate? That's problem #2: the gauges in the cluster are WAY too bright even with the dimmer turned all the way down. I can't imagine driving the Veracruz in some remote location devoid of light pollution. The speedo and tach would bore holes into my skull.

Jason Kavanagh, Engineering Editor @ 3,365 miles

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