2012 Honda CR-V: Night Lights
October 31, 2012
Seems that in the past five, six years, Honda's instrument panels -- particularly the dash gauge cluster -- have gone goofy with the starship bridge motif. Other automakers have also fallen for this techno funk, but all the winged displays, semi-circle gauges and kaleidoscope lighting feel distant from the more classic Honda/Acura interfaces of 10, even 5, years ago.
I can hear a product planner pleading, "But it's what the kids want!" And that's fine, except the kids aren't the ones buying your CR-V, and they started getting bored with your Civics when you put struts up front (2006 Si excepted).
So it's some relief that while driving at night, you can turn off the navotainment screen entirely for a little visual soothing. This is a personal peeve, and I'm staying on it until every automaker in the developed world hears me. I even kinda want a screen defeat feature named after me, like the Monroney sticker, so just bear with me here. I'm on a mission.
The i-MID screen doesn't dim completely, but it's not as bright as the camera makes it seem. And you can kill the graphics except for time and temp. Not ideal, but it'll do.
Dan Frio, Automotive Editor