Cruise Control Not Easy to Use - 2010 Mazda Mazdaspeed 3 Long-Term Road Test

2010 Mazda Mazdaspeed 3 Long-Term Road Test

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2010 Mazdaspeed 3: Cruise Control Not Easy to Use

July 12, 2010

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I'm such a nerd that I have actual conversations with people about the various possible control layouts for cruise control. Whenever someone says they prefer to have cruise buttons on the steering wheel, rather than as a separate control stalk, I think to myself, "Have you never actually used the cruise control?"

Rarely, in my experience, do you end up with an ergonomic layout when the cruise controls are on the steering wheel. Stalks are always easier to use.

The layout in our 2010 Mazdaspeed 3 is one of the least user-friendly setups I've used in a while. This steering wheel is already chock full of buttons and switches. It certainly doesn't need separate "on" and "off" buttons taking up the lower left side of the wheel.

But the bigger ergonomic miss is on the other side of the steering wheel...

It's the toggle button for setting and adjusting your speed. Note the textured portions for "+" and "-". Note that they are both raised and feel identical to the touch. I have taken a 1,000-mile road trip in this car, and still I find myself fumbling around for the right button.

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Here's what I'd like: Make the minus button indented rather than raised so I can tell the buttons apart at first touch.

Erin Riches, Senior Editor @ 13,573 miles

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