The expensive factory-fitted satnav may be taking you on the road to nowhere, writes Mark Hinchliffe
Another strike against expensive factory-fitted satnav as we reveal your mapping software might be up to five years out of date
YOUR new car could have a satellite navigation system that is up to five years out of date.
Cartographer Peter Davis says the problem occurs because of the length of time between the cartographer’s data collection and purchase of the vehicle.
Mapping data is usually updated every 18 months,’’ he says. However, there can be a long time between when the data is supplied to the satnav manufacturer, then installed in the vehicle, then the vehicle is shipped to Australia, distributed to dealers and finally sold to a customer.’’
With the amount of roadworks going on it doesn’t take long for the data to become outdated so it could be almost useless by the time you get your new car.’’
Davis says not only are factory-fitted satnavs often out of date, but also expensive with the average being about $2500.
I’ve got prices from German manufacturers for as much as $10,000,’’ he says.
They say that includes the entertainment system, but their cars already come with an entertainment system, so you are paying a lot for satnav.’’
Davis says another problem with factory-fitted satnav is difficulty getting upgrades.
It’s a low priority for the dealers who are unlikely to have an update disc sitting on the shelf,’’ he says.
It takes a long time to get the discs in and if you do get them they can be extremely expensive and there is still no guarantee they are up to date. Because the upgrade disc is considered a spare part, it’s always expensive.
You also have to buy a genuine part. You can’t buy aftermarket software that will be compatible with the factoryfitted satnav.’’
Davis says customers should install aftermarket satnav for a couple of hundred dollars.
It’s so much cheaper to get aftermarket,’’ he says.
Davis says most factoryfitted satnavs in off-road vehicles only come with street map software, which is just ridiculous’’. There are many aftermarket satnavs to which you can add 4WDmapping.
His preferred system is an iPad fitted to the windscreen/ dash via sturdy RAMmounts.