Mercedes Widescreen Cockpit
It’s about the biggest slab of digivisual display of any car. The E-Class Widescreen option actually consists of two 12.3-inch screens, mounted side by side under a single glaze. It’s not just about size: graphics and resolution are pretty stunning.
On a 4cyl E, you have to spend £1,495 to go from basic Garmin nav to the connected system that swells the central screen to 12.3 inches. Then you’re permitted to drop a further £825 on the widescreen, replacing actual speedo, tacho and other gauges with the second 12.3-incher, confgurable in three diferent visual designs, and multiple variations of info.
You can knock out the rev-counter and use that space for all manner of real-time fuel-use data. Or make space for music or phone info, both of which are controlled by pads on the wheel spokes. Plus you can partition the central screen, splitting into a main section and a sub-window.
In principle, this is brilliant. In practice, not so much. Often, you’ll fnd the info you want only by using up a whole big display, not one of the sub-windows. Use the sub-window ahead of you to show the radio station, and it misses out what track is playing. For that you need to evict the big map of the central screen. Why not move the map to one of the sub-windows, as in this pic? Because it’s non-zoomable then. The whole system has several such idiocies. It’s over-redundant but under-fexible, and does nothing more useful than the standard, and rather pretty, hardware dials.