Who doesn’t love a good gadget? From clever tools for DIY projects around the home to electronic functions on the latest tech, the wow factor of gizmos holds undeniable appeal. However, some of these gadgets can be unnecessarily difficult to decipher for the uninitiated, particularly in cars. From electric roller blinds to heated cup holders, automotive creature comforts can be tricky to use, especially outside of our semi-secretive hive of handbook readers and button enthusiasts.
David’s submission for a confusing button is Porsche’s valved exhaust button, which looks like a pair of binoculars (see above). This is especially weird because Porsche’s loud mode button is labelled better than most, with the bumper cut for the exhaust tips appearing on the icon. Then again, it’s easy to see how less technically-minded people or those not used to modern performance cars would have difficulty finding what the icon references.
Another solid contender is the Party Mode button on Rob’s Toyota 4Runner. I thought party time was all the time in a modern 4Runner? Anyway, this button whacks up the bass on the stereo equalizer and shifts balance to the back for tailgates and festivals. From the front seat, it just makes the stereo sound a bit crap, which doesn’t seem like much of a party.
Oh, and who could forget the button marked “REST” found in many German cars? Does it make the car tired all of a sudden? Not quite. Instead, it circulates warm coolant through the heater core when the car’s off so you can pop into the shops in the winter and come back to a warm cabin. Now that’s a thoughtful touch.
The automotive kingdom is filled with confusingly-labeled controls, so we want to hear from you. Is there a button, switch, or knob you’ve found absolutely perplexing? Let us know in the comments below.
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