By David Whinyates on 2017-05-17 - David helped set up Driving Force while motoring editor of the Teesside Gazette. Now acts as consultant motoring editor and is a co-owner of Driving Force Media Ltd.
Techno upgrades for the
TIME waits for no man - or woman - in the ultra-competitive world of selling cars, which is why MINI is introducing a basket of techno upgrades to further enhance the appeal of its cheeky little best sellers.
From July, all new MINI models will feature an enhanced cockpit instrument with a new night design and a fuel level display that offers greater precision.
Operation of driving modes and the head-up display are also being revised and, in a first for the brand, Clubman and Countryman variants will offer Apple CarPlay while an alertness assistant will be introduced on the three and five door hatch and convertible models.
Apple Carplay integration offers buyers a convenient, wireless connection to compatible Apple iPhone apps, including iMessage, Phone, Apple Music, Apple Maps and selected third party apps. Apps are displayed and operated on the 8.8" high resolution central display and controlled using either the car's touch controller or touchscreen.
The cockpit instrument on the steering column of all current MINI models will offer improved clarity and an enhanced graphics display. At night time, the numbers and letters will appear in white rather than orange and the new colour scheme will also apply to the head-up display whilst driving in the dark. An individual height setting for the display will now be stored in the personal profile on the vehicle key, as will the settings for the exterior mirrors and the electrically adjustable seats.
The new fuel level display on the right-hand section of the cockpit instrument features an enhanced and more precise display, making it easier to read fuel level details.
In the latest models, the operation of the three different driving modes will now be by means of a toggle switch positioned underneath the air conditioning controls while the head-up display will be managed from a separate menu item in the car's operating system from July 2017 onwards.
The alertness assistant on the hatch and convertible models is included with the optional visual boost screen or navigation systems and continuously analyses how the vehicle is driven. If the distance covered or the behavior at the wheel indicates that the driver may be losing concentration, the system encourages the driver to take a break with a graphic displayed on the central display screen.
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