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MyFord Touch Apparently Really, Really, REALLY Sucks

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This is how bad the MyFord Touch "infotainment" system sucks: it sucks so bad, the latest JD Power Initial Quality Survey dropped Ford down to 23rd place from the #5 slot it occupied last year -- and says it's "the root cause of the drop."

Reviewer Sam Haymart writes:

The problem is it sucks. We recently panned the system heavily in our 2011 Ford Explorer long term test as being too difficult to use, confusing and prone to cause more driving safety problems than texting on your phone. Trying to make routine adjustments for the air-conditioning that once were achieved with a button, took paging through menus and taking your eyes off the road for unacceptable lengths of time.

And suck, it does -- even worse, apparently, than the "vehicles" turned out by Suzuki, which somehow managed to best Dodge in the new JD Power report, but still finished far behind category leaders Lexus and Honda.

Of course, it wasn't supposed to turn out this way.

When it was introduced, the MyFord Touch interface was dubbed -- by Ford, naturally -- as the “intuitive driver experience.”

“MyFord delivers a premium interior experience that will help consumers fall in love with their vehicles again,” said Derrick Kuzak, Ford Group Vice President, Global Product Development. digital editor Andrew Stoy wasn't much more impressed, finding the car itself adequate, but the MyFord Touch "to be terrible."

"After three days with the car, I still didn't know how to direct-tune a Sirius station," he wrote. "Instead of the more-intuitive touch-screen/five-way button combo on the full-size MyFord Touch, the 2012 Focus gets a bizarre array of buttons on the center stack, no touch screen and a steering wheel laden with vaguely marked switchgear. Could I have opened the manual and learned it? Probably. But I still contend that it should be intuitive, and this is most definitely not."

Executive editor Bob Gritzinger was "baffled by the Sync whatever-the-hell head unit. Way too much information on the screen, not enough on the steering wheel buttons--and it all probably adds a grand to the sticker that the typical Ford Focus buyer would rather put into their fuel, smartphone or fast-food budget."

Consumer Reports, an early MyTouch detractor, called the system "overcomplicated" and said "none of the options works as well or is as easy to use as old-fashioned knobs and switches, and they can be more time-consuming and distracting to operate. First-time users might find it impossible to comprehend."

"It's a touchscreen from the past, without support for multitouch, physics or gestures. Imagine how obsolete it will look in five years, when you're still making payments on that Mustang," offered Computerworld's Mike Elgan before going on to deride the MyFord Touch as "complex, clunky, and ugly," and that it "looks like it was designed by a U.S. car company."

Oh, and he called it a disaster, too.

Unfortunately, this Ford owner, who took to a Ford message board in an attempt to figure out his MyFord Touch, didn't seem to have Googled "MyFord Touch reviews" before he signed on the dotted line:

"I am a new member and owner of a 2011 Ford Edge Limited with MyTouch. Already, I am having some problems and had to reboot the system, in addition to it locking up and crashing before hand. I have a few questions maybe someone can help me with.
First off, I am curious as to what version of MyTouch I have. I see people are updating to 2.8. How do I find out what version I have? I have looked through the menus but have been unsuccessful. Same goes for SYNC. How do I find what version I have? Is there a way to update these myself, or are they dealer only?

The reply:

"Abe, sorry to say this but welcome to the nightmare called Sync.

"Ford did a great job marketing it but didnt put the same effort into making sure it was up and ready to put in their vehicles.

"Otherwise a great auto, soured by the MFT system

"Looking forward to the end of my lease in 20 something months."

The bright side of the story?

At least he wasn't driving when his MyFord Touch went haywire, causing to volume to get "stuck on max while the A/C continued to blow cold air in 42-degree weather."

So, who else misses the 8-track?
POSITION:  No positions in stocks mentioned.