There are those of us who have shiny object syndrome, and then there are those of us who are pretty much done with touchscreens in cars. Among the latter is one of Stellantis' top designers, who has declared a plan to eliminate all screens from cars he designs in the future.
"It's a big trend at the moment to have [a lot of] screens, but I think it's a little bit stupid, because in fact to have not any more dashboard, only a big screen, isn't our philosophy inside DS," Métroz told the publication. "Our target is to delete all the screens in our future interiors. The problem with the screen is when you switch off your screen, you're just left with a rectangular black surface with all the fingerprints. It's not very sexy; it's not very luxury."
"Of course we need to deliver the information for the driver," Métroz continued. "It's a big challenge."
Distracting though they may be, touchscreens, in particular, allow automakers to aggregate a wide range of functions into a single system that can be shared between models. Taking them out again, then, poses a problem: How do we control the increasingly complex functions of a modern car? Setting up an individualized drive mode is most easily done through a screen, while technologies like navigation practically require a visual component.
Métroz didn't yet have a solution to offer, stating only that screens will require stand-ins that are "less intrusive" and offer "more serenity." His position within DS, one of Stellantis' smaller brands, may also limit the scope of his ambition to cars not sold in the United States. But the sharing of vehicle architectures between brands may result in a knock-on effect, one that begins to see screens fall out of favor in Stellantis products. To those of us who are ready to let cars just be cars again, any progress is welcome at this point.
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