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Discussion Starter #1
On checking out new cars (after many years since buying a new vehicle) I'm surprised to see how much the "gadget" technology has come ahead. I guess I shouldn't be because I am going back a lot of years to our last new vehicle and things have certainly changed in technology since then. Many of the things that were options then are standard now......probably overly expensive (but fun) things it would be nice to have. It used to be that power windows and door locks, cruise control and air conditioning were the big options. Now it's the Navigation Systems, reverse camera's, auto parking features etc. Honestly I don't think anything's actually built like it used to be, but do love all the new bells and whistles. When we finally decide on something SU doesn't thing the Navigation System is worth having considering the price. Says you can buy one much cheaper that would do the same things. I agree the cost is high. If you don't do a lot of travelling do you think the Navigation feature is worth bothering with (and paying for) especially if you can buy a hand held version for a quarter/fifth the price or less? It would be nice to have, but trying to keep the price reasonable. TIA
 

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For anti-theft reasons alone I prefer to have a portable one that I can stash. Navigation systems are the new car stereos for thieves.
 

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My worry with an inboard nav system is how do you update it? With my TomTom I just plug it into the computer once a month and it's done.
 

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Get a portable unit and also get some up-to-date maps if you travel a lot. A GPS will sometimes take you on some strange routes. If I had to choose I definitely take the maps.
 

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My worry with an inboard nav system is how do you update it? With my TomTom I just plug it into the computer once a month and it's done.
At some point, my dad was telling me how theirs does it, but now I can't remember. It was expensive enough (and enough errors) that they use a Garmin even though their car has one built into it.
 

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I wouldn't get a built in unit -- too expensive and if there is a means of updating it, that would be too expensive, too.

I've had 2 Garmins and like them very much. BUT, they're NOT infallible, they sometimes (very rarely but not unknown) have glitches, pimples, that give you the wrong info until you get out of that glitch zone.

Whatever type or brand you get, turn it on every time you drive anywhere for a couple months so you get trained on when you can comfortably depart from its instructions (and how soon it recoups and gives you new, revised accurate directions).

Several times on cross-country trips I've crested a hill in a large city to see a huge traffic tie-up just ahead so I've darted off on an exit. For awhile, my Garmin kept trying to get me to go back to the route with the traffic jam until I got far enough away from it that it gave me a new route to my destination.

It's best to learn your GPS's characteristics so you know when to obey and when not to.

(Also, have good maps)

 

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Well I'll be the dissenting vote. :) We've got built-in systems in both of our better cars and I love them both. In neither case did the nav system come alone; it came with upgraded stereo, mp3, blue tooth technology, and that sort of stuff as part of a package. Both are very intuitive, and I've never had a mistaken direction. Frankly I thought they were kind of stupid until I got one. The dealer updates them as part of regular service.

Personally, I hate extra stuff sticking off the car. Nav systems, fast-trak for toll roads or bridges, etc. all clutter up the car. Would it kill me to have the add-on stuff? No, but if I don't have to look at it, then I'd rather not.

I'm sure the aftermarket stuff is more cost efficient but most things come in packages nowadays and you have to be sure you are willing to give up the rest of the stuff in the package in addition to the nav.
 

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The dealer updates them as part of regular service.
What is the charge for that and how often is it charged? Everytime you go in for service? How much for that over a two year span?

and I've never had a mistaken direction.
Garmin is (IIRC) generally considered the best. That's what I use. Twice in the last 5 years I've encountered glitches in the directions it advised me. I doubt that ANY GPS system relying on this technology will do better.

 

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Discussion Starter #12
Well, sounds like the majority or you are in agreement with SU. After seeing the additional cost we'd ruled it out anyway.

Golfgirlrobin - In the case of the Escape (if we end up going with that) it appears the only extra option that goes along with the Navigation is a premium sound system.....and I think you can watch DVD's on the screen. I bet it looks pretty though. :)
 

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My friend has a Pilot with the rear camera and the navigation system...it doesn't stop her from getting lost nor did it prevent her from backing into her garage and denting her rear bumper...lol. I didn't consider it when I bought my Accord because the Nav package was like $2k more, and obviously you can buy a lot of GPS units with that sort of money. I did get the EX package which includes the 6 CD changer, premium sound, and the sunroof...I might regret the sunroof at some point but the 6 CD changer or sound system...nope. I love it. I would look for options like a headphone jack (for phone and MP3s). I think most all cars do MP3 discs now but I would make sure that was there, too, because you can listen to a lot more songs that way. Multiple vehicle adapter slots are nice, too, because then someone can have the GPS or XM radio plugged in but you can still charge your phone or do something else. Some cars even have USB adapters now, which is really sweet.
 

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Well I'll be the dissenting vote. :) We've got built-in systems in both of our better cars and I love them both. In neither case did the nav system come alone; it came with upgraded stereo, mp3, blue tooth technology, and that sort of stuff as part of a package. Both are very intuitive, and I've never had a mistaken direction. Frankly I thought they were kind of stupid until I got one. The dealer updates them as part of regular service.

Personally, I hate extra stuff sticking off the car. Nav systems, fast-trak for toll roads or bridges, etc. all clutter up the car. Would it kill me to have the add-on stuff? No, but if I don't have to look at it, then I'd rather not.

I'm sure the aftermarket stuff is more cost efficient but most things come in packages nowadays and you have to be sure you are willing to give up the rest of the stuff in the package in addition to the nav.
This ^^

Portable nav is great but also a pain in the ass because you have to keep removing it from the car unless you want a thief to remove it for you. And you cannot stick it to the window anymore because thieves will look for the suction marks on the window and break into the car to check in the glove box.

When considering built in navigation there are additional features that come on some cars. For example, my Mom's car has parking sensors displayed on the screen along with a back up camera. As for the theft aspect, most of the built in nav systems are virtually impossible to remove because you'd have to take the entire dash apart.

Another thing to consider is resale value. Cars with navigation tend to hold their value better.
 

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Portable nav is great but also a pain in the ass because you have to keep removing it from the car unless you want a thief to remove it for you. And you cannot stick it to the window anymore because thieves will look for the suction marks on the window and break into the car to check in the glove box.
Dave, I'm glad you're happy with your built-in. I'm also well-pleased with my portable.

My Garmin can't be mounted on my front window, it mounts on a little removable stand that sits on the dash. And, according to the instruction booklet, I can take it with me to find my way back to my car when it's in a big parking lot. (Haven't needed to try that yet.) My GPS unit slips into a leather case that I can slip in my pocket and take with me or store it out of sight into the console between the front seats.

And among its advantages are that you can use it in a rental car without paying extra, or in the car of a friend you're riding with if he doesn't have one.

 

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I have a hard time believing you will get your money's worth out of a nav system. Cars always depreciate, but even if the nav boosts your resale a little bit, I still think you are throwing most of your money out the door. Now if you somehow manage to get the nav added in for less than $500, I would say yes, it would be worth it. But like I said, most of the time it is at least $1k more. A buyer is not going to think it is worth that much more, not when their smartphone or Tom tom will do the same thing.
 

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Dave, I'm glad you're happy with your built-in. I'm also well-pleased with my portable.

My Garmin can't be mounted on my front window, it mounts on a little removable stand that sits on the dash. And, according to the instruction booklet, I can take it with me to find my way back to my car when it's in a big parking lot. (Haven't needed to try that yet.) My GPS unit slips into a leather case that I can slip in my pocket and take with me or store it out of sight into the console between the front seats.

And among its advantages are that you can use it in a rental car without paying extra, or in the car of a friend you're riding with if he doesn't have one.
Hey Bob,

I like a lot of the portables but at the same time I think it is unfair to dismiss in-car nav systems just because they cost more. They usually integrate other features and chances are you'll have a bigger screen with an in-car system unless you want to carry around a 10" portable system. I appreciate you can dash mount a portable one or even attach it to a vent but the fact remains that when you get to your destination you have to carry it around with you or leave it in the car and run the risk of having it stolen.

BTW - neither of my cars have in-car navigation systems but up until a few years ago I had company cars that did. :)

I tend to use the app on the IPhone or even just google maps when I want to find something.

- Dave
 

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My friend has a Pilot with the rear camera
I actually think the back up camera is a great tool to use for seeing if there are any kids behind you when you back out of a space in a grocery store. Most good cameras will also show you how close your bumper is to the car behind when you parallel park. Clearly, as you have pointed out, it should not be used to look at while reversing but then again there are warnings that come up on the display pointing that out.

I have a hard time believing you will get your money's worth out of a nav system. Cars always depreciate, but even if the nav boosts your resale a little bit, I still think you are throwing most of your money out the door.
I think it also depends on the car/market and the clientele too. For example, a New Lexus RX350 without navigation does not sell well at all. People spending 40K+ want/expect Navigation and a variety of other luxury things. In addition, a lot of manufacturers have cars built a certain way so if you want something without Nav you will lose other features that are bundled in unless you factory order one.
 

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I do have one in my truck, the only reason I have it is because it came with the truck!

I do like it better than a hand held GPS, buttons are bigger screen is MUCH bigger, it is like a small tv in my dash. My Nav unit comes with a CD, it is a 2007 CD so far I have only found 1 road that is not on the CD and that is a road that was just built last year. I can purchase a updated CD for $100 from GMC.

I do like the hand helds for portability, you still have to make sure you purchase one with free updates. As my portable GPS requires me to pay for updates.
 

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I think it also depends on the car/market and the clientele too. For example, a New Lexus RX350 without navigation does not sell well at all. People spending 40K+ want/expect Navigation and a variety of other luxury things. In addition, a lot of manufacturers have cars built a certain way so if you want something without Nav you will lose other features that are bundled in unless you factory order one.
We are not talking about a $40k plus car here, though--we are talking about an Escape, which is like $25k max? Not a luxury vehicle by any means. That's why I was comparing it to an Accord, which is more of a mid-value sedan with a similar range of features. Compared to the depreciation you are going to expect with a Ford, a Nav system is not a feature you are going to get a lot of money out of when it comes time to resale. Not when these are the people that think they can use their phone or a handheld instead.
 
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