Will the new generation of Vette design be a sports car milestone for GM in 2013? While we’re not totally sure what General has in store for the C7, there are tidbits that offer clues into what features may be available in the latest series of America’s most beloved sports marquee.
By far the most innovative piece of connectivity to hit the GM design desk this year, an all-new virtual gauge cluster featured in the current Cadillac XTS may offer the biggest glimpse into what may very well be the Corvette and other makes’ future.
An all-digital display consisting of a 12.3-inch LCD screen connected to a steering wheel mounted toggle switch allows drivers to choose between four different cluster display modes, each based on the four most common type of driver profiles.
According to GM senior creative designer, Scott Martin, the four preset display modes are designed with the everyday luxury car driver in mind, “We spent time with owners of all kinds of vehicles to learn how they used the radio, navigation, phone settings and other user connectivity features,” explains Martin.
Martin, who was placed in charge of the LCD cluster’s design says that drivers generally fall into distinct groups; “Most drivers fall into one of four different categories in terms of the amount of information that they want to see at any given time, so we built the XTS gauge cluster layouts to appeal to any one of those drivers,” Martin explains.
The gauge cluster display ranges from “Balanced” to “Enhanced” mode – the standard “Balanced” display designed for those who prefer a more traditional layout while still maintaining the ability to view several of the car’s vital signs at once, while the “Enhanced” cluster is a more web-based design, allowing drivers to monitor navigational info while monitoring fuel and speed info and scrolling through other on-screen information windows.
The XTS virtual gauge cluster also features a “Simple” layout for those drivers who prefer the least amount of on-screen graphics while focusing on such vitals as audio, speed and fuel consumption. With the system’s steering wheel toggle switch, it’s easy to navigate through the different cluster displays and each mode is suited to the individual driving experience.
Does Cadillac’s current XTS gauge cluster offer a clue into the possibilities for C7 and other future Vette designs?