Outsmart Your High-Tech Car

by Jim Motavalli

Did you know it was possible to disable some of the annoying features of your all-too-modern car? In a recent New York Times piece, I wrote about car owners who had, among other things, reprogrammed their Volkswagen remotes so they could lock the sunroof, canceled the irritating ice warning that comes on at 37 degrees in BMW 3-Series cars, dialed in new lock codes for Ford Tauruses, disconnected the hill holder on Subaru Foresters, and eliminated the feature that locks the doors on the Chrysler PT Cruiser.

The problem is that cars are really getting complicated. Take the high-line BMW 5-7 Series, which now come with a fancy computerized gizmo called iDrive. The “Car Talk” brothers admit they were completely flummoxed by the thing, which controls most of the important features of the vehicle. “Unfortunately, iDrive is a complete disaster,” they wrote on their website. “It’s a lot of technology — and yet you gain nothing. We were continually frustrated by the iDrive. It took us 15 minutes just to change the radio station.”

Read the rest of the article at westchesterweekly.com.