Ford’s Gigantic Mustang Mach-E Touchscreen Is a Tad Big, but That’s OK

Ford’s Gigantic Mustang Mach-E Touchscreen Is a Tad Big, but That’s OK

I’ve just picked up the Ford Mustang Mach-E, Ford’s first consumer-oriented electric vehicle in Australia, but not the first electric Ford altogether, as it was preceded by the E-Transit. This wasn’t the first time that I’ve driven the car as I had a brief test drive in Queensland late last year, I was caught a bit off-guard by just how big the centre console car touchscreen is (see image above).

After spending a week in the Kia EV9, which has a fairly modest wrap-around touchscreen and a week with the Volvo XC40, which has a comparatively very small touchscreen).

The touchscreen in the Mach-E is about 15.5-inches. that’s 0.5-inches bigger than that in the Tesla Model Y, though in my opinion, it appears a bit larger because it’s portrait orientation, rather than landscape, like in Tesla’s cars. Mind you, the screen in the Tesla Model S and X models you can no longer buy new in Australia are 17-inches.

In my first impressions piece of the Mach-E, I noted that the touchscreen was so big that it could cause a driver with long legs discomfort getting out, by clipping the edge of the screen. That being said, variants of the car do come with a retracting driver’s seat on power off, so when you park, it’s much easier to get out, with no annoying screen-bumping required.

This is a good jumping-off point, if the screen impedes the rest of your experience, maybe that’s where we say it’s a bit too big. The good news is that most car variants don’t like to get overly ambitious with their screens – even exciting models like the Cupra Born, or German brands like BMW, try to not sour the experience with a big gosh darn screen.

We get bogged down in the ‘cars as an experience’ mentality when we think about gigantic screens, so it’s a pleasure that, even when screens are huge (like in the Polestar 2, which has an 11.2-inch portrait screen), they are still functionally useful for all of your needs, without feeling too intrusive (although I would love more physical buttons in Polestars).

Image: Zachariah Kelly/Gizmodo Australia

But then I see something like the Mercedes Benz EQS SUV and see a gigantic ‘hyperscreen’ that wraps around the entire dash 56 inches, according to Top Speed.

Image: Mercedes-Benz

I hate to say it, but that’s so extra. You do not get any extra functionality out of all that screen and it just looks like you love spending money. Maybe you do, we are talking about Mercedes after all.

Or even in a model like the Lucid Air, which although it is beautiful, isn’t doing too much with three big screens. It’s also not coming to Australia just yet.

Image: Zachariah Kelly/Gizmodo Australia

Anyway, you’ll get no hate from me when you say how much you love your Toyota Camry’s screen, or the infotainment system in your Subaru Liberty.

My big problem with car touchscreens remains that they often take too much control away from physical buttons. I want to change the aircon with real buttons, dang it, not by tapping a glass panel.

That being said features like the birds-eye 360 camera systems rock, and having a big screen aids with that.

We are currently spending a week with the Mustang Mach-E, stay tuned for our review.

Image: Ford

Want more Aussie car news? Here’s every EV we’ve reviewed in the last two years, all the EVs we can expect down under soon, and our guide to finding EV chargers across the country. Check out our dedicated Cars tab for more.

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