I always take note of new advancements with car companies. In some ways, the strict safety standards and semi-annual refresh schedule for new cars makes it difficult to add something totally new.
Recently, I was able to test the new 2016 Ford Escape with Sync 3, a much improved touchscreen, voice control, and driver interaction system. It’s a big leap forward and a good reason to consider this small, compact SUV that’s a blast to drive.
One of the biggest changes has to do with the responsive, capacitive touchscreen. I tend to overtest in cars, and I put this one through the ringer. I swiped through my contacts list (synced to my iPhone 6 over USB) and the screen never paused or jerked. I drove to an urban area and tried out the nav screen, which now supports pinch to zoom. I flicked around trying to find a specific intersection and found my destination easily enough. In many ways, this one advancement -- making the screen more responsive -- is a smart safety feature. When the screen doesn't quite work, it becomes distracting and even dangerous. All of the climate controls, radio settings, and even the options for configuring the text messaging feature worked flawlessly. (The car can read your incoming texts, which is another way to minimize distractions).
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