What happened to talking cars? - Rojer
I had a Renault 25 TXi, (my first car!) with voice synthesiser. It started off as a gimmick but it actually said some useful stuff like, \"Brake problem! Emergency circuits in operation. Avoid braking hard. Service as soon as possible\" .. which turned out to be low brake fluid.

My S-Class Merc doesn\'t tell me even 1/2 as much as the Renault did. Why is voice synthesis not included in at least the flagship models? It\'s all available on the OBD at the garage I\'m guessing. Why not to the driver, at the very time something goes worng.

Which light-bulb has gone wrong, which door has been left open, handbrake on, fuel low .. etc etc etc.

PS You *could* shut the Renault up if needed.
Astra, Renault 18, Renault 25 TXi, Astra Est, Passat Est, Mercedes 190E, Mercedes
What hapenned to talking cars? - Dipstick
Reminds me of the Dave Allen sketch.

He gets in car.
Voice: Fasten seat belt. Fasten seat belt.
He does.
Voice: Rear door open. Rear door open.
He gets out and shuts it, gets back in.
Voice:Fasten seat belt. Fasten seat belt.
He does.
Voice: Boot unlocked. Boot unlocked...

etc etc
What hapenned to talking cars? - v8man
I thought that sketch was Not the Nine o'clock News?
What hapenned to talking cars? - SkyMan
Nope, definitely Dave Allen...

Saw it years ago but it was so funny it still sticks in the brain even now :)
What hapenned to talking cars? - Clanger
As a nation that doesn't like being told what to do, the marketeers should have heeded the lesson of the Austin Maestro.

A friend had a Renault 25 2 litre which served him well for nearly 100,000 miles but I never heard it speak.

I think the car manufacturers may be afraid of the car that makes its own mind up; "Never mind this 20,000 mile service interval, I want fresh Mobil 1, and I want it NOW. And while you've got your credit card out, I fancy a pair of new Michelins at the rear. Do as I say or the air-con will be awfully smelly next time you get in ..."

What hapenned to talking cars? - Rojer
IT was an option, which, as you gathered, was quite rare. They bunged it in the TXi to get rid of the last few 25s before they stopped production. Lovely air bag seat .. yes, in 1990!!!

Astra, Renault 18, Renault 25 TXi, Astra Est, Passat Est, Mercedes 190E, Mercedes
What hapenned to talking cars? - Mark (RLBS)
I had an MG Montego that spoke.

To this day I dream of some irritating nagging voice saying "all monitored systems are functioning correctly"

The one that always made me wonder was "brake failure, stop the car immediately".

You could switch the voice off, but every time the car was siwtched on and off it defaulted back to on with loud volume. I *really* hated the car.
What hapenned to talking cars? - bernie
My Renault Laguna RXE has this feature and is actually quite usefull.

It will warn the driver about quite a few things but the safety items like "Left Hand Brakelight Faulty" is probably the best.

I don't find it intrusive at all and would rather have it than not as most of the time you don't even know its there.
What hapenned to talking cars? - Rob C
I often hear a voice in my car saying..

"You're driving too fast"
"You're too close to the car in front"
"Why did you come this way, the other way was quicker"
"Why don't you park closer to the shop"

I think you get the picture.
What hapenned to talking cars? - Brill {P}
... others would include:

"I feel sic......."
"But it's my turn to sit in the front"
"Look, if I have to stop the car to sort you two out ..."
"...oh, that was the turning we wanted"
"ooooh, Daddy swore"

What hapenned to talking cars? - Dynamic Dave
I had an MG Montego .....

Are you not embarrassed by that statement? ;o)
What hapenned to talking cars? - Miller
I had a Maestro Vanden Plas no less with the talking voice. The only statement I ever seemed to hear was "Warning - low fuel"

I'm a loser, baby....so why don't you kill me?!
What hapenned to talking cars? - Dipstick
The motoring related Not the Nine O'clock News sketch that I'm minded of is as follows:

Learner driver at junction. VERY hesitant, waits and waits and WAITS for AGES, looking left, right, left, right, left.... FINALLY proceeds at half a mile an hour - and a car drops onto the roof.

Acutally it's just barely possible that's from "Alas Smith and Jones" instead. It was twenty years ago.
What hapenned to talking cars? - Big Cat
You can normally trust the French to come up with some new gadget on a car, most eventually get dropped. Over 20 years ago Renault launched the PLIP remote central locking system (Renault 9 - when did you last see one of those?) that has survived because it actually is some use.

Talking dashboards have died out - our 25 GTX back in 1984 sounded like a holiday drunk trying to order his last pint in a bar.
Tyre pressure sensors on our Laguna were inaccurate.
Peugeot and Citroen now put rain sensitive wipers on some models together with automatic headlights. Triumph toyed with the wiper issue on the TR7 (did sometimes work unlike the pop up lights).

But really, are manufacturers so desperate to differentiate their products that they have to put these things on? While I am capable of driving, I would like to think I am capable of deciding when I need to turn my wipers and headlights on.

Now if the French were to put more effort into reliability and build quality issues...


Value my car