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Daft indicator stalk - mrmender
Just arrived back in UK, had a hire Vectra from Newcastle Airport home to N Wales. It was a 1.9 Diesel Auto On the whole i was quite suprised not a bad motor & the 1st Vectra i've ever driven.... Except i could not get to grips with the stupid indicator system. Sorry if this has been covered before.
After about 10 miles i understood a light touch for 3 flashes, ok for changing lanes on M way. Then a harder push to keep flashin, This then self cancels with a turn of the wheel. The problem that arrises is you want cancel yourself i found myself indicating the other way! or if i just wanted a quik indicaton to change lane as mentioned above then i pressed too hard it went on flashing. Then i had the problem of not being able to cancel!
How do you vectra drivers cope with this? What is the advantages of this over a normal switch?... Cost i suspect!
Certainly put me off
Daft indicator stalk - Dynamic Dave
How do you vectra drivers cope with this?

Easy. To cancel the indicators, just lightly press the stalk in the same direction again. If you do it too heavy handed at least you don't run the risk of putting the opposite side on.

Vauxhall aren't the only ones to use this design. BMW and possibly Merc, to name but a couple.
Daft indicator stalk - Hamsafar
It's the future man! New cars increasingly seem to have this - VAG group too.
Daft indicator stalk - daveyjp
Difference is the VAG system seems to work! I am always seeing Vectras going down the road with one indicator then the next going off as the driver wrestles with the control.
Daft indicator stalk - JH
but that's not intuitive and I had no idea until I read your post. I had exactly the same problem when I encountered a Vectra hire car. It probably saves 3p v a mechanical switch. Daft.
Daft indicator stalk - Bilboman
Similar experience after recently hiring an Astra. To the uninitiated, the indicator and wiper stalks on new Vauxhalls both have a "return to centre" feature; when changing to main beam, for example, you push the stalk away from you and you get main beam but the stalk returns to its original position; likewise, after any command to indicate, wash or wipe.
Oddly, to cancel certain commands you can either repeat the command or do the opposite. (e.g. push stalk for main beam: To get back to dip beam either pull the stalk or push it again. Indicate left. Whoops, my mistake: indicate left again, or indicate right.)
It's initially unnatural and counter-intuitive, especially the "do it either way" options, and potentially dangerous, but I found when I returned to my own car I missed the automatic "3 flashes" feature for lane changes. 4 or 5 flashes would be even better!
Challenge to car manufacturers (especially their dashboard designers): STANDARDISE!! At least the major functions: Can we please have horn pushes German/Swedish style on the steering wheel (3 or 4, one on each spoke) and a French/Italian/Japanese twist-action on the indicator stalk for side and headlights? DO IT NOW!!
(Does anyone know whatever became of the geek who designed early SEAT dashboards? Ought to be chained to a bed and medicated. Must have had a hand in the Alfasud and Peugeot 504 too...)
Daft indicator stalk - henry k
>>and a French/Italian/Japanese twist-action on the indicator stalk for side and headlights? DO IT NOW!!
No thanks I prefer a rotary switch for lights.

I hired a Toyota in South Africa and it had the twist action stalks just the same as the Yaris except they were the " correct" way round not like the UK models that copy the continent. The wipers were not found in a hurry. ;-)

I hope Ford have reverted to normal headlamp stalks not like the Mk 1 Focus which had to be tickled to flash which is also not intuitive with the resultant main beam needing to be deselected.
Daft indicator stalk - Pugugly {P}
Focus - found this out with a hire car last month. What a silly design.
Daft indicator stalk - Bilboman
Any more members for the "rotary club" out there?
I hate to have to take one hand fully off the wheel to click a particularly stiff (2004 model Astra) light switch twice. I need to switch headlamps on quickly in fog, tunnels, sudden smoke, spray from passing lorry, etc.
Best light switch ever for me was on my Montego: Neat little switch on the indicator stalk itself which I could click on and off neatly with my middle finger. It was also the only car I've ever driven which had illuminated symbols on the indicator and wiper stalks. My Astra has a soft orange light to illuminate the gear lever.
I mean, just in case I suddenly forgot where those little-used controls were in the middle of the night...
Daft indicator stalk - rtj70
I like the light control (rotary type) on the Mazda6 which means I don't need to take hands off the wheel. Actually I didn't on the Mondeo because it was on auto.

But the Mazda6 lets me "flash" someone with my front fogs easily (part of the light cluster and not lower down) instead of blinding them. It's also on auto though. But at least you can operate fogs on auto lights unlike the Mondeo.
Daft indicator stalk - rtj70
"I missed the automatic "3 flashes" feature for lane changes"

My 53 plate Mondeo had this and a proper switch for the indicators - it clicked down. But push down until resistance and it flashed 3 times.

What I disliked on the Mondeo was the full beam selection. Click towards you for on. And repeat for off. Every other car I have driven has been push for on, pull for off.

Edited by rtj70 on 06/01/2008 at 23:02

Daft indicator stalk - bathtub tom

You only have to sit in the car park for 'arf-an-our' or so ;>)

Edited by bathtub tom on 06/01/2008 at 23:24

Daft indicator stalk - henry k
I like the rotary light switch on my MKII Mondeo but it is located in the wrong place.
It is too low on the dash.
When exiting, sometimes my knee can brush against the bottom of its "light" action and this turns it to the left ( parking lights) with no resultant " light left" on buzzer - stooopid!

At least Ford stopped locating the hazard switch in the most unbelievably useless postion on the top of steering column. It should be in the centre of the dash so that a passenger can operate it ( if required).

On most recent cars we have to suffer indicators on the LH stalk but please can they stop messing up well established operations.
Daft indicator stalk - Dynamic Dave
What I disliked on the Mondeo was the full beam selection.

What I dislike about any Ford is that if you switch off the headlights while on main beam, they'll come back on that way as well. At least with Vauxhall (with the return to centre stalks) the headlights always default to dip beam when they're switched back on.
Daft indicator stalk - Avant
The VAG system is like any other normal system except that a light touch gives (very usefully) 3 flashes instead of just one.

I'm sure you get used to the Vauxhall / BMW method but as Mrmender found, it's a right pain when you hire a car thus equipped.

It's just as annoying when the windscreen washers are anything other than 'pull the right stalk towards you'. It's some time since I last drove a Ford, but do they still persist in doing it differently?

It may seem petty, but it's surprising how annoying this can be if you need to drive different cars.
Daft indicator stalk - mfarrow
Since the Focus Ford design seems to have "gone with the flow" in terms of light controls, which is a shame because I often find myself selecting full beam rather than flashing it with the latch not being push away from you like they used to be.

Pull towards you on the wiper stalk is now rear wiper in modern Fords.
Daft indicator stalk - mrmender
I should have asked the question is this progress.... I don't think so!
Daft indicator stalk - Pugugly {P}
Don't go there with the Golf's rear wash-wipe system - totally counter intuitive and had to RTFM (and ask PG) on how to turn it off.
Daft indicator stalk - movilogo
Recently car manufacturers started providing several controls in a manner it is suitable for them rather than the consumers!

We don't have a standard on which side indicator stalks should be. Majority of UK cars have that on left side except Korean ones. I think it should be on right hand side - as you can't indicate and use gear shift on left side system.

Some cars are providing foot operated parking brake or even electronic one!

What the hell - why can't they follow standard one?

In a recent car magazine (probably What Car, with the new Jaguar picture on front), I came to know someone had his Honda Accord Tourer's engine seized in just 11k miles!! It was ultimately found out oil starvation was the cause. The bill was £7k+ and Honda contributed only £3k after intervention from What Car. Honda argued that as per user manual, one needs to check engine oil EVERY TIME the car is re-fuelled. And it is also stated that Honda Accord didn't have low oil warning light in the dashboard.

The owner grudged that it had a Sat Nav which can direct you to a restaurant in Switzerland but didn't have a low oil level warning light (mind that engine was topped up one month back).

It was not expected from Honda at least!
Daft indicator stalk - Statistical outlier
I can confirm that you do indeed need to check the oil level every single time you refuel. For the first 30k miles or so anyway. The engine uses oil, but not in a completely linear fashion, although I never did work out what made the difference.

I think no auto oil level sensor is stupid, my £4k Xsara had one, but I have limited sympathy as everyone at Honda I came into contact with stressed this as something that needed to be done, from before the sale to handover to services. Some responsibility should be taken by someone spending £20k on a car surely?
Daft indicator stalk - movilogo
I can confirm that you do indeed need to check the oil level every single time you refuel.

Why not include a oil pressure gauge then? It will be a better investment than auto headlight/wiper, keyless entry etc!

Sometimes I think manufacturers intentionally screw consumers!

Edited by movilogo on 07/01/2008 at 13:09

Daft indicator stalk - Bilboman
Interesting to see how this thread has moved from one type of indicator to another totally different one!
One summer I ran an old Talbot Horizon. Rusted all over, tappety engine you could hear from a mile away and the turning circle of the QE2, BUT!! it went like the clappers, started first time thanks to (pioneering) electronic ignition and it had an oil level warning light! Very simple technology - there was a sensor in the dipstick which had to be unplugged if you wanted to withdraw the dipstick to test the oil level "manually". Thanks to the swoopy French suspension, the light used to flash when hacking round bends, but what a brilliantly simple idea.
And like so many brilliantly simple ideas, it doesn't seem to have caught on!
Daft indicator stalk - Dynamic Dave
>> I can confirm that you do indeed need to check the oil level every single time you refuel.
Why not include a oil pressure gauge then?

The oil level would have to drop lower than the min level on the dipstick before the oil pressure light came on. Better to have an oil level light than low pressure light.

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