The 2014 Ford Fiesta gets an updated Sync and MyFordTouch infotainment system.
It’s the classic good news/bad news syndrome. On the plus side, Ford has been drawing in plenty of tech-savvy buyers with its advanced Sync and MyFordTouch technologies. The downside is that problems with the systems have turned off many buyers and caused the maker’s quality ratings to plunge.
Ford hopes to fix those problems with the next-generation Sync and MyFordTouch infotainment systems that will be integrated into the newly revamped Fiesta subcompact making its formal debut at the LA Auto Show this week.
Be in the Know!
The 2014 Ford Fiesta will get a new touchscreen when it reaches showrooms later in the model-year. It also will have a revised voice command system designed to resolve many of the problems owners have had getting the infotainment system to do such basic tasks as syncing a smartphone and playing music. The maker claims it will also be easier to operate the 2014 Fiesta’s navigation system.
Ford was one of the first makers to embrace infotainment technology and initially scored some big kudos for the Sync technology developed jointly with tech giant Microsoft. But in recent years, as Sync and the complementary MyFordTouch technology have become more complex, owners and reviewers have started to howl.
MyFordTouch, in particularly, was blamed for a sharp drop in recent quality and customer satisfaction studies, including both the J.D. Power Initial Quality Survey and Consumer Reports’ annual Automotive Reliability Study.
That non-profit magazine’s testers declared that MyFordTouch “frustrates us like few other control systems in any other brand’s automobiles.”
The maker has tried to put a positive spin on the problem.
“MyFord Touch is appealing to customers, as it consistently ranks among the top 10 purchase considerations with new owners,” insisted Michelle Moody, Ford’s cross-vehicle marketing manager.
But following a recent news conference by Consumer Reports, Ford officials also acknowledged their internal data confirms that owners have been frustrated by some of the snags with the Sync and MyFordTouch technology – and they promised that updates are in the works.
The new Sync system going into the 2014 Ford Fiesta will have a smaller touchscreen than in other models – 6.5 inches instead of 8.0, which will help hold down costs.
More significant, the voice command structure will be simplified and follow more conventional human speech patterns. For example, a motorist will simply have to say “Play,” followed by an artist’s name, or a song title, reducing the number of steps needed to perform a task. Similar changes should simplify changing a radio station, pairing a phone or plugging in a destination.
Beyond the basic styling changes, the 2014 Ford Fiesta will get a number of other key revisions. Among other things, the new subcompact will be offered with the latest of Ford’s EcoBoost engines. Despite its diminutive size, the 1.0-liter 3-cylinder package will outperform the current 1.6-liter inline-four — while also delivering what Ford promises will be the best mileage of any non-hybrid product on the U.S. market.
For more on the new Fiesta EcoBoost package, Click Here.)