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Can't Navigate Out of a Paper Bag - Comments

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Garmin nuvi 350.....the greatest 'toy' I have ever purchased....I use it ALL the time. My girlfriend thinks I have some sort of addiction with it.....

I'm in law enforcement and one of my friends bought one then a few of us purchased one each then next thing I know there is 15-20 of us who all have the same one. We work in upstate NY where some roads don't have the road names at the intersections. This little box is wonderful.

I own a 2006 Dodge Magnum. Love the car, don't like the installed GPS system. It sounds like the one you have, so do all the US auto manufacturers buy from the same supplier? I fly an airplane behind two Garmin GPS navigators, and I really like them. I'd spend that kind of money again if I ever buy another aircraft that needed an upgrade (and we're not talking about a few hundred dollars).

If Garmin, TomTom, and others have "fixed" the GPS navigator problem, why are the American car makers still using the broken junk? I do wish Garmin would make an in-dash unit so I could rip out the junk unit from my car and replace it with something really cool.

Our GPS system (I can't remember the brand) is great because, since it's not attached to the car permanently, and uses batteries as well, it will still work if you're walking around. So, trying to find our way in a big city that we were not familiar with was SO much easier with the GPS telling us where to go.

So if you're considering buying a new one, try and get one with that feature, cause it is so useful! :)

Change your setting from "shortest route" to "fastest route", this will eliminate all the extra turns you were talking about. This is one of the single biggest mistakes gps users make. Shortest route calculates by distance, fastest route calculates by time, which means it will take use freeways more. also shortest route doesn't account for stop lights, intersections and etc. BTW there are only 2 major gps mapping systems, one is nav-tech which garmin uses, and tele-atlas which tomtom uses. Honestly you will probably find built-in navigation to be more bells and whistles than you'll ever use, and the portable gps to be more user friendly. i highly recommend the garmin units over any other brand for their ease of use and accuracy. Good luck and read the user manuals.

You say so much for the shortest route promise. It sounds to me like you are telling the GPS to take you the shortest route. When I select shortest route on my GPS you get a warning "The shortest route may not be the fastest way to travel." You need to choose the fastest route. When I choose the shortest route to my job it cuts 5 miles off the trip distance. It adds 35 minutes to my commute because I am twisting and turning through neighborhoods instead of heading down I-75 at 70 MPH.

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When it loops you around in circles, it's neither shortest nor fastest. -rc

We bought our 2004 Jeep Liberty with the built-in nav system and quickly found that it was useless here in our rural area - or any rural area we travel to. Same exact shortcomings you mention!

At the time, both our daughter and her husband worked for Chrysler and previously we had consulted on or the other on every vehicle we bought. For some reason, this time we didn't.

When we were ready to buy a new truck - a 2006 Dodge Ram - we asked our son-in-law if the nav system had improved any. He said do not get the built-in one, buy a portable Garmin Road Pilot and it will do everything we want. We did and it is wonderful. We use it in the truck, of course, but also use it in the Liberty and leave the built-in one in the dark - which is where it leaves us when we try to use it!!

Of course, I gave up a great CD changer/stereo system to have the nav system built into the Liberty. I plan to have the nav system removed and replaced with a good CD/stereo again and perhaps sell the built-in unit to someone who never leaves suburbia. Urban-dwellers who don't venture out of the "Verified" areas are the only ones who will think the built-in has any merit!

I have a Cadillac that I bought for the installed gps system. It has all the warts you describe, and more. I recently had it tell me that my exit off an interstate was 4.5 miles down the road as I was passing the exit for that road. Then it went on to say that this road (I-85) was not in its system, and turn-by-turn guidance would not be provided. Yeah - I guess all those tiny little interstates can be confusing.

It also consistently gives me wrong directions, whereas my old Garmin 340 (which I no longer have) never made an error. I wrote to Cadillac about the problems, and was told, in a return phone call, that the department responsible for the navigation system did not accept outside comments, even from other GM divisions. Go figure. The rest of the car isn't that hot, either.

I used to work at Ford Motor Credit (owned by Ford) and in the short time I worked there I learned a couple of things. Ford is extremely proud of, and stands behind, all of its products. Customer service, even in collections which is where I worked, is priority. The reason? If you don't like us....you won't buy us again. When we had dealerships messing with customers? We took action. More than one dealership has lost its franchise with Ford/Mercury/Lincoln because of their handling of customers. I haven't the number, and I never memorized it to begin with, but if you call FMCC and ask who to contact regarding defects, there is an actual team that takes care of those, sometimes to the extent of actually coming out and examining the vehicle. They really do care, even though the dealership is trying to make you believe otherwise.

And...just to amuse...
Four years I ago I vacationed in Anaheim, CA. I rented a Chevy Classic from Hertz with the NeverLost (gps) system. One day, after I was finally used to the voice prompts, I decided to take my son to see the Hollywood sign. Following the NeverLost directions...from Anaheim...I was 20 minutes from San Diego before I called my sister, who lives in Huntington Beach. She laughed so hard and for so long I passed the next exit still waiting for directions. If I had followed the entire directions from Hertz NeverLost? Would have ended up in Mexico. Never did see the Hollywood sign.

I thought you might be interested to know that Ford is partnering with Garmin to provide the navigation component in their upcoming line of trucks. Perhaps things will get better!

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Interesting that new collaboration is only for commercial vehicles. They wouldn't put up with such garbage, but I guess they've decided regular consumers don't have much of a voice. They forgot the power of the Internet, I guess! -rc

In the 1950's, car heaters were optional. For many people in the south, this was a worthwhile cost savings. When enough people wanted it, the cost of not producing them meant it became standard, not even an option.

GPS's keep getting cheaper--sometimes in the quality sense as well as price! They will eventually become standard equipment, just like car heaters.

In 2007, five vehicle models were available without power windows. In 2008, only one new vehicle was left in the USA that didn't have power windows as a standard option.

Unfortunately, the quality of a heater (warm or not) or power windows (do the windows go up and down?) is much different than a GPS. But in ten more years, *all* cell phones will probably have it built in, either as a program or via the internet.

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