For reasons not entirely clear to me, Beagle Man and the missus got rid of the trusty old Acura MDX that carried us across the country and back in comfort and style not once, but twice — and that I fully expected would be our vehicle for the upcoming LA/XC-3 — and replaced it with a brand-new (untested, unfamiliar . . . different!) Audi Q-5. I was there when the salesman told them “everything will be intuitive,” and “every control you’ll ever need you can access from the steering wheel.” Well, we’re exactly one month out now, and the only thing Beagle Man’s been able to access from the steering wheel is turning left and turning right. I’ve watched him try to drive this thing for four weeks, and he still has pretty much no idea what he’s seeing when he uses the back-up camera, and absolutely no idea how to operate the moon roof. Most of his driving time is spent trying to navigate from radio to iPod, and when
he finally gets to iPod, he can’t figure out how to switch from playlists to albums. So he pulls over, stops the car, and fiddles with his iPod manually. Very time-saving. And he’s going to make the switch from his old reliable Garmin to the Audi nav system?? How do you think that’s gonna work out for you, Beagle Man? This car is way, way too complicated for our guy. I actually saw him put “learn how to operate Audi” on one of his lists. Not a good sign. To tell you the truth, I have some serious concerns about our road trip this year. L.A.? Personally, I wouldn’t bet on us getting past Rowayton.
The Roof Rack Report (#roofrackreport on Twitter, for those who follow me already on @BeagleManHank) appears on Mondays, usually. It’s about politics, travel, food . . . important stuff like that.