Have you bought a new car lately, or are you shopping for four-wheel windows online? Then you notice that some automakers retail websites are absolutely sucked.
We can’t be the only ones who find some of them difficult to navigate and are very worried about looking glamorous and giving you a vignette on the surface of the fantasy life you can have with their car instead of giving you easy access to the information you need to make your decision. Whether or not you actually want to buy a car.
Many of them have fancy pan sliding in and out, embedded videos that give almost no useful information and are punctuated with glossy, airbrushed images that tell you nothing. I’m terrified of contacting those “Explore” buttons because you know that as soon as you click, you’ll be sent an empty promotional rabbit hole that is the equivalent of one of the tax-free cigarettes, perfumes and snacking pathways through the website. Alcohol department at an airport.
Some site configurators even offer you a pop-up box that will help you alongside a meaningful description of an option that may sound completely unfamiliar. My biggest problem, however, is how difficult it can be to find a typical old-fashioned table that shows the technical features and standard (and optional) tools fitted to a car, and better yet, a table that compares different trim grades. It’s one of the only things you can find in a printed brochure, and sometimes even if you find a digital brochure to download.
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Now I appreciate that if your average mom is looking for a new car she won’t be bothered that she can’t find the corresponding engine RPM image for peak torque in a hybrid minivan. But some of us take care of that thing because we want to be able to compare rival car specs.
Volkswagen, on the other hand, takes things to the extreme, even giving you separate gear ratios for its cars, which is pretty good in 2022: : 1 running fourth gear, so mom thinks we’ll go to the camera instead. “Even Porsche doesn’t give you that kind of information.
Overall though, the Porsche website is a good one in our opinion. It is logically arranged, with an image of each model displayed on the homepage with a button to go into configuration and another to learn more about the car. Click on the button to learn more about a model, for example, 718 Boxstar, and then you can slide sideways through different trim grades, although each will get a suitable profile picture with a price, a power rating and performance statistics. The mpg number will be more effective than a top speed image.
And if you want to dive into the exact technical specs that car folks want to do, you press a simple, easy-to-find button marked “technical specs” and you’ll get a complete breakdown of power and torque statistics, economy numbers. And dimensions. The only real problem with Porsche’s site is that cars are so expensive that most car buyers will not benefit.
So why do some other automakers make such a mess of the same work? Which brand of websites do you find useful and easy to navigate and which ones can only be displayed in raw HTML without being coded? Let us know in the comments.