Ford’s Sync in-vehicle infotainment systems (IVIS) is one of our favourite systems. Although we really liked iteration 2, accessing it through numerous buttons via the dash was a step out of touch with today’s digital era. Now, thanks to the arrival of Sync 3 in vehicles such as the Ford Everest and Ranger FX4, that minor problem has been addressed.
Sync 3 also supports Android Auto (which Google has not made locally available as yet) and Apple CarPlay, a quick review of which you can read here.
Our version of it did not include navigation but every other feature set. Sync 3 provides faster performance when compared to the previous-generation SYNC 2 system, and replaces the button acne on the dash with a brighter capacitive 8″ colour touchscreen that boasts clearer and big icons. The system also supports convenient multi-touch gestures (such as swipe, slide, scroll and pinch-to-zoom), plus Ford’s impressive voice recognition that uses simple, real-world voice commands.
Makes accessing your phone features on-the-go a breeze
With a simple push of a button and a voice command, you can make a call through your vehicle’s speakers. Once the phone is paired, you can automatically download the names and numbers programmed in your compatible phone. You can also play music over the car’s speakers via Bluetooth, by using your favourite music apps such as Google Play Music, Deezer, Apple Music, or Simfy and controle the playback via the controls on the steering wheel or the touchscreen.
All the controls for your audio sources (CD player, radio, two USB ports and 3.5 mm headphone jack accessible via the dash), climate control can be quickly set via the touchscreen. The touchscreen and system is highly responsive with no visible lag or stutters.
The buttons on-screen are big, making them easy to hit each time, but for distraction free driving skipping tracks, answering calls, etc. should be done using the satellite controls on the steering wheel or hitting the voice button on the wheel and using your voice to perform these functions.
We did not get to use the native navigation app, since we used the version of Sync 3 without navigation. You can still use Apple Maps (for now, support for other navigation systems is coming later this year) via Apple CarPlay if you own an iPhone or use Google Maps or Waze on your Android smartphone while your phone is connected to Sync 3 and set as the audio source to get turn-by-turn voice-guided navigation.
All in all, Ford Sync 3 is currently our favourite IVIS, but look out for upcoming IVIS reviews to see how it stacks up against offerings from competing car makers.