Slide on in to the drivers seat, shut the door, put your hands on the steering wheel and look around as you feel the excitement and power envelop you. The driver’s seat is the control centre of any vehicle and how it looks, feels and functions is vital to the driving experience.
The cockpit of a car includes everything in the driver’s pod, from the seat to the instrumentation and steering wheel. There are lots of cockpits that we love, this is just a sample menu of some of the tastiest in recent times.
So take a look, then close your eyes and imagine yourself in the driver’s seat of these treats.
In the words of the legendary Tony Crawford, “The F12’s interior space is superb. Exquisitely crafted leather upholstery, blended with beautifully fashioned alloy highlights and lacquered carbon-fibre.”
This is one of the most beautiful interiors we’ve seen in recent years. Almost every surface is covered in leather and everything from the steering wheel push button start to the design of the centre console is magnificent.
The track-focussed road-going Porsche 911 GT3 has had everything it doesn’t need stripped out to reduce the weight. But that hasn’t made the cockpit any less amazing.
From its Alcantara and leather finishes, accented by carbon-fibre inlays, to the three-spoke steering wheel – this is simply gorgeous. The best bits though are the carbon-fibre backed racing seats, complete with racing harness, and the five binnacle layout of the instrument cluster.
Audi Virtual Cockpit made its debut in Australia in the 2016 Audi TT Coupe. Replacing the traditional instrument cluster, it’s customisable and offers full screen navigation behind the steering wheel with a digital odometre and speedometre.
Virtual Cockpit does away with the central infotainment screen, and though it looks fairly simple, the TT S Coupe interior feels sporty and premium. With its aircraft-inspired circular air vents and optional Nappa leather seats, it’s comfortable and functional.
The BMW i3 features a spacious and futuristic cockpit design and it’s been constructed using a number of recycled materials. While the seats are nothing to crow about, there are a few features that make this one of the coolest cockpits.
The gear-shift is a rocker positioned on the right hand side of the steering wheel, and there is no transmission tunnel to accommodate, so the floating dash is completely separate, adding to the light and airy feeling of the space.
MORE: 2017 BMW i3 94Ah review
The 2017 Toyota 86 has been given a refresh, but what hasn’t changed is the lack of steering wheel-mounted buttons on the entry level GT. This old school style means that the steering wheel is there for one reason only, to steer. No distractions.
The cockpit of this rear-wheel sports car is very simple in design, maintaining the traditional handbrake and unaffected by the clutter of too many buttons and dials.
Which cars do you think have the best cockpits? Let us know, leave a comment below.