Top Gear's top nine: the coolest instrument displays

By topgear, 08 July 2018
Citroen CX

The replacement for the iconic DS used floating cylinders as instruments, rotating to display speed and revs as the driver gazed through the single-spoke steering wheel. For the sanitised facelift, they were binned. Boo.

Lamborghini Reventon

Well, if you’re going to reclothe a Murcielago with F-22 Raptor fighter jet inspirations, you can’t stop at angular bodywork, can you? Try reading these LCD party pieces at 356kph…

Aston Martin Lagonda

In the early Seventies, Aston Martin was on its knees. It needed sales. It needed stability. What it came up with was the Lagonda. Its world-first LCD instruments were one of its many unreliable, bankruptcy-summoning features.

Fiat 500

Fiat’s reinvention of its iconic city car used concentric rev and speedo needles that chased each other around the bezel. Impossible to read, but cute as a button. For tech’s sake, Fiat binned it for a digital set-up on the 2016 facelift.

Audi - Virtual Cockpit

The Range Rover beat Audi to a fully digitised screen, but Audi’s ultra flexible and far more intuitive set-up, which debuted on the TT in 2014, is the king of screens in modern cars – endlessly imitated, not yet bettered.

Lexus LFA

Was there a real need for the LFA to have a motorised tachometer bezel that whizzed across the screen depending on your driving mode? No. A feature as blindingly, mesmerisingly over the top – and ultra-Japanese – as the V10.

Tesla Model 3

What happens when the designers win against the conservative thinkers? This. The Model 3 doesn’t have dials at all. Your current speed is a minor readout on the central large touchscreen. Minimalist cool gone mad?

TVR Cerbera

TVR’s mid-Nineties super-coupe put its speedo and revs under the binnacle, and then hung its clockface and petrol gauges under the boss. So you could only view them when the car was safely heading straight. That’s… never.

Bugatti Veyron

The ex-fastest car in the world had a tiny speedo. To the left was the infamous 1001PS power dial, front and centre was the rev-counter, to the right, the speedo. There’s an elegance to the dials totally at odds with its brutal ability.