Are the latest tech features on a car worth the money?
If you are looking to buy a new car and haven’t purchased one in some years, brace yourself. Today’s vehicles have high-tech options that go beyond just enhancing our driving experience. New technology features inside of the vehicle can help to keep us safe as well as protect other motorists and pedestrians. These add-ons are sure to wow you, but are they really worth it? We take a look at which options are luxuries and which one can improve safety.
Lane-keeping assist and active steering are offered as premium options and are more commonly found on luxury cars. They will sound a warning when drivers stray from their lanes, and some will even steer the vehicle back on course. This feature could be beneficial for older drivers who are more likely to be involved in collisions where they are not in their correct lane or didn’t check their blind spots. However, this option could be viewed as a convenience feature rather than one that actively keeps you safe.
Inflatable Seat Belts
Inflatable seat belts are promising in reducing certain rear seat-belt-induced injuries, but they are an expensive option when you consider how uncommon such injuries are. In the front, the airbags are going to do the work. Unless you usually drive a full car of people, inflatable seat belts are often not worth the money.
Reverse cameras are common upgrades on most mid-level trims these days. They were introduced to help prevent drivers from backing into children, walls, and are especially useful on SUVs that have higher sightlines. However, these cameras have led to an unintended consequence. More and more drivers are hitting the rear corners of their vehicles more because they stop looking and only use the camera. If you’re desperate for such a feature, go for a system with sonar and a chime to warn you of objects outside the camera’s range.
Bluetooth-Based Text Dictation
Everyone knows better than to text behind the wheel. Driving distracted is responsible for a large percentage of vehicle accidents and deaths. Yet, we’ve only grown more reliant on texting to communicate. Fortunately, the latest Bluetooth systems notify you when you receive a text and read the message to you. Using voice-activated commands to reply, proofread, and send, you can stay in touch with the digital world without taking your eyes and hands off the wheel.
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