Cars have come a long way since the first automobiles rolled off the production line with nothing but the bare bones to make automation possible. Now, we have cars that barely even need us to be there, if at all, in order to operate. Yes, the modern vehicle is pretty impressive with even the most modest cars having some of the most sophisticated technologies available.
Here are just some of the most amazing car technologies available right now that are good to have if you can get them:
Climate Controlled Seats
It might seem like such a simple things, but car seats that are both heated and ventilated can make the experience of driving so much more pleasurable. They ensure that, whether it’s cold outside or hotter than the sun, you can cruise along in complete comfort. A lot of people think heated seats are a 70s thing, but they’ve actually been around since 1966 when they were used in the Fleetwood luxury car. If you can find a car that has climate controlled seats and a massage function, then you’ll be in hog heaven.
As I mentioned above, having car seats that will give you a massage would be amazing, and you know what, if you have a Bentley Bentayga, you can experience the awesomeness of having a relaxing massage as you sit in traffic for real. More car manufacturers should add this amazing feature.
Adaptive Cruise Control
What would we all do without adaptive cruise control? If you’ve ever driven a vehicle without it, and those of you who are a little more mature surely have, then you’ll appreciate just how fantastic it is to have it around in so many cars now, Why? Because unlike regular cruise control, ACC uses sensors to speed up or slow down your vehicle based on the position of vehicle in front of yours, which makes it even more efficient, and obviously, using cruise control is better because you don’t have the constant stress you do when you’re completely in control.
Publically available driverless cars might not be a reality for most people right now, but it is thought that by around 2020, they will become available in many places, such as the UK and US and I think that qualifies them to be included here. I’m sure you can see the many advantages of driverless cars; they will completely revolutionize the way we all travel by enabling us to work, read, or simply enjoy the scenery as we travel to and from work instead of having to concentrate on the road ahead of us. In theory, they should cut down on accidents because human error will no longer be an issue, too, and of course, they could help people who don’t or can’t drive for whatever reason to get around too.
Remember when you had to strain your neck to see what was going on behind you when you were driving, and you needed to back up? Well, that is becoming less and less of a necessity thanks to the fact that even entry-level vehicles like the Honda Fit are coming being fitted with rear cameras as standard, which means that, although you’ll still need to look behind you, you can do it without turning back and get a more accurate picture of what is actually going on, which means fewer bumps and dings.
Cars like the Subaru Forester, which incorporate voice control are a boon to those of us who enjoy listening to music or who occasionally have to take calls while we’re driving. Why? Because they enable us to safely change the song or pick up the phone without having to actually take our eyes off the road or our hand off the wheel. Thankfully, although there are still many cars being made without voice control, most manufacturers are starting to incorporate it, and things are sure to be easier for us all in the future.
Automated liftgates, like the kind on the 2013 model Ford Escape are fantastic for one simple reason – you can open up the trunk without having to use your hands, which means if you’re struggling with bags full of groceries, you can get them packed up a lot more easily without the dreaded, attention-drawing bag drop.
Keys for cars, at least, are becoming fast obsolete. There is a time in the not-so-distant future when we will look upon them as being rather quaint. Right now, it’s all about keyless entry, whereby you only need push a button to unlock and start your vehicle. Most keyless systems will even allow you to put your car into ‘panic’ mode, whereby it will honk the horn and flash the lights, to attract some assistance if you find yourself in a dark parking lot with a potential mugger on your tail!
GPS systems have come a long way since they were first a thing in the 90s. If you were ‘lucky’ enough to have one back then, you’ll know just how frustratingly slow and laughably inaccurate they could be, not to mention difficult to actually work without taking your eyes off the road! Now, not only are GPS systems fast and accurate, but they can do things like point out local landmarks, access traffic data to give you a faster journey and quickly reroute you should you head towards the scene of an accident or a closed road. They’re pretty much essential for anyone who drives more than a few miles from their home on even a semi-regular basis.
Cell Phone Integration
Cars that come with cell phone integration are now the norm, but not all of them do it well. If you’re driving a car that requires you to connect via USB as your only option, then you are missing out. Vehicles that incorporate Android Auto and Apple CarPlay are a must because they allow you to control almost every function on your phone safely from your car seat. I mean, you can even send texts hands-free – it’s fantastic!
Auto Braking isn’t just a feature that it’s nice to have because it makes your driving experience more pleasant – it could actually save your life! Basically, auto braking systems use sensors to stop your vehicle without any input from you if they sense a danger ahead of you, like a child who’s suddenly run out in front of you. If your reflexes aren’t quite as fast as they maybe should be, an auto braking system could seriously save your, and other road users’ butts.
High-end cars like the Mercedes-Benz S-Class have come with their own wi-fi hotspots as standard for a little while now, but you don’t have to be rich to get wi-fi in your car because more and more affordable vehicles are being fitted with their own hotspots, and this is fantastic because it means you can connect to Spotify or update your GPS without having to use your data.
EnLighten is a totally amazing car app that is available on both iOS and Android. Why is it so fantastic? Because it can be used to predict when the traffic lights on your route are likely to change, which means that you can coast along instead of stopping, to save some gas, or safely take a sip of your beverage without having to worry that you’ll get honked at by holding the lineup. Sometimes, it’s just the little things!
Automatic Parking Systems
If you hate parking because y’know, you suck at it, like so many of us do, and you’re always worried about dinging other people’s cars, then automatic parking systems, like the amazing Tesla Summon are a total boon. Why? It will let you park your car autonomously by pressing on your key fob, that’s why! Obviously most vehicle’s don’t have anything quite as good as this yet, but Tesla have set the ball rolling by stepping up automatic parking, and it’ll only be a matter of time before others follow.
Electric cars are becoming more popular, and this is great news for anyone who cares about the environment or, y’know just the cost of gas. Right now, there needs to be more infrastructure built to support electric car users, but when that happens, this will be one technology we’re truly grateful for, well unless we’re in the oil industry, perhaps.
Lane Keep Assist
Lane keep assist technology solves one of the simplest problems us drivers face – staying safely within the perimeters of the lanes we’re driving in, and it can come in pretty useful on those long road trips when you’re traveling the same stretch for what seems like an endless amount of time, let me tell you!
If you can find a car that has as many of these great technologies included as standard, then you have found the manna of car heaven, and you will be one of the safest, most contented drivers that are out there.