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New Car Tech Headed Our Way

Craig Thomas & Eric Vo

Many car buyers make purchasing decisions based on the technology fitted to their new ride.

In fact, nearly 60 percent of millennials and 40 percent of older adults would change brands if another car manufacturer offered the technology they wanted. And an average buyer would pay over $2,200 more to have the technology features they wanted in their car. The tech also has to be easy to use. If the technology wasn’t intuitive, more than 30 percent of buyers said they’d look at a completely different car.

Let’s take a look at technology for your car—both what’s currently available and what we’re likely to find in our cars in the coming years.

Keyless Entry

Having been widely available since the 1990s, keyless entry is a common feature on many of today’s cars. But there have been some updates.

Keyless entry was first introduced by Ford in 1980. It was featured in the Ford Thunderbird, Mercury Cougar, Lincoln Continental and Lincoln Town Car, and adopted by the likes of Renault, Nissan and GM soon after.

The first versions used a keypad that required a code to unlock the vehicle. Soon, more sophisticated systems were developed that turned keys into radio transmitters that sent a coded signal to a receiver unit in the car.

Keys have evolved even further so that these days there are a number of automakers that offer smart keys. Used in conjunction with car doors that have touch sensors, these hands-free smart keys (or keycards) rely on a proximity-based system of opening. The mere positioning of the key close to a vehicle unlocks the car as soon as the driver places their hand on the door handle.

In widespread use by a number of carmakers, these smart key systems have a range of names:

  • Toyota calls it Smart Key
  • Nissan has its Intelligent key system
  • Keyless Go is available with Mercedes-Benz cars
  • BMW uses Magic Key

Keyless entry systems can also be gesture-based. For instance, one keyless system enables the owner to open the trunk by making a kicking motion with their foot under the rear of the car—particularly handy if your arms are full of shopping bags.

A related development is keyless start, which eliminates the need to insert your key into the ignition. The car’s engine is instead started with a start/stop button.

Pros and Cons of Keyless Entry

Why you’ll like it. Keyless entry and start means easy access and convenience. You won’t have to fumble around for your car keys to unlock the door or start your car anymore. Locking and unlocking your doors, as well as starting and turning off your cars, is now a seamless process.

The hardest part to get used to. It may take some time to get used to being able to get in your car without physically using a key. Or it could take time to adjust to using gestures to open the trunk. Once you’re acclimated, you won’t want to go back to having to use a physical key.

Safety Features

Cars can be commonly found with standard safety features. Car manufacturers have their own names for the suite of safety features. For example, Ford calls its suite, “Co-Pilot 360.” These features can include technology that assists the driver. From blind spot monitoring to adaptive cruise control, these features can provide a semi-autonomous driving experience, while also helping drivers be safer on the road.

  • Blind Spot Monitoring. This feature uses sensors on the car to help alert the driver if there is another car in the blind spot. If there is, a light or icon glows in the side mirror. In some models, the car may beep at the driver if they put on their turn signal and try to switch lanes while there is someone in their blind spot.
  • Lane Keep Assist. The sensors on the car also used to help keep your car in the lane you’re driving in. When turned on, this feature will beep at the driver if the computer detects the car drifting out of the lane. It’s aimed to prevent distracted driving, as well as drowsy drivers.
  • Automatic Braking. Using cameras on the front of the car, the computer system can also adapt to the speed of traffic while in cruise control. You can set the distance you want to have between you and the car in front of you. If the traffic ahead of you slows down, your car will adjust its speed on its own.

The cameras are also used for automatic emergency braking. If the car detects a potential collision, your car will brake to prevent the collision.

Pros and Cons of Safety Features

Why you’ll like it. These are tech features aimed at keeping you and your family safe. And best of all, more car manufacturers are making these features standard. Technology, like adaptive cruise control and automatic braking, can help reduce the chance you get into a rear-end collision – one of the most common accidents.

The hardest part to get used to. After driving for many years, it may be a jarring experience to feel a car accelerate and brake on its own. If it’s available on your car, it could take some time to get used to the semi-autonomous driving features of your car.

Another thing to be aware of is having your car beep at you if you have safety standards turned on. Whether it’s the blind spot monitoring or lane keep assist, you may need to get used to occasionally hearing your car beep at you.

Telematics

Everyone thinks they’re a safe driver – but how do you know if you are? Telematics uses technology, such as GPS, accelerometer, and gyroscope, to monitor your driving behavior and analyzes it to determine how safe you’re being. Aside from learning about your driving habits, one of the biggest perks of telematics is that you could save on your car insurance premium if you demonstrate safe driving behaviors.

Telematics can monitor your driving through a dongle that you plug directly into your vehicle, or with an app you use on your smartphone. The data gathered incudes time of day you’re driving, acceleration and braking habits, and miles driven.

Driving data is analyzed by your insurance company to get a better picture of you as a driver. Data can be recorded for six months of driving. It’s a general rule that the cleaner your driving record, the better you insurance premium. With telematics, an insurer can tell if you’re truly a safe driver, and use collected data to generate discounts to your renewal premium.

Pros and Cons of Telematics

Why you’ll like it. Simply put, it could save you money on your insurance policy. By letting a device or app monitor your driving habits and behavior, it gives an insurance company a better idea of how safe you are. Data showing you’re a safe driver can lead to policy discounts.

The hardest part to get used to. It could be a little nerve-wracking to have your driving monitored and analyzed. Telematics devices and apps collect data on whether you’re accelerating too quickly or braking too aggressively. You may be self-conscious until you forget the device or app is in your car.

Self-Healing Tires

Tires that resist puncture or can heal themselves are a huge benefit to drivers for obvious reasons. On average, punctures occur every 46,600 miles (75,000 km), but they always seem to happen at the most inconvenient times: while traveling with children, in bad weather or heading to an important appointment.

There are two types of self-healing tires: run-flat tires and self-sealing tires.

Run-flat tires are self-supporting tires, which enable a car with punctured tires to continue at a lower speed (usually around 50mph) and for a limited distance (up to 50 miles). These tires are fitted to a number of automakers’ products (BMW, in particular, is a fan of the technology).

Self-sealing tires are still in development, though they are slowly entering the market. Most use the latest rubber technology to seal tread punctures of up to 5mm (0.2 inches) in diameter.

Michelin Selfseal, for example, uses a rubber compound that immediately plugs any holes in the tread. Other versions include Kumho Tire’s ‘K-Seal’ technology, Hankook Tire’s Sealguard and Pirelli’s Seal Inside.

But that’s not all! Scientists in Leipzig, Germany, have developed a new rubber technology that promises to enable tires to fix themselves at room temperature over seven days with carbon and nitrogen additives that allow crucial bonds in the rubber to reform.

These compounds and technologies are still relatively new, but hopefully, in the next few years we can expect to be able to avoid unscheduled roadside stops to change a tire.

Pros and Cons of Self-Healing Tires

What you’ll like. If your car’s low tire pressure light turns on or you suspect you have a flat, a run-flat or self-sealing tire can help give you some more time to safely pull over. If you do have a flat, it gives you the ability to drive to a repair shop to get it fixed without having to change a tire on the side of the road.

The hardest part to get used to. You should always check your tires if you suspect you have a flat or if your tire pressure light turns on. Even if you have a flat, you won’t have to take out a spare tire and jack to change the tire. You can drive a certain distance at a given speed to a repair shop.

The Connected Car

Connectivity is a big buzzword in the automotive world at the moment, as manufacturers enable their vehicles to communicate with the outside world, becoming part of the Internet of Things (IoT). In fact, 73% of drivers would change car brands if the other car offered more connectivity.

The ability to tether a smartphone to a car for hands-free use (i.e. Apple CarPlay or Android Auto) is just the start.

Companies such as BMW and Audi are now embedding SIM cards in their new cars to enable them to communicate with cloud servers. The SIM card—similar to that in your smartphone—offers immediate access to:

  • Emergency and breakdown services
  • A call center concierge who can book anything from a movie ticket to a hotel room
  • Information on available parking spaces at your destination

Onboard apps can also:

  • Sync with your calendar and email
  • Access your contacts
  • Stream an unlimited number of music tracks
  • In the not-too-distant future, communicate with internet-enabled devices in your home (heating, lighting, even a stove)

These onboard systems will help ensure your car integrates seamlessly into your connected lifestyle.

Some cars also have an on-board digital assistant. BMW announced the BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant in 2018. The assistant gives drivers the ability to perform in-car actions through voice. For example, a driver can tell the assistant they’re hot, and the AC will turn on. The assistant can also provide important information about the car, such as oil levels.

Hyundai and Kia also announced plans to include on-board digital assistants in its cars in 2019. Some actions the assistant can perform include navigation to a place based on your calendar or driving history.

Car manufacturers are also partnering with Amazon to create unique features with Alexa, the company’s virtual voice assistant. Although still in the early stages, the tech could help drivers find things based on their location or play music.

Pros and Cons of the Connected Car

Why you’ll like it. Connected cars are meant to cut down on distracted driving and help you focus on the road. Plugging in your iPhone or Android phone to use CarPlay or Android Auto lets you use navigation, listen to your music, and access the respective digital assistant.

Digital assistants are created to help you complete tasks with your voice. Whether it’s adding an item to the grocery list, setting a timer, or finding the nearest gas station, a digital assistant helps you complete simple asks. In a car, a digital assistant can help reduce distracted driving and keep your eyes on the road.

The hardest part to get used to. You may be used to adjusting the temperature controls in your car on your own or using your car’s navigation system to search for the closest gas stations. Asking a digital assistant in your car to do these things can be a strange feeling at first – especially if you have to preface the command with a name. For example, “Hey Google,” “Alexa,” or “Hey Siri.”

Car Seat Technology

Most of us are now accustomed to electrical seats that allow us to adjust our position with a button or toggle. Some vehicles even save our seat positioning preferences.

And heated and cooled seats are also regular fixtures in modern cars. Plus, many luxury cars include massage functions to ease our backs on long journeys.

But car seat technology is likely to evolve even more in the coming decades as autonomous, or self-driving, functions in cars will mean that we’ll no longer be bound by the need to sit upright and face forward.

Concept cars with autonomous features have been shown with seats that morph into beds (think the best international airline seats). This could let drivers (or car users, as we would become) to relax and even sleep. Alternatively, seats could swivel around to enable the driver and front-seat passenger to face those seated in the rear of the car, creating a more communal space. For example, Mercedes-Benz’s concept research car is autonomous and the seats turn around to give passengers space to talk.

Car Seat Technology that Monitors Your Health

Car seats will also play a part in improving the wellness of car occupants. As cars in the future become personal mobility vehicles, they may be able to monitor the health of their users—for example, we will find seats checking heart rates of those sitting in them, thanks to sensors embedded in the upholstery and seat belts. If the system, via the sensors, detects a rising pulse, it can either activate a relaxing massage program or alert the driver (or even emergency services via connectivity technology) of the danger.

Mercedes-Benz and Hyundai have already released concepts of such technology at the Consumer Electronics Show, while other brands are developing similar systems.

Pros and Cons of Car Seat Technology

Why you’ll like it. If your car can safely accelerate, brake, and steer on its own, it can give back some of your time. Volvo touts its autonomous features in its cars and that drivers and families can decide how they spend the time in the car. The company suggests drivers can prepare for a meeting or learn new skills. If car manufacturers also build in wellness tracking sensors into seats, it’s another method to help us keep track of our health. Plus, these sensors can alert the proper authorities if something happens while you’re driving.

The hardest part to get used to. We’re used to the idea of a driver and passenger seat. If cars get to the stage of swivel seats, it could take time to get used to the idea that every seat in a car is a passenger seat. Facing the opposite direction while you’re behind the steering wheel could be uncomfortable—especially if you’re not used to letting a car drive itself.

Navigation Systems

GPS systems are becoming more advanced and more accurate as they incorporate connectivity technology to get information such as real-time traffic conditions and as engineers prepare them for the demands of autonomous cars.

Currently, connected cars constantly transmit their speed and GPS coordinates to a cloud server, which simultaneously provides data about the locations and speeds of nearby cars.  Therefore the GPS system in your car is able to use this information to change your programmed route and lead you away from any congestion, saving you time and presumably, stress as well.

The next step for GPS systems will be tied to self-driving cars. Current GPS systems are accurate to around eight yards of the vehicle’s position. Autonomous cars’ positioning systems need to be accurate within inches of where the car is within a driving lane. That’s because a self-driving car needs to be able to follow lane lines, as well as stay in between the lines.

Pros and Cons of Navigation Systems

Why you’ll like it. The more information your car’s navigation system has, the quicker you can get to your destination. If your driving route consists of highway driving, your GPS system could notify you of an accident causing heavy delays. It can then provide you with a different route to your destination.

The hardest part to get used to. Your car steering itself could be unsettling at first. But as GPS accuracy continues to improve, drivers can trust their cars to navigate straight or windy roads.

Features to Combat Distracted Driving

Much of the new automotive technology—especially systems that enable access to smartphones and connected services—will likely make drivers’ lives easier and more convenient. It can even make drivers’ lives safer by reducing the chances of dealing with a road rage incident. But there is one obvious downside.

Connectivity to smartphones, email, SMS messages, social media and music streaming services in the car can create distractions for the driver—distractions that can cause fatal collisions.

The distracted driving situation is unlikely to improve, especially as younger generations are even more wedded to their devices.

In an attempt to address the issue of distracted driving, manufacturers and tech companies could find themselves being forced by legislation to introduce airplane mode-like features to disable the use of cell phones while a car is in motion.

Some tech companies are already adding in features to cut down on distracted driving. Apple recently updated its CarPlay software to include a “Do Not Disturb While Driving” feature. When a person’s iPhone senses they’re driving, this feature silences the phone, prevents the screen from turning on, and automatically sends a reply to texts that you’re driving.

Popular navigation apps, like Waze, are doing similar things. Waze may lock the screen on a person’s phone if they’re driving. It may also ask if the person operating the app through the phone is the passenger before unlocking.

Avoid Distracted Driving With These Tips

Despite these new features, we all need to be vigilant to avoid distractions while driving. Here are a few tips:

  • Switch off your cell phone and place it in the glove compartment when driving.
  • Sync your car with Bluetooth so you can answer calls without looking at your phone.
  • If you don’t have a Bluetooth option in your car, invest in an aftermarket solution, which can cost less than $100.
  • Set your GPS destination before starting your journey.
  • Ask a front-seat passenger to change the music.
  • Try to keep conversation calm and to a minimum. Even that is a distraction.

Although distraction is a major issue at the moment, this could be a (relatively) temporary phase in the history of car use.

This is because the next big leap in automotive technology—autonomous or self-driving features—will be upon us perhaps sooner than you might expect. Tesla, Volvo and BMW already have some limited self-driving capabilities, but these will be increasingly common by the end of the decade.

So if you think that car tech is advanced now, you ain’t seen nothing yet.

Does your car have a new technology that isn’t listed in this article? Comment below and share with us!

44 Responses to "New Car Tech Headed Our Way"

  • Joe B | August 10, 2019 at 6:32 pm

    I just want to change my Points & Plugs !!!!

  • Joe B | August 10, 2019 at 6:26 pm

    WOW ! Sure sounds like a lot of unhappy people ~

  • Zorba | August 3, 2019 at 1:17 pm

    Like so many others, I have no need, want, use, or desire for "technology" in my car, nor do I want to pay the thousands of dollars it adds. The only "technology" I'm interested in is a transistorized ignition module in the case of a gasoline engine as points suck, but I own and drive diesels. I'll keep my '85 Mercedes with no computers, no cell phones, no garbage electronics that are, as my mother would have said, "something else to break". Not to mention being obsolete in 5 years. I use a Garmin GPS for navigation that cost me $50, and can be replaced for the same if it ever dies - contrast to "built-in" GPS systems that cost $1,000+ - and cannot be replaced if they become obsolete. I too have zero use whatsoever for "smart phones", considering them to be grossly overpriced to acquire, grossly expensive to "feed" every month, pretty much useless as a computer with the too small screen, crippled operating system, and substandard I/O; and awkward at best as a phone! And now "they" want to build this crap into my car - I just want to turn a knob to adjust the heater, and a different knob to tune the radio! I've been using, programming, building, and designing computers since long before most people had ever seen one or knew what one was, and "this ain't it". Building a microprocessor into EVERYTHING, whether it needs it or not, is the height of folly. What I enjoy about driving is the interaction with the machine and the road - the new "transportation appliances" isolate the driver from the experience. I want ZERO "technology", manual transmission, and even no power steering - power steering isn't necessary on anything smaller than a truck (and I know how to drive trucks with manual steering too), and numbs the steering feel to the road!

  • Dorothy Smith | May 26, 2019 at 11:12 pm

    I love my 2018 Ford Escape. I am 80 years old and decided to buy the new safety features now instead of waiting for my first accident. I especially like the better back-up vision (when parked between larger vehicles) and the blind-side monitors. The auto speed when using cruise control and even the auto headlight dimmers are nice. It seems even the wipers speed up or slow down according to the amount of rain falling. I recently drove a 2012 model for a short trip and really missed those features. My last car had keyless entry and keyless start. It was really great to never look for lost keys! But the downside was that I couldn't lock keys in the car. I forgot to specify that feature in this vehicle, but now I can lock even my keys in the car and open it with a passcode.

  • Dennis Goodman Sr | April 21, 2019 at 12:20 am

    Not now

  • Extra Mile Staff | April 12, 2019 at 7:02 pm

    Thank you for your feedback, Rosemary!

  • Rosemary King | April 12, 2019 at 2:36 pm

    I feel comfortable with all the new tech stuff on our vehicles today. I really depend on it with our freeways and heavy traffic. It talks to me and assures me I am in the right direction or gets me in the right direction.

  • John Hartmann | April 6, 2019 at 12:24 pm

    MOST new tech is just expensive junk. How much does it add to insurance premiums ??? Need more cops to give tickets !!! Car is still a tool, still not a home on wheels. Will still keep an older car.

  • Ronald Weagley | April 5, 2019 at 7:53 pm

    One has to ask are we making it better or worse with all of these changes. I won't call them advances as they are not all advances. You would hope this helps people but what it really does it make them lazy and less skilled at "driving" their car. I have a close person that works for a car manufacturer company. I have asked them if their company would consider making at least one "dumb" car like we used to have. Change is NOT always good. Somethings were done right the first time and making people have to pay attention to their driving is a good thing - in my opinion. I say this because there are more people NOT obeying the rules and I do not believe any computer can totally protect one from careless drivers. Like others, having various music choices, navigation, and others are very good options. Just FYI. I had a friend that bought a car and it had those tires that won't go immediately flat. Guess what? The car also did not come with a spare tire anymore - only a can of gunk filler! That works great on a highway in the middle of no where. You better make sure you get a spare tire on some of these new cars.

  • Richard | April 4, 2019 at 6:15 pm

    Some of the new technology is useful and some is annoying and some is downright dangerous to have. i.e: The sensors for lane assist, backing up and for vehicles approaching from the side when backing from a parking place don't always work. I've noticed that in cold weather if there's frost or ice covering the sensors they don't always work so anybody relying on a beep to warn them could be in trouble.

  • retired engineer | April 3, 2019 at 8:34 pm

    Smarter vehicles for dumber drivers. The best safety device is the one between the drivers ears. We need to do a better job of training drivers before giving them a license. There are too many bad and dangerous drivers on the road. Let's start getting them off the roads not trying to technology them on the road.

  • Diane | April 3, 2019 at 3:02 pm

    My biggest concern and gripe with where we are in general today with technology and where it is being infused into everyday living is this---where do you draw the line on obsessiveness? Do we really need cars that will cost more than houses because you won't have to steer, backup, park, (i.e. actually drive it). This is being driven by the ones that don't like to do "things" for themselves. Even food must come to them automatically to the front door. PLEASE. If true safety features are necessary with technology then fine, but honestly from what I can see on the highways these days, no feature in a new car can contradict stupidity and speeding. I want higher efficiency mileage and alternative fuel usage, not gizmos and even more internet inside the car.

  • Virginia B. | April 3, 2019 at 2:31 pm

    I welcome smarter vehicles, so I may maintain mobility independence longer. Although in all areas of my life I am low-tech, mostly I see these changes as steps towards keeping me a safe driver for a few additional years. My main concern is the use of touch screens rather than buttons or dials. A driver has to look away to touch screen options. Buttons and dials are used by feel and habit. It is odd to me that distracted driving, as in texting, is a concern for most but looking away to adjust temperatures, play music, or navigate is rarely discussed. Audio control is not something I would appreciate. I find audio navigator interruptions annoying.

  • Guy Weger | April 3, 2019 at 5:17 am

    The more ( high tech ) the more that can go wrong and the higher the price. The more the profit is why the high tech is in these cars, mostly expensive junk. most people don't need or use this stuff. Give me a HEI ignition, air conditioning, fm radio, and i'm good to go.

  • Daniel Quinones | April 2, 2019 at 10:00 pm

    I don’ like at all the new technology on the new vehicles. I don’t even like the way they are build, they are not as safe as they use to be. I don’t care how safe they say are, they are just plastic so whenever there is an accident more people’s die. With this new technology you always end up with the mechanic because it is almost impossible for you to do enything on them. In other words you have to pay more for less(I don’t care about all this new things cars can do now, I really strange the old one) quality. Would be nice if the auto makers start building the old one again from the tire to the engine.

  • Tom Martin | April 2, 2019 at 9:54 pm

    It would be nice to have a new car but I won't buy one because of the electronics.

  • Extra Mile Staff | April 1, 2019 at 7:02 pm

    Hi Walter! We are glad to hear your Prius didn't break when you hit your brakes. Thanks for the edit!

  • walter heberlein | March 30, 2019 at 4:47 am

    You state that with automatic braking. When the car sees you need to stop it will automatically break. My 2017 Prius has stopped me automatically several times but it never broke. It just brakes!

  • Extra Mile Staff | March 28, 2019 at 5:29 pm

    Hi Jerome, unfortunately at this time we do not insure Teslas. To learn more, please call us at 1-877-896-9320.

  • Jerome Squire | March 27, 2019 at 5:57 pm

    The new tech is geat! However the Hartford seems to disagree. I've been with the Harford for many years. We purchased our "new tech" vehicle, a Tesla. Took some of my life savings ...ouch. But I love it. Probably the safest car I've ever owned. I also have a truck and a car for when my wife or I need it. The Hartford will not insure the Tesla. It can't be the cost since I know of others who have trucks that cost way more! Now I have to leave the Hartford (unless they change their policy) because Allstate can't insure the Tesla without insuring the other two cars too. Allstate gave me until June to get the other two cars with them.I'm hoping the Hartford will change their policy.

  • Extra Mile Staff | March 27, 2019 at 12:52 pm

    Great insight Allaire, thank you for reading.

  • allaire deCoudres | March 27, 2019 at 12:36 am

    Well I'm ready for the Autonomous car, 45+ years of driving muscle, sport cars, 4x4's, pick up trucks and over a million miles motorcycling I've had a lot of fun driving. Autonomous personal transportation will have its problems I'm sure but the advantages it will offer will be awesome I think. When I'm 95 I won't have to give up my independence. Hopefully I'll be able to sleep in the car as it transports me across the country, to places I would not otherwise take the time to go too. If the car needs service, it will tell me, maybe when the shop has time they can have my car drive itself in for service, no need to leave it to sit for days before they get to it. Sorry but I trust technology to be driving the car next to me than I do most of the mediocre and distracted drivers I see every time I'm out on the road....and to be honest I've caught myself being distracted while driving, don't know many who could honestly say they have not. Sure their will be some accidents caused by the autonomous vehicles but I think it will be a far, far lower number then what we have now. I think they will play a major roll in reducing highway fatalities. No more speeding, no more red light or stop sign running, no lane wondering, no more road rage, no drunk drivers...the list goes on and on.....so bring it on I'm ready!

  • Robert Riedesel | March 26, 2019 at 9:19 pm

    My wife and I employ technology where we find it useful for us. Features such as blind spot monitoring, adaptive cruise control, lane assist, etc. are useful to us as we age. True, some vehicles have more tech perhaps than we need. Our Kia Optima hybrid has a number of features that make driving long distances a pleasure and not a hassle. Forty six MPG is not bad either. Currently looking at something to replace our older Nissan Leaf; only to find AARP/Hartford will not insure a Tesla, but will insure other electric and hybrid vehicles.

  • Alan Rasmussen | March 26, 2019 at 7:27 pm

    I just bought a new car and it has so much technology that I will probably never figure out everything the car is able to do. On top of that, the owner's manual is high on telling me commands, but low on explaining exactly what each option does. Locking the car must has five different options available. That's just one system. Way too many options. I hate step-by-step instructions that assume I know what I'm doing and never give an introduction to what the feature is capable of. Further, the navigation system isn't explained in the Owner's Manual. I needed to buy the Navigation Manual from the dealer in order to get the directions on how to use it. Very frustrating. I was sold on all the technology because I was told it was very intuitive and easy to use. Not so. There isn't anything that resembles my desktop computer, tablet, smart phone, etc. Where's SERI when you need it? Thankfully, some folks (not the manufacturer) have taken the time to make YouTube videos explaining many of the procedures. They're very helpful.

  • Jan Keirsey | March 26, 2019 at 3:40 pm

    Apparently there is no way to have a new car without technology features being foisted down on the consumer. At the very least, the manufacturer must recognize that the owner might want to opt out of features. Just because it is technologically possible, does not mean we want it or want to pay for on going service. I resent the lack of respect. Evidently your marketing trumps your customer service.

  • william ingram | March 26, 2019 at 2:32 pm

    I don't own or never will own a smart phone. They cost too much and require updates too frequently which means spending more $$. Believe it or not eventually technology fails and humans have to fix the problem. When technology fails, all systems can and will shut down resulting in you being stranded or worse yet injured or killed. The costs to all this automotive technology means more profit to the auto manufacturers and more money out of your pocket. Call me old fashion but my $5/month flip phone that I only use in the case of emergency or travel suits my needs and yes I still use a road map before heading out on a trip. To have to pay more for the techno gadgets on vehicles is upsetting to say the least when I don't plan on using them. I just had to replace my 17 year old cadillac and chose a new toyota not because of the tech features, but because it had a CD player. And yes, I don't bank on line and still receive paper statements for all my banking and investments. The people sucked into the tech craze are slipping further down the economic class structure all for the sake of keeping up with technology and yet they can't even afford a down payment on a home. It always amazes me how the poorest of cultures and people less economically fortunate somehow manage to whip out their $1,000 I-phone, buy a Starbucks, go out to lunch everyday but yet can't afford to purchase a home, have little to no money saved and live paycheck to paycheck all in the name of keeping up with technology. So, NO, I think more technology is a huge mistake in vehicles and marketing and media continues to sell their techno products to those who have no reason in the first place to buy them. If you can't afford the most basic of necessities you have taken the the masses for a proverbial ride.

  • Extra Mile Staff | March 26, 2019 at 1:10 pm

    Thanks for sharing your feedback, Linda.

  • Linda | March 25, 2019 at 10:38 pm

    I'm opposed to most of these new-fangled "improvements". When you're driving your car you should have 100% of your attention on driving, not emails or texts or phone calls. Also, I would prefer to drive my car myself and make any necessary maneuvers as I deem them necessary. Having the car do so many things for the driver just makes them lazy and inattentive. The self-healing tires sound pretty nice, though.

  • Alan G Burns | March 25, 2019 at 9:35 pm

    New technology has gone way too far in my opinion. Not only is it driving costs up, but there are way too many things that can fail. All of these so called "safety features" are teaching people that if you don't pay attention to your driving, don't worry, the car will take care of it. I think there would be a lot less distracted driving if we didn't have all the "gadgets".

  • D J Hirte | March 25, 2019 at 5:26 pm

    I'm very opposed to most tech "advances" found on/in new cars. Occasionally I rent a new model and am appalled by what drivers are required to know/use. As to safety issues, anything that distracts or relieves the driver of responsibility that driving is (full time) is a menace to us all. Fav vehicle: my 62 Studebaker GT Hawk. Great fun and no high tech junk.

  • Larry Woodyard | March 25, 2019 at 2:15 pm

    NO I WILL NOT BE BUYING THE NEW CAR ELECTRONICS,OR THE NEW CAR. In 2004 I purchased a used Durango ,the first time I activated the ABS system it failed at 20 MPH,falling back on old school skills,pumping the brake pedal,I avoided a collision. 14 years later I discovered the problem, a high resistance connection at the main connector block from the Differential sensor. The second time I was test driving a 2015 F150 ,I was on a interstate entrance ramp doing 60-65 MPH in a hard right turn when the steering failed for a second . that was close. I'm looking for a street legal ATV.for my next vehicle My occupation was an Electronic Tech with 30 yrs. with the Bell System working on the first Computer Controlled Electronic Switching Systems.

  • Extra Mile Staff | March 25, 2019 at 12:43 pm

    Thanks for sharing your feedback, Corinne.

  • Extra Mile Staff | March 25, 2019 at 12:38 pm

    Great point, Wil. This is something to definitely look out for.

  • Extra Mile Staff | March 25, 2019 at 12:32 pm

    Thanks for sharing, John!

  • Wil houts | March 24, 2019 at 5:07 am

    When is Wi-Fi available in automobiles, where cell towers are not adequate.?

  • Corinne | March 24, 2019 at 12:41 am

    I dislike the new tech.It's distracting. back up camera is fine so we don't run over child or whatever. It seems they are making it so we don't have to use our minds. I loved my 2003 corolla with tape player & cd. I don't use the phone stuff. I can tell when it is slippery out. I want to turn my lights on & radio on & off. I like it simpler & resent paying for the tech stuff. I know when to fill up & have an oil change. I do appreciate being told when my tires need air. The more I have to move & think the better.

  • Richard Neilsen | March 23, 2019 at 9:36 pm

    We have a 2018 Honda Odyssey with a bunch of driving aides. We changed from an older Odyssey because of these aides. They are great and find it surprising that The Hartford doesn't give us any credit for having them! We travel from Michigan to Florida and back every year. The driving assist helps and make for a easy-er trip. Our only gripe is that the lane keeping assist gets confused when going through construction zones with lane shifts. Some times we turn off the lane assist or just over power it.

  • NEAFIE D PATTERSON | March 23, 2019 at 8:29 pm

    With a 2018 GMC SIERRA 1500 built out with all cameras front, rear left & right side and crash avoidance your premium rate does not reflect any of this. Your answer is than the Virginia SSC does not use the safety equipment in setting insurance rates.

  • GEORGE MCCARTNEY | March 23, 2019 at 6:45 pm

    My 13 Honda has none of the features listed above. I do not own or use a cell phone or any other device. I drive very short distances and have less than 7500 miles on it. When not driving I keep my car in the garage.

  • John Robinson | March 23, 2019 at 5:20 pm

    I have most of the functions mentioned in my vehicle but I find the speed reading function which also slows the vehicle down for bad bends and turnings and stops automatically very useful as it helps to always stay within the speed limits

  • STEVEN HARRIS | March 23, 2019 at 2:38 pm

    I HATE all that tech stuff. Not only do I not want all of it, I don't want to pay for something I'll never use. I feel that the majority of this tech is there ONLY to raise the price of the vehicle. What's worse, you can't get a car without it.

  • Craig Bastas | March 23, 2019 at 2:22 pm

    So what happens if one of the driver assists fails and you have a crash?? Is it my fault or the software developer, or the manufacturer. These are questions that must be answered especially with self driving cars. Technology is not perfect and it can be hacked. I am waiting for the first lawsuit. That's a given, it will happen.

  • Avoid Drowsy Driving | Extra Mile | March 12, 2019 at 8:18 pm

    […] Technology designed to assist drowsy drivers is also evolving and has come a long way since the introduction of rumble strips, those grooves in the pavement along the shoulder of the road intended to jolt drifting drivers awake. Manufacturer-installed anti-driver fatigue systems in vehicles are becoming increasingly popular. A 2014 article highlights some of the more notable innovations. […]

  • Bill Howard | February 15, 2018 at 1:49 pm

    They need to mandate that all new cars have Bluetooth connectivity for incoming and outgoing cell phone calls but also for incoming and outgoing texts (text to voice and voice to texts). Perhaps for other social media messaging. I use my phone’s and car’s handsfree Bluetooth feature for incoming and outgoing cell phone calls and it allows me to keep my eyes and attention on the road.

  • Em | January 2, 2018 at 6:04 pm

    BsafeMobile.com for a distracted driving solution.

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