So, you are thinking about buying a new car in the New Year, but which one to get? Trucks and SUVs seem to have taken over the vehicle market lately and this is something Montana is incredibly familiar with. A big help in deciding which vehicle to purchase can be the features it offers. There are so many choices that it can be hard to tell which is best. To help you, I’ve made a list of the coolest car features you can add to your list to help you pick your next vehicle
Comfortable Driver Seat
As someone who spends a lot of time traveling between Helena, Bozeman and Butte I can tell you an important feature to look for is a comfortable seat with electronic adjustments including lumbar support. Yes, this might make me seem much older than my 32 years but when you drive often, lumbar support is everything. You want to make sure the driver's seat is customizable to your liking because it can mean the difference between loving your new ride or hating it.
I know this seems a little ‘extra’ but a back-up camera is EVERYTHING! While the camera encourages you to check all your surroundings, it can also catch that random pedestrian in the Target parking lot who likes to jump out in front of cars pulling out of parking spaces (we’ve all been there). In the wise words of Consumer Reports, it is both a safety feature and a convenience feature and you can’t afford to miss it.
Apple CarPlay and Android Auto
One of the more recent technological advances in car features, Apple CarPlay, and Android Auto are game changers. As an Apple CarPlay user, I can tell you it takes hands-free to the next level. You can talk, text, choose a tune from your phone, access Maps, and much more all with your voice thanks to Apple CarPlay. This would be one of my top must-have features in a new car, it is more than just Bluetooth and it makes a huge difference.
This handy tool monitors the lane lines and electrically nudges the steering wheel to keep you between them. In my experience, lane-departure systems are just as effective at warning you if you’re not paying attention, and they’re less annoying because they don’t give you the eerie feeling that someone else is tugging at the steering wheel.
I mean, who doesn’t want built-in Wi-Fi in their vehicle? If you have children this would especially come in handy allowing them to stream shows and movies on a long road trip. Built-in Wi-Fi was something GM rolled out in 2015 and other automakers have quickly jumped on board. For me, it is not a must, but it is a pretty cool feature available in new vehicles.
Auto-Open Trunk or Tailgate
Who hasn’t struggled to open the tailgate when their hands are full? I know I have and it is incredibly frustrating. Automakers are now offering a solution: smart sensing trunks or tailgates. It's another cool feature that could be on your must-have list. I know what you are thinking, this can’t be safe… but that’s simply not true. You can program the vehicle in several different ways to maintain safety.
Built-In Night Vision and Radar Detection
This one is a big deal for those of us who live in Montana. We’ve all had some close calls with animals on Montana highways… especially at night. According to Buzzfeed, car manufacturers like BMW and Audi have taken it upon themselves to develop actual night vision dashboard systems that work with sensors and allow you to see wildlife like deer or objects like trash cans in the complete dark.
Seriously. You can get a car that will parallel park itself. Hallelujah! This is probably the worst part about the driver’s test you take when you are young, and now they make a car that does it for you! Every company from Toyota to Lexus and Ford to Volvo includes parking assists which find a space and perform a near perfect parallel park maneuver without messing up anyone's bumper.
With these features in hand, you should know which car features are your must-haves and which you can live without. Do you have other car features that you want in your car? Comment below to let us know what your favorite features are!
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