Not only do shoppers know what technology they want when purchasing cars, but according to the largest U.S. website for buying and selling cars, they are also willing to pay more for it. The latest safety features, including adaptive cruise control which helps your car maintain a safe distance from the one directly in front of you while in cruise control by automatically adjusting your speed when needed, and other anti-collision features are always in high demand. The technologies most desired, however all cater to entertainment and convenience. Features such as in-car Wi-Fi and voice commands are more appealing than ever before as shoppers search for the automotive tech equivalent to what they have come to expect from their smartphones.
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In a recent survey of 1,020 Americans (matching census figures for ethnicity, age, and gender), respondents indicated that in order to get the exact tech features they want, they would be willing to pay $2,276 on average more on future car purchases. In addition, 56 percent of those surveyed agreed that they researched the technology they want prior to visiting dealerships.
According to Autotrader senior analyst Michelle Krebs, “Technology has become the deciding factor for car buyers selecting a vehicle. Automakers must deliver innovative features or risk consumers looking elsewhere.”
The survey also indicated the following:
- Exterior color preference was less important than getting the right technology for sixty-one percent of respondents.
- Forty-eight percent said the right technology is more important than either the brand of the car or even the body style. In other words, they might buy a sedan instead of a small SUV if the sedan was outfitted with the right technology.
- When it comes to advanced safety features, the majority of those polled believe that the standards should be raised on all vehicles sold in the US. Blind-spot detection and forward collision warning were highly endorsed, with 67 percent and 52 percent of participants, favoring these features as standard.
Beginning with all 2018 models, the rear-view backup camera is a feature that will be mandatory. Not only does this feature help drivers avoid collisions with vehicles or objects behind the, it also reduces the likelihood of tragedies like backing over a small child or pet resulting from limited visibility through rear window or side mirrors.
Next in car technology
Automakers have voluntarily agreed with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, to make both avoidance and forward collision warnings standard safety features on most vehicles by 2022.
Even though they are not yet mandatory, these safety features, which traditionally start with luxury brands, have already become standard for more mainstream models and less expensive brands. According to Russ Radar, senior vice president of communications for the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, “Advanced safety systems are becoming widespread very quickly.” He added, “It seems to be happening faster than in the past because automakers are competing on safety more than ever.”
The 2017 Honda Civic, the winner of Kelley Blue Book Best Auto Tech for mainstream models, is an excellent example of this fast-spreading technology. Kelly cited both entertainment features and safety features, including Android Auto and Apple Car Play, which allow you to send messages, make phone calls, or play music using voice commands, eliminating the need to touch your phone while driving.
Zach Vlasuk, a Kelley analyst, noted that the Civic is “a compact car laden with advanced features once reserved for vehicles costing three times as much.”