Published On: Fri, Jul 25th, 2014

Top Ten Features to Look For When Shopping For a New Car

In this day and age where image is everything, a lot of people shop for cars with only appearance in mind. Many opt for popular sports cars or settle on one model over another just because it comes in their favorite color. But really, we should be focusing on practically and safety. Vehicles have changed so much over the years and now many features come standard. When you purchase your vehicle, there are certain features that you should look for when you’re out on the car lot.

Shopping For a New Car

These ten features will help keep you comfortable and safe. If you’re still worried about appearances however, you can always look into body modifications or vinyl wraps in your favorite color and finish to make your vehicle the perfect car for you.

GPS System

When possible, the newer vehicles have a GPS system built into your console. A GPS, or Global Positioning Satellite, locates where you are using satellites and give you directions to wherever you need to go. This system is ideal in large cities to help you get to your destination when you get lost. If you have to travel a lot for work, this is invaluable in getting you through unfamiliar territory.

OnStar System

If you are in an accident and have OnStar, your vehicle’s computer will notify the OnStar advisors, who will then call to make sure you are okay and see if you require assistance. The advisors can also track your car if it is stolen and unlock the doors if you lock your keys inside. While it does require a subscription, it is less than $20 a month.

Anti-Lock Brakes (ABS)

While anti-lock brake system comes standard on most vehicles, it is a feature you will want to look for. The ABS monitors your wheels individually and if it senses one locking up, the computer will automatically pump the brakes faster than you can. Your computer also will sense if the ABS is not working properly and will return brake control over to you, the driver.

Skid-Control System

In addition to the ABS, you will want to make sure your vehicle comes equipped with an electronic stability system. This system uses the ABS sensors, steering wheel sensors, accelerometers, and the pedal position sensors to determine what the driver wants the car to do, and what the car is actually doing. It will then assist the driver by applying power to individual wheels and reducing the power to the car.

Adjustable Steering Wheel and Pedals

When you get in to test-drive a car, check to see if the pedals and steering wheel are adjustable. The steering wheel should be able to move up and down, or tilt, but some vehicles are equipped with a steering wheel that will move in and out as well. Combining the adjustable steering wheel with the adjustable pedals makes the car easier for you to find a comfortable position, and one that is a safe distance from the driver’s side airbag.

Remote Keyless Entry

Many people perceive keyless entry as an unnecessary add-on for vehicles; however, it can help keep you safe. Being able to get into your vehicle quickly when you are in a poorly lit area can be a lifesaving event. The remote can unlock the driver’s side, or all doors, and lock them again just by the press of a button. Most remotes will also have a panic button that you can push when you feel in danger that activates the horn and lights.

Power Outlets

Having power outlets or USB ports on your vehicle can be a very helpful feature. While you should not talk on your phone or text while driving, it is ideal to have a fully charged phone in case of emergencies. Try and make sure there is one near the driver’s seat for ease of use.

DVD Player and Side Airbags

Two features that you need to look for if you have children are DVD players and side airbags. These two features will help keep your children safe and your ability to concentrate on the road present. Your children will be entertained and quiet during the ride, and you will know that if you are involved in a collision, they will be protected.

Roadside Assistance

When you purchase your vehicle, check the warranty to see if roadside assistance is part of the package. You will be surprised to find out that many cars do come with a limited policy that will help you if you have a flat tire or run out of gas.