Must-Have Car Safety Features You Should Look For
Time for a new car? As technology advances, so do car safety features. Before you purchase your next car, check out its safety features and consider the must-haves listed below.
Blind Spot Detection
A blind spot detection or blind spot warning (BSW) feature is any new driver's best friend. By providing either an audible or visual alert, blind spot detectors use sensors and cameras to evaluate the activity around your vehicle. Blind spot detectors are on the job when you activate your turn signal and they’re in an “always on” mode with a warning light on your side mirrors. This comes in handy when you aren’t expecting a zooming car to pass you or when in bumper-to-bumper traffic.
Adaptive Cruise Control
Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC) is there to help when you may not have time to react. With ACC, a vehicle implements defensive driving habits by turning off cruise control when another vehicle is too close in range, keeps you within a preset speed limit, detects upcoming bends and turns and adjusts your speed accordingly. Like blind spot detection, technology on the vehicle consists of cameras and sensors to help drivers drive safely. ACC comes with varying abilities and is customizable in your vehicle’s settings.
Automatic Emergency Braking
Have you ever been distracted in traffic trying to switch lanes, only to turn forward to see the vehicle in front of you has suddenly braked? With automatic emergency braking, your vehicle can help detect a potential collision and react with an automatic emergency brake. This can prove useful, especially if you regularly encounter stop-and-go traffic or drive during rush hour.
Crunch! This is the awful sound you hear when bumping into another vehicle in the parking lot, or when backing over the bikes your kids left behind your car in the driveway. With a rear-view camera, you’re able to avoid parking lot accidents, and most importantly, protect your kids (and their toys).
The good news is the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) implemented a law stating that by May 1, 2018, all cars, SUVs, trucks and vans manufactured are required to have a rear-view visibility system, meaning this is now a standard safety feature and easy to find.
Lane-Keeping Assist/Lane Departure Warning
Lane-Keeping Assist is a great feature to have in a car, especially if you frequently drive at night. With Lane-Keeping Assist, you may receive a vibration, sound cue or light cue to signal that you’re going outside of your lane. Simply correct by returning into your lane or if no action is taken, your vehicle may correct for you until you’re within the lane lines. Note, if the driver takes over steering while the vehicle tries to correct it will back off and the driver will resume control.
Standard Car Safety Features
The advancements in car safety features covered here are available in most newer models. But don’t overlook the most important safety features in a car, especially if you are buying a used vehicle. When car shopping, make sure your vehicle has the following features in good working order.
- Front airbags
- Antilock brakes
- LATCH system (Lower Anchors and Tethers for Children)
- Traction control
- Electronic stability control (ESC)
Make Sure You’re Protected
When shopping for a new vehicle, don’t forget to reevaluate your auto insurance. At Farm Bureau, we offer competitive prices and knowledgeable agents to guide you every step of the way.