Are advanced automobile safety features worth the extra money?

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Are advanced automobile safety features worth the extra money?

January 17, 2024

Safety is a big concern for many car shoppers, but the question remains, which if any of the current safety features are worth it? Some drivers don’t like the obtrusive quality of lane-keeping assist (it beeps at you!), while  others call it necessity and even a lifesaver. We must ask ourselves which features we want vs which features are actually worth spending money on? 

1. Anti-Lock Brakes:  When you need to quickly stop in a car with traditional brakes, those brakes often lock, causing the vehicle to skid With anti-lock brakes, however, the system automatically “pulses” the brakes for you, keeping the brakes from locking up. (Standard Feature on Most Cars)

2.Backup Camera:This feature makes it far easier to back u. You don’t have to turn your head and using your mirrors. Backup cameras can save lives, especially the lives of small children (or pets) who may not realize the dangers of standing near a moving vehicle.

3. Rear Cross-Traffic Alert: You’re probably familiar with this situation: You’re backing out of a tight parking spot, you can’t see what’s coming and you roll backward ever so slowly. Then, it happens: A car quickly comes up behind you, and you consider yourself lucky that you didn’t collide with it. With rear cross-traffic alert, this situation is a thing of the past. The feature warns you if a vehicle is coming up from behind while you’re backing out of a parking spot, taking guesswork and uncertainty out of the equation. Although we could do without some other modern safety features, this one is worth every extra penny.

SHOULD YOU GET IT? Yes, but don’t expect it to catch everything. As the name implies, the sensors will spot objects crossing from the sides of the vehicle. If something or someone is directly behind the vehicle, you won’t get the alert.

4. Lane Departure Warning/Lane Keep: These two systems both work to keep you in your lane. Lane departure sounds a warning or buzzes your seat or steering wheel to inform that you are crossing the white lines or unintentionally leaving your lane. Lane Keep meanwhile, will gently steer you back into your lane if you drift out of it. When lines are faint or the system has trouble detecting lines, the system can be switched off.

SHOULD YOU GET IT? Yes, but to get the most out of it, make sure to get a system with lane keeping assist, not just the warning. If the car’s camera can no longer see the painted lanes, or if you veer out to make room for a cyclist, it will trigger an alert. Some may find the beeping annoying and choose to mute the alerts. That’s why the lane keeping function, with its noiseless, more subtle physical cues, is more useful.

5. Blind Spot Detection: Blind spot detection picks up what you might have missed and also warns you are vehicles approaching from the rear by shining small orange or yellow lights in your door mirrors.

SHOULD YOU GET IT? Yes, but you must regularly use your turn signals to get the most out of it. Some systems will activate the warning light when a vehicle is in your blind spot, but the warning tone or vibration will only occur when your turn signal is activated.

6. Safety Exit Assist: As seen in the recently revealed Hyundai Sante Fe SUV, Safety Exit Assist temporarily stops kids from opening the back doors when vehicles and bicycles are approaching from behind. It’s an extension of the blind spot monitor and has the potential to be one of the most sought-after features for parents of young children.


7. Auto Night Vision: Night vision is a feature that can warn drivers of bicycles and pedestrians on dark streets at night, and smart headlights that lower their hi-beam automatically towards oncoming traffic. Car night vision is a sensor that, when activated, will help you stay aware of persons, vehicles, or animals that are out of reach of your headlights. Many of the newer automotive infrared systems are advanced to the point that their algorithms determine whether a hot spot ahead is living or moving to alert you of any possible danger.


8. Forward collision warning: If you come up behind a slower or stopped vehicle and don’t show signs of braking, the forward collision warning system will alert you that an impact is imminent. 

SHOULD YOU GET IT? Yes. Distracted driving is at an all-time high, and this system can serve as an extra set of eyes to prevent an accident. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration recommends the technology.

9. Automatic emergency braking: This system will become a standard feature on nearly all cars and light trucks by 2022, thanks to an agreement among most carmakers and NHTSA. If the vehicle senses an imminent collision, the system will automatically apply the brakes to avoid or minimize an impact.

SHOULD YOU GET IT? Yes. The fact it is becoming a standard feature soon speaks to its importance.

The Consensus: 

Safety features may cost more but they may save you money, inconvenience and even your life. Get them, but don’t allow the safety features to make you lazy, you must continue to check your mirrors and brakes, not just assume your car is going to do all the safe driving for you!


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Lyon, P. (2018, June 01). The Top 7 Car Safety Features You Cannot Do Without. Retrieved February 25, 2019, from

Montoya, R. (2017, December 29). Should you get it? Edmunds sizes up new car-safety technology. Retrieved February 25, 2019, from