By on August 27, 2019

2019 Buick Envision interior

True story: a person this writer knows was recently upsold into a higher-trim version of a popular domestic subcompact crossover, with the selling point being, obviously, the model’s additional plushness and safety features. Once in the driveway, this buyer instantly grew annoyed with the vehicle’s various driver-assist features and, not knowing how to dial them back or cancel them altogether, began the process of finding a buyer.

Dealers and their salespeople have a long way to go in educating the buying public on the industry’s growing list of tech-heavy features; doing so would help boost satisfaction rates for new vehicles. A great number of people have a bone to pick with their car’s driver-assist features, and it may prevent them from sticking with the brand.

According to J.D. Power’s 2019 U.S. Tech Experience Index (TXI) Study, lane-keep assist and lane centering is the topmost complaint among new car owners or lessees angered by in-vehicle tech. Yes, a feature designed to keep the roads safe and the insurance adjuster away is something many buyers wish their vehicles didn’t have.

The study tapped the minds of 20,000 American buyers or lessees of 2019 model year vehicles. It found that 23 percent of respondents driving a so-equipped vehicle complained about the various alerts and warnings issued by the system during their first 90 days of ownership. A slightly smaller slice, 21 percent, had no problem with the warnings. Of the first group, 61 percent said they sometimes disabled their lane-keeping system for guilt-free (and perhaps signal-free) lane changes.

It’s worth noting that, of the group that found lane-departure warnings annoying, some 63 percent still desired the feature on their next vehicle. That compares with 91 percent for those who tolerate the system just fine.

The type of warning, as well as the effectiveness of the lane-keeping system, varies between brands, and this led to marked departures in satisfaction rates. Drivers of one brand showed steep dissatisfaction rates while drivers of another barely had an issue. This, in turn, left drivers more or less likely to desire the feature on their next vehicle. The low/high on wanting lane-keeping in a subsequent vehicle ranged from 59 percent to 90 percent, depending on brand.

The study, of course, didn’t look at only lane-keeping gripes; some 38 technologies came under the microscope. Vehicles were assigned a score based on satisfaction rates for these features.

Overall, J.D. Power respondents judged the Kia Stinger to have the best integrated and least annoying tech features of all vehicles in all segments. Indeed, Hyundai Motor Group ranks high in this regard. The small car category returned the Hyundai Kona as the standout in that class (tied with the Toyota C-HR), while the compact field put the Kia Forte in the No. 1 spot. The Hyundai Accent and Elantra were runners-up in those two categories.

For midsize vehicles, Chevrolet’s new Blazer earned the top score, ahead of the Chevrolet Traverse and Hyundai Santa Fe, while the large vehicle class gave the crown to the Ford Expedition. Lower on that podium were the Chevrolet Silverado 1500 and Ram 1500. The compact luxury field was dominated by the aforementioned Stinger, with the Genesis G70 and Cadillac XT4 in the No. 2 and 3 spots. Answers from midsize luxury respondents pegged the Porsche Cayenne as the vehicle least likely to annoy, followed by the BMW 5 Series and Audi Q8.

The best thing a salesperson/dealer can do is inform a buyer on how to cancel a safety feature they don’t like, if possible, or perhaps diminish its sensitivity. Think pre-collision braking range on that score. Just dial it back. Education will breed enjoyment here. Still, there’s a lesson for automakers here, too.

“The technology can’t come across as a nagging parent; no one wants to be constantly told they aren’t driving correctly,” said Kristin Kolodge, Executive Director of Driver Interaction & Human Machine Interface Research at J.D. Power, in a statement.

While sudden, unexpected braking can unnerve drivers, respondents listed pre-collision braking as the least annoying feature in the study, followed close behind (in increments of increasing annoyance) by smartphone mirroring, comfort and convenience features, entertainment, driver assist functions, and navigation.

[Image: © 2019 Chris Tonn/TTAC]

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90 Comments on “Shockingly, New Car Buyers are Confused and Annoyed by Safety Content...”


  • avatar
    jmo2

    ““The technology can’t come across as a nagging parent; no one wants to be constantly told they aren’t driving correctly,” said Kristin Kolodge, ”

    But in many cases they aren’t driving correctly. When this was discussed the other day the B&B were ranting about these systems forcing them to signal before a highway lane change.

    • 0 avatar
      NormSV650

      Try a winding highway like I-77 in West Virgina with lane departure announcement. At least with this Envision Premium ll there are 3 extra buttons right below the analog clock that can control all of stuff. Our 2016 Envision had all of that and with the 2018 Regal TourX we have no audible or warning lights. Peace and quiet!

      • 0 avatar
        dal20402

        I drive winding roads in our hilly region all the time with LDW on in both of my cars (2016 Highlander and 2019 Bolt). LDW comes on when I, well, leave the lane, and not at other times. Drive in your lane, instead of cutting corners, and you’ll be fine.

    • 0 avatar
      slavuta

      Ok, I was driving this Hyundai with super aggressive lane keep assist. This car fought me. So, if I wanted to leave the lane because there is a 2×4 laying on the ground or something like that, and I have a sore arm… Or a pothole. Or water. And this car steers me right into trouble. At leas in my Toyota (in I forgot to turn it off), it will stop doing it as soon as I push in opposite direction.

  • avatar
    jkross22

    My impression is that dealers themselves don’t know much about safety systems, highly optioned vehicles, etc. One dealer I went to had a ‘genius’ – the most ironically named person in the place – to walk us through the tech in the car.

    We love tech, but much of it is distracting and superfluous in cars – exactly the opposite of its intended purpose.

    Great tech – ABS, traction control, auto emergency braking.

    Bad tech – pretty much everything else like lane departure warning, complex menu systems in infotainment, crap marketed as ‘self driving’ when it’s not.

    • 0 avatar
      slavuta

      Our local Lexus dealer has a position of Technology technician. This dude must set navigation, phone couplings, etc, for new buyer. I remember this dude trying, trying to set something for my sis – no luck. So, he told her to come another day, he’ll read on it.

  • avatar
    sgeffe

    I wonder where Hondas ended up in the rankings? The lane-keep assist will almost guide the car around gentle curves, and after 2.75 months and 2,400 miles, I have yet to have the auto-brake even activate, much less falsely. About the only issue I’ve encountered is that the adaptive-cruise radar will rarely catch a car in the adjacent lane and start to back off the throttle — same as happened on my 2013 Accord.

  • avatar
    bullnuke

    My predilection for lower models of vehicles paid off for me in regards to these “safety nannies” when I purchased new last month. The ABS (which has been around for several years) and the reverse camera (I purchased a 1-ton truck and this is a godsend) were pretty much the only helpers I received with it. An added bonus I found was, with the headlight switch in auto lighting, the headlights automatically come on when the windshield wipers are in use which will help me obey the law and prevent malicious revenue generation by the local constabulary. That other stuff is, to me, silly fluff and just another marketing tool. As always, YMMV on this.

  • avatar
    Steve Biro

    Note to automakers: If you feel you must offer these safety nannies (most are NOT required by law), then make sure the salient among us can turn them all off – and have them stay off. It’s fine if we have to do some menu diving to do it. It’s also okay if, say, we get a new battery and have to turn them all off again one more time. But give us the choice with all of the latest “driver assistance” technology. Because it’s only designed to accommodate those who can’t or won’t drag their effing eyes off their smartphones – and allow you, the automaker, to start selling us crap we don’t need via our in-car screens (and selling our information to third parties).

  • avatar
    threeer

    Timely, as my son is in the market for a new car to replace the one he just wrecked. As a new family man (he just had his first son born a month ago), he is obsessed with getting a “safe” car and has settled on the Subaru Forester because of Eyesight. But here’s the rub…he wants it because those features *may* have prevented his last accident…in which he was completely NOT focused on the road and was looking elsewhere when he rear-ended another vehicle! I worry about people relying so much on tech that they forget how to be competent drivers.

    But then I do also worry about folks like my mother, who will be buying her last new car in a few years. With so much tech on the car, will it be overload for her to understand and utilize, or will she simply grow frustrated over the features and give up driving all together?

    • 0 avatar
      jmo

      “forget how to be competent drivers.” Since most people never were I think your concern is misplaced.

      • 0 avatar
        SPPPP

        Well, jmo, there are an estimated 6 million car accidents in the USA per year.

        But that’s among 411 billion daily trips.

        That’s one accident per 68,500 trips.

        Out of 68,500 trips, 68,499 of them turn out fine. That’s 99.999%.

        Either the average driver is actually pretty competent, or we are all really lucky.

        • 0 avatar
          Jon

          Stop using math. Its obsolete – just like driving…

          • 0 avatar
            jmo

            Using those numbers math would also say 1 out of ever 37 drivers gets into an accident each year. Doesn’t 1 out of 37 seem a little high to you? Keeping in mind almost all of those are due to human error.

          • 0 avatar
            SPPPP

            If we could get the number of accidents down, that would be good. I don’t know if technology will ever get good enough to stop all accidents. All I am saying is that this issue, like many others, can look quite different with a change of perspective.

      • 0 avatar
        slavuta

        JMO, people are incompetent because they are learning from other incompetent people. In any case, this doesn’t make computer more competent. A recent study found that computer driven cars have not created major incidents but rather created bunch of small collisions.

  • avatar
    MiataReallyIsTheAnswer

    Wait – this “person you know” would rather lose thousands of dollars reselling a brand new vehicle, than simply go back to the dealer and ask them to demonstrate the features??

    • 0 avatar
      sgeffe

      Cripes, I’m still getting postcards in the mail from Honda explaining this or that on my car.

      Unlike the stereotypical bro-dude, I actually read the manual from cover to cover. Usually before I take delivery of the car, thanks to the online resources! (Always have, as my Dad will attest, after my ten year-old self showed him up on the headlight dimmer on his 1980 Cutlass, his first car with the switch on the turn signal lever!)

  • avatar
    cprescott

    I have found the best safety technology involves that the driver pull their head outside of their body. Judging by the brands that always tailgate me, I’d say Honduh and Toyoduh buyers haven’t mastered that skill.

  • avatar
    eggsalad

    Had a 2-week rental of a Fusion Hybrid last month and the nannies were horrible. It was constantly telling me to keep my hands on the steering wheel, which of course they were. It also told me every 90 minutes to stop and get some rest. Ridiculous.

    The last thing I want to do when on vacation is spend an hour idling in my rental car to figure out how to turn off all the nannies. I’m not sure why Avis doesn’t leave the owner’s manual in the car, but they ought to.

    • 0 avatar
      TMA1

      The worst part about these nannies is that they only get the message across by forcing you to take your eyes off the road and decipher whatever is displayed on the screen.

    • 0 avatar
      4drSedan

      Eggsalad, Right this second I am halfway through a 2 week rental of a Fusion Hybrid. I have experienced none of what you’re vexing about. I just drove from Ottawa to Montreal and with the Radar Cruise it was a complete joy. Set it at the greatest following distance and tail the lead foot in front.

      I adjusted the lane departure sensitivity from lowest to highest setting and was never once nagged about putting my hands on the wheel. If anything I didn’t notice anything at all.

      As for the driver attention monitor, once it showed a barely noticeable picture of a coffee cup on the display to which I thought “mmm…coffee”.

      It didn’t take a hour to learn, it was menu driven and completely self explanatory.

      Vapid much?

  • avatar
    tankinbeans

    Of the safety features on my car; one is a minor annoyance, but helps occasionally; one is useful for some parking/parking lot manuevers, but not totally necessary; the other has never activated.

    The minor annoyance is the blind spot monitoring system. It’s annoying because it only ever beeps after I’ve recognized the vehicle, such as in a turn lane. However, the cross-traffic function is useful when pulling out of a spot while flanked by two larger vehicles.

    The back-up camera is occasionally useful if I’m backing into a spot with a higher curb or parking lot divider. Otherwise, I usually don’t even look at it.

    Emergency braking has never activated. In fact the only time I remember it’s there is when the system light comes on indicating that it won’t activate, such as when the roads are slippery or it’s too cold.

  • avatar
    FreedMike

    I rented a RAV4 last week to get my kid up to college with, and it had the dreaded nannies – a lane-departure system and radar cruise control. The former could be defeated (the trip was on the Interstate, so I had time to figure out how to navigate the sub-menus that controlled this function), but as as far as I could tell, there was no way to have “non-radar” cruise.

    Full disclosure: this was the first vehicle I’d driven with these features.

    When both were engaged, the car displayed a limited “self-driving” ability – it did steer itself within the lanes. I didn’t appreciate that on the way up and turned that stuff off. But the return trip was done very late at night, and as I’d been moving stuff and shopping for supplies all day, I was bushed, and found myself wandering a bit. I ended up turning the lane-control function back on at that point.

    Long story short…there IS a place for this stuff, but it needs to be defeatable, and if manufacturers want to make that process less annoying, I’d recommend a simple dash-mounted switch, versus having to navigate a zillion menus on the tiny screen between the tach and speedometer. If it’s that easy, then I’m in – I see the worth of these systems.

    • 0 avatar
      JMII

      Good call… as long as the system has an obvious on/off switch I’m fine with it. Honestly I don’t need a car steering for me, but radar cruise sounds awesome. I have older vehicles so none of them have any such features. In fact my truck is so old (’02) that it doesn’t even have a backup camera!

      • 0 avatar
        TMA1

        But that on/off switch is usually buried in a menu somewhere (they’re not going to pay 50 cents per vehicle to put an actual button in there), and it resets every time you restart the vehicle. It’s tedious having to go through it every single time you restart the vehicle.

        I used to like driving my Mustang GT in Sport+ mode with the steering set at comfort. But it still required hitting 4 toggle switches every time I started the car, so that I wouldn’t bother setting the car to “enjoyable” on any short trip.

      • 0 avatar
        schmitt trigger

        “…as long as the system has an obvious on/off switch I’m fine with it…”

        Automakers can learn from Boeing. Make it a paid option.

    • 0 avatar
      slavuta

      To defeat radar cruise control, all you have to do is from OFF position, press and hold ON button for 1.5 seconds, or until a little car on your CC indicator doesn’t disappear leaving only a little gauge. Now you are in the regular cruise control mode

    • 0 avatar
      sgeffe

      In Hondas, LKAS is off by default — you have to turn it on when you want to use it at every ignition cycle. It can only be used if the cruise switch is active; unlike Nissans, Fords, Fiatslers, and probably some others, that state is retained between ignition cycles.

      To switch from ACC to normal cruise control, you hold the distance switch until it beeps, and displays “Cruise Control” in the instrument cluster.

  • avatar
    Fred

    I’ve seen people sleeping and reading in their Teslas so obviously this survey is wrong.

  • avatar
    Detroit-Iron

    Just rented a Kia that was the “or similar” to a Fusion. Less than 5 minutes down an arrow straight midwestern road it starts telling me I need a break.

    • 0 avatar
      sgeffe

      Interesting.

      My Accord’s system will only start working after 30 minutes, and I checked the meter at each end of a couple road trips I’ve taken, and it never moved off the highest mark!

      I’ve had a few false-positives with the hands-on-wheel sensor with the LKAS, and it took only a flick of the wheel, or a movement of one of my hands, to stop it.

  • avatar
    dal20402

    Every time a texting driver runs a red light and nearly kills me in a crosswalk, I have a little bit less patience for drivers who think they are too good for electronic assists. Every last one of us, me very much included, sucks at driving and makes constant mistakes, because it’s just not a system set up with the weaknesses of meatbags in mind. The tech is primitive enough at this point that it only addresses a few kinds of driver mistakes, but it does address a few. Leave it on.

    Signal your damn lane changes/merges/exits and LKA/LDW will never bother you unless you actually drift out of your lane. Don’t tailgate and you won’t get spurious pre-collision warnings. Drive with blind-spot warning on for a couple of days and you’ll get used to the orange lights. And for god’s sake don’t think that you’re better at reacting to a skid than the traction control, because you’re not.

    • 0 avatar
      TMA1

      Defensive walking is a learned skill. I look both ways, and over my shoulder for turning vehicles, before stepping into a cross walk.

      And cars have their own form of body language. The light’s yellow, is the oncoming vehicle slowing down or speeding up? I’m going to go with experience on this one before stepping into the street.

      • 0 avatar
        dal20402

        You shouldn’t need special skills to walk on the sidewalk, and if drivers didn’t act like a$holes, you wouldn’t.

        • 0 avatar
          TMA1

          Shoulda, coulda, woulda. I’m not going to worry about what other people should be doing. We live in a world full of a$holes, and we can’t change that, so it’s best to learn to move among them. Get good enough at it, and you can move like they aren’t even there.

          • 0 avatar
            dal20402

            I’m a bike commuter who’s never been in a serious accident. I do just fine. But I’m thoroughly sick of drivers who think their sh!t don’t stink.

          • 0 avatar
            TMA1

            The nice thing about being on a bike is that you can stand up and look down on most drivers. Lets you see who’s paying attention, and who might kill you through neglect.

          • 0 avatar
            jkross22

            dal, I drive home for lunch most days. Pedestrians use a crosswalk I pass, but the majority of them either have headphones on or are texting or both. While they’re crossing the street.

            Today I honked. No one looked up.

            I’m sure Darwin observed this and is drawing up plans. I just hope Karma was in a food coma.

        • 0 avatar
          FreedMike

          Well, speaking as someone who got hit by a Ram truck, right in front of a stop sign that the driver didn’t stop for in broad daylight (near as I can tell, she was busy f**king with her phone), I’m with TMA on this one – assume drivers are incompetent for your own safety.

          (Thankfully, she only hit me doing maybe 5 mph or so, but that was enough to throw me several feet and give me a concussion, and I’m lucky that was all that happened.)

          Put differently: I would sure hate my tombstone to read “He was in a clearly marked crosswalk when he got run over.

    • 0 avatar
      ajla

      “Every time a texting driver runs a red light”
      “Every last one of us, me very much included, sucks at driving”

      I will defend myself so much as to say that I never ever use my phone while driving. I won’t even take a HF call.

      • 0 avatar
        dal20402

        I sincerely thank you; I do the same (except that I will take hands-free calls on quiet freeways).

        That’s one way in which you and I suck a bit less at driving :)

        • 0 avatar
          sgeffe

          I only use Bluetooth — I couldn’t coordinate texting and driving to save my life!

          But I’m the first one to admit I’m far from perfect! Average at best, and even that’s a stretch!!

          • 0 avatar
            tankinbeans

            I thought everybody on TTAC was an above average racing driver, to read the comments anyway.

          • 0 avatar
            ToddAtlasF1

            There’s plenty of real estate between projecting one’s sense of helplessness onto everyone and thinking oneself to be an opportunity removed from mixing it up with Kyle Busch or Max Verstappen.

    • 0 avatar
      dwford

      Perhaps the next time you are standing at a street corner, you can educated your fellow pedestrians as to the function of the crosswalk lights. Pedestrians commonly push the button, but then walk on red anyway. Other times they stand there while the crosswalk light counts down, then walk when it hits zero. Others see that it is red, hesitate, then casually walk across as my light turns green. I don’t drive on the sidewalk, stay off my road.

      • 0 avatar
        dal20402

        I’ll do that if you work on the considerable majority of drivers who (a) won’t stop for pedestrians in clearly marked crosswalks and (b) don’t even understand that unmarked crosswalks exist. Deal?

        • 0 avatar
          TMA1

          When it comes to crosswalks, it’s usually the drivers who are the bigger maniacs. I can’t count how many times the second car at the intersection is honking at the car in front, urging him to turn right into the crowd of people crossing the intersection. Or the number of drivers who will actually cross into a small gap in the crowd.

    • 0 avatar
      Steve Biro

      Dal, I am not trying to flame you and there are many incompetent drivers. But your post is a classic example of judging others by what you see in yourself. If you suck at driving then everyone must suck at driving. There are quite a few drivers who, in fact, know what they’re doing and pay attention. You also need to understand that this technology cannot be replied upon. Sure, read your owners manual. Get a tutorial when you buy your new car. And you’ll still discover that whenever you need these features the most, they will fail you. Because it wasn’t the second Thursday of the month. With no rain. And the car wasn’t on a perfectly flat road. And you weren’t traveling on an Interstate highway between 22.5 and 22.7 miles per hour. The technology simply isn’t ready yet – not reliable yet – no matter how much some people want it. And it’s extremely intrusive and distracting. There’s still no replacement for knowing what you doing, paying attention – and leaving the damn phone off.
      I

      • 0 avatar
        dal20402

        I’m 43 years old. I’ve been driving, biking, and walking in the central city for 27 years without any accident that caused anything more than a paint scratch. That includes five years as a professional city bus driver, most of it on the busiest central city routes in the agency’s network.. So, no, I don’t think I’m worse than the usual driver.

        But I still make tons of mistakes. Just on tonight’s bike ride home, I cut off a pedestrian in a crosswalk, who dealt with it gracefully but had every right to be mad at me. And every single day I see all sorts of drivers making much worse mistakes.

        Human drivers suck. All of us. And if you don’t have the humility to realize it, step back and look carefully at your own driving, without a forgiving lens. You’ll find the mistakes too.

        I’m not urging “relying” on the technology. Give full concentration to driving any time you are driving. I’m urging leaving it on, because it can compensate for some small number of your mistakes at the margin.

  • avatar
    ImAbeFroman

    Depends on the manufacturer. My Mk7 GTI’s adaptive cruise and lane tracking features are amazing. It will take me from 0-45 mph and from 45-0 mph. The lane tracking is subtle and keeps me centered on straight roads. They are also very easy to toggle on/off.

    However the rental 2020 Carolla I had a few weeks ago was infuriating. Lane assist just beeped if I crossed the line, then slightly pulled me the opposite direction. Took two days of swearing to realize the ACC only operates, from what I could tell, on the interstate.

    • 0 avatar
      TMA1

      That must be the Autobahn trim. I have automatic braking in my ’18 SE, and I find it to be overactive and slow. By the time it starts screeching at me, I’ve already adjusted, and now I have to look down to see what else is going wrong. Oh, it’s just the thing I corrected for half a second ago.

      Not only that, it even gives me false alerts from cross traffic while at a stop sign. I turned it off once, but it then it just displays a warning light the entire time, and comes back on when I restart the car. I may try to have it disabled completely when I take the car in for its 10K mile service.

      • 0 avatar
        ImAbeFroman

        It’s a 2016 3-door, actually:) That’s another example of systems that bug people: alert only. They tell you but don’t do anything.

        The alert-only system came available in 2018.

        • 0 avatar
          TMA1

          I would have gotten a 3-door had it been available. Oh well.

          Mine also has an overly panicky rear alert sensor, so it often starts screeching if I start to roll backwards at a stop, even if the car is 5 feet behind me. So that’s another message to I have to read and decipher (is there something between me and that car way back there?) as I’m still rolling backwards in no danger of hitting the car behind me.

    • 0 avatar
      slavuta

      I hate adaptive CC. I want to zip through traffic and this thing keep slowing behind car ahead when I in fact want to accelerate. I bet ya, on the long trip, I can get 1 hour quicker to destination without it. You have to accelerate passed other cars, not slow down behind them. This breaks the rhythm of the trip.

      • 0 avatar
        sgeffe

        You might just need to set the distance to minimum.

        And you can usually override ACC with the throttle.

        The nicest thing about the latest ACC systems is the stop-and-go feature! If traffic slows on the freeway, I’ll brake to under 20mph, then hit Resume and let the car take over while I cover the brake, just in case. Then after the car is stopped (with “Stopped” displayed in the IP), when the traffic starts moving, you tap Resume or the gas pedal, and the car will start moving at the speed of the vehicle ahead.

    • 0 avatar
      krhodes1

      So glad my ’17 Sport has none of this crap. Nor does my Fiata. My other cars are all far too old.

  • avatar
    Whatnext

    Is that dash from a current Buick model? What a cheap-ass mess!

  • avatar
    IBx1

    The only benefit to all this safety crap is vehicle pricing.

    Before, you had to go to higher- or top-trim cars to get nice creature comforts, but now those are all standard and all you get with the higher trim is a hundred radar sensors and warning messages in your gauge cluster.

    This means base models are more content-rich than ever before, so you only have to spring for one trim level upgrade to get rid of the steelies and halogens, and grab sensibly-sized alloys and the nicer LED headlights/taillights.

  • avatar
    slavuta

    “lane-keep assist and lane centering is the topmost complaint among new car owners or lessees” – yea babe.

    Now, did anyone actually read the manual for your car? I did. And it is full of “when system will not work as expected”. In fact, could be 1/8 of the entire book. It is a one big mess

    • 0 avatar
      ImAbeFroman

      As the owner of a car with adaptive cruise, I was completely confused trying to figure out adaptive cruise on my rental Toyota. Just said F it and gave up trying. Later my theory of it only working on interstates (thank you, speed limit detection technology) proved to be correct.
      On the GTI everything is located in a simple menu accessible by a button on the turn signal stalk. The Toyota required flipping through a bunch of menus in the dash. If it was my car this would have made me log a complaint.

      • 0 avatar
        slavuta

        Don’t account for distance to be correct when behind a flat bed truck, on turns, when trees close to road, when uphill or downhill, when moving from one side of lane to another, etc. Enjoy!

        • 0 avatar
          ImAbeFroman

          Haha, yes. The systems require being monitored just like the road has to be monitored.

          • 0 avatar
            sgeffe

            With my previous car, a 2013 Accord Touring, I learned early on that you have to keep watch out the back, and be ready to override the ACC with the throttle if it braked quicker than you anticipated.

  • avatar
    HotPotato

    A friend recently took me for a ride in her new nanny-equipped Subaru Forester. She insisted on conversing with a degree of eye contact and hand gestures that were better suited for the coffee shop than a moving vehicle. The lane departure system kept shrieking in impotent terror at her inattention — which mirrored exactly how I felt, but I would have preferred that it just pull the car back into the damn lane. I was sorely tempted to serve as a human lane departure response system and just reach over to steady the wheel myself…like a kid in the 1970s when Dad had enjoyed one too many cocktails at the restaurant. (Ah, the pre-MADD, pre-childseat era.) Anyway, point is: crappy drivers will be crappy drivers whether you beep at them or not. Just correct their crappy driving.

    • 0 avatar
      dwford

      People who can’t talk to you without staring at you are so annoying. I get that they need the visual cues of watching your face, but maybe those people just shouldn’t be allowed to drive.

      • 0 avatar
        krhodes1

        I have a couple of friends who I simply will NOT ride with. Ever. The worst is my friend with a Forester, the official car of awful drivers in Maine. He’s passive when he should be aggressive, and aggressive when he should be passive…

        I freely admit I am NOT a good passenger.

  • avatar
    dwford

    Yes, it would be great id the dealers educated the customers on the safety features of their new car. But there is so much to show people, they just don’t have the patience to sit there and absorb it. Today’s cars need a Saturday class to really show people what the functions are.

  • avatar

    I was cheezed at this…I’ve played with the Toyota, the Mercedes, and the Cadillac versions of lane warnings, etc. Notably, I thought it would help in Scotland, where one drives on the wrong side. Nope all around. I generally turn them all off.

    I’m unhappy with Mercedes…the one option I wanted was the “curb warning” beepers, but this 80’s level now inexpensive option is bundled with the full Distronic system, which I’d never use. Want curb feelers ? You need a 360 degree camera and radar based cruise control. I don’t sit in LA style traffic, I change lanes very often, and use cruise control sparingly…

    The Toyota system on our car in Scotland would sometimes find the lines…and sometimes not. I don’t know how good or bad Tesla’s system is, but for now, having played with the best efforts of the majors, I don’t want the option, thanks…..but I’d still want those stupid curb beepers.

  • avatar
    ABC-2000

    I do not agree with all that, my experience was different, my Honda dealer have a list of all settings on the car and someone will ask you how would you like it to be set up before you drive it for the first time.
    Also, another person will sit in the car with you and give you a brief explanations of the various safety systems.
    On top of that, Honda have great tutorials videos on any system in the car.
    I also saw in the new 2020 Explorer that Ford put in a small animation on the car screen for every setting, this way you can tell immediately what every system is doing.
    All you need to do is put some effort in learning the stuff.

    • 0 avatar
      HotPotato

      You’re right, people just need to put a little effort into learning it. They won’t do that with a rental, of course, but at least they can do it with a car they own. All they have to do is read the manual… is that too much to ask?

      Yes. I belong to a Facebook group for owners of one of my cars, and someone inevitably responds to nearly any question with “RTFM” (read the f*ing manual)…which is rude but understandable. How often should I change my oil? RTFM.

      The other day my wife said “the front park distance sensors always beep in the drive-through, it’s so annoying. I wonder if there’s some way to turn them off when you don’t want them.” I wanted to say “RTFM.” Instead I said “just press this button here that says P with little soundwaves coming out of it.” I’m pretty sure this very complaint about the drive-through, coupled with a lack of RTFMing, is why the front parking sensors have been deleted from luxury cars these days.

  • avatar
    geozinger

    After reading all of these comments, it looks like I’m going to have to find a way to keep my 2009-era car going for a while longer… Ugh.

  • avatar
    teddyc73

    “Shockingly”! Wow, you internet writers love that word. Everything surprising, unusual, unexpected, etc is “shocking”. Exaggerate much? Are people giving this technology a “brutal” take down?

  • avatar
    427Cobra

    I had the full safety suite in my ’13 Ford Edge Limited. I found it very disorienting when bells & alarms started going off… like WTF?

    I was surprised that my ’17 Ford Focus ST (ST3) is devoid of most of these gimmicks. The backup camera comes in handy… but beyond that, I’m glad it doesn’t have too many electronic nannies.

  • avatar
    Jeff Semenak

    One nanny I would love to see in new cars; Having the dashboard light up only if, the headlights are on when the car is moving. Too many people in Tempe drive around without noticing, or caring that their headlights are off. Their dashboard is lit up really nicely though.Just need an additional line of code in the ECU.

    • 0 avatar
      DenverMike

      Headlights ON should be the default setting. Its stupid, cars with 200+ processors don’t know it’s dark out. And you still see cars abandoned with their headlights left ON in parking lots, and dimming. And we’re talking newer cars. Probably Toyota/Lexus mostly.

      I tend to drive older, and or basic trucks a lot, but it almost never happens to me. I’m probably more forgetful than most, but every vehicle I drive gets the headlight switch modified to (ignition switch) “ON” power instead of stock “constant” 12+ (always powered).

      It’s almost never necessary to have the headlights ON and the keys in my pocket at the same time.

      So I leave the switch set to “Parking lights/Tail/Markers” and Fog Lights ON as a safety/default, or run the headlights/everything ON all day if I forget.

      Besides, headlights should be ON early morning and late afternoon when the sun is at your back (and sun’s glare at oncoming traffic) as a courtesy.


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