Safety systems have come a long way in the past few decades, helping to save countless lives on the road. According to a 2015 survey by America’s Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), safety features introduced since 1985 prevented as many as 7,700 potential deaths in 2012 alone.
Most of the top safety features you can find in cars today were common by 2018. Many used models offer the same high-tech safety features as brand new cars, but for a lower price. If you’re thinking about buying a used car anytime soon, these are the top safety features that you can find.
Built-in Rear View Camera
These days, you’d be hard-pressed to find a new car without a rear-view camera in the back. In fact, as of 2018, manufacturers have to put a rear-view camera on new car models by law. However, many manufacturers were doing so long before they were required.
Many used car models will have a built-in rear-view camera to help you back up safely. A rear-view camera can give you a better indication of what’s behind your car, especially if it’s sitting low to the ground.
With a rear-view camera, you lower your risk of getting into an accident with another car. You also help to protect nearby pets and children from getting hit. In most cases, rear-view cameras offer a full 180-degree view behind your vehicle.
Automatic Emergency Braking Capabilities
Automatic Emergency Braking, or AEB, is becoming an increasingly popular feature for car shoppers. Many used cars these days boast some form of AEB to help protect drivers from rear-ending and other accidents.
An automatic braking system works by detecting a potential collision before it happens. If a driver doesn’t react for any reason, the system kicks in and begins to apply the brakes and stop the car.
According to the IIHS, automatic braking can decrease your chances of causing a rear-end collision by as much as half. Even in non-emergency scenarios, an AEB system can react faster than a human driver.
Lane Departure Warning
It’s easy to drift out of your lane when driving, and this can increase your risk of a life-threatening or even fatal head-on collision. You also put yourself at risk of side-swiping other cars and raising your insurance premiums.
Cars with a lane departure system use sensors and/or cameras to look ahead and detect lines or dividers in the road. If it senses that your car is drifting away from the center, it will sound an alarm to alert you. This helps to keep drivers engaged and aware while on the road.
In addition to lane departure warning systems, some cars also offer Lane Keep assistance. While departure warnings rely on you to correct your path, Lane Keep will gently take over your steering wheel to keep you straight.
It’s a good idea to keep in mind that lane departure systems aren’t perfect. They can fail in poor weather conditions or when road markings are worn. Most systems have a manual shut-off that allows you to take over when things aren’t working right.
Plenty of used cars offer lane departure warnings as well as lane keeper capabilities. The technology has been around for over 20 years and is common in used cars made before 2018.
When buying a used car, safety should be an important consideration. You can find many of the same safety systems in used cars as you can in brand new models. Automated features such as rear-view cameras, emergency braking, and lane departure warnings all serve to help you better focus on the road, reducing your risk of a catastrophic collision.