For lots of people, there are few things more exciting than the search for a fresh set of wheels. And statistics from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders reveal that there were more than 1.6 million new car registrations recorded in 2020.
But not all drivers prioritize the same features. There are those who are looking to reduce their carbon emissions and might want an electric vehicle. Or it might be that they have a large family, in which case they’re looking for a practical seven-seater to transport all the children.
There might also be monetary considerations – such as for those looking to finance the purchase despite bad credit or a limited budget. And then there are those that place greater importance on in-car techs, such as the infotainment system. If that’s you, here’s a quick and easy guide on what to look out for.
Ease of use
Most importantly, any infotainment system needs to be simple to operate. Data from 2019 shows there were more than 2,500 accidents in Great Britain caused by distractions inside the vehicle, and you don’t want your attention to be taken from the road by trying to use an overly complicated system with dozens of complex menus to navigate. Instead, choose one that offers a straightforward user experience, and be sure to familiarise yourself with it before setting off.
The majority of modern infotainment systems operate on a touchscreen basis, but some can be less responsive than others. When browsing potential models, be sure to try each one and satisfy yourself that it responds properly to your touch. If it means repeatedly pressing the screen to trigger the simplest of commands, it’s best to avoid, as even just a few short seconds of not paying attention to the road can have severe consequences.
If you’re going to get plenty of use from your infotainment system but are worried about being distracted while behind the wheel, opt for a model that offers voice recognition software. That way, you can enter your commands without having to lift a finger or divert your eyes from the road. However, be aware that the technology is not always perfect and can sometimes respond even though you didn’t want it to – particularly annoying when it’s in the middle of one of your favorite songs.