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10 must-have technologies for new cars

July 3, 2014
A list of the high-tech features that new-car buyers say they must have includes four features that could be categorized as infotainment and two that clearly are safety features. 
While some of the features are not as new as one might think, considering that the average car these days is more than 10 years old, there are plenty of drivers for whom the high-tech features are, indeed, brand new.
The editors at Kelley Blue Book compiled a list of 10 "must-have" features from a survey of consumers conducted in the fourth quarter of 2013. The most desired feature, by 43 percent of respondents, was availability of USB/auxiliary ports. That’s hardly cutting edge technology, but it is basic, allowing drivers and passengers to at least charge their mobile devices while they are riding. It also is standard equipment on most compact and larger cars.
Vehicle diagnostics ranked second in the survey, at 40 percent, and back-up/blind spot cameras tied with Bluetooth for third in the rankings at 39 percent. Bluetooth supports hands-free calling, and texting and is available as standard equipment on most compact and larger cars. Blind-spot and back-up cameras rarely are standard equipment but are available as options. 
Many automakers already incorporate some of the safety technologies into their new cars, but at relatively steep prices.
A list of the 10 most sought-after high-tech features:
Deemed "essential"
USB/auxiliary port 43%
Vehicle diagnostics 40%
Back-up/blind-spot camera 39%
Bluetooth 39%
Premium sound system 33%
Recall advisor 33%
Driving directions 28%
Stolen car recovery/immobilization system 26%
Collision sensor 25%
Satellite radio 21%