Drivers don’t know how to use in-car technology

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New research reveals 40% of drivers don’t know how to use all the technology in their new car

It’s not just a case of not knowing how to turn the radio up either, with more than four in ten believing their safety could be compromised as a result of their poor technological knowledge.

With more than half a million new cars set to be sold in March it seems many people don't feel confident in their knowledge of what they'll be driving away in.

More than half of Brits also admitted to being digital dummies outside the car too as they cannot use all of the functions of their smartphones, tablets and other devices.

The research of 2,000 motorists, carried out by Continental Tyres, showed 44% of drivers think more time needs to be dedicated to explaining the complex systems and settings when buying a new car.

According to the study the average new vehicle handover lasts just 51 minutes and that includes the financial transaction and demonstration of all the car’s features.

Continental Tyres’ safety expert, Mark Griffiths, said: “New technologies are adding features to the devices and products we use all of the time, including the cars we drive.

“If we don’t have the chance to keep pace with innovations in convenience and comfort that might be a shame, but when advances are delivered to increase road safety it is vital we have the chance to understand how we benefit to the full extent possible.”

Only a third of those surveyed would ask about an automotive technology they were unsure about when receiving a demonstration of features, yet innovations like Automated Emergency Braking (AEB) and ‘head up displays’ will play a big part in road safety.

The top three areas covered when a new car is collected are finance first followed by safety features and entertainment systems which are given equal discussion time.

When listing their order of priorities, motorists placed safety features top, then basic maintenance, and then fuel economy.

In additional research for Continental Tyres, 100% of vehicle manufacturers and dealers said the average new car handover time is an hour to an hour and a half, with half saying the time should be extended as new vehicles increasingly have more technology.

Mark Griffiths added: “Continental and other technology businesses in the automotive sector have a job to do to educate people so that we deliver the safer ‘Vision Zero’ we are working towards.

“This study also detailed that 52 per cent of motorists are not in favour of further automation if it means a loss of control for them.

“And only a third are willing to pay extra for additional safety features – yet when drivers are placing increasing importance of safety this suggests they may expect all appropriate safety features to be standard on all models.”

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