Safety, environmental awareness, and technological conveniences are becoming the new standards in buyer’s expectations when purchasing a new car. The once “special features” of AC and seatbelts in the 1980’s have been absorbed into the “goes without saying” list and features such as key-less entry and the ability to synchronize your cell phone with your car have taken their place. Society expects more from new cars and car dealers are more than willing to meet and exceed expectations.

With gas prices hovering around the $4 level in most U.S. states, mileage is a major concern for car owners. New cars are made of lighter weight materials and in more ergonomic designs than their predecessors allowing a mid-sized sedan to get around 30 mpg and SUV’s to get around 26 mpg, much better than the 18 to 20 mpg, or less, of older cars. Many new cars even have the option of being upgraded to hybrid or fully electric engines which can greatly increase the miles per gallon capability of the car.

Front seat airbags have been pretty standard in most new cars of the past two decades but new cars today have airbags for all sides of the vehicle. Anti-lock brakes and features like backup cameras and object sensing laser technology also add to the safety of new cars by helping to avoid accidents. Some new cars even include a sensor that can detect whether the driver is asleep or otherwise impaired while driving and either auto-correct to put the car back in a lane or shut the engine off. 

Smog in big cities, the whole in the Ozone Layer and general awareness of humanities impact on the environment are hot topics in popular culture and car manufacturers have taken the hint. New cars put out few emissions and use less gasoline making a smaller impact on the environment.

Society is on the move and plugged in more than ever and new cars help feed our addiction to the sensory stimulation of constant attachment to music, cell phones, and the web. Many new cars can be synced with your iPod or cell phone to allow you to listen to the music in your play list avoiding radio commercials or make phone calls or send texts through voice commands leaving both hands on the wheel. There are also apps that allow you to turn some new cars on with your cell phone so that on cold winter mornings you can turn the car on and run the heat so your car is warm when you leave for work. 

It might be tempting in hard economic times to keep your old vehicle for just a little longer but are your really saving money?-Probably not. Old cars with 100k miles or more on the odometer tend to have issues with major, expensive to replace parts such as the transmission. For the cost of replacing one major part in an old gas guzzler, that you might even have trouble finding parts for, you could put a down payment on a new car that will save you money on gas and be under warranty for a few years.