Monday, May 16, 2016

It's a sad day when car performance and handling is lowest on buyer's list of influences.

A recent study reports that in the grand scheme of things, car buyers are ranking the performance and handling of cars as very low on their list of things that influence their buying decisions. The highest ranking item is, according to this study at least, the entertainment system.
As a gear head I find this yet more evidence of a troubling trend; people just don't like driving any more. They're not trained properly and have no real interest. Driving standards have been plummeting for the last decade and as manufacturers add more and more distractions in the cab, with more and more isolation from the road. Honestly if the performance and handling of a car are that low on people's lists, I wonder why they buy a car at all and don't just use cabs, public transport and Uber. I wonder if I'll see the end of drivers who enjoy driving, who are allowed to drive in a spirited manner in my lifetime? I wonder if legislation and insurance will just make it too expensive to actually drive? I wonder if we're all going to be forced into joyless self-driving mobile entertainment centers? If that's the case then just shoot me now. I still rate performance and handling as number 1. If my phone can connect via Bluetooth so I can stream Spotify then that's really all I need. I don't need to text from the steering wheel, or get Twitter updates from celebs with inflated egos on my dash display. But it seems I'm in the growing minority. It's a sad day for driving for sure. 

1 comment:

Paul Canciu said...

Should we blame Google and Apple for pushing their systems? Or are they just reacting to people's demand? I think it's kind of a vicious circle.
I, just like you, enjoy driving and don't need the connectivity. But I see it being important to the other occupants of the car. So I don't think that the "need" that is described in the article is actually a driver's need, but mainly a feature for all the persons in the car to enjoy. Driving will stay with us for some time.

On the other hand, distracted drivers are already among us; and they have been on the roads for some time. It's not the entertainment system that kept them distracted; there has always been something else to fiddle with.