A recent study referenced by Kelley Blue Book indicates the majority of car buyers are not interested in having the ability to purchase items through their vehicle’s infotainment system.
KBB recently cited a study by auto research firm AutoPacific that determined the features car buyers want most in their vehicles and the features they could definitely do without. Fully autonomous, hands-free driving without a steering wheel was the least popular feature, according to the study, although it was tied with gesture controls for most unpopular. The ability to purchase items from the infotainment system (or in-vehicle shopping) was the third least popular, followed by electronic engine noise enhancement and an augmented reality head-up display.
The features that car buyers want most in their new vehicle include heated seats, which was the number one most in-demand feature, as well as blind-spot monitoring, front and rear parking sensors, all-wheel drive, lane departure warning, Apple CarPlay/Android Auto, power front seats, LED accent lighting, ventilated/cooled seats and driver’s seat position memory.
The most in-demand features sit in stark contrast to the least popular features. While many of the most popular features are highly practical and make the overall ownership experience of a vehicle better, the least popular features are all unnecessary gimmicks.
These findings were backed up by the recent J.D. Power Tech Experience study, KBB says, which found that 61 percent of owners who had a vehicle with in-vehicle shopping never used this feature. Furthermore, 51 percent of these buyers said they had no need for in-vehicle shopping features and couldn’t see themselves ever using them.
Knowing which tech features to include in a vehicle and which to leave out will be hugely important in the coming years, explains Kristin Kolodge, executive director of human-machine interface at J.D. Power, as vehicle prices are rising rapidly due in part to the presence of unnecessary, unpopular technology.
“New-vehicle prices are at an all-time high, partly as a result of an increased level of content,” said Kolodge. “This is fine if owners are getting value for their money, but some features seem like a waste to many owners.”