Who ever imagined that a vehicle would parallel park itself? Or stop all by itself to avoid hitting something. Now, there is talk of self-driving cars with robotic navigators that will chauffeur us about. My, how times have changed.

The new technological advancements of today’s vehicles can boggle the mind. They may also seem like an unnecessary expense, given that most drivers are not aware of the exact benefits they provide.

Here are a few of the latest upgrades and options that are now being featured in newer vehicle models. Pedestrian Auto- Detector Who couldn’t use an extra set of eyes on the road? The new Pedestrian Collision Mitigation technology is often available as part of a Driver Assist Package.* This package includes the use of a camera that scans the road ahead of the vehicle to check for pedestrians. If one is detected, a series of indicators and alerts is activated and the vehicle will auto brake to avoid a collision.

Night Vision

Night Vision systems increase a driver’s visibility at night. Through thermal technology, you will be shown people and large animals that are ahead of you on the road. This feature can enhance safety in the dark by making you aware of potential hazards before it’s too late.*

Rear Camera Mirror with HD

Video Newer vehicles offer a dual rear view mirror and camera feature that streams HD video through the rearview mirror itself. With the simple touch of a finger, you’ll have a less obstructed view and 300 percent more vision than an ordinary standard mirror allows. Then with another touch, you are reverted back to a traditional rearview mirror.

Surround Vision

Surround Vision* provides a 360 bird’s-eye view of the vehicle and the areas immediately around it. This projected view helps reduce blind spots, increases awareness and assists when maneuvering in and out of tight spots. It can also automatically record video when something touches or comes near the vehicle, storing the footage on an SD card for later review.

Even More Safety Features and Options

Other safety features and convenience options include 3-D GPS navigation, Doppler weather reports, hands free calling, adaptive cruise control, Bluetooth streaming and considerable higher horse power motors. The list goes on and on, and there is so much more to come.

But are they worth the added cost? In the long run, the safety systems, other comfort and convenience options are what people seem to want – making them well worth the cost.