It’s exciting to buy a new car, and it’s easy to get caught up in the thrill of it and say “yes” to all the cool new features. But that can add a lot to your total cost. Instead, it pays to carefully consider which features are valuable to you and which you can do without. Consider your driving habits and the conditions you normally drive in when weighing these features.

Built-in Navigation

This likely duplicates a navigation system available for free on your smartphone. Plus, the built-in ones may require costly annual map updates, while your phone apps update constantly, free of charge. Phone-based navigation is usually easier to use, too. Apple® CarPlay and Android™ Auto transfer the maps from your phone to the car’s screen.

Blind Spot Awareness

This feature monitors the area alongside and behind your car. If it detects another car in the blind spot area, it will display a warning signal in the glass of the side mirror. The systems in some vehicles also use a warning sound. It doesn’t replace checking your mirrors and turning your head to look, but it can increase safety.

Wi-Fi and LTE 4G Connectivity

Most people won’t need this since cell phone plans usually offer mobile hot spots. Or, you can buy a low-cost Wi-Fi hot spot appliance from your cellular provider instead of paying for a data plan in your car.

Backup Camera

You may find a backup camera useful if you need to parallel park frequently. It also reduces the risk of you backing over or into something that might otherwise be unseen behind the car. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration will require backup cameras in all new vehicles manufactured after May 1, 2018.

Assistive Parking Technology

Some cars now have a feature that allows you to remotely park your vehicle or remove it from a parking space. It can only be used on private property, and it takes a lot longer than it would to park the car yourself. You’d probably only use it to impress your friends. But if you have to parallel park often and hate it, this could be great.

Digital Instrument Panel

You can customize the display so it shows more prominently what’s important to you as you drive. Furthermore, some cars come equipped with a Heads Up Display, where you can display important data such as speed or navigation information, right on the windshield so you don’t have to look away.

Lane Keeping Assist

This technology relies on painted lane markings to operate, so it doesn’t work when lines are faint, nonexistent or covered with snow, ice, dirt or fog. It can also have trouble with exits where lane markings change. It can warn you with a sound, light or vibration if you drift out of your lane. If you don’t respond quickly, the feature may steer you back to the center of the lane.

Making the Purchase

Learn more about what to consider during the car-buying process, including what you’ll want to look for later as part of your car’s regular maintenance. It’s safe to say that no matter which features you choose in your new car, you can be sure of getting good value with an auto loan from Navy Federal. In addition, you can enjoy a stress-free buying experience on your next new or used car with our Auto Buying Program, which simplifies the auto-buying process for you and features low, established pricing. It’s now even easier than ever to get a great deal!

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