Do cars of today have excessive tech & gizmos

Cars from Kia and Skoda might be loaded with features, but I have to consider how many would I actually use.

BHPian MadinMumbai recently shared this with other enthusiasts.

So, we finally bit the bullet and got a new Honda City. It was a straight upgrade from the 2012 VCVT to the 2021 VCVT. The buying process was smooth and delivery was within 7 days of placing the order.

I know boring, right? But we did a lot of waiting and watching. I procrastinated for almost a whole year. Did everything possible to rule the City out as a rational choice. Looked at all the new models in the Rs 14-17 lakh OTR range. There have been quite a few new launches. Some excellent new crossovers that I considered seriously (drooled at) and am now glad I didn't get. I'll explain why. And it might seem silly.

Of all the cars we considered Honda is perhaps the most conservative when it comes to tech offerings for users, you know the little bells and whistles that a user can tinker with. To be honest there was a time when I was very happy to spend days playing around with features on my new phone. Sadly not anymore. I found both Kia and Skoda were loaded to the gills. And while the specs are impressive on paper I had to consider my own usage. How many of the features will I actually use? And I realised basis that I could happily choose the Honda City.

Now, I am getting old, or let's say I am no longer a fan of many buttons, especially while driving in maddening Mumbai traffic. So, the City seemed a better fit. Even so, I am finding new things, most of which I have no use for, every day.

Do others also feel that? You know just the fatigue of learning to use a whole bunch of instruments, commands and instructions when all I want to do is get from point A to point B in some measure of comfort.

Here's what GTO had to say on the matter:

I personally love tech & gizmos. Most of them do offer functionality & features and enhance the in-cabin experience. However, my conditions are that they:

  • Should not be useless. A few truly are, like gesture controls & even ADAS in India.
  • Don't affect reliability, whether short or long term. Complexity does have disadvantages in terms of long-term ownership & out-of-warranty vehicles.
  • Don't take the focus away from what really counts to enthusiasts = the driving experience. Must say, most of today's cars are nice to drive. Even the Koreans have learnt how to tune suspensions (go take a Seltos 1.4T on the highway and you'll know what I'm talking about). Haven't driven the Astor yet, but BHPians are saying that it has neutral road manners.

End of the day, after test-driving all the new cars coming our way, when I take my 25-year old Jeep for a spin, it truly is a throwback to a "purely mechanical" era. Forget gizmos, there aren't even power windows, fuel lid release or a MID in this one!

Here's what BHPian Rajeevraj had to say on the matter:

My only concern with too much tech is the additional glitches and issues it can cause which can either be minor irritants or cause major issues including breakdowns. The probability of this happening is also high because the tech ramp-up in the mass market segments has been pretty fast. This may have resulted in a lot of half baked and gimmicky technology.

Keeping that aside, considering we are spending more and more time in cars- Due to long commutes, never-ending jams or just an increased number of driving vacations, it is good to have all that tech and features that make the cabin a better place to be. If we don't prefer it, there is always the option of buying the lower variants which are all now well equipped with respect to the essentials like safety engine, transmission etc.

Here's what BHPian Raghu M had to say on the matter:

Totally agree with you and feel exactly the same. My XUV 3OO has quite a few features but the 7-inch screen keeps me away from it. I don't want to keep meddling with it and not enjoy the car/drive itself. Having simple features is pretty fine with me. I am not into stuff that is too fancy. I don't remember the last time I used any filters on my phone's camera. So, a few important features are good. I think the City is a timeless design, you should enjoy the car and the ride. Not worry much about bells and whistles!

Here's what BHPian androdev had to say on the matter:

That is the relentless forward march of time for you. We will all accept the new normal and eventually can't live without it. I was having BlackBerry phones till they stopped supporting even the most basic apps. I was a champ when it came to BlackBerry texting. Can't go back to it now. I am on iPhone 6 now. I expect the same with cars - I am delaying my purchase of tech loaded cars or EVs as I am typically not the early adopter (or beta tester) and to be honest my love for cars is deep-rooted in things that are mechanical. However, I am going to be open-minded about the future. I believe there is a good dish in every cuisine and a good song in every music genre. I will find something to fall in love with - but I am in no hurry to transition.

Check out BHPian comments for more insights and information.

A helmet will save your life