Auto safety technology has made huge leaps in the last couple of decades. Today’s breed of vehicles will help you stay in lane, stop quicker in an emergency, and even monitor your blind spot calibration. Much as these features have contributed to a reduction in crashes, they’ve also made modern cars increasingly expensive to repair.
The Ugly Side of Driver Safety Tech
A typical driver assistance package features a central control module along with a bevy of cameras and sensors. While the former’s usually tucked deep in the body, the sensors upon which it relies must be mounted on exposed parts of the vehicle. Take blind-spot monitoring mechanisms for instance; their sensor’s optimal installation points are the front and rear bumpers. Or, to put it another way, the most vulnerable sections of your vehicle.
So guess what happens when you’re involved in a rush-hour fender-bender? Chances are you’ll need to replace the entire bumper along with the sensors. Even if you’re lucky enough that the bodywork only needs minor restoration, blind spot calibration will be necessary to get the underlying mechanism working properly.
Other seemingly-innocuous impacts can be just as demanding in repairs. Had your windshield chipped by an errant pebble on the freeway? You’ll have to get a replacement with infrared sensors for your rain-sensing wipers. And it’d better be an OEM piece if you want to get back your fancy heads-up display; an aftermarket windshield will likely not have the right polymers between the glass layers.
It’s clear that while cars equipped with all manner of safety features have become more affordable, the technology’s still prohibitively expensive. Auto manufacturers spend huge sums developing these features, and it costs more to retrofit them outside a standard production line.
What are Your Options?
Well, there’s not much you can do here, really. Everything comes at a price, and car safety features are no different. Finding yourself facing a disproportionately-hefty repair bill following a seemingly-innocuous crash isn’t too-far-fetched a scenario.
Now, one might argue that you can save yourself the headache by driving an older vehicle without these expensive, delicate systems, but come on! You want to enjoy the latest and greatest that today’s auto tech has to offer, don’t you? Your only option is to beef up your insurance coverage by lowering your deductible. This will cost you more in premiums, of course. But it’s a decision you will very much appreciate in time to come.