As we get older, we might need certain accommodations to fit our needs. If this is you, there is no shame in asking for specific features, and being more selective about what you want in a car for your own comfort and peace of mind. You are definitely not alone in this, either – the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that the number of drivers over the age of 65 will be up to 40 million by the year 2020. In 2005, there were only 29 million seniors on the road.
Car companies are well aware of this, and thankfully they have come up with pedals and steering wheels and dials and buttons that are easy to read as well as attractive. When looking for a vehicle, you should try to count in certain features that you might have thought were frivolous in the past, things you will find extremely helpful now. There are even cars that have an automatic parallel parking feature!
Something like side airbags is really a must. If the side of your car is hit, your body might be protected by the beams reinforcing the door, but your head is likely to hit the window next to you because of the force of inertia. A side air bag will cushion your head and might even save your life.
Key-less remote entry can make your day much easier. Many newer cars have this feature and it is starting to be considered a standard instead of a luxury feature. If you are walking up to your car in the rain or snow with your arms full of bags of groceries, you won’t want to be wrestling with your keys to unlock your car. All you will need to do is push a button that unlocks the doors or opens the trunk when you are getting close to your car.
A GPS navigation system can already be existent in the car in the dash, so you won’t have to worry about buying a separate GPS unit. If you are traveling to somewhere new, you won’t need to concern yourself with looking at a map while you are trying to drive. The GPS will tell you exactly where you need to go.
An OnStar System can also save your life or help you out in case of an emergency. Anything from someone trying to rob you, to being broke down on the side of the highway – all you would need to do is press a button and you would be connected to someone who can help.
Three of the Best Cars for Senior Drivers
The Nissan Cube has a door that is set low, so it is easy to get in to. It also features an automatic anti-skid system, which applies brakes to certain wheels to prevent or reduce a skid when the car starts going in a direction where you are not pointing the wheels. The Cube starts out at $14,710 with these features.
The Ford Taurus runs at $25,995 and has great supportive seats that are factory, but with an extra add-on, you can get seats that change support so that your back isn’t in the same position for too long. If you go on long trips, this might be the best car for you.
The Hyundai Veracruz is another crossover that comes with a push-button key-less entry, so you will only need to hit a button on the door to unlock it. This is also one of the few to feature adjustable pedals. The Veracruz costs $27,895.