Outside of the classic-car-collector hobbies, many people appreciate the quirks and features offered with today’s modern cars. The availability of technology has made cars safer and given owners a lot of features we love to use, but that doesn’t mean some of them aren’t actually annoying. In fact, some new car features give us such a headache it makes us miss the days of older, more simple cars.
Headlights are a major safety feature of our car that we require to drive at night or in the early hours of the day. While we love the aggressive style of daylight running lights and how much the road in front of us is illuminated by LED headlights, we still find ourselves incredibly annoyed by other peoples’ lights. This is because LED lights are significantly brighter than the headlights many drivers grew up with. LED lights are effective when it comes to lighting up the roadway and potential hazards, but they are also annoyingly bright, sometimes blinding other drivers. Most of the headlights we use today are brighter than the high-beams of older cars, and with no ability to turn the light intensity down as you approach oncoming traffic it can leave many drivers feeling more than a bit irritated.
Cars can’t talk, obviously, but that doesn’t mean they don’t produce an awful amount of chatter. If you find yourself less-than-patiently waiting for all of the dings and beeps of your car to settle, you’re not alone. New cars today do, in fact, make a lot more of a raucous than older cars. Parking sensors, proximity sensors and a whole slew of other safety mechanisms seem to constantly fill the cabin with obnoxious warning noises. If we grew up thinking that the ‘seat belt’ noise that played when the car detected a seat belt wasn’t fastened wasn’t annoying enough then we had no idea what was coming. Modern cars seemed to determine that annoying noises are the best way to get our attention. While this probably isn’t an incorrect statement, we don’t necessarily love hearing our cars practically yell at us to let us know someone is just a little too close.
Manual transmission cars have slowly been dying out since the introduction of the automatic gearbox. Some people may enjoy the luxury of being able to drive leisurely and without concern of gears but you could argue that automatic gearboxes have made us worse drivers. It may not be the fault of the automatic gearboxes that have made people less road-aware, but a combination of that along with features like adaptive cruise control that lulls people into a false sense of security. As drivers become more comfortable allowing their car’s technology to take the wheel, you could argue that they also become only casually aware of the road around them. While it may not directly make us a worse driver, automatic gearboxes are becoming a part of a car culture that is less aware of potential hazards and other drivers.
With all of the conveniences of new cars, it’s hard to complain about the smaller things like blinding headlights and annoying chimes. Although none of these are enough to send you running back to a quieter, early 2000s car just for some peace and quiet, it doesn’t make these little things any less annoying.