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Revhead Ramblings: Six of The Most Pointless Car Features

Other than further developing the powertrain and adding additional safety features, there’s very little else our cars need. But obviously, Mr Engineer at BMW has to justify his wage, so he’ll develop an automatic sun visor or another driving mode. The majority of the options listed for a new car are gimmicks. I don’t want night vision and I don’t want Twitter on my infotainment screen!

  1. Dynamic Steering

The idea behind dynamic steering is that it’s easier to turn in comfort mode, making your turns effortless and pleasant, and harder in sport mode to make inputs more precise. Having them change as you alter your driving mode is bad enough, having it change automatically depending on your driving style however is a recipe for disaster.

  1. Eco Light

Other than my indicators, I don’t want any lights to flash up on my dashboard. If the light does come on however, I at least one it to be important and meaningful. This isn’t the case with the ‘eco’ light, which comes on to warn you when your driving is melting the icecaps. As a qualified driver, I understand that the faster I drive the more fuel I use; it’s a necessary evil though! Don’t start rubbing my nose in all the money I’ve just lost leaving a cloud of smoke at the traffic lights!

  1. Illuminated Door Sills

You’ll feel great when you open the door to your new car and see the model name or tuner glistening on the clean aluminium tread plate. You’ll feel less than great when you realise you’ve just spent the best part of £400 on something that’s going to be covered in mud, leaves and god know what else.

  1. Paddle Shifters on Non-Performance Cars

I’ve got nothing against paddle shifters on a performance car. While I personally prefer a manual, I accept in some cases DSGs are quicker and more convenient. Have an automatic in your supercar, don’t have them in a 2.0D 3 Series! It’s not a fast car and if you wanted to change gears yourself you should have been smart and saved yourself some money by selecting the 6-speed manual; you’ve made your bed, now lie in it.

  1. Automatic Lights and Wipers

There are very few functions on a car that should be automatic; not only does it create yet another thing to go wrong it also makes us less focused. How many times have you driven to work in some horrible drizzle or fog to see some idiot driving the other way with no lights on. While they should be aware, it’s often an over reliance on the automatic lighting system. The same goes for your wipers, how hard is it to flip a switch when you see spot of water appear on your windscreen? Not only are these features unnecessary, it also costs you a fortune when you need a replacement windscreen!

  1. Motorised Rear-View Mirrors

How many times have you grumbled about the inconvenience of adjusting your rear-view mirror? What’s that? Never? Exactly! There are some manufacturers however, who won’t stop until all features and movable objects on your car are controlled by a button or switch. Electric side mirrors are fair enough, leaning over to mess with the little handle on older cars was annoying, but how hard is it to set the central mirror?


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