September 15, 2020

Protect Your Tech

NAC Blog
NAC Blog

Protect Your Tech

In recent years, the technology of passenger vehicles has become more complex and prominent. Even 5 years ago, many drivers would not have expected their next new vehicle to be capable of braking for them or alerting them to another vehicle in their blind spot. Today, that’s exactly what most brand-new vehicles are capable of.

Advanced driver assistance systems, or ADAS, are no longer the exclusive domain of luxury vehicles. They are becoming standard equipment on a growing number of makes and models. The accelerated proliferation of this technology is largely aimed at increasing safety of drivers, passengers, and pedestrians alike. As American drivers put more miles on their vehicles each year, and as our society becomes increasingly engrossed in our smartphones, mitigating the costs — human and financial — and number of accidents has become a high priority for regulators and manufacturers.

As ADAS technology has become more commonplace, drivers have embraced these features; many rely on them every time they drive their cars. (Be honest: when was the last time you backed out of your driveway or parallel parked without your backup camera?) A recent AAA study found that some drivers are becoming reliant on these systems to the point of distraction, spending up to 50% more time fussing with their smartphones or taking their eyes off the road while driving compared to drivers who don’t use ADAS features. While these results are alarming, they illustrate just how integrated these features have become with operating a late-model motor vehicle.

With dependence on ADAS growing, vehicle owners are sure to notice if a sensor has failed or a camera is no longer working. This new frontier of vehicle maintenance can carry a serious case of sticker shock: the ubiquitous backup camera, one of the oldest ADAS features, averages about $600 to replace. Sensors that enable crucial safety systems like lane departure warnings, adaptive cruise control, and emergency braking might run anywhere from $500 to $1,100. As ADAS is only expected to become more integrated in new vehicles—eventually giving way to more autonomous systems in the future—the costs of repairing and maintaining those components are the “new normal” for the cost of vehicle ownership.

For those drivers who use ADAS technology regularly, leaving part of the system unrepaired is likely not a palatable option even if the price has their head spinning. As for vehicle owners that aren’t attached to these features, not repairing a failed part carries its own costs down the road. While the vehicle may still be drivable without a working backup camera, for instance, not repairing it will lower the value of the vehicle if it is sold or traded in; if the vehicle is involved in an accident and is declared a total loss, the insurance company can lower the vehicle’s value for unrepaired prior damages as well. As ADAS technology becomes more common, vehicle owners must use it responsibly and maintain it just like any other part of their vehicle.

Want to offer your customers the protection they need on advanced features of their vehicle that they use the most?

National Auto Care’s High-Tech Vehicle Service Agreement covers all the important technology that drivers use most to feel safe on the road. Contact us to learn more!

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