What Underappreciated Safety Feature Can’t You Live Without?

Illustration for article titled What Underappreciated Safety Feature Can't You Live Without?

Screenshot: Ford

Safety features in modern cars span from the ubiquitous and expected (like say, seatbelts) to the more niche and high-tech (like lane-keep assist and 360-degree cameras.) Today, we’re asking you what your favorite unique safety feature is that you can’t live without.

“Unique” is the key word there. Yes, seatbelts and airbags are indispensable, but the objective here is to share appreciation for those features that are less celebrated and don’t come common on every single model.

It doesn’t even have to be sophisticated or super novel. To give you an example of what I mean, my answer is the built-in blind spot mirrors Ford put on the last-gen Focus and Fiesta. I’ve owned both cars, and I can’t begin to tell you the number of times those little guys have saved my bacon. I’ve relied upon them so frequently over the years that every time I get into a car that doesn’t have them, I’m out of my element.

Amazingly, these tiny mirrors were so uncommon in the days before blind-spot monitoring sensors that Ford had to produce a video explaining to people what they were for — and it’s not like they’ve grown in popularity since. I imagine the added production cost must have been negligible in exchange for serious life-saving potential. Every car should have them! Plus, they look way less miserable than the stick-on ones sold at AutoZone.

The humble integrated blind-spot mirror gets my vote. What’s a safety feature you absolutely love and would hate to lose?

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