Fleet News

Pros and cons of high-tech extras

NEW technology such as parking distance sensors and radar cruise control, along with airbags and good fuel consumption, will have a positive impact on the resale value of cars in future.

But satellite navigation, DVD players and xenon gas headlamps will do nothing to improve the resale value of new cars, according to CAP national research manager Martin Ward.

He was speaking at the Fleet News Hit For Six conference, in a session sponsored by Manheim Auctions, and said all used cars should have power steering, electric windows, air conditioning, central locking, anti-lock brakes and metallic paint to ensure they are attractive to buyers.

However, he said some expensive options that new car suppliers might persuade fleet decision-makers to specify have little value to used car buyers.

Ward said: 'Even the smallest cars must now have air conditioning to ensure they remain attractive to the used car buyer, as well as metallic paint, power steering and central locking.

'We are now seeing parking distance sensors offered as options to an increasing numbers of cars, and in a few years we will probably be wondering how we managed to park without them. It might be worth considering adding these as options where it is available and there is a strong chance of getting some money back.

'Distance control linked to cruise control is starting to appear where cars maintain a set speed in relation to the vehicle in front. If everyone had this system there would be fewer accidents on the roads.

'Multi-airbag systems are also becoming more important. People will soon feel that if they are driving without the maximum number of airbags available, they are behind the wheel of an unsafe car.'

He added that large capacity six-cylinder engines were also falling out of favour, with used car buyers placing greater importance on fuel economy.

'The 3.0-litre V6 is dying, with smaller, more economical engines becoming popular.'

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