Studies have found that anxiety is correlated with worse driving behaviors including:
exaggerated safety/caution behaviors (like going too slowly, which can be dangerous),
anxiety-based performance deficits (like failing to merge safely with heavy traffic), and
hostile/aggressive driving behaviors (like road rage incidents).
If you have anxiety or insecurity about your ability to drive safely from Point A to Point B, the anxiety itself could be making matters worse.
And this is one way that smart car features can help you be a safer driver. Smart car safety features can make you more confident in your ability to drive safely, which can actually make you a safer driver!
Recent survey data shows that certain smart car features help drivers feel safer, make driving easier, and make driving more enjoyable. Let’s dig into some of the survey statistics about how smart car features can make you a more confident driver.
Help Drivers Feel Safer
It’s nearly impossible to feel confident when you don’t feel safe. But lots of drivers are feeling safer thanks to smart car features like rear cross-traffic alerts, automatic emergency braking, blind-spot monitoring, and a backup camera.
Here’s how these features rank according to survey data.
Blind-spot monitoring and backup camera make drivers feel safer than any other smart car feature. A whopping 91 percent of drivers surveyed feel safer with these features.
Rear cross-traffic alerts come in second, making 88 percent of respondents feel safer.
And while automatic emergency braking comes in last place of the three, it still makes a large impact. 86 percent of those with automatic emergency braking say it makes them feel safer.
Make Driving Easier
Smart car features also give drivers confidence by making driving easier. The easier driving is, the better we feel we are at driving. And that gives us confidence!
In the ease-of-driving category, rear cross-traffic alerts ranked as the most important safety feature with 92 percent of those with rear cross-traffic alerts saying it makes driving easier. But blind-spot monitoring comes in a close second place with 91 percent agreeing blind spot monitoring makes driving easier.
Backup cameras and pedestrian detection round out the list of safety features that make driving easier, with 89 percent and 86 percent of survey respondents agreeing respectively.
Make Driving More Enjoyable
For our last data set, we want to see if drivers feel that smart car features make driving more enjoyable. When you enjoy doing something, you're more confident in your ability to do that thing successfully.
This was a close contest to see which features make driving more enjoyable. Here are the results, ranked from most enjoyable driving experience to least (spoiler: they all make driving more enjoyable for a large majority of drivers!):
88 percent of those with self-driving mode say it makes driving more enjoyable.
85 percent of those with a heads-up display braking say it makes driving more enjoyable.
84 percent of those with pedestrian detection say it makes driving more enjoyable.
84 percent of those with road sign recognition say it makes driving more enjoyable.
83 percent of those with parking assist say it makes driving more enjoyable.
Other Ways to Be a More Confident Driver
Clearly, smart car features can help drivers to be more confident on the road. But there are other things you can do to give yourself a confidence boost.
Here are three additional ways to be a more confident driver.
Relax. Easier said than done, right? We understand that driving anxiety is no joke! And of course, you don’t want to get so relaxed that you become careless. So try a few mild relaxation techniques like doing a quick breathing exercise before starting the car or listening to some chill music.
Practice. Confidence comes with experience. The more you drive, the more confident you will be in your ability to drive safely.
Take a defensive driving course. Your confidence will skyrocket when you learn specific techniques for avoiding accidents.
Competent driving skills coupled with smart safety features will make you a safe, confident driver.