Car safety after age 67 or so

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blackhawkfan
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Joined: Wed Apr 11, 2018 5:59 pm
Location: Illinois

Re: Car safety after age 67 or so

Post by blackhawkfan »

I worked for a major auto manufacturer for over 30 years, a majority in the service area, and just recently retired. I can tell you having driven company (demo) cars all that time that the new vehicles out now are much safer than earlier models. Most late model cars (last 10-15 or so years) have passive safety features like air bags, quality seat belt restraint systems, collapsing steering columns, etc. What new cars have are more active type safety features like blind spot monitors, brake assistance systems that anticipate panic stops, backup camera's, park assist that tells you audibly when you are getting too close to other objects, rear cross traffic alert that gives you an audible warning if you are backing out of a parking spot and a car or person is crossing behind you, additional air bags for non traditional areas of protection such as knees, rear seat occupants, etc., and passenger structures with high strength steel and crumple zones that more safely protects occupants.

If it's in your budget, I'd spring for a new car. Although the more expensive models will have the latest and most advanced safety systems, virtually every model has a comprehensive suite of safety features that will certainly make you safer as you age and eyesight changes. Depending on manufacturer, model and grade level, some safety features might be optional and some are standard so make sure to look at all of the standard and optional equipment for EVERY model and grade level before choosing and make sure you get the safety features you want and need.

Typically as models are redesigned more safety features are added to that model so a recent redesign will generally have a more comprehensive package of safety features. The one downside to all of this technology is that if the vehicle is in an accident, the cost to repair will be greater because of all of the technology, so typically insurance premiums are higher on these higher equipped vehicles.
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BarbBrooklyn
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Location: NYC

Re: Car safety after age 67 or so

Post by BarbBrooklyn »

So, a couple of wrinkles. I am surfing the IIHS website about safety features, especially the adaptive headlight stuff.

Without getting into a car or test driving (and you should know that I did neither with my last two cars, the Honda Civic or Honda Fit) I think that either the Forester or Crosstrek is what we are looking for.

Does anyone think that prices in Maine might be cheaper than in the NYC tristate area? I'm thinking of taking the title with me on vacation in two weeks. What are the downsides? That we'll need to drive home slowly?

Seriously though, we probably want to pull the trigger in October when the 2021 Foresters come in.
BarbBrooklyn | "The enemy of a good plan is the dream of a perfect plan."
02nz
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Re: Car safety after age 67 or so

Post by 02nz »

RudyS wrote: Sun Aug 09, 2020 10:04 am Despite my car having Navigation (Subaru), I prefer to use my Android phone. I use the Google Drive app, which I think gets the same info as Google Maps for directions. Google Drive sometimes needs to remind me that I have to have Location Services turned on.
Huh? Google Drive is a cloud storage system similar to Dropbox or OneDrive. It has nothing to do with navigation. Maybe you're thinking of Waze, which Google also owns and uses the same traffic data as Google Maps?
Colorado13
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Re: Car safety after age 67 or so

Post by Colorado13 »

Sample of 1, since you mentioned the Crosstrek and Forester: My mechanic recommended that I drive the Crosstrek as both he and his wife have one and he really likes theirs. I found the 2017 model to be underpowered but supposedly the later models have addressed that issue. I bought a Forester, which isn't flashy by any means. However, the seats are very comfortable and visibility is really good due to the large windows, which are not as common on some other SUVs. It's fantastic in snow. We did a road trip last weekend and averaged 39.2 mpg.

Good luck!
RudyS
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Re: Car safety after age 67 or so

Post by RudyS »

02nz wrote: Mon Aug 10, 2020 8:49 pm
RudyS wrote: Sun Aug 09, 2020 10:04 am Despite my car having Navigation (Subaru), I prefer to use my Android phone. I use the Google Drive app, which I think gets the same info as Google Maps for directions. Google Drive sometimes needs to remind me that I have to have Location Services turned on.
Huh? Google Drive is a cloud storage system similar to Dropbox or OneDrive. It has nothing to do with navigation. Maybe you're thinking of Waze, which Google also owns and uses the same traffic data as Google Maps?
Sorry I got the name wrong. Should be Driving not Drive. It's an app on my Android that is called Driving. The icon has a G on it so I assumed it's Google. Definitely not Waze.
02nz
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Re: Car safety after age 67 or so

Post by 02nz »

RudyS wrote: Tue Aug 11, 2020 12:19 pm
02nz wrote: Mon Aug 10, 2020 8:49 pm
RudyS wrote: Sun Aug 09, 2020 10:04 am Despite my car having Navigation (Subaru), I prefer to use my Android phone. I use the Google Drive app, which I think gets the same info as Google Maps for directions. Google Drive sometimes needs to remind me that I have to have Location Services turned on.
Huh? Google Drive is a cloud storage system similar to Dropbox or OneDrive. It has nothing to do with navigation. Maybe you're thinking of Waze, which Google also owns and uses the same traffic data as Google Maps?
Sorry I got the name wrong. Should be Driving not Drive. It's an app on my Android that is called Driving. The icon has a G on it so I assumed it's Google. Definitely not Waze.
No such app that I could find. Perhaps you could post a link: https://play.google.com/store/apps
RudyS
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Re: Car safety after age 67 or so

Post by RudyS »

02nz wrote: Tue Aug 11, 2020 12:37 pm
RudyS wrote: Tue Aug 11, 2020 12:19 pm
02nz wrote: Mon Aug 10, 2020 8:49 pm
RudyS wrote: Sun Aug 09, 2020 10:04 am Despite my car having Navigation (Subaru), I prefer to use my Android phone. I use the Google Drive app, which I think gets the same info as Google Maps for directions. Google Drive sometimes needs to remind me that I have to have Location Services turned on.
Huh? Google Drive is a cloud storage system similar to Dropbox or OneDrive. It has nothing to do with navigation. Maybe you're thinking of Waze, which Google also owns and uses the same traffic data as Google Maps?
Sorry I got the name wrong. Should be Driving not Drive. It's an app on my Android that is called Driving. The icon has a G on it so I assumed it's Google. Definitely not Waze.
No such app that I could find. Perhaps you could post a link: https://play.google.com/store/apps
Well, it seems to be called Navigation for Google Maps Go. The screen shots for that app in the store look exactly like what I see on the phone.
02nz
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Re: Car safety after age 67 or so

Post by 02nz »

RudyS wrote: Tue Aug 11, 2020 1:41 pm
02nz wrote: Tue Aug 11, 2020 12:37 pm
RudyS wrote: Tue Aug 11, 2020 12:19 pm
02nz wrote: Mon Aug 10, 2020 8:49 pm
RudyS wrote: Sun Aug 09, 2020 10:04 am Despite my car having Navigation (Subaru), I prefer to use my Android phone. I use the Google Drive app, which I think gets the same info as Google Maps for directions. Google Drive sometimes needs to remind me that I have to have Location Services turned on.
Huh? Google Drive is a cloud storage system similar to Dropbox or OneDrive. It has nothing to do with navigation. Maybe you're thinking of Waze, which Google also owns and uses the same traffic data as Google Maps?
Sorry I got the name wrong. Should be Driving not Drive. It's an app on my Android that is called Driving. The icon has a G on it so I assumed it's Google. Definitely not Waze.
No such app that I could find. Perhaps you could post a link: https://play.google.com/store/apps
Well, it seems to be called Navigation for Google Maps Go. The screen shots for that app in the store look exactly like what I see on the phone.
That seems to be a "lite" version of Google Maps optimized for budget Android phones. Same basic functionality.
Jack FFR1846
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Re: Car safety after age 67 or so

Post by Jack FFR1846 »

BarbBrooklyn wrote: Mon Aug 10, 2020 3:36 pm So, a couple of wrinkles. I am surfing the IIHS website about safety features, especially the adaptive headlight stuff.

Without getting into a car or test driving (and you should know that I did neither with my last two cars, the Honda Civic or Honda Fit) I think that either the Forester or Crosstrek is what we are looking for.

Does anyone think that prices in Maine might be cheaper than in the NYC tristate area? I'm thinking of taking the title with me on vacation in two weeks. What are the downsides? That we'll need to drive home slowly?

Seriously though, we probably want to pull the trigger in October when the 2021 Foresters come in.
All dealers in New England are supplied by Subaru of New England (Ernie Boch Jr). The site gives you a chance to search for cars.
https://www.subaruofnewengland.com/

I don't know why Maine dealers would be cheaper than New York dealers.

You absolutely should test drive whatever model you think you might like. My mom was looking for a new car to replace her 09 Ford Fusion and was convinced that she wanted a Forester from what she saw online. I met her at the dealer. She got in a Forester before I got there and when I got there, had ruled it out. "Too big". So we looked at a Crosstrek and a Legacy. She bought a Legacy premium. Didn't like the more fancy controls in the Limited version.

I've found most dealers to be responsive to email inquiries and have bought several Subarus before even going to a showroom.
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Topic Author
BarbBrooklyn
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Location: NYC

Re: Car safety after age 67 or so

Post by BarbBrooklyn »

Colorado13 wrote: Tue Aug 11, 2020 11:14 am Sample of 1, since you mentioned the Crosstrek and Forester: My mechanic recommended that I drive the Crosstrek as both he and his wife have one and he really likes theirs. I found the 2017 model to be underpowered but supposedly the later models have addressed that issue. I bought a Forester, which isn't flashy by any means. However, the seats are very comfortable and visibility is really good due to the large windows, which are not as common on some other SUVs. It's fantastic in snow. We did a road trip last weekend and averaged 39.2 mpg.

Good luck!
Thank you for this info!

So, folks...how do I do a test drive without selling them my firstborn? I've bought 2 new cars, but never done a test drive. Embarrassed to admit that ( I guess you COULD count the test drive of the 87 Nissam Van with ex DH and all 3 kids under 6, but it didn't really tell me anything). Maybe that's why I don't do them.
BarbBrooklyn | "The enemy of a good plan is the dream of a perfect plan."
MathIsMyWayr
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Location: CA

Re: Car safety after age 67 or so

Post by MathIsMyWayr »

BarbBrooklyn wrote: Tue Aug 11, 2020 8:01 pm
Colorado13 wrote: Tue Aug 11, 2020 11:14 am Sample of 1, since you mentioned the Crosstrek and Forester: My mechanic recommended that I drive the Crosstrek as both he and his wife have one and he really likes theirs. I found the 2017 model to be underpowered but supposedly the later models have addressed that issue. I bought a Forester, which isn't flashy by any means. However, the seats are very comfortable and visibility is really good due to the large windows, which are not as common on some other SUVs. It's fantastic in snow. We did a road trip last weekend and averaged 39.2 mpg.

Good luck!
Thank you for this info!

So, folks...how do I do a test drive without selling them my firstborn? I've bought 2 new cars, but never done a test drive. Embarrassed to admit that ( I guess you COULD count the test drive of the 87 Nissam Van with ex DH and all 3 kids under 6, but it didn't really tell me anything). Maybe that's why I don't do them.
I asked a salesman to test drive a new stick shift Subaru. I had never driven a car with a manual transmission before. It worked well. Driving my new Subaru home on my own was a challenge.
tdmp
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Re: Car safety after age 67 or so

Post by tdmp »

BarbBrooklyn wrote: Fri Aug 07, 2020 1:04 pm

We have the funds to buy something in the 25-40K range for cash. Would like to do a hybrid if possible and, having ridden in a friend's Tesla this winter in Florida....well, that intrigues me.
ETA: We have 2 grandchilren, ages 8 and 3; we sometimes need to haul 2 parents and 3 yo (they are urban dwellers and don't drive) around. Also have another adult child and wife who don't own a car and need to be schlepped...but I really don't want to go back to a mini van.
How about 2021 Toyota Venza? It is hybrid only model. Newer safety features. Should have enough space to haul 2 parents and 3 y/o. Model Y if you want performance/acceleration/not having to go to gas station. Maybe test drive both and see.
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ResearchMed
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Re: Car safety after age 67 or so

Post by ResearchMed »

BarbBrooklyn wrote: Tue Aug 11, 2020 8:01 pm
Colorado13 wrote: Tue Aug 11, 2020 11:14 am Sample of 1, since you mentioned the Crosstrek and Forester: My mechanic recommended that I drive the Crosstrek as both he and his wife have one and he really likes theirs. I found the 2017 model to be underpowered but supposedly the later models have addressed that issue. I bought a Forester, which isn't flashy by any means. However, the seats are very comfortable and visibility is really good due to the large windows, which are not as common on some other SUVs. It's fantastic in snow. We did a road trip last weekend and averaged 39.2 mpg.

Good luck!
Thank you for this info!

So, folks...how do I do a test drive without selling them my firstborn? I've bought 2 new cars, but never done a test drive. Embarrassed to admit that ( I guess you COULD count the test drive of the 87 Nissam Van with ex DH and all 3 kids under 6, but it didn't really tell me anything). Maybe that's why I don't do them.
It should be easy, unless I'm misunderstanding something.

I've only done that during pre-COVID days, so there were normal interactions, so your mileage may differ (pun intended :wink: ).

I/we went it to discuss getting a new car, and asked about different models, and basically, just told them we'd like to have a test drive.
In the old days, they'd take down the drivers license info, and hand me the keys, and we'd agree on a time I'd be back.
Nowadays, unless they already know you, a sales rep will no doubt want to join for the spin around town.

I'd always make sure to get some "in town, traffic" driving, and then at least a short time at higher speed on a major highway, all dependent upon the time available, and also whether I was at all familiar with the car/model yet.

I (female) almost always used to find the car sales reps obnoxiously sexist and condescending, and how much of that still exists can depend a lot on the particular dealership and of course the specific rep.
Assuming you are indeed a "Barb", don't let that rattle you. I think at least some of that was to set up a power differential, in terms of any attempts to negotiate price, etc.
But with the internet now, pricing can be easier, as one can easily compare the model you want with what a dealer in the next town will ask, etc. Use that opportunity when you have decided, especially if you are getting a new car, as the same model is... the same model, etc.
You might be able to negotiate on some "extras", or get almost 0 percent financing, or something else.

Don't be rushed. Plan to come back for another drive the next day, or with another dealer. And try more than one "model" or trim level (degree of "extras", usually), etc. The seats or the suspension, etc., may feel quite different. Or you may like - or hate - a particular "entertainment system", or the visibility from the driver's seat, etc. The test driveS are for you to get enough info/feel to make a reasonably informed decision about "which car" *you* like.

Don't hesitate to ask the rep about comparisons if you aren't sure, and then sit in the car(s) or drive them to get a feel for <whatever>.

RM
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Colorado13
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Re: Car safety after age 67 or so

Post by Colorado13 »

Definitely schedule a test drive...or two or ten.

I've relayed this story previously: I did a lot of research, talked to current owners and decided on the Mazda CX-5. It's a great vehicle. I test drove it and the seats were so uncomfortable for me that I just couldn't convince myself to buy it. So I test drove it 3 more times and still the seats were very uncomfortable/too firm for me. Solution: I bought the Forester. The seats in my Forester are extremely comfortable and I have no complaints at all about the vehicle. The gas mileage is excellent and it is very easy to get in/out of. Consumer Reports rates it as the "Best SUV for older people." (Not that you or I are old...we're not, it's just a Consumer Reports recommendation.) :-)

So, a test drive, as described in ResearchMed's excellent post, is a must do.
MrBeaver
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Re: Car safety after age 67 or so

Post by MrBeaver »

BarbBrooklyn wrote: Sat Aug 08, 2020 12:11 pm What a lot to think about!

I am leaning toward the idea of buying sooner rather than later for safety reasons. Yeah, I know we're not OLD, but I like to be prepared for what is going to be. At 50, I sold the house and moved into an accessible apartment near everything so that when the day comes when we can't drive, we won't have to.

Can't have two cars, we live in Brooklyn, and not the part with the driveways.
Really glad to see that not only are you considering setting yourself up for less driving as you age, but you took action for it. Given that, I'd focus on getting something that provides the flexibility you think you need. Your needs will likely be significantly different from many others here. I'm thinking your main use of a car might be:
  • Car trips to kids/grandkids
  • Large item pickup?
  • Other?
My point is that this will not be a daily driver, so many of the suggestions you get may not be applicable. Pick something with the flexibility you need for the uses you do have, and enjoy being able to do so many things without the car.
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