We spend plenty of time in our car, whether we’re travelling to the bach for the holidays, ferrying the kids between classes and clubs, or stuck in gridlock, so, once you’ve found a vehicle within your budget that meets all of your essential needs, make sure that you don't overlook the comfort it'll offer you.
Seating is a prime factor for consideration, especially if you’re going to be the main driver. Make sure you’re sitting pretty, by being able to adjust the height and lower back lumbar of the seat. Some cars will offer thigh support. These non-complex solutions allow you to tailor the comfort of your ride to your own requirements so, when you’re doing your test drive, make sure you’re operating under the conditions that make it as easy as possible.
Narrow seats with raised bolsters can become particularly uncomfortable for some drivers. By choosing a neutral seat that’s adjustable, you also have the flexibility to accommodate the needs of multiple drivers.
On that note, many vehicles now have seats that can be electronically adjusted and some include a preset positioning programmer, meaning each driver can store their preferred driving position in the electronic system. You’ll no longer need to spend time adjusting the seat when someone else has been in before you, and the same programme also operates the rear view and side mirrors.
Heated seats and personalised cooling functionalities that utilise the air con to flush air through to your back and thighs aren’t such a rarity anymore, although often they’re reserved for higher spec models. Certainly they’re more of a ‘nice to have’ than a mandatory requirement, but you may be starting to see more of these kinds of things filter down in to the used car market, as they’re advanced further and introduced to manufacturers’ newer vehicles.
Life of luxury
If you don’t want to compromise comfort and are working from a bigger budget, you can really be pampered with some of the features that are on offer from luxury manufacturers. Seating fitted with a combination of special air filled chambers and heating functions can give you a massage of varying intensity levels. A back rub may be relaxing if you’re stuck in a tailback after a stressful day at work, but will it affect your alertness after a long day on the road which has turned in to a night drive? Probably not.
Another solution to a #firstworldproblem is that which has been devised by one manufacturer to help keep motorists toasty warm when they’re behind the wheel with the top down. The air scarf system works by gently and efficiently blowing warm air out of the headrest onto the driver or passenger’s neck. A special air cap system further helps by reducing air turbulence within the cabin during open top cruising.
Manufacturers are always striving to achieve greater levels of comfort and refinement in their vehicles. Any vehicle can have a comfortable seat for a small asking price, but it’s worth giving it some serious consideration if you spend a lot of time in your vehicle. Likewise, if you suffer from back pains, the upgrade packages are worth checking out to see what extra options are available. Performance and aesthetic upgrades are great, but how much will you really benefit from them on a daily basis? Spending some extra cash to improve the comfort of your journey is certainly preferable to spending a little less and not looking forward to getting behind the wheel each time you need to take a drive.