DS 4 rearview
Beth Twigg

Beth Twigg

Beth is our Content Marketing Executive, tasked with creating great articles to keep you both entertained and informed. She has two years previous experience, but has been writing and scribbling for much longer.

Read time of 6 minutes.

The top nine features car buyers are looking for

From wireless charging to heated seats, these are the most popular car features that have people saying ‘yes’ to the car.

When you’re shopping for your next car lease, chances are you have a shopping list of features in mind.

Whether you’re a fan of heated seats or you want all the safety kit in the world, you’re not alone. Though, especially with technological innovations making it seem like there is nothing our cars cannot do now, you might be surprised to find which car features are actually the most popular among buyers.

And no, it’s not Tesla’s all-singing, all-dancing technology.

It’s the little things.

Research carried out by AutoPacific last year has shown that what drivers actually want are those little luxuries that feel more familiar, like heated front seats, or features that make life easier, like wireless charging pads for those in the front.

A lot of the newer tech, like advanced safety systems, don’t feature in the top ten, though this could be because many people aren’t familiar with these features and what they can do yet, or perhaps just expect a new car to come loaded with a solid safety spec as standard.

And new cars are much safer these days, with many driver aids like active cruise control and blind spot monitoring coming as standard, and plenty of optional kit available to purchase on top.

However, this is slightly different for electric car drivers.

The survey found that people who are looking to drive an EV, or who already drive an electric or hybrid car, are more open to the newer, more advanced tech, or are specifically looking to buy or lease a car with these features. 

These technologies include automatic or remote parking and active cruise control with active lane centering, which are all features you’ll find on a lot of new EVs, especially those from more disruptive brands, like Tesla or BYD, or more premium brands, like BMW.

Without further ado, these are the top nine most popular car features.

BYD ATTO 3 interior

9. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto

It’s no real surprise that people are looking for ways to make their cars smarter and their lives easier.

Apple CarPlay and Android Auto allow you to connect your smartphone to the infotainment system, mirroring the screen and allowing you to access many of your favourite apps through the interface.

It comes in both wired and wireless guises, with wired needing you to plug your phone into a USB socket, while wireless lets you connect your phone to CarPlay and Auto using Bluetooth. But functionality-wise, there’s no difference, and it makes life on the go much easier, especially if you prefer using Google or Apple maps over the cars built in satnav, or want to be able to play all your favourite Spotify playlists for the perfect car-aoke experience.

8. USB-C outlets

With many of our gadgets switching over to a using USB-C as standard, it makes sense that this is a feature that people are looking for.

Not only does it mean you can charge your phone while you’re driving, so you’re never left stranded with a drained battery, but if you don’t have Apple CarPlay or Android Auto it also means you can take calls and use your favourite music app with ease.

A small feature, perhaps, but an extremely useful one.

7. Distracted driver monitoring system

The only safety feature to make an appearance on the list, and an important one.

It’s a system that, using a camera placed on the steering column, can detect whether or not you’re paying attention. If you’re not paying attention to the road or your mind has wandered, the system will alert you by flashing lights or a warning noise.

If you don’t take any action, the car can apply the brakes.

Though we advocate for taking at least a fifteen-minute break every two hours if you’re on a long journey, it’s still a handy system to have as a back-up.

USB charging ports

6. Heated and ventilated/cooled front seats

Whether it’s too hot in the summer or too cold in the winter, getting into the car can be an uncomfortable experience.

It’s no wonder that people are looking for seat features that can make this unpleasant experience a little bit nicer, with warm seats providing a cosy place to perch on your winter commute, and ventilated seats helping you to cool down after a long day on the beach.

And if you’re not too fussed about cooling yourself down, we highly recommend splashing out for just heated seats.

They won’t make the depth of winter feel any shorter, but for twenty minutes or so while you drive to work, it will make your life considerably nicer.

5. Front and rear parking sensors

Coming in at number five, a feature that just makes life easier: parking sensors.

Particularly if you’re switching from a smaller car to a bigger one, and you’re not quite sure of the length, or you’re just tired of trying to dodge multi-storey carpark pillars using your eyes alone, front and rear parking sensors can be a lifesaver.

Many newer cars can also have limited visibility out of the back thanks to thick pillars or smaller rear windows, making sensors an absolute necessity.

4. Dash camera

Dash cams are becoming more and more popular, allowing you to record the road in front or behind your car. Though you won’t often need to use this footage, if you’re involved in an incident it can be handy to be able to see exactly what happened, instead of relying on your memory, or the other people’s memory of the incident.

When conditions on the road can change so quickly, it can sometimes be tricky to work out exactly what happened.

Video footage can provide the concrete answers you – and your insurer – need. 

Genesis GV60 interior

3. All-wheel drive

A surprise entrant in at number three – all-wheel drive (AWD).

It’s a type of powertrain that can provide power to all the tyres all the time, not just the front or the back. It’s designed to provide better on-road handling and stability, while four-wheel drive (4WD) is better off-road.

With icy winters making driving a treacherous affair, opting for an AWD car can help to control the car when the roads are slippery or wet, or if you’re frequently driving unpaved roads, but don’t quite need the power of a 4WD. 

2. Sunroof

With the humble sunroof the least technical option on the list, it’s nice to see this feature making an appearance at number two. With the sunroof dating back longer than many of the other features, it’s a timeless classic that shows no sign of waning in popularity.

Many modern cars now come with a panoramic sunroof, like the Tesla Model Y, that let in huge amounts of natural light, make the car feel airier and less enclosed, and are also perfect for stargazing at night.

Though they can limit headroom in the back, they do elevate the driving experience and can make the whole car feel a lot more luxe.

And you might be able to spot a really cool bird or two through them.

1. Wireless charging pad

It’s not a massive surprise that the wireless charging pad is the most wanted car feature.

Charging your phone in the car is a useful option anyway, making sure that you always arrive to your destination with a fully juiced battery, but having the option to just plonk your phone down and not have to think any further about charging it? 


It also means if you’re mid-drive and suddenly need to charge up, there’s no fiddling with wires that can take your hands and eyes off the road ahead.

Know which features you want, but not which car you want?