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5 New Features in 2019 Models

11/20/2018 @ 7:12 am

Thanks to rapidly-evolving technologies, plus changing preferences in the Canadian population, new and interesting features are emerging in cars for the 2019 model year.

Some of these changes are also a result of shifting government standards, like the push for improved fuel efficiency and fewer emissions. Canadians are also demanding cars which consume less fuel as a way to feel better about their contribution to pollution.

In total, there are five new features emerging in 2019 car models you need to know about. These will reshape how we view cars, use them, and travel in the coming years.

Change is Constant

The one thing you can count on in the car market is change. Automakers are always looking to improve what they make, enticing shoppers to secure financing and buy the latest and greatest features, instead of choosing another brand.

For 2019, five new features in cars will help transform how we use this private mode of transportation.

Smarter Safety

One topic which is always on the forefront of the automotive industry, safety, is an area of considerable developments for 2019 model year cars. Overall, just think of smart features which anticipate your needs and deal with sudden emergencies better than the current crop of driver assistance systems. Also, remember we’re still not quite to the point where cars can drive themselves without human intervention, meaning these technologies require you to be alert and participating.

Ford is pushing a new technology called Evasive Steering Assist, which goes beyond just forward collision warning, something you can get on just about any model today. While cameras watch for any cars ahead that you might be on a collision course with, the system doesn’t just warn you about the danger or hit the brakes automatically. Instead, it helps you as the driver to steer around the danger, giving you a better chance of completely avoiding an accident. This technology debuts in the Lincoln Nautilus and Ford Edge.

Safety is a legitimate concern with cars

Audi almost always puts the newest technologies in the A8 sedan, and it has a new trick for the 2019 model year. A system helps monitor for cross traffic in intersections, like when a person misses a red light and runs into the side of another car. In that kind of situation, the active suspension actually raises the Audi’s ride height by 3.5 inches, preparing for a collision. That means the other car would hit the A8 in the most rigid part of its structure, lowering the risk of serious injury.

Multiple 2019 models now come with rear collision detection and automatic braking. Several years ago, the trend was for forward collision warning systems, which featured flashing lights and sounds to get your attention when on a crash course with another vehicle. Then automatic forward braking tied into those systems, along with cyclist and pedestrian detection systems. Now, all those features which have been used in new vehicles to help avoid collisions when traveling forward are being applied to when you’re reversing out of a parking spot, driveway, or anywhere else. This seems like a natural evolution of the technology and something which is completely necessary.

Forced Induction

While all-motor setups used to dominate the industry, particularly among American-made cars, the trend now is toward more forced induction systems. To clarify, forced induction is when by some means a system in a car forces more air into the combustion chambers than what would normally be sucked in just using a regular air intake.

While superchargers and even nitrous oxide are examples of forced induction, the mode of choice for a growing number of 2019 car models is turbocharging. Ford led the way with the its cleverly-named EcoBoost engines, as did a few other brands with select models, but plenty of 2019 cars are using turbochargers for the first time.

Among the notable examples is the Chevrolet Silverado, which can be had with a 2.7-litre turbocharged four-cylinder engine. It used to be that the very idea of using an engine with a mere four cylinders in a full-sized truck was completely laughable, but thanks to innovations in turbocharger technology and tightening government standards for fuel efficiency as well as emissions, today it’s becoming more common. This setup is good for a peak 310 horsepower and 348 lb.-ft. of torque, which is an impressive level from such a small engine. It helps that the 8-speed automatic transmission keeps the engine operating within a tighter rpm range, maximizing efficiency ad performance as a result. Of course, you can still get a Silverado with a V-6 or V-8 engine, at least for now.

Nissan decided to get rid of the V-6 engine for the all-new 2019 Altima, opting instead for a turbocharged four-cylinder. The automaker took things a step further and used the first variable compression engine in its lineup. As a result, efficiency and performance both rise to higher levels, which is a win-win.

Greater Connectivity

While getting Android Auto and Apple CarPlay in a car has been a huge help for drivers who want to stay in the information loop while traveling, 2019 car models are taking connectivity much further.

New connectivity technologies go beyond connecting with a smartphone.

GM has decided to leverage connectivity to make towing with the 2019 GMC Sierra or 2019 Chevrolet Silverado more manageable. The trucks’ trailering systems actually communicate with an app on the driver’s smartphone, providing helpful maintenance reminders, a pre-departure checklist, one-man light check feature for the trailer, pressure monitoring for the trailer tires, electrical diagnostics, and more.

An increasing number of Canadians are getting smart home devices. These gadgets allow you to remotely control everything from when lights turn on an off, locking or unlocking the exterior doors, changing the thermostat settings, and more.

Automakers are looking to get in on this innovative lifestyle by adding features in 2019 car models that allow you to manage your smart home while on the road. For example, the new Genesis G70, a compact luxury sedan, can connect with Amazon Alexa devices. That means the driver can start warming up the house on the way back from work, turn on the porch light if the sun is setting, or do any number of other tasks.

Your imagination and the growing number of smart home devices open up all kind of possibilities. This kind of new connectivity could help you to better manage a busy lifestyle, especially if you spend plenty of time in your car during the day, making you feel like you’re getting your money’s worth out of the car.

Modern Family

Foreign automakers have often in the past been perplexed by the unique tastes and preferences of car shoppers in North America. Canadian and their neighbors to the south want vehicles which can accommodate large, active families. Long road trips to visit grandma or visit a national park far away almost requires features that people who live in more compact regions, like Japan or Europe, would never use. Fortunately, Subaru seems to have really caught on to this fact, and in a big way with its new three-row SUV, the Ascent.

New for 2019, the Subaru Ascent has been designed for families who are always on the go and like to spend time in nature, just like other models from the brand. It should be no surprise then that the SUV contains 19 cup and bottle holders, spread out in positions where people on all three rows can access them easily.

Having accomodations for everyone in a family car is key.

Some people misread or mishear this and think there are 19 cupholders in the Subaru Ascent, which there are not. Some are designed solely for holding bottles, like those pockets in the doors where even if you could squeeze a cup inside, it would surely spill just as someone slams the door. On long trips, it’s not inconceivable that everyone in the vehicle might have two or three things of liquid, like water bottles as backups and cans or takeout cups of beverages as well. Suddenly, 19 cup and bottle holders doesn’t sound so ridiculous, and it’s surely being noticed by competing automakers.

Modern families need more than just liquid refreshment when spending long stretches in the car. Eight different USB ports are also scattered among the three rows of seats. Each one is powered, so anyone can plug in their smartphone, tablet, or any other mobile devices to replenish the battery. In an age where teens and even younger kids have smartphones, and those are used to keep them entertained and not asking when the family will arrive at a far-away destination, having this many powered USB ports seems necessary. It’s enough that everyone in the Subaru Ascent, including the driver, can have a device plugged in and charging while the SUV is turned on.

Electrification

Perhaps one of the biggest trends for 2019 car models in Canada is the increasing presence of electrification. While many consumers are still skeptical about electric cars and hybrids, the technology has developed quite a bit in the past few years and is making its way into all kinds of cars people will want to buy.

One prime example is the 2019 Ram 1500. Electrification has been almost completely absent in pickup trucks, but the new eTorque mild hybrid system changes that fact. It can be paired up to either the trusty 3.6-litre Pentastar V-6 or the muscular 5.7-litre Hemi V-8. A 48-volt battery pack attached to the electric motor helps with starting the engine seamlessly when it automatically shuts off to avoid idling, thanks to the auto start-stop system. Since pickups are made to work hard, the eTorque system also lives up to its name and can add extra torque to the tune of up to 90 or 130 lb.-ft., depending on which engine you select. This means more towing and hauling capability, plus the promise or improved fuel efficiency.

Jaguar is looking to reshape itself and hopefully carve out a nice spot in the growing all-electric car market with the I-Pace SUV. Some people are automatically comparing this new model to the Tesla Model X simply because they are both all-electric and SUVs, but they’re different in several ways. You can’t get a third row in the I-Pace, but Jaguar says it has made the SUV to excel at overall handling, thanks in part to torque vectoring by braking. It’s fairly quick with a 0-60 time of 4.8 seconds. To help you survive the brutal Canadian winters, a heat pump extracts all the heat it can from the vehicle electronic components, so you don’t reduce driving range just to stay warm.

Of course, there’s plenty of buzz about the new Tesla Model 3. The most affordable car made by the California-based company yet, hundreds of thousands of people put down deposits on the Model 3 when it was announced some time ago. That means Tesla has been busy rolling these smaller sedans off the assembly line and getting them to consumers, but you can still order your very own today. The car features Autopilot, a semi-autonomous drive system, plus a front-facing camera which records drives, and other advanced tech.

Even more electric cars are coming in 2019, like the Volvo XC40 Electric, Mini E, Audi E-Tron Sportback, and Porsche Taycan. That’s not even mentioning the plug-in electric models which are hitting the market, like the Toyota Corolla and new Kia Niro. With the plug-in hybrids, you can drive around town using only the electric motor, but still have the reassurance of an internal combustion engine if you want to go on longer trips where electric vehicle chargers might not be available.

Just like fashion and smartphones, cars go through trends. Some are pushed from within the industry, but often they’re a response to what consumers want at the time. As Canadians use their cars differently and want them to serve new purposes, this private form of transportation will continue to evolve.

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