– By Victoria Nelson –
How was your summer holiday? Did you #holidayhere bouncing from border to border to avoid 14 days in quarantine?
If you spent anytime cruising on the open road in a car purchased in 2020, you probably enjoyed the pleasure of Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC). And, if like me, your partner forgets that you normally drive by yourself at other times during the year, using ACC would have made the trip a lot less irritable.
Available on any five star ANCAP fleet vehicle or novated lease, ACC (aka Radar, Autonomous, Smart, Active Cruise Control) allows you to maintain a constant distance between you and the vehicle in front. I use it around town at any speed in my novated lease but it’s more effective on freeways when travelling at speed when you’re not braking regularly.
How can it save a marriage? Well, have you ever noticed your partner in the passenger seat applying their imaginary brake pedal? This is the polite signal that you’re too close to the car in front. If you’ve been together for more than 10 years, your partner probably isn’t worried about being polite anymore. They’ll be telling you with comments like, “How nice, they must be Scottish based on the sticker on the back of that Q8 you’re about to send to the panel beaters.”
So while I do value constructive feedback, especially during the Christmas break which is a time for reflection and renewal, getting advice from my partner on how to improve my driving during our seven hour trip to Byron isn’t the ideal way to start a holiday. This year, ACC saved me!
Once we hit the Harbour Bridge I flicked on ACC, cruised through the Lane Cove Tunnel, along the M2, dove deep into the North Connex for an journey underground so long I almost lost my tan, before bursting out into the sunlight on the M1 without one application of the brake pedal on the passenger’s side.
And this holiday road trip bliss lasted all the way to Byron. Neither of us could complain from the passenger’s seat since the car was in charge. The ACC was only turned off for a pitstop. And nothing breaks the tension of a road tip like a service station bathroom. Everything in the world seems better after that experience.
It’s not just the marriage saving benefits that I enjoy. You do feel more relaxed after a long trip when using adaptive cruise control and lane keeping assistance. The scenery becomes more enjoyable because you can take a glance without fear of an accidental swerve or a sudden stop. Of course at FAN we endorse safe driving with both hand at 10 and 2, but if you can relax just a little bit it takes longer to get fatigued which is a good thing.
WA went into lockdown during the first week in February, and Victoria had another outbreak so don’t expect to be flying anywhere on your next holiday. Think about upgrading your novated lease or family car (used cars values have risen faster than Sydney property prices) with one that has all the latest safety features including the marriage saver – ACC.