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Everything is getting more complicated – and simpler!

There was a time when, taking delivery of a new car, you spent an hour with the car salesperson going through paperwork and five minutes receiving instructions on the car before driving away. Today it takes five minutes to do the paperwork (most of it is online) but you will need a good hour to go through instructions on how to use the car.


The reason it takes an hour to be instructed on the details of the car is because the product has changed so much. No longer is it four wheels and an engine. You have bought a computer that controls four wheels and an engine and my goodness there is so much to learn.


Almost certainly you will have to pair the car's computer with your phone. And then there are the infinite ways in which you can construct the digital display. But we have only just started because you need to learn how to use the drive assist functions.


There will probably be a gizmo that keeps you within the lanes of the road when you are doing more than 30 mph. There will be a capability of controlling the distance from the car ahead that you will need to know about. Take note because this is also operative when you are using cruise control and the car will automatically adjust its speed to whoever is in front of you. You will receive notifications about vehicles at your side by alerts in your wing mirrors.


If you are brave enough to trust the software, you will learn that the car will brake to a standstill without any intervention from yourself as its cameras notice that there are stationary cars ahead. And when the cars before you set off, you won't need to do anything because your car will glide forward on its own.


By now your mind will be spinning and you may not take in everything you are told about the self parking capability of this wonder machine. There will be lots to remember about this because things work slightly different when parallel parking or perpendicular parking.


The navigation system is probably something you think you can master without any further tuition but you will still have to listen carefully when the car salesman launches into how instructions can be given by voice activation.


Depending on whether you have bought an electric vehicle or you are sticking with old-style fuel, there will be a good deal to talk about with regard to charging the batteries or changing gears.


It used to be that the most complicated thing about a new car was finding out how to open the bonnet. Nowadays this is almost irrelevant because you are unlikely to ever look inside it. Thank goodness not everything has become more complicated. At least the survey asking for feedback on the customer experience couldn't be simpler.


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