If you’re in the market for a new car with all the bells and whistles, think safety first. Advances in technology are making cars safer. The latest, called active safety features, can actually help you avoid getting into an accident. More than 264 million passenger vehicles are traveling on United States roadways these days, and among those, a more recent model with active safety features has a greater chance of saving lives than those without such safety advancements, according to automotive research firm IHS Markit. Also, insurers may offer discounts on your auto policy if your car has some of these features.

Top-Rated Safety Features

Depending on the make and model, active safety features can be standard or offered as an optional technology package. Since auto safety features are constantly evolving, it’s important to stay informed. The National Safety Council offers a frequently updated website with a comprehensive list of safety features. Here are some of the top features available on most new cars, trucks and SUVs:

  • Forward collision warning with automatic emergency braking. Sensors that detect vehicles or objects in front of you. If the system detects a danger, it triggers a visual or audible signal. If you don’t respond quickly, it automatically applies the brakes to avoid or reduce the impact in a crash.
  • Adaptive headlights. These intelligent light systems move side to side with the car’s steering. Sensors detect changing road conditions such as curves and hills, as well as objects on the road, adjusting the headlights to light up your route.
  • Backup camera. A camera that lets you see what’s behind you when the car is in reverse. Thanks to a National Highway Traffic Safety Administration rule, most new passenger vehicles will be required to have rear-view cameras by 2018. These devices prevented about 1 in 6 police-reported backup crashes, according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.
  • Blind spot warning. A camera or radar that alerts you to cars driving in your blind spot. You’ll hear a warning sound and see a flashing icon in your side-view mirror when vehicles are in an adjacent lane.
  • Automatic crash notification. If you’re involved in a crash, this system contacts an emergency operator who can speak to the driver and passengers. The system can provide the vehicle’s location and other information to emergency responders, if necessary.

You found your dream car. Protect it with quality auto insurance. Navy Federal Credit Union has joined forces with GEICO* to offer competitive rates. To get a free quote and inquire about safety feature discounts, go to geico.com/navyfederal or call 1-800-368-2734.

*Navy Federal Credit Union is in no way responsible for the insurance provided through the GEICO special member discount program. Members located in Tennessee, Mississippi and Michigan are not eligible for the discount.