During the ’80s and the early ’90s, most automakers were trying to make vehicles that were more advanced due to the rise in technology. However, digital gauges on vehicles like the Chevrolet Corvette and Chrysler Lebaron were far too complicated. There was a lot of information on the dashboard drivers just wouldn’t use.
Even though the automakers knew that they continued to use these dashboards. Eventually, the analog dashboard was the norm on most vehicles until the next generation of cars hit.
Nowadays, most of your vehicle’s information is digital, which is a far cry from the lackluster digital dashes of the past. This was just a feature that most drivers never ended up using that was expensive to repair.
Perhaps one of the most useless and sometimes dangerous features on automobiles was automatic lighting. This was something that you can find on cars toward the end of the ’90s and into the new millennium. The problem with automatic lighting was that most drivers would end up not paying attention to their cars.
Many drivers would assume that the headlights were on when they weren’t. This made it dangerous to drive at night and the visibility of the vehicles much lower.
Automated lighting has changed a lot in the past few decades, but it’s still a useless feature. The more that cars are automated, the less attention drivers pay to the road.
During the ’80s when the gas crisis was happening, many automakers including GM decided to start experimenting with cylinder deactivation. This was still a new technology, so most computers were not advanced enough, which caused a lot of frustration. The technology was especially bad for Cadillac because the Fleetwood in the repair shop more than it was on the road. The same thing happened during the 2000s when GM and Chrysler begin to experiment with the technology again. However, the fuel economy was not better. Cylinder cut-off caused was a lot of headaches for those mechanics who were unfamiliar with the technology.
The cylinder deactivation of the past couple of decades was a useless attempt to increase fuel economy. It’s just not something that works on a vehicle that weighs quite a few tons and has a powerful V8 motor.
These are 25 useless car features automakers got away with for decades. If you’ve ever had to deal with any of them, you’re probably glad they are long gone. Some were useful at the time, but became obsolete with emerging technologies, while others were just plain bad from the get-go.