This Year's Best Automobile Features

February 07, 2012 | Pursuits

1. Backup Collision Intervention (BCI): The family-friendly Infiniti JX crossover’s first priority is safety. The new BCI system not only sounds an alert but can actually engage the brakes if the car is about to back into something. Ross Berman, Berman Infiniti of Chicago, 640 N. Lasalle St., 312-476-8000

2. Audi Connect: Audi’s multi-media interface brings the Internet to the car’s navigation screen, providing access to weather, travel information and even local gas prices. Plus, it can create a wi-fi hotspot so passengers can be online--perfect for business trips. Tony Kouretas, Athans Motors, 9040 N. Waukegan Rd., Morton Grove, 847-967-8700

3. Carbon MonoCell: For ultimate power, it’s necessary for sports cars to be very lightweight. The new McLaren MP4-12C replaces the normal, all-aluminum structure at the core of the car with the Carbon MonoCell. Carbon fibre was originally used in the aerospace industry and the 12C is the first car in its class to use it for the chassis. Cassie Carver, Lake Forest Sportscars, Ltd., 990 North Shore Dr., Lake Bluff, 847-295-6560

4. MyFord Touch: Available in almost all of Ford’s models, MyFord Touch is the result of a collaboration with Microsoft and integrates phone, navigation, entertainment (i.e. audio) and climate into one easy-to-use dashboard screen (some models even have steering wheel controls). And with updates to the system in 2013 models, it will only get better. Paul Brian, host of DriveChicago on WLS 890 AM Radio, 312-591-8900

5. Keyless Entry: The new 2012 Range Rover Evoque has the ability to ‘recognize’ its key, no matter how far it is buried in your purse or pocket. Simply touching the hand unlocks the car, and touching the ignition starts it; best of all, never forget to lock up again: walking away with the car key locks the doors. Joe Cotteleer, Land Rover Lake Bluff, 375 Skokie Valley Hwy., Lake Bluff, 847-604-8100; knauzlandrover.com

PHOTOGRAPH BY DAN CHMIELINSKI

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