I just got a new car. Well, new to me, but not brand new. It’s equipped with all sorts of cool features that my old car, which my parents bought for me in college, doesn’t have. Cubby holes everywhere. A moonroof. Volume and channel controls on the steering wheel. Although it’s barely been cold enough here in Greenville, South Carolina to use them, my favorite feature is heated seats (with two settings, nonetheless).
Yes, my new car is very well equipped with features that, while certainly not critical to the car’s function, make driving it a nicer, easier experience. There is a new car on the market, however, that puts all of these features to shame — the new Buick Verano has a headrest that is designed to accommodate ponytails!
That’s right — as reported by USA Today, the headrests in the new Buick Verano are designed so that “someone with a ponytail or other big hairdo [won't] feel like their head is being pushed forward.” A marvel of engineering. Yet the design still complies with federal safety standards, which mandate how close a person’s head must be to the headrest.
This new feature made me wonder how many of the features in my car had to be worked around federal safety standards to provide the convenience that they give me. I wonder if they regulate the temperature of my heated seats? A quick search of the Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards didn’t come up with much, but I bet it exists somewhere. After all, if a cup of hot coffee can get a company in hot water, I imagine a set of too-toasted buns could do the same.