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Here Are Some Crazy Features Missing From Base-Model Cars

If you’re buying a new car today, you probably think all vehicles have at least certain basic features as standard equipment. You’re wrong. In fact, you might be surprised to discover what features many new vehicles are missing in their most basic, entry-level trims — and not just models like cargo vans and work trucks, but regular-old, normal cars that you and I might purchase. So, just which features are most surprisingly missing from base-model vehicles? Here’s the answer.

Chevrolet Spark

Chevrolet Spark: Power Locks

Even though Chevrolet’s subcompact Spark hatchback comes standard with side-curtain airbags, GM’s OnStar system, air conditioning, a Wi-Fi hot spot and even power windows, you won’t get power locks if you buy a base-level car. Instead, you’ll have to tell your friends to hold on while you reach across the passenger seat to unlock the door. Find a Chevrolet Spark for sale

Dodge Journey

Dodge Journey: Floor Mats

Dodge isn’t shy about touting the Journey’s status as America’s cheapest midsize SUV. But it doesn’t earn this title by being generous with features: a base-level Journey AVP comes standard with steel wheels and hubcaps, plastic exterior mirror caps and — perhaps most surprisingly — no floor mats at all. For those, you’ll have to step up to the Journey SE. Find a Dodge Journey for sale

Hyundai Accent

Hyundai Accent: Center-Console Storage Box

The base-level Hyundai Accent is one of the most basic cars on the market. And while it comes standard with a few essentials like air conditioning, keyless entry and a split-folding rear seat, you’ll have to pay more for a center-console storage box — and a front armrest. That’s the mark of a truly cheap car, and indeed, the Accent is truly cheap: Its base price is under $15,000. Find a Hyundai Accent for sale

Jeep Renegade

Jeep Renegade: Air Conditioning

Although virtually every vehicle on today’s market comes standard with air conditioning, the Jeep Renegade is an exception. Likely intending to release base-level Renegade models at a certain price point (the Renegade starts at $17,995 before shipping or around $18,995 including destination), Jeep left air conditioning off the base-level Renegade model, dubbed the Sport. Oddly, it has a decent smattering of other standard equipment, including a dual sunroof, power windows and door locks and remote keyless entry. Find a Jeep Renegade for sale

Toyota Corolla

Toyota Corolla: Transmission

Yes, the Corolla comes standard with a transmission. In fact, the Corolla comes standard with a 6-speed manual transmission, and it offers an optional automatic, just like most compact cars. That’s not the crazy part. The crazy part is the transmission itself: While upper-level Corolla models offer an optional continuously variable automatic, the base-level Corolla L still offers a 4-speed automatic — a transmission most cars retired years, if not decades ago. Interestingly, despite complaints about and (more recently) open mocking of this transmission’s inefficiency and increasing age, Toyota doesn’t seem to want to leave it behind. Find a Toyota Corolla for sale

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Doug Demuro
Doug DeMuro writes articles and makes videos, mainly about cars. Doug was born in Denver, Colorado, and received an economics degree from Emory University in Atlanta. After graduation, Doug spent three years working for Porsche Cars North America. Eventually, he quit his job to become a writer, largely because it meant that he no longer had to wear pants. Doug’s work has been featured in a... Read More about Doug Demuro

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17 COMMENTS

  1. I know this is old but I’mma comment anyways: The Lincoln Aviator didn’t have an overhead console for sunglasses. It was an optional feature even on the “Ultimate” trim level.

  2. My dad bought a Honda Civic DX Value Package in 2008. Black plastic door handles and no power locks, and though it does have a center console storage bin, the bin has no lid.

  3. My MINI, bought certified pre-owned, was a Cooper S model from 2008. It came equipped with bixenons, racing stripes, a limited slip differential, Bluetooth/iPod connector… but no cruise control.

  4. Nissan Juke: Front Armrest.

    Seriously, getting an armrest between the front seats is technically a factory option. It wasn’t available at all for the first couple years of production. This is for a car that starts at $5000 more than the Hyundai Accent you mentioned.

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