Sometimes it's the little things that make a big difference in the comfort or utility of a vehicle. Take cupholders. Before their introduction in Chrysler Corp. minivans in the mid-1980s, you'd hold a cup of coffee in your hand or between your legs to prevent spilling. Now millions of variations of that simple convenience appear on vehicles each year. Here are some other practical, yet simple, innovations on today's vehicles.
The Audi Q7 press kit calls this a telescopic separation bar. That's a fancy way of saying you can securely stow luggage or bulky items without them flying all over the cargo area when the SUV comes to a sudden halt.
While cupholders are nice, sometimes they're in an awkward place. Wouldn't it be nice to move it? General Motors has solved that problem in the new GMC Yukon and Chevrolet Tahoe SUVs by designing a cupholder that can be moved around the center console. Or you can remove it entirely.
Sure, you can get a beverage cooler on some premium cars. But the Chrysler group came up with a cheap way of doing the same thing. The Chill Zone on the Dodge Caliber uses cold air from the air conditioning system to keep as many as four 20-oz. bottles or cans chilled.
The armrest lid on the Caliber comes with a flip pocket in the center console for convenient storage of a cell phone or an iPod.
Truck owners looking for a place to store items such as work gloves, hand tools or rope will appreciate the lockable bedside storage compartment in the rear of the Nissan Titan Crew Cab pickup. The compartment is double sealed to keep out water and dust.
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