Do you remember Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs from college? It’s that pyramid of things that humans need, physiologically or psychologically, to survive. Sure, Maslow himself never imagined the hierarchy, instead preferring to see all needs as, well, needed, but we can spin the idea into something useful to us: Jalopnik’s Hierarchy of Car-Buying Needs.
See, when you buy a car, there are some basic necessities. Tires, wheels, seats, windows. You can also strive for a huge engine, twin turbos, or massive aero, but you’re less likely to find them, and you’ll probably compromise those niceties first. Today, the question is this: What defines the base level of your own personal automotive hierarchy? What features will you never forego in a new car purchase?
For me, it’s a bit early to start thinking about future vehicle purchases. I just bought one, I’m probably not going to need another any time soon. But I do know, next time I purchase a car, there’s something I’ll never give up: A complete steering wheel.
I know — all the cool OEMs are getting on the yoke train now. It’s the hot new thing in automotive interior design, removing bits and pieces of your perfectly functional steering wheel just to be cool and different. I’ll never understand the desire to take something so simple, so perfected over the years, and cut away at it just to — oh god, this is what my parents sounded like when I wanted to buy ripped jeans from Hot Topic as a teen. But I stand by it: Wheel good, yoke bad.
That’s my must-have feature for a new car: A normal, round steering wheel. What’s yours? Tell us in the comments below, and we’ll collect the top answers tomorrow afternoon.