the past couple of years, cars got a lot smarter. They now connect to the
Internet to do things like ping your phone when they need oil or you leave the
doors unlocked. They can help make your teens better drivers, by nagging and
tracking what they’re up to when you aren’t in the car.
your old clunker doesn’t do any of that? Don’t beat yourself up. You couldn’t
have predicted all this was going to happen when you bought it a few years ago.
But you can get it up to speed.
The Automatic is a dongle you plug into the OBD-II port of your car. (Most cars made
since 1996 have one.) It then connects your car’s computer brain to your
phone via a free iPhone or Android app.
that’s done, it will track your gas consumption, coach your teen on how to
improve her driving (by turning the teaching process into a game), call your
nearest and dearest if you crash the car, and help you find your car if can’t
remember where you parked. It even has a team of emergency responders at the
ready if you crash.