Several years ago, I rented a Mustang convertible. It was my first experience with automatic headlights. It was starting the get dark and the headlights and dash lights came on. I assumed (I know…bad word) that the taillights were also on. But while stopped at a stoplight, someone told me that my taillights were not on. REALLY? Recently, I encountered a brand new car (had paper plates) where the headlights were on, but there were no taillights. I felt this was a VERY dangerous situation! The driver pulled in behind me in a turn lane. I got out to warn him. He had NO idea!
I truly believe this is a very good idea with very POOR execution! New car buyers (and renters) are given a false sense of security with these automatic headlights. They have no idea that they won’t have taillights until they actually turn the lights on with the switch.
I believe that if car manufacturers are going to provide this “safety” feature, that they should be turning on ALL lights, not just the headlights and dash lights.