So it is no surprise that the baby boomer generation is keen to hang on to the car keys - and the independence that goes with it - for as long as possible.
A recent story in the Financial Times looked at how major car companies are working on technology to help the ageing baby boomers stay behind the steering wheel as long as possible. Ford has announced its research area is working on a car seat that will have the ability to detect when a driver is having a heart attack while other companies are working on driver technology aids to help monitor intersections and provide early warnings and alerts for drivers.
This is all a demand-driven response to the ageing population and is perhaps preparing us for when a 100-year-old driver will not be considered "abnormal" according to the social researchers.
Car keys are one sign of independence. A self-managed super fund (SMSF) is another.
The SMSF sector already has almost half the $559 billion of assets in pension or drawdown mode and for large part that is working well as people tailor portfolios to provide retirement income streams.
The question that looms large is when would be the appropriate time to hand over the keys - or trading authorities - for the SMSF or even when it is appropriate to wind it up.
What is rewarding and engaging at 65 or 75 might become burdensome at 85. Worse you may not realise your decision-making ability has declined.
This is a challenge unique to the SMSF sector by the very nature of the type of funds.
Stereotypes are open to challenge but where a typical SMSF has two members it is not unusual for one person to be much more engaged/hands-on with the management and investment of the fund.
That is not to ignore or underplay the legal responsibilities on all trustees of the fund but simply to accept practical differences in the levels of involvement and engagement.
The risk factor obviously rises with age where illness or some other life event happens unexpectedly to the active trustee then the management of the fund could be neglected or worse.
For SMSF trustees this is a critical component of the estate planning section of financial planning. But it is more than just having the administrative house in good order.
The flexibility and control that SMSF's have is a big part of their appeal when people set them up. But the sunset stage brings with it a range of personal questions that lead to decisions involving considerable technical complexity.
There is considerable focus within the financial advice industry on how SMSFs are investing their portfolios. But perhaps the greater need for specialist advice will be around the drawdown and then windup phase to ensure handing over the SMSF keys will be as seamless as possible.