Driving The Fog Rightly

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It couldn’t have been a worse Thanksgiving morning for more than 100 drivers traveling through Beaumont, Texas, on Interstate 10. A fog rolled in and in just a few short minutes, a nightmarish chain effect of car and truck crashes had vehicles strewn all over the highway.

Earlier this year, the Texas Legislature passed a bill allowing the highway to increase from 65 mph to 75 mph and the traffic was moving briskly when a severe fog rolled in.

Two people died and more than 80 were critically hurt as a result of fast cars, trucks, and vans slamming into each other at top speeds. The two who died were in a Chevrolet Suburban SUV and were crushed by a tractor trailer. A mist of fog was seen as photos and footage of the pile-up made national news.

Fog creates low visibility (iStock)

Fall and spring are both heavy seasons for fog. There are nearly as many types of fog as there are cloud formations. In fact, fog is a sort of ground level cloud. Sometimes fog starts out as a mist, but it can grow into what we commonly call a “pea soup” and that’s when the trouble begins.

So how do we deal with this sudden blindness when it hits? As our friends in Texas now know, you can find yourself in a world of hurt if you don’t slow down, but trucks moving at 75 mph have a much harder time braking with all that tonnage. Since nearly one-third of all fatalities are weather-related, it’s good practice to be reminded of what safety experts say you should and shouldn’t do when you’re left driving in the fog.

Immediately drive slow and steady

Slow down and go only as fast as you can see in front of you. Do not change lanes or pass another vehicle unless absolutely necessary. When you do see a car in front of you, keep a safe distance at all times, giving yourself room to negotiate around it if something were to happen. Generally, keep an eye on your speedometer because people are known to unconsciously increase their speed in fog.

Understand the nature of fog

Fog doesn’t stay the same — sometimes it gets thicker and often, it magically lifts. Fog is made up of condensed water droplets; the result of the air being cooled to a “dewpoint” where it can no longer hold all of the water vapor it contains. Remember that fog also wets the highway, so the chances of slick, oily, non-gripping roads increase as well.

Do use: lights, fog lamps, hazards, defroster, and wipers

The brights are not going to help when driving in fog; they’ll actually hurt. You should turn on regular lights and fog lamps and hazard lights if it’s thick enough. This will warn drivers behind you of your lowered speed. Also, use the windshield wipers and defroster because fog can cause more condensation on your windows and the moisture could make them fog them up as well.

Don’t use: brights or cruise control

No brights — they will actually make a shadow on the fog, creating even less visibility. Also, be sure your cruise control is off, as you may have to brake suddenly, and there’s no telling when, so stay in control of your vehicle in the fog.

See and hear what you can

If the fog hits and you can’t see where to go, use the right edge of the road or roadside reflectors to follow to the next offramp or exit. As for hearing, roll your windows down and listen to road — do you hear a car or truck up ahead? How about a car revving it’s gears up behind you? If so, it may be time to find a pocket on the right and turn on your hazards.

Not on our list is the most obvious tip: If you can, pull over and wait for the fog to lift. Although this isn’t always possible, it is truly the best advice if you want to be truly cautious in a thick fog.

Technology to save the day someday
What we can hope for in the future are cars that detect objects in front of us without us having to actually see them. The National Transportation Safety Board recently put pre-collision alert systems on their Top 10 list for 2013 — to make these types of devices available on all cars at all price points.

The most effective type of Pre-Collision System (PCS) are the small radar detectors that are placed near the front of the car, usually in the grill. These radars are constantly sending out quick bursts of high-frequency radar waves. These waves bounce off the nearest objects and return to the sensor, where a computer unit calculates how long it took for the signal to leave and bounce back.

Some cars take this information and simply give you a warning beep, others can autonomously apply brakes, but the technology does exist and the NTSB believes it can stop 1 out of 5 weather-related accidents from happening.

So now that we’re clear, remember that it’s best to be prepared for one of the worst weather conditions known to drivers. Perhaps in future years, we’ll all look back and laugh about how we used to drive without radar, but for now, use caution, slow down, and make clear-headed decisions when hopelessly stuck in the fog.

The Best Vehicles for Daily and Work Use that You Can Love For A Long Time

A lot of us working folk don’t have the luxury of having a car that we can use for work and another that we can use for daily life. We have to find a car that is good for both. There are a lot of choices out there for high towing capacity and actual comfort for getting to the store or to the movies with the family. But if you’re like me, you don’t like doing all the research yourself and you’d rather just someone tell you what the best option is. Find a trusted source, let them do the research, and go from there. That’s what we’re here for today, to give you a few suggestions of cars that are great for both work and play.

Toyota Tacoma

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The Tacoma comes with the known reliability of the Toyota brand. Find yourself in a 4×4 truck, and you’ve got a great option for both work and play. Plus, the family wil love driving around in a truck. If you get the extended cab, the Tacoma fits a family of 4 or 5 comfortably, and you can bring everything back from the mall or from the grocery store in the bed. You can even get a cap for the back so that you can leave stuff in there. The Tacoma drives more like a sedan, so it will be comfortable to drive and will last a long time, with regular maintenance, due to that Toyota name. It’s a fantastic work and play option.

Nissan Xterra

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We love the Nissan line in general, and the Xterra is a fantastic member of that fleet. Also, it will provide everything you need for both the work side of your life and the play side. It’s got great hauling capacity and luggage space for filling up with the day’s needs, but then you can take out all your gear, and get those seats folded back up, and you have room for the whole family to see the latest movie or go to the water park. It’s also reliable, as all Nissans are. Look for yourself at Fontana Nissan or online at http://www.downtownnissan.com and you can see all the specs and you’ll see it’s a great option for all your life’s needs.

Ford F150

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It may seem a bit boring to recommend a F150, but there’s a reason why, as Ford will remind you over and over again, that it’s the number 1 selling truck for every year since time began, it seems. The more extended cab versions have so much space both inside and out. Inside it feels like a luxury SUV, but on the outside it looks like a zoomed in pic up truck. It rides nice and high so your family will have fun being up in the sky as they zoom across the landscape, and you can roll up to the work site with confidence and all your gear. It’s a great option for road trips as well as daily commutes.

How To Properly Work With Wipers

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It’s right after a major snowstorm, and there’s ice and snow on everyone’s windshield. You’re at the shop waiting for the phone to ring. The phone leaps off the receiver and it’s Captain Chaos; he’s managed to find a second use for his wiper blades. Apparently, Captain Chaos was in too much of a hurry to clean the ice off the wiper blades before turning them on. In his frantic ­attempt to go to work, the wiper blades have become completely useless. He can hear the wiper motor running, but the blades ­refuse to move.

Most likely, it’s the nut on the wiper arm that has worked loose from the wiper shaft. Since most wiper manufacturers have gone to this type of fastener, I haven’t seen as many wiper transmission failures due to snow or ice. But, there’s always our illustrious Captain who will find some way to break things.

The next generation of “frameless” or “aero” wipers are starting to become the norm on late-model vehicles, much to the chagrin of older drivers who only want to pay for $5 ­refills for older-style blades. These blades are designed to work for late-model vehicles and often a driver will notice reduced performance and wind noise if they try to go with a cheaper frame wiper. For older cars, these wipers can be a nice upgrade.

Diagnosing most of the mechanical parts of the wiper system is straightforward. There are exceptions to every rule, so I can’t say that every car will be easy.

Diagnosing the electric or electronic components, however, is ­another issue. We can break the systems down by years, and then determine how to diagnose the problem and make repairs. Prior to 1995, there weren’t too many complicated electrical wiper systems. To go back even farther into auto history, most wiper systems were either vacuum-operated or operated by hand. There are a few exceptions, but most of those are on ­special models.

Although, after 1996 with the ­arrival of OBD II ­systems, a lot of the manufacturers tied their wiper systems into the ALDL connector. You can actually diagnose the wiper system with their scanner. Some even have codes that involve the wiper system, usually through the BCM unit or the CAN system.

I much prefer the newer cars for the diagnostic ­capabilities using the factory scanner to operate the front and rear wiper systems. Not to worry though, you can still diagnose the entire system with the use of an ohm/voltmeter. But, if you ever get a chance to use a factory scanner, you’ll be amazed how much simpler it is to diagnose.

One of the other things that has changed over the years is how they work, where they’ve put all the separate components and the nomenclature that each different manufacturer uses. I pulled the wiring ­diagrams on Nissan Sentra, model years 1985, 1995 and 2005. The 1985 model had a separate intermittent amp control module incorporated into the wiper system. It was mounted under the dash or near the fuse box. Its job was to control the intermittent level for the wipers.

By the time 1995 came around, the intermittent amp control module was now called a time control module. They both did the same job; however, it was now mounted at the base of the steering column.

In 2005, things get even more compact. It’s a variable intermittent wiper control module and it’s part of the wiper switch itself. If the test results tell you to change the wiper switch, you also get lucky with the intermittent unit being changed along with it.

Before tackling any electrical system in any car, make sure you have the latest TSBs, proper wiring ­diagrams and any diagnostic information that you can get your hands on. Most good diagnostic manuals will have the impedance values and the voltage ranges in their test procedures.

Rain-sensing wipers are starting to ­become a popular option and they are even standard on some import vehicles. Some newer models have eliminated the driver-controlled intermittent setting in favor of this option.

The rain sensor projects non-visible infrared light with LEDs onto the windshield. Next to the LEDs are sensor diodes measuring how much ­infrared light is reflected back. If the glass is dry, most of this light is reflected back. If rain or snow is on the glass, the light is reflected in different directions.

Rain sensors often perform double duty as sensors for automatic headlights. If there is a problem with the sensor, chances are it could change how both the lights and wipers work.

The software sets the speed of the wipers based on how fast the moisture builds up between each wipe. But, the newer systems use vehicle speed and information from the CAN Bus for the wipe interval. This stops the wiper from flailing about at stoplights.

The rain sensor and module will also send information to the lighting module that controls the lights to turn them on if the wipers have to run for a predetermined amount of time.

One of the most common problems with these systems is not the sensor, but the windshield itself. When a windshield is replaced, it’s possible for the glass installer to mount the sensor with contaminants or adhesive in front of the sensor. Some systems will detect that the wiping action is not changing how much light is being reflected back and might not allow the driver to select the auto mode. This is where the scan tool comes in handy.

Some replacement windshields may vary enough from the OE coatings, thickness and tints to also cause the sensor to malfunction.

The condition of the wiper blades can also influence how the sensor operates. If the blades streak or leave excess water on the windshield, it will be ­detected by the sensor and the sensor will increase the number of wipes to remove the water. When testing these ­systems, use a spray bottle that leaves droplets on the windshield. Do not use a hose, as the sensor is ­designed to detect droplets, not a stream of water.

Most late-model imports use vehicle speed to ­determine the wiper interval. At lower speeds, the vehicle will increase the interval or speed. When the vehicle is put into park, the wipers may or may not enter into a hold mode.

Newer Lexus, Acura and Nissan models have controls to adjust the sensitivity of the sensor to the customer’s liking.

The adjustment method can typically be found in the owner’s manual and involves navigating through the information display. This adjustment may help some customers deal with their control issues. You can also recommend new wiper blades to improve the system’s effectiveness.

Remind your customers, especially those in the northern part of the country, to make sure they turn off their wipers before parking the car for the night, and that they clean the snow and ice off the wiper arms and blades before trying them the next morning. A ­little advice can go a long way, and, hopefully, keep Captain Chaos on the road, and out of the shop.

Why Automotive Chemicals Are Important For Car’s Maintenance

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In the modern era of reduced vehicle maintenance requirements, it’s very easy to develop a complacent attitude toward selling automotive chemicals. But, in our current market, automotive chemicals have become far more than just “snake oil” or “mechanic in a can” products. To the contrary — many are essential tools for keeping a modern vehicle in top-notch operating condition.

To help you capitalize on the modern automotive chemicals market, I’ll break the most popular chemicals down into basic categories of lubricant, solvent, stop-leak, maintenance, and shop chemicals. While we’ll discover that there are some overlapping definitions among these categories, they will help us understand how most popular automotive chemicals are used in modern, day-to-day vehicle maintenance. But before using any automotive chemical, understand its intended use and related precautions by reading its label and enclosed literature.

Lubricant Chemicals

If your shop performs a large volume of undercar repairs, you’re definitely going to use a number of automotive chemical lubricants. A typical wheel alignment service, for example, requires a large application of penetrating oil on the tie rod adjustment sleeves, adjustment cams and suspension attaching bolts. Not only does penetrating oil expedite the removal of rusty bolts, it also allows rusted threaded fasteners to be torqued to specification. Far from being an expense, a regular-sized aerosol can of penetrating oil becomes a profit generator by saving minutes on each job and occasionally adding hours to each day’s productivity numbers.

Many manufacturers sell penetrating oil in money-saving gallon-sized containers. The penetrant can then be applied with a common squirt oil can or plastic spray bottle. But, if your shop prefers aerosol cans, it’s less labor-intensive and less expensive to buy a case as opposed to a single can.

When buying lubricant chemicals, it’s important to know which type to use for specific applications. For example, some chemical manufacturers supply “dry” lubricants that resist attracting dust. These dry lubricants work well for door locks and other body and interior mechanisms requiring a greaseless lubricant that won’t stain clothing or upholstery.

Weather-resistant aerosol lubricants are required for applications like shift linkages, vehicle hood latches and truck tailgate latches that are exposed to outside weather. These are generally non-drying lubricants that resist water, snow and extreme temperatures. Aerosol silicone and synthetic-based lubricants are generally used on rubber door moldings, moving plastic parts and other non-metallic parts that require dry, non-petroleum-based lubrication.

In contrast, silicone greases are generally synthetic-based, non-hardening lubricants that resist water and extreme temperature changes. Silicone greases are most useful for lubricating small, light-duty moving parts like shift linkages, window register mechanisms, door latches and small gear box assemblies like those found on windshield wiper motors. None of these light-duty greases should, however, be substituted for heavy-duty chassis or wheel bearing greases.

Solvent Chemicals

Before using a solvent/cleaner, it’s very important to understand that chemicals like aerosol carburetor, throttle body, mass air flow (MAF), brake/parts and electrical contact cleaner all have very specific formulations and they are not, in most cases, interchangeable. Aerosol carburetor cleaners are very harsh solvents intended to dissolve the hardened carbon and gum deposits collecting on carburetor choke plates and linkage mechanisms.

Throttle body cleaners, on the other hand, are less harsh and are intended to remove the softer deposits forming around throttle plates and idle air control valves without damaging the throttle shaft seals, throttle bore coatings, idle air control valves and throttle position sensors. Hardened throttle body deposits also can be cleaned by using penetrating oils recommended for this task. Cleaning these deposits with penetrating oil might require soaking and brushing the deposits with an old toothbrush, but they can remove hardened deposits without damaging delicate throttle body coatings or shaft seals.

Brake part and electrical part cleaners have similarly different applications. Some brake part or brake-electrical cleaners tend to be very harsh and will damage plastic electrical parts and painted surfaces. If in doubt about the properties of a specific brake/electrical cleaner, it’s always best to suggest an electrical part cleaner for cleaning plastic electronic connections and other insulating parts. Here again, reading the manufacturer’s label before selling to the customer is a good way of avoiding incorrect and potentially damaging recommendations.

Stop-Leak Chemicals

Stop-leak chemicals are generally designed to reduce minor fluid leaks on older vehicles. Because a large volume of stop-leak products are sold to an amateur market, it’s important for you to read the labels on these chemicals before using any product for a specific use.

When used as instructed, cylinder head gasket stop-leaks can often prolong the service life of a leaking cylinder head gasket and occasionally provide permanent repair if the leak is caught in time. In contrast, cooling system stop-leaks are designed to seal small seeps and pin-hole leaks that develop in radiators and around the external edges of cylinder head gaskets.

Because heat tends to harden neoprene oil seals, gaskets and hoses, many stop-leak manufacturers design chemicals to soften and slightly expand these materials to their original dimensions. Applications include power steering, automatic transmission and engine oil stop leaks. Because these additives often include oil supplements designed to blend with power steering, automatic transmission and engine lubrication oils, they are not interchangeable. In any case, using a stop-leak can reduce fluid leaks to manageable levels and reduce the potential for immediate and expensive repairs.

Maintenance Chemicals

To simplify, I’m including engine and powertrain oil additives under the category of automotive maintenance chemicals. At the outset, it’s important to understand that many modern engine and powertrain oils are becoming application-specific, which means the oil used in these vehicles must contain an oil base and additive package that will extend oil service life to 10,000 or more miles. Due to warranty considerations, some auto manufacturers might not recommend the use of engine oil additives in an engine that requires application-specific engine oils or that utilizes extended oil change intervals.

With that said, many neglected engines might require a solvent oil additive or other lubricating additive to either clean or provide additional lubrication to the engine’s internal parts. Most oil additives will fall into this category and most, when used under these circumstances, will provide a benefit.

Other oil additives might claim to extend engine life or improve the lubricating qualities of engine oil. Obviously, I can’t make a general comment that will apply to all engine or powertrain oils and oil additives. But I will say that choosing such an additive is largely up to the consumer. In some cases, an additive might provide a benefit, in other cases, it might not. In any case, be aware that using unauthorized oil additives might void some auto manufacturers’ powertrain warranties.

Other maintenance chemicals could include fuel additives intended to clean fuel injectors and reduce carbon formation on intake valves and combustion chambers. In most cases, installing a fuel system detergent during each oil change can maintain the performance of the fuel injectors. In contrast, alcohol-based fuel additive chemicals are designed to prevent wintertime fuel line freeze-ups. Isopropyl alcohols tend to be the most effective “de-icers” because isopropyl transports the water out of the fuel tank into the engine’s combustion chambers.

Shop Chemicals

The solvents, lubricants, sealants, adhesives and other compounds used in the day-to-day business of repairing modern automotive vehicles can be classified as “shop” chemicals. Solvent chemicals like aerosol carburetor, throttle body, MAF, brake/electrical and electrical contact cleaners are used each day to clean automotive parts. Lubricants might include chemicals like penetrating oil, “dry” lubricants, light greases and synthetic lubricating products.

Sealants might include weather strip adhesives, the various silicone gasket sealing and gasket-making compounds, and thread locking compounds. Other chemicals commonly used in shops might include aerosol gasket-removing chemicals used for removing hardened gaskets from metal parts and anti-seize compounds used for installing exhaust systems, oxygen sensors and corrosion-sensitive parts. For maximum productivity, every shop should have at least a small working inventory of these diverse kinds of automotive chemicals.

Ford’s the Word

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Sometimes it’s just time to get back to basics. Whether you’ve been driving Fords for as long as you can remember or had defected to a foreign auto maker but are back in the market for an American made vehicle, there’s something about a Ford that screams classic. You know you just can’t go wrong when you’re driving the same make of truck that your grandfather did.

When you buy a Ford, you know that you’re getting a quality vehicle and the salespeople at affiliated dealerships are there to help you find one that fits all of your new car needs. Whether you’re doing an internet search for Ford Riverside and or visit the Fairview Ford website at http://fairviewford.com, you can look to see what different dealerships have available on their lots. In a world of ever changing taste, Ford is one thing that has really been able to stand the test of time.

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So, if you think that it might be time to return to a classic, take a look at some dealership websites so that you can see everything Ford is currently making. From sedans and SUVs to work vans, their vehicles run the gamut and almost anyone can find something that is likely to work for them. When you’re ready to take one for a test spin, visit one of your local car lots with an idea of what you’re looking for in mind and rest assured that you’re going to be driving a safe, high quality, top of the line vehicle. And when you decide to take the plunge and buy a new Ford, you’ll know that you’re getting a vehicle that isn’t just going to work in the short term but could potentially last you for decades, with the right kind of care.

The Citroen’s New SUV Concept Is The Bomb

A few months ago, the DongFeng Motor Group in China invested many, many millions of euros into Peugeot-Citroen (PSA). Now, at the Beijing Motor Show, we can see the first fruit of this new money in this C-XR SUV concept.

It’s the first SUV jointly developed by Citroen and DongFeng, set to enter one of the automotive world’s last growth sectors and previewing a future jointly produced model.

Proportionally, it’s around the same size as the DS4, though of course gets extra ground clearance and 17in alloys. There’s additional body cladding around the front and rear of the car – and the wheel arches – while we’re promised the suspension can ‘effortlessly absorb road imperfections’ for a more refined ride.

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It’s a two-wheel-drive effort – ‘Grip Control’ tech and all-season tyres eliminating the need for 4WD, we’re told – along with PSA’s 160bhp 1.6-litre petrol engine up front. 4WD would increase emissions and reduce efficiency, and who actually uses an off-roader for going, well, off-road anymore?

The C-XR also features a chrome finished grille, LED daytime running headlights, a ‘C’ shaped signature that runs from the roof bars to the waist, and 3D effect rear lights.

Inside, Citroen tells us there’s a ‘saloon-style’ (the car, not the bar, we assume) driving position and a panoramic glass sunroof to help cook your scalp. Expect the production version C-XR to arrive on an eastern shore at some point in the near future.

“MINI John Cooper Has Done It World Premiere at the North American International Auto Show 2014 “

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Munich – Characteristic Smaller technology and style elevated from the competition keep track of come together to form the inimitable figure of the John Cooper Works model, rendering the Smaller sub-brand name a byword for amazing go-kart sensing and authentic each day functionality.

And from now on a brand new contender for pole placement has surfaced to take this profitable strategy to the next stage and convey the commitment of maximum traveling exciting to the modest car portion. The Little John Cooper Performs Principle offers a appearance ahead of time to another age group in the top level sports activities product.

The investigation car will be introduced the very first time in the North American Global Vehicle Show (NAIAS) 2014 and flies the flag for progressive sportiness soon enough-honoured John Cooper Performs type, with capabilities which includes distinctive system paintwork in Vibrant Roadways Greyish, common Little reddish coloring decorations, tailor-made sleek functions and 18-“” John Cooper Works gentle-alloy tires in the freshly developed design.

The thrillingly sporty driving a car practical experience aboard a John Cooper Functions version is the effect of a comprehensive idea designed on the back of the brand’s many years of engine sport activity expertise.

The precise interplay of the extremely-higher-efficiency chassis and powertrain modern technology with all the car’s aerodynamically optimized external functions helps to ensure that the nimble and surefooted handling we now have go to termed as the Smaller go-kart sensation shines brilliantly in very athletic driving a car circumstances at the same time. The outcome is serious traveling entertaining, used in to a new sizing from the Small John Cooper Performs Idea.

Best foundation and substantial auto racing knowledge produce a new measurement in excessive driving entertaining.

The John Cooper Performs Concept will depend on the most up-to-date-generation Smaller. Its origins are plainly recognisable within the for a longer time wheelbase and bigger keep track of within the extroverted model, with a immediate result on the car’s traveling characteristics. The product variants of your new Small provided by release have shown them selves to get more powerful, agile and punchy than their forerunners. Weight price savings and enhanced aerodynamic qualities also have added significantly on the new car’s traveling abilities – and those developments furthermore have got a good influence on the Smaller John Cooper Functions Idea.

Large air intakes – filling up the area reserved for fog lighting fixtures from the series-produced MINI versions – and exactly created oxygen-channelling factors symbol out of the entrance apron of your Little John Cooper Functions Principle, that capabilities Brought front lights plus a dark surrounds to the front side grille. The version-certain John Cooper Works sleek system also comprises specially contoured area dresses as well as a back end apron with flaps plus a diffuser aspect. The research automobile additional features a roof spoiler and other entire body elements built to route oxygen efficiently round the C-pillars for optimized aerodynamic stability at great rates of speed.

Exclusive entire body paintwork, common compare shade

The Bright Highways Greyish external painting hue owes its expressive character to a specific developing process. The hand-refined surface area covering is finished by using a crystal clear cover along with the finished lustrous sheen from the paintwork additional accentuates the eye-capturing constructions of the pigment layer. Exuding solidity and purity, this fresh paint accomplish is accompanied by John Cooper Performs hallmarks for example contrasting reddish colored for your roofing, roof structure spoiler and external vanity mirror hats. Also included are Sport Stripes – in Chili Reddish to the boot and bonnet lid, and in white for the roof top. Additional reddish colored highlights decorate the rim wells from the John Cooper Works light-alloy tires, the callipers of your sporting activities braking system, the side indication surrounds as well as the curve collections in the front and back apron. A red-colored accent range also gives particular focus on the John Cooper Operates logo around the radiator grille.

A further nod for the strategy car’s impressive wearing focus may be found in the centre of your rear apron. The Small John Cooper Operates Concept is fitted using a athletics exhaust process including John Cooper Functions silencer system, as well as the striking dual tailpipes with chrome finish off also hold the John Cooper Performs emblem. With all the new elite sports activities design going to benefit from more development, these traits suggest its enticingly athletic aura is definitely not tied to visual characteristics: an unique generator soundtrack promises to reveal heart phase.

Photograph: Smaller

(17.12.2013)

How to Make Your Vehicle Last Longer

It can take a big chunk out of your monthly money just getting from point A to point B – yep, motoring costs in the US are escalating. There are some things you can’t do anything about – the price of fuel just keeps on rising, you’ve got to have adequate insurance and repairs are always going to be necessary when you can least afford them. There are a few things you can do however – things which can actually make your car last that little bit longer.

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Okay, down at Nissan Riverside they’ve got some great motors which you’d love to take on a test drive but the following tips can help with both scenarios:

A – you simply can’t afford to replace your car right now so you’ve got to make it last as long as possible or
B – you’ve found your perfect match on http://metronissanredlands.com, you’ve done the deal and now you want to make sure that your car lasts for as long as possible.

Here’s how to do it:

• Regular filter changes – these help your car to breathe more easily. Changing the oil and oil filter is not rocket science and can make a big difference to the longevity (and incidentally fuel consumption) of your car. A new air filter can help the engine to keep going for longer and also help with fuel economy.
• Keeping cool – it’s important to check the coolant level every once in a while, this simple thing can potentially save hundreds of dollars in repair bills. If your cooling system isn’t functioning correctly your whole engine can over-heat and go into melt down.

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• Checking the pressure – tire pressures that is. This is an easy and important but often neglected part of routine car maintenance. Your tires are the only thing between you and the road so make sure that they are inflated to the correct pressure. This helps with safety, fuel economy and helps your tires to live longer. Money savers all round.
• Take a closer look – this is a very easy thing which everybody can do, even those with the minimum amount of motoring knowledge. Spend five minutes to walk around the car and really take a look at it. Check the tire wear, pop the hood and check that the hoses are in good condition, check that the lights are all working as they should – just five minutes every week or two can be a real help.
• Be a smarter driver – the way that your car is driven has a massive impact on how long it will last and the type of condition it will be in. You can save lots of wear and tear on your vehicle by careful driving, as well as helping with fuel economy. If you set off like a race car and slam your brakes on at the last minute each time you pull up it will have an effect on your brakes, engine and the rest of your car. There really is no need to put your vehicle parts under such added pressure.
• Keep your car clean and covered up – Regularly washing and waxing your car can help the body work to stay in good condition and regularly cleaning the interior of your car will help to keep it stain free and fresh smelling. It’s also a good idea to park your car in the shade and away from the sun although avoid areas where it is likely to be covered in tree sap and bird droppings.

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And that really is all there is to it.

2015 Lexus NX 200t and NX 300h Get New Features

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Lexus just unveiled its new compact crossover, the 2015 Lexus NX, at the Beijing auto show, and now the company has released more details about the turbocharged NX 200t and hybrid NX 300h models that will be coming to the U.S. this fall.

Both the Lexus NX 200t and NX 300h will be offered with either front- or all-wheel drive. The NX 200t’s new turbocharged, 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine, which mates with a standard six-speed automatic, will make 235 hp and 258 lb-ft of torque. Those numbers are competitive with other compact luxury crossovers like the BMW X1 and Audi Q5, which also use 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinders.

The hybrid model will use the same 2.5-liter, Atkinson-cycle four-cylinder engine and electric motor combination that’s found in other Lexus and Toyota models like the Lexus ES 300h and Toyota Camry Hybrid. Its 194-hp total system power output and standard continuously variable transmission won’t make for quick acceleration, but we would expect fuel economy in the mid-30s for this model.

With an overall length of 182.3 inches and a wheelbase of 104.7 in, the 2015 Lexus NX is about six inches shorter than the Lexus RX crossover and has a two inch shorter wheelbase. This makes the NX slightly larger than the BMW X1 and Mercedes-Benz GLK, but slightly smaller than the Audi Q5 and Acura RDX.

There will be a sport-oriented F Sport model of the 2015 Lexus NX 200t with a special mesh grille design, different wheels, black exterior accents, paddle shifters, and sport seats. In the Russian and Chinese markets, Lexus will also offer a naturally aspirated version of this crossover called the Lexus NX 200.

Stay tuned for more information including pricing and fuel economy as we get closer to the 2015 Lexus NX’s U.S. launch later this year.

Hennessey Will Come Anew

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Texas-based tuner Hennessey Functionality is renowned for its crazy, higher-horse power masterpieces that acquire already fast generation cars much like the SRT Viper and then make them even quicker. The company’s newest design, the HPE550, is dependant on the 2015 Cadillac Escalade deluxe SUV and it is thought to target other higher-functionality deluxe Sports utility vehicles just like the Mercedes-Benz GL63 AMG and also the Collection Rover Sport activity Supercharged.

To produce the HPE550, Hennessey usually takes the Cadillac Escalade’s standard straight-injections, 6.2-liter V-8 bolts and engine on a supercharger and intercooler which make for 6 psi of improve. There is additionally a new generator control computer to handle the added power, which totals 557 hp and 542 lb-feet of torque-that is 137 hewlett packard and 82 lb-ft greater than inventory. All of this extra grunt will cost a whopping $15,950, including installation, although it does come with a 3-year/36,000-mile warranty.

All HPE550 models acquire specific Hennessey badging, stitched floormats, as well as a serial-amount oral plaque about the dashboard and the engine. Hennessey is also giving other upgrades for your 2015 Cadillac Escalade to go along with the supercharger system, like some forged monoblock 20-“” rims to have an additional $6950.

In case the Cadillac Escalade is too elegant to your choices, Hennessey may also offer the HPE550 update for just about any other GM vehicles and Sports utility vehicles loaded with similar 6.2-liter V-8 motor, such as the GMC Yukon and Yukon XL, the Chevrolet Silverado, as well as the GMC Sierra.