ಸೋಮವಾರ, ನವೆಂಬರ್ 29, 2010

Recall Alert for 2010-2011 Jaguar XJ

Jaguar XJ

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Jaguar would be recalling 6,475 2010-11 XJ sedans due to the potentially defective windshield wipers.

The windshield wipers were not properly installed or synchronized in these affected vehicles. In few vehicles, the wipers would lose synchronization and eventually clash against each other, resulting in one or more wipers detaching from the vehicle.

Jaguar would begin notifying the owners by Dec. 13. Dealers will inspect the vehicle and repair the securing nut to correct the torque specification if necessary.

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Land Rover Defender 90 Yachting Edition

land rover defender 90 yachting edition

The Land Rover Defender 90 Yachting edition created by Brabus affiliate Startech cruised its way to the Essen Motor Show floors. The Defender 90 Yachting Edition was finished with a bright white color with 16-inch alloys wrapped around in wider tires measuring 267/75 R16. Complementing the 4x4's looks are new running boards with integrated entrance lights that are activated via the keyless fob or by opening one of the doors, an SVX grille and body-colored headlight covers.

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ಶುಕ್ರವಾರ, ನವೆಂಬರ್ 26, 2010

How To Move Your Garmin Favorites

Garmin GPSs store your favorites in a file called Current.gpx, in the folder X:\GPX\.

So say you got a new GPS, and want to copy over your collection of favorite locations.

Connect your old GPS via USB to your computer. It should show up as a new drive.

Copy the file Current.gpx to your computer, and rename it to somenthing else, e.g. TEMP.gpx.

Then plug in your new Garmin, and copy the TEMP.gpx file to the \GPX\ folder.

Restart the Garmin. It should merge your favorites into its Current.gpx file.

GM Ad: "We All Fall Down"

This is a touching ad, no doubt about it.

However, GM isn't an individual. It is a huge company with hundreds of executives at the top, steering the boat.

GM isn't a boxer that took a hard punch by a powerful opponent.

GM whittled itself down, year after year, making bad decision after bad decision. And GM didn't entirely pick itself up... it required a major reorganization, financial destruction, and outside management.

That is the key thing. GM must remember, as an organization, how they went from largest automaker in the world to bankrupt. They need to have the "lessons learned" burned into the very DNA of their leadership culture.

I'm glad GM is back on track, for numerous reasons. A failure of GM would have been catastrophic not just to the domestic auto industry, but to the entire economy.

They had better stay on top of the game now, because I don't think the American public will have the will to save them again.

ಗುರುವಾರ, ನವೆಂಬರ್ 25, 2010

Aston Martin's New Vantage GT4 Racer

Aston Martin GT4 Racer

It's only been a year since Aston Martin launched its Vantage GT4 racing car, but the British maker has already prepared an updated model for the 2011 season. The revised Vantage GT4 is said to be inspired from the firm's V12 Vantage road car, giving it enhanced aerodynamics and increased downforce, while it also features a number of other improvements.

For information about auto shipping, visit car shipping.

How to transport the car in a best way

When you decided to transport the car, you should transport it safely without any damage. If you decided to travel to a nearby place, its of no issue, you can do it by yourself, but when it is long distance, you should prefer a car shipping company for transportation of the car. Just imagine, do you like to see your car get tucked in some other vehicle and moving. It has the chance of getting damage and some mode and some means of transportation is essential when you transport the car. In that aspect, you should see the safety and security of the car.

As said above, auto shipping companies provide you this service in a best and affordable way. When you decided to hire them, you should know all the pros and the cons of the auto transportation of them. For that, you need to enquire about them in the market and should consult with the friends and elders who would have already used this service. Dedicated car movers directory in the internet enhances you to find the best vehicle transport company. Experience is what you should expect form them because the experienced car shipping companies know how to handle the tough situation in a best way.

You may have a doubt, how I know that the company I choose is the best one and also the reputed one. Business bureau is there and you can find the complaint and reviews of the auto transport companies you selected and also go through MCSA safety and fitness electric records of them. Select a company that will deliver the car before you arrive and enquire whether the auto shipping company you selected is registered with USDOT and if they have registered, check whether DOT and MC number is given to them. generally all the auto shipping companies ship your vehicle using the trailers and select a company that have more number of trailers so that your transportation do not get disturbed frequently.

There are two methods of transportation and each mode is convenient and it depends upon the users who select it. Enclosed and open methods are those two types and as the name indicate, in the enclosed method; your car is transported safely in an enclosed vehicle and also your car gets protection from various elements like wind, dust and other natural calamities. Some cars need maximum protection and in that aspect, you can prefer for enclosed mode of transportation. If you plan for budget transportation, then open car shipping is best because it is nearly 50% cheaper than the enclosed one, but your car is transported in an open vehicle with more than one car is transported in a time.

Once you get an estimate, ask them about the payment methods and the acceptance. Get everything in return format and never agree with any verbal promises. Make your car transportation simple and easy by selecting the best car shipping company.

For information about auto shipping or car shipping quote, visit aaat.com.

Most luxurious cars

Here is the list of the world’s most luxurious cars of all time:
Aston Martin Vanquish: The Aston Martin Vanquish car was designed by Ian Callum and manufactured by Aston Martin.

Aston Martin Vanquish

Rolls-Royce Phantom Drophead Coupé: The Rolls-Royce Phantom Drophead Coupé is a British handmade convertible manufactured by Rolls-Royce.

Maybach 62: The Maybach 62 is the first automobile model of the Maybach brand.

Porsche Carrera GT: Porsche has always been a heart-stealer and it’s worth for its price.

Lamborghini Murcielago: The Lamborghini Murciélago is a two-door, two-seat sports car produced by Lamborghini.

Mercedes SLR Mc Laren:The Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren is an Anglo-German car developed by Mercedes-Benz and McLaren

Koenigsegg CCX: Koenigsegg CCX is a mid-engined car produced by the Swedish car manufacturer Koenigsegg.

Pagani Zonda C12 F: The Pagani Zonda is a mid engined sports car which debuted in 1999.

Ferrari Enzo: Ferrari has been the craze among car lovers and the Formula 1 champion Michael Schumacher has added more craze to it.

Bugatti Veyron: Bugatti Veyron is the most luxurious car and it’s a mid-engined car designed by Volkswagen Group and produced by Bugatti.

Audi to launch plug-in hybrid in 2014

Audi Etron Concept

By the year 2020, Audi would be the leading premium seller of electric vehicles. In addition to launching a number of hybrid vehicles including the A8 and Q5, Audi plans to debut a plug-in hybrid in 2014.

Michael Dick, Audi's board member for technology says that he wants to see the automaker's internal combustion engines improve efficiency by 30 percent, with 5 percent of the brand's lineup to be purely electric.

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ಬುಧವಾರ, ನವೆಂಬರ್ 24, 2010

Bentley GT Speed Elegance Edition

Bentley Continental GT Speed

Anderson Germany has presented a new tuning take on the Bentley Continental GT Speed. Called the Elegance Edition, the package enhances the British grand tourer with number of performance and styling goodies.

The Continental GT Speed leaves Bentley's factory in Crewe with a 610HP W12. Thanks to a series of modifications including software optimization, a new air filter and a sport exhaust system with additional Rennkats, output is lifted to 695-horsepower. A remote-controlled valve adjusting the exhaust that allows the driver to choose from three different noise levels is also part of the package.

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2012 Mazda5 Minivan available from $19,990

2012 mazda5 minivan

The Japanese auto maker has released the pricing details of its new minivan, the 2012 Mazda5 minivan after it's launch at the Los Angeles Auto Show. This redesigned Mazda5 will go on sale at dealers across the U.S. in January 2011 with a starting manufacturer's suggested retail price (MSRP) of $19,990, including destination and delivery.

For information about auto shipping, visit car shipping.

ಮಂಗಳವಾರ, ನವೆಂಬರ್ 23, 2010

GM Logo Flip-Flop

For a while, GM insisted on linking all of its brands together by putting a little silver GM square logo on each vehicle, be it a Daewoo Chevrolet or a Cadillac.  Now, the old GM-in-a-blue-square logo is hard to find--it is off of the RenCen, and missing from most of GM's web pages.

One place it appears to live on is at the GM fleet web site, here: http://www.gmfleet.com/

I suppose if you go bankrupt, and then are reborn as a new, lean company, you may want to tinker with your logo.  And if you are GM, you want to emphasize each brand individually, instead of reminding people that their Cadillac has something in common with a Daewoo.   But the Blue Square dates back to 1964 according to one source I found, and logos should not be thrown around lightly.   Remember how Ford was mocked for changing its top line logo from the blue oval to the company name in script?

New GM Website

GM has updated its web site with a neat intro video showing off GM's engineering prowess.  It's a great video, with a nice tech-rock soundtrack, check it out.  http://www.gm.com

.GOV Soaking Up Hybrid Capacity

According to Bloomberg, Obama's administration has purchased 25% of domestic hybrid production.  In fact, it appears that Obama was the biggest customer for the Malibu mild hybrid, which was a market flop.

The government purchased about 64 percent of GM's Chevy Malibu hybrid models and 29 percent of all Ford Fusion hybrids manufactured since Obama took office in 2009, the data show. GM stopped making the Malibu hybrid in 2009 after lack of consumer demand.

Hybrid demand is weak because of relatively reasonable gas prices, so the U.S. government is helping to keep hybrid capacity utilized by buying for the federal fleet.  This will help the taxpayer in the long run, by using less fuel, but the cost up front is significant.

Interestingly, Bloomberg reports that the average purchase price was about $5,300 under MSRP.  GIven that hybrids tend to be a loss leader or break-even product to begin with, this program probably didn't help Ford and GM make much money.

For the hybrid business to prosper and evolve, two things need to happen, and soon: batteries need to be cheaper, and gas prices need to be higher.  The consumer has proven that he is primarily cost driven.

ಸೋಮವಾರ, ನವೆಂಬರ್ 22, 2010

Cadillac Escalade Platinum Edition

cadillac escalade platinum edition

To satisfy the needs of soccer players, singers and business men who want to stand out from the crowd of Porsche Cayenne, Range Rover and BMW X5 SUVs, GM of Europe is launching a new and exclusive edition of its larger-than-life Escalade, the Cadillac Escalade Platinum Edition.

Source: carscoop

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Hyundai - The biggest asian car maker in Europe

Hyundai Elantra

Toyota is slowly becoming a shadow of the company that dethroned General Motors in 2009. It can't be a good news for the Japanese maker that it also lost its position among Asian car makers in Europe, to Hyundai Motor Co. and affiliate KIA Motors Corp.

The two Korean companies had sold 521,369 vehicles in total during the first ten months of 2010, a 4% improvement over the last year which had earned them the title of the biggest Asian carmaker in Europe with a market share of 4.5%. Meanwhile, Toyota's figures dropped by 17% to 511,754 units, which accounts for 4.4% of the European market.

Source: carscoop

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Fiat's Nero

I heard on John McElroy's automotive news show, Autoline Detroit, that Fiat will use Italian names for its colors in its marketing and ordering materials.  For example, red will be called rosso and black will be nero.  (Que Rome burning jokes)

What I don't understand then is why Fiat is calling the 500 "Five Hundred" and not "Cinquecento", which is its proper Italian name.  Some Americans many associate a recent large sedan by Ford with "Five Hundred".  Maybe the problem is teaching us dumb Americans how to say Cinquecento, although it isn't that hard once you hear it.  It sounds like "chink-wuh-chento" (not "sink-wuh-sento").  Fiat could hire some Italian babe with full lips to show us how it is done.

If you are going to go Italian, I say, go all in.  Call it Cinquecento.

ಭಾನುವಾರ, ನವೆಂಬರ್ 21, 2010

CLS63 AMG Shooting Brake for Mercedes Benz

Mercedes Benz CLS Shotting Brake

In the span of two weeks, Mercedes-Benz announced two new CLS-based production models: the recently revealed CLS63 AMG and plans to produce a wagon version inspired by the CLS "Shooting Brake" Concept shown at the Beijing Motor Show. Now we've learned that another CLS variant could combine the two.

The CLS63 AMG Shooting Brake would adapt all the go-fast bits of its sedan counterpart into the five-door model set to go into production in 2012. That means the M157 5.5-liter twin-turbocharged V8 putting out between 518 and 550 horsepower and up to 590 pound-feet of torque depending on the spec. We've yet to get official word from M-B if the CLS Shooting Brake is bound for U.S. shores, but if the AMG version does come to fruition, don't expect it much before 2013.

Source: http://www.autoblog.com/

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Audi TTS built by Volkswagen Group

audi tts

The autonomous Audi TTS built by Volkswagen Group Electronics Research Lab, Stanford University and Audi has taken an important first step toward its ultimate goal: participating in the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb. The self-driving TTS officially completed a test run all the way to the 14,110 foot summit earlier this year, clocking a time of 27 minutes, which is pretty good considering that race officials typically expect a human driver to do it in around 17 minutes.

Audi says that the car used a combination of brand-new software, algorithms and hardware to tackle one of the world's most challenging hill climbs. The 12.42 mile course is a gauntlet of tarmac and loose gravel that snakes upward with a number of instant switchbacks. According to Audi, the autonomous TTS managed to hit a top speed of 47 mph during one stretch.

Source: Audi

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ಬುಧವಾರ, ನವೆಂಬರ್ 17, 2010

Ford Explorer Smashing "Priceless Ming Vases"

Part of Ford's online social marketing campaign for the new Explorer is a series of short and amusing YouTube videos which answer a question about some feature of the vehicle.  

I thought this one was funny.

Why prefer car shipping companies for auto shipping?

Most of you may ask, I know driving well and I have the all the amenities with me, why I should prefer auto shipping companies for auto transport. Ok, can I ask you a question? Why you go for school and college to study rather than studying in your house.

Most of you say it is a place for education where we get the education along with discipline and perfectness. Can anyone say no for this? I think, most of you agree with my answer. It is very simple my friends, we need to understand some logic behind every thing that happen in our life, and then we can easily live a life without any frequent chaos. As like above, the car shipping companies are meant for this and they transport your car in a safe way.

May be you would be a good driver, or you may be having good driver, but it is not advisable to drive alone for such long distances. If it is near so, you can travel by own, but when it comes to long distance, it is better to prefer a auto shipping company for the sake of your benefit. Modernization and safety is what you can expect from their service. They transport your vehicle in a best way and also, in a safe way with affordable charges.

Once you book the car shipping company, they will come to your place and pick up your car. They also give you the online estimate quotes so that you can come to know about the shipping charges in well before.

For more information related to auto shipping, visit aaat.com.

Ferrari's limited edition California Exclusive

Ferrari California

If you live in Japan and have the means, there are any number of enticing automobiles you can get domestically that aren't available elsewhere. Most of them are from Japanese automakers, though. But last week, we reported on the BMW Z4 Silver Top edition, and now Ferrari has joined the race with an exclusive offering of its own.

This Ferrari California Limited Edition is being offered exclusively by Cornes & Co, Ferrari's main importer in Japan for the past 30 years. Their latest limited edition starts with Maranello's first front-engined V8 convertible and upgrades it with special touches like carbon fiber rocker panels, door handles and fuel cap, and unique diamond-polished forged rims with red hubs and titanium nuts.

Source: http://www.cornesmotor.com/news/detail.html?id=92

For information related to auto shipping, visit aaat.com.

Cadillac's Urban Luxury Concept

Cadillac Urban Luxury Concept

One could be excused for thinking that the definition of urban luxury might be the Cadillac Escalade, but apparently the hive mind at General Motors' most luxurious division have other thoughts on the subject. In fact, it seems Cadillac is thinking the exact opposite. To wit, take a gander at the Urban Luxury Concept that's being debuted at the 2010 LA Auto Show.

As would seem appropriate for a car intended for urban confines, this Caddy concept features rather small exterior dimensions, but the automaker claims that it's large inside with seating for four occupants. Wheelbase comes in at a hair over 97 inches and overall length measures 151 inches. Width is listed at 68.1 inches and height at just under 57 inches.


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ಸೋಮವಾರ, ನವೆಂಬರ್ 15, 2010

2011 Dodge Challenger Revealed

2011 Dodge Challenger

The details and photos of the subtly refreshed 2011 Dodge Challenger coupe are finally in, but the changes are far less spectacular than expected. The 2011MY version of the Chrysler Group's muscle car gains a new Pentastar V6 for the base model and a 6.4-liter V8 for the SRT8, plus a revised suspension and some barely noticeable styling changes.

If you are able to spot a cosmetic difference on the outside, chances are you're probably working for Chrysler's design team. At the front, there's a restyled trapezoidal front air dam with a larger opening while the Dodge logo has been removed from the hood.

The 2011 Challenger will hit dealerships within the next few weeks.

Source: http://carscoop.blogspot.com/

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Honda Civic sales to stop in Japan

honda civic

According to a report from Japan's Nikkei.com, Honda will stop selling the Civic sedan in its home market as soon as existing inventories run out. As customers shift their focus towards MPVs and more compact vehicles, the popularity of the Civic has dwindled substantially in Japan – only 452 of the trusty Honda sedans were sold in the automaker's domestic market during the month of October.

Honda is still committed to offering the Civic sedan in other markets, such as the United States and Europe, where sales numbers are substantially more robust. In fact, new versions of both the U.S.- and Euro-spec Civics are set to bow sometime next year. Honda will continue to manufacture Civic sedans at its Suzuka plant for export purposes. It's unclear whether Honda will continue to import the European-built Civic Type R Euro hatchback into Japan.

For information related to auto shipping, visit aaat.com.

ಭಾನುವಾರ, ನವೆಂಬರ್ 14, 2010

General view on auto shipping

Auto Shipping takes care of transporting your vehicle from one place to another in a safe and secure manner. It is important that the company you choose should render quality service and be economical. It’s good to go in for an experienced company and it is also necessary to check if the company is registered with the U.S. Department of transportation and a USDOT and a MC number is given to them. The insurance coverage and service charges will differ from company to company and it is better to obtain quotes with some auto shipping companies before you decide to go with one.

Discussing with your friends, browsing and checking with some shipping companies will give a clear picture and help you to find the best shipping company. It is our responsibility to choose safety equipment in auto transport as the safety aspect is very important. Only experts can handle such a responsibility. There are two types of auto transport available: Covered auto shipping and Open auto shipping.

Covered auto shipping: The container carrying the vehicle is covered and gives added protection to the vehicle. Though it is expensive when compared to an open car shipping, it protects your vehicle from the climatic conditions and also from road hazards. You can avail ramp gates for long wheelbase vehicles and winches for the vehicles that are inoperable. You can see a variety of trailers likes six-car enclosed trailers, four-car enclosed trailers and two-car non-stacking enclosed trailers. Multi car trailers are available for over sized cars.

Open auto shipping: As the name indicates, the container carrying the vehicle is open to the sky and can be affected by the weather conditions. It is cheaper when compared to covered car shipping. It is good to provide the details of the vehicle’s length and weight so that it can be transported properly. This is to ensure that the weight is within the legal specifications for loads to be carried. Have an eye on the insurance coverage that is offered. Always go for a better insurance plan that takes care of any damage caused by the shipping company while relocating your vehicle.

Always go for a company with high grade of reputation and flawless certificate from the public because they know the art of adding your name in their list of happy clients. A good transport company always accepts the burden of shifting your vehicle with care and attention. They must have a skilled batch of professional drivers who can handle your valuable vehicle in various climates and environments. You are investing your money and time, have a passion to get a good service because you know that you and your vehicle deserve that.

For information related to auto shipping, visit aaat.com.

2012 Chrysler 200 Convertible

2012 Chrysler 200 Convertible

The Chrysler Sebring Convertible's days may be numbered, but it won't be long before we get a glimpse at its successor. According to Olivier Francois, president and chief executive officer of the Chrysler brand, the company will show off the droptop version of the 200 at the 2011 New York Auto Show. Details are minimal so far, but we fully expect to see the car boast either the 2.4-liter four-cylinder or an optional 3.6-liter V6 (or both).

Francois also revealed that Chrysler could begin implementing a new two-tone paint system for the 200 sometime soon. The treatment certainly classes up vehicles like the Lancia Delta, but it also adds about 6 additional hours to the paint process. Momma never said looking good was easy.

Source: http://www.autoblog.com/

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Aston Martin Rapide Luxe

Aston Mrtin Rapid Luxe

If you're in the market for a luxurious four-door, you'd be hard pressed to do better than the Aston Martin Rapide. But now the British automaker has announced an even more exclusive package called the Rapide Luxe.

Over and above all the bells and whistles that come standard on the Rapide, the Luxe trim gets you a selection of exclusive color options, a custom-fitted leather luggage set matched to the hides of the car's interior, a rear-seat DVD entertainment system, plus glass switchgear and keyfob.


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ಶನಿವಾರ, ನವೆಂಬರ್ 13, 2010

iPod Touch Bug: Alarm

Well so much for the illusion of Apple's "it just works". I found a bug in iOS 4.1 in, of all things, the built in Alarm app.

After the end of daylight savings time, my alarm that was set for 6:00 AM now triggers at 7:00 AM, even though the click is set to 6:00 and the alarm is set to 6:00!

ಶುಕ್ರವಾರ, ನವೆಂಬರ್ 12, 2010

2012 Hyundai Elantra to hit 40 mpg

2011 Hyundai Elantra

Hyundai has just announced that the 2012 Elantra, which will debut next Wednesday at the LA Auto Show, will achieve 40 miles per gallon on the highway and 29 mpg in the city. The engine behind these impressive numbers will be a 1.8-liter inline four-cylinder producing 148 horsepower and 131 lb-ft of torque.

40 mpg highway ratings are "the new black" for small cars these days, with other vehicles like the 2011 Ford Fiesta and 2011 Chevrolet Cruze achieving 40 mpg or more on the highway and letting everyone know about it in their marketing material. The difference between those American small cars and the new Elantra is that only particular models of the Cruze and Fiesta can reach 40 mpg – more specifically the Cruze Eco, which tops out at 42 mpg, and the Fiesta with a special SFE package.

Source: Hyundai

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Lamborghini sesto elemento at the paris motor show

lamborghini sesto elemento

Lamborghini's Sesto Elemento, the carbon fiber beauty that debuted at the Paris Motor Show just two short months ago, has reportedly been given the green light by its Italian automaker. The two-seat "Sixth Element" exotic is much more than radical jet-fighter styling and a fixation with all things lightweight.

Hidden under its flat-black composite panels is the same V10 engine shoehorned into the Lamborghini LP 570-4 Superleggera. Keep the pedal down, and the Lamborghini should top 215 mph. With a price tag of about €2.5 million, and a production run limited to less than ten units, best of luck securing one for your garage.

Source: worldcarfans.com

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New Opel Ampera to be sold in Europe

Opel Ampera

General Motors announced today that the European version of its extended-range Chevrolet Volt electric car, the Ampera, will go on sale in the fourth quarter of 2011 as an Opel in mainland Europe and as a Vauxhall in the UK, with prices -including tax- starting from €42,900.

At the current exchange rates, that comes to around US$59,100, which is significantly higher than the base price of the Volt in the USA that sells for US$41,000 (€29,800) not including a $7,500 federal tax credit.


For information about auto shipping, visit car shipping.

ಗುರುವಾರ, ನವೆಂಬರ್ 11, 2010

Skoda's special edition Fabia RS S2000

Skoda Fabia RS

While it may not have registered on the radar screens of many American racing fans, Czech automaker Skoda took the top honors this year in the Intercontinental Rally Challenge. In the process they captured both the drivers' and manufacturers' titles against the likes of Ford, Subaru, Mitsubushi, Honda, Peugeot, Proton and Fiat/Abarth on special stages across Europe and a pair in South America. To celebrate, the Volkswagen subsidiary has launched a special edition of its Fabia RS hot hatch.

For information about auto shipping, visit car shipping.

Happy Veterans Day

Did you know there is only one surviving American veteran of WWI?  Read Frank Buckle's fascinating story here.

Thank you to our military veterans.  You fought, and many of you were wounded, many of you lost friends, because the country asked you for service.  Our freedoms and comforts rest on your shoulders.

GE: Eating Up EV Tax Credits

Is there a downside to the public to GE's announcement that it will buy 25,000 EVs, including 12,000 Chevrolet Volts?  

The tax credit for EVs phases out after a manufacturer sells 200,000 of them.  From Public Law 111-5, Sections 1141-1144

    `(2) PHASEOUT PERIOD- For purposes of this subsection, the phaseout period is the period beginning with the second calendar quarter following the calendar quarter which includes the first date on which the number of new qualified plug-in electric drive motor vehicles manufactured by the manufacturer of the vehicle referred to in paragraph (1) sold for use in the United States after December 31, 2009, is at least 200,000.
By gobbling up EVs, GE certainly helps to jump-start the industry, but they also gobble up future tax credits that consumers would have gotten, unless GE opts to forego the EV tax credit.  Which would be bad business.

ಬುಧವಾರ, ನವೆಂಬರ್ 10, 2010

Land Rover's five-door Evoque

land rover evoque

There once was a time when three-door sport-utes were commonplace, but they gradually gave way to the versatility of the five-door body style. The trio-portal is making a comeback these days in the luxury crossover market, thanks to the likes of the new Range Rover Evoque and upcoming Porsche Cajun. And while the three-door versions of both are scheduled to arrive on the scene first, both are being followed by five-door versions. Land Rover has just pulled the sheet on its five-door Evoque, which will make its official debut at the Los Angeles Auto Show.

The specs are largely the same as the three-door Evoque that bowed at this year's Paris Motor Show, but with a couple extra doors thrown into the mix to enable easier access to the rear seats. Nothing too complicated there, but it could make all the difference for many consumers looking to keep the sleek profile but not willing to forgo the bodystyle.

2012 Ford Focus - official car of 2011 CES

2012 Ford Focus

This January Ford CEO Alan Mulally will take the stage as one of the keynote speakers of the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. It'll be the fourth time Mulally has headlined CES, and this time he'll have one of The Blue Oval's most anticipated new products in his corner.

The 2012 Focus has been named the official car of 2011 CES, an honor that will give the forthcoming C-Segment blockbuster the spotlight right in time for its launch. The Focus enters the market early in 2011 with most of Ford's latest technology including Sync, MyFord Touch and Wi-Fi capability.

The Focus is actually the second straight Ford to claim the title of "official car of CES," as the Taurus held the title at CES 2010.

E15: Big OIl Fights Back

The American Petroleum Institute has filed a lawsuit to block the EPA's waiver allowing E15 in late model (post 2007) vehicles, on the grounds that the potential harmful effects from E15 have not been fully studied.

I agree with the API, at the heart of it.  If E15 is sold alongside E10, some customers may try to use it in older vehicles, and they could have problems.  

However, on the practical side, I don't see E15 going anywhere in this piecemeal permitting approach.  For E15 to have any impact, it will have to be mandated, not just permitted.  And I doubt it will be mandated until it has been proven safe for older vehicles.  Considering that the average age of cars on the road in the U.S. is around 10 years or so, to safely cover most used cars EPA needs to test back well before 2001 model year.  I don't have the data (R.L. Polk, where are you?) but I suspect you would have to go back to like 1995 to cover 95% of the vehicles on the road.

On the commercial side, gas station owners are not about to spend $20,000 per pump to upgrade to E15 certified pumps.  According to this NY Times piece, unless there is a mandate, gas stations are not going to be switching over.

The third option for service station owners is simply not to sell E15, which Mr. Eichberger said seemed likely. "It is an authorization without a mandate," he said. "There is no retailer out there who has to sell this product."

E15 will remain mostly a symbolic gesture for the near future.  And if your favorite station does put up signs warning you that they are selling E15, make sure you don't put it in your older car, boat, 4 wheeler, or lawnmower.

ಮಂಗಳವಾರ, ನವೆಂಬರ್ 9, 2010

Top 5 tips for car shipping

The first question you'll need answer is "What is the total cost of shipping my car?" To get a good price, obtain quotes from several auto shipping companies and be prepared to provide:
1. origin/destination - include ZIP codes if possible
2. approximate departure date
3. type of vehicle(s)
4. preferred shipping options

Just remember that the cheapest price is not always the best.

To get an accurate quote and be able to compare quotes between companies, make sure you understand your shipping options and what your preferences are:
1. Door-to-door vs. terminal-to-terminal - For door-to-door shipping, the car carrier picks-up your vehicle at your home or workplace and delivers your vehicle to your final destination. For terminal-to-terminal shipping, you deliver your vehicle to a vehicle storage location where the car carrier will then pick up your vehicle. It is delivered to a similar type of location near your final destination.
2. Open or enclosed - Open transport is the less expensive and most common way to ship a vehicle. Sealed off transport is typically priced higher, and it protects your vehicle from dust, rain, snow and other elements. High-end vehicles are sometimes shipped enclosed.
3. Operable or inoperable - Operable vehicles can be driven onto the truck. Inoperable vehicles require special equipment to pull the vehicle onto the truck. If your vehicle is inoperable you need to let the auto transport company know, so they can make sure the truck that picks up your vehicle has the proper equipment.

Your vehicle(s) should be insured alongside damage and theft by your car shipping company. Take the following four steps to be sure of the coverage:
1. Get a copy of Their Insurance Coverage.
2. Determine if the carrier's insurance is primary or secondary to your own insurance in the event of damage during car shipping.
3. Ask if there is damage deductible.
4. Verify everything in writing.

In addition, your own car insurance may cover your vehicle in transport – check with your car insurance company to verify. Keep in mind that many car shipping and auto shipping companies may deject or prohibit you from leaving personal articles in your vehicle. Any personal articles left in the car are not insured – your home policy may cover these articles, but you should check with your home insurance agent to verify.

Note: overloading your case with heavy items may result in damage to your car's undercarriage. Your car transport company may not cover damage in that instance.

The majority of car transport experiences are worry-free, with your damage-free vehicle arriving at the expected time. On occasion, a vehicle may be damaged in transit. If this should happen, note all damage on your inspection report, obtain the driver's signature, and contact your car transport company. The auto shipping company should then work with you to refund you for confirm-able damage done to your car.

If you believe that a car shipping company has not treated you properly, first try to work it out with the company. Car shipping companies are more likely to collaborate with you if they believe you are trying to work fairly with them. Be reasonable, but firm. If all else fails, you may consider filing a complaint with the Better Business Office in the city in which the auto transport company is listed. The U.S. Dept. of Transportation – http://www.dot.gov – regulates auto shipping companies – however they will usually not get involved until after you have a court judgment against a car shipping company.

For more information about car shipping, visit aaat.com.

How to find the right car rental company?

People often waste time thinking about the type of car they are going to rent simply because they are so focused on the price of the rental. While it is easy to say that the model, make and size of vehicle, makes no difference, in reality this is a major factor which impacts not only the price but also your overall satisfaction with the rental.

Now you’re probably thinking you’ll just be content to rent a compact car, since it will help you save money. While this is true and not only will save on the cost of the rental, but also fuel costs, it is important to ensure that you can live with the decision to rent a smaller car. Because these vehicles offer less passenger space and luggage room, if you travel with adults and luggage you may just be better off paying a bit more and going to a medium sized vehicle.

Ask for an upgrade, even if you have not pre-ordered a medium sized car it is usually not a big problem because most car rental companies rent their small vehicles first and usually have some medium size cars available for those with a last-minute change of heart. Sometimes if you book a smaller car you can even get an upgrade for free so it does not hurt to ask, and it can only result in you getting a bigger vehicle, without having to pay more.

For more information about car shipping, visit aaat.com.

ಸೋಮವಾರ, ನವೆಂಬರ್ 8, 2010

Auto shipping by quote

It is always suggested to compare auto shipping quote of different auto shippers. We guarantee you that the quote you will avail from us will be worthy, and profitable. It is impossible to drive you car everywhere and especially if it is long distance. car shipping along with other belongings to the new destination might be quite troublesome. Shipping you car with us can really make a difference in terms of time and money.

AAAT stands uniquely among prestigious auto shipping companies. Shipping your car with AAAT will really make a sense to you. They also provide car insurance for your car's safety and your betterment. They are really concerned about the allotted pick-up dates and delivery dates.

For more information about car shipping quote, visit aaat.com.

2010 Porsche 911 Carrera S

2010 porsche 911 carrera s

Driving a Porsche in Germany is akin to climbing rocks with a Jeep JK in Moab, piloting a luxury yacht in the Mediterranean, flying a Long-EZ into Oshkosh or guiding the Skycycle X-2 over the Snake River Canyon – the machine is a perfect choice for the venue.

With a personal European vacation already scheduled, it was an ideal opportunity to review a 2010 Porsche 911 Carrera S in Deutschland. During one full week of touring, I'd have the opportunity to drive the venerable sports car nearly a thousand miles through German Bavaria. The planned route would wander through wooded forests, cross fertile farmland and follow the banks of the Rhine River. There would be days climbing through the spectacular Alps, and countless miles spent zooming down unlimited sections of Autobahn.

CLS shooting brake from Mercedes Benz

Mercedes Benz CLS shooting brake

Mercedes-Benz has confirmed plans to put the CLS Shooting Brake into production in 2012, with the swoopy wagon set to be built along side a handful of other Benz models at its plant in Sindelfingen.

Originally shown in concept form at the Beijing Motor Show earlier this year, the CLS Shooting Brake will likely debut in production guise early next year. The standard CLS sedan powertrains will carry over to the wagon, including the CLS63 AMG version debuting at the LA Auto Show next week.

For information related to auto shipping, visit aaat.com

Mulally Crushes Jobs

Steve Jobs, that is.  Amazing times we live in.  Alan Mulally, CEO of Ford, has crushed Apple's Steve Jobs in the Fortune magazine Business Person Of The Year internet poll, 96% to 4%.  Link here.

ಶುಕ್ರವಾರ, ನವೆಂಬರ್ 5, 2010

Mahindra Update -- Still On Track?

I just got this email from Global Vehicles regarding Mahindra. It doesn't mention the litigation at all, and seems to blame domestic Indian market demand for the delay to U.S. introduction. Huh?

Good Morning Mahindra Truck Fans,

Congratulations. You are part of over 30,000 signed up to be the first to experience the hardworking Mahindra trucks.

I know you are wondering when you will have the opportunity to get behind the wheel of one of these amazing, authentic, robust, fuel-efficient trucks at a Mahindra dealer near you. While I cannot give you a firm answer on timing, I can tell you in my estimation, trucks will arrive in the spring of 2011.

Mahindra has applied for and received their EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) certificate, which means the vehicles have passed emission requirements. They also filed with (NHTSA) National Highway Safety Administration, which handles US standards for safety.

With these hurdles completed, it would seem production is imminent, but other factors may hinder the US launch. India's car sales are on a dramatic trajectory upward. The sales pace combined with an industry wide parts shortage is impacting home market sales, which will have an affect on the United States introduction.

In closing, I know each of you anxiously await the arrival of the Mahindra trucks, and I am confident that you will see a launch announcement in the next few months.

If you haven't seen the Specsheet on the trucks yet, please click on the link below to see it.

Click here to view Specsheet

Or copy and place the following into your browser:



John A. Perez
Global Vehicles USA, Inc.
1720 Windward Concourse
Suite 400
Alpharetta, GA 30005


They Want Trucks!

Well, not just trucky trucks, they also want crossovers.  But still, Americans are not buying increasing numbers of small cars, which may force some very interesting discussions in Sacramento and Washington.  From AP:

The category – known as light-duty trucks – made up 54 percent of all new U.S. vehicle sales last month, compared with 46 percent for cars, according to industry tracker J.D. Power and Associates. It's the biggest difference since December 2005, when trucks accounted for 56 percent of sales.

Which continues to show that Americans want large cars and cheap gas--not small, fuel efficient cars.   If Washington forces the automakers to push small cars in a market that doesn't want them, there will be a strong political backlash.

ಬುಧವಾರ, ನವೆಂಬರ್ 3, 2010

Your career as an auto transport driver

First decide if this is the career for you. As an auto transporter, you will need to transport a variety of automobiles, military vehicles for your employer or clients. Auto shippers are typically paid $25,000 and upward per year, which equates to $350 to $450 per car transported, $150 for RV transport and $2,100 per month for military transports. In some instances, you may also be reimbursed for expenses (including room and board). As a auto shipper, you'll be expected to travel excessively and be extremely flexible, responsible and organized.

Secondly, ensure you have the right background. Most companies prefer that car transporters have the minimum requirement of high school diploma or GED, though its not the major criteria. You must hold a good driving record, have specialized training, and pass a drug and alcohol exam. You should not have a criminal record. Some states require that you have 20/40 vision with or without glasses or contacts.

Join a certified truck driving school in your state. There are many truck driving schools that will help you get your CDL, or commercial driver's license. When choosing school, evaluate prospects carefully. Ask about training course costs, available course schedules and job placement rates. In addition, any program you choose should be trustworthy and established in the field. In addition, they should provide you with auto shipping driving instructions and should pair you with a skilled and experienced car transporter that can teach you the ropes.

Study and pass the test. Study for and pass the FMCSR (Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulation) exam. Car transporter must pass a written, physical, hearing and vision exam.

For more information related to car shipping, visit aaat.com

SEMA 2010: Hyundai Genesis Coupe

Hyundai Genesis Coupe

The Hyundai Genesis Coupe is a tuner favorite at SEMA. GogoGear showed off its racing Genesis Coupe, while ARK Performance has created a performance Genesis Coupe more appropriate for cruising the Vegas Strip. There's even a bit of overlap between the two, as GogoGear's entry uses a carbon fiber bodykit, headers, shocks and coilovers from ARK Performance. Getting the rest of the coupe ready for kerbs are the upgraded V6 churning out 380 horsepower, carbon fiber roof, 18-inch Konig Kilogram lightweight wheels and a Racepak IQ3 data logger dash.

ARK Performance went street with a carbon grille, hood and rear diffuser, with ARK SFX bumpers, skirts and fenders. Stoptech brakes scrub the speed, and Alpine, Apple and Infinity provide the audiovisual buffet in the cabin. JsDesigns can be thanked for the little guy on the hood, and his rear is warmed by the heat of a supercharged 3.8-liter, 585-hp engine with 330 pound-feet and dual headers and downpipes.

For information related to auto shipping, visit aaat.com

SEMA 2010: Ford 2011 Mustang

2011 Ford Mustang

We've seen Explorers, Fiestas and even an F-Series Super Duty, but of course, the car with the biggest showing on Ford's SEMA stand is the Mustang. In fact, the automaker is displaying nine examples of its pony car, showing a wide range of customization options.

Starting things off in-house, Ford has provided us with a glimpse of what is possible through its Vehicle Personalization program. The VP 'Stang wears wheels, rear window louvers, a rear spoiler and a handful of other items that are all for sale at FordAccessoriesStore.com. Besides the in-house car, Ford handed the Mustang off to Funkmaster Flex and Team Baurtwell, MRT, Creations n' Chrome, Muscle Mustangs and Fast Fords, Mobsteel, Raceskinz, Street Scene Equipment and Tjin Edition.

For information related to auto shipping, visit aaat.com

Review: Dyson DC31 Animal Vac

The Dyson company recently sent me a Dyson DC31 Animal vacuum to review, as part of "Clean Your Garage Day", a made-up holiday dedicated to cleaning up garages.

The DC31 is a handheld vacuum with a 22V Li-on battery. It has Dyson's signature industrial/colorful design, and comes with a motorized brush attachment. It has a high power button on the back, which increases the suction but reduces run time. The DC31 Animal has an attractive metallic purple and gunmetal color scheme, with controls clearly marked with red.

The DC31 takes about 3 hours to charge, and will run for about 10 minutes in normal mode without the motorized brush, and about 6 minutes in high output mode. Using the brush probably costs some run time, but I didn't bother to measure it.

I used the DC31 to vacuum out my very crummy car. It didn't last long enough to do the front and back halves, I was only able to vacuum the (very dirty) front floor and seats before the battery ran out. That is in part because I was using the high suction mode, and I also used the motorized brush to get some stubborn crumbs out of the seat cushions. As we always say in this business, your mileage may vary. While it lasted, it did quite a good job.

I would have liked if Dyson had a plug-in mode, to allow the machine to run off of a car's 12v power supply through the accessory plug. Perhaps a module which replaces the battery, and includes a DC step-up transformer to generate the needed 20v for the motor? There also isn't an easy way to recharge the unit in a vehicle, you would need a DC to AC transformer to do it.

The vac is not very small, but it isn't terribly heavy, and with the
battery well balanced at the end of the pistol grip. I give the ergonomics a mixed grade, it is natural to hold and point, very much like a cordless drill, but the long overall length means that it is ungainly to maneuver in tight spaces, unlike a more traditional vacuum with a flexible hose.

The Dyson uses what they call a "digital motor", which from what I can tell is a high speed brushless DC motor, to spin the impeller and create the vacuum. It has a built in digital controller. It is smooth, with very little vibration, but it is quite loud, making a high pitched whine and whistle sounding similar to a cordless drill. I found the noise to be annoying because of its high pitch.

The other main issue I have with the Dyson DC31 is that it is expensive. Retail price is around $270, or about what you would pay for a good quality cordless drill. Dyson argues that they are offering a premium product, and I don't disagree--but not everyone is ready for a hand vac that has the Apple treatment, innovation at a high price.

  • Excellent suction for the size
  • Nice motorized brush attachment
  • Easy to empty
  • Good ergonomics
  • Dyson's hallmark design
  • Long 2-year warranty

  • No wall-mount feature
  • No way run off of vehicle power or recharge in vehicle.
  • 3.5hrs of charging only gets you 10min of runtime
  • Trigger must be held down continuously, no way to keep it running
  • Can be awkward to maneuver in tight spaces
  • High pitched whistling sound
  • Expensive

In conclusion, the Dyson DC31 makes a very good car vacuum if you are quick about your cleaning, and would like to own a premium product. It makes quick work of small, dirty jobs.

Engineering School Q&A

A student emailed me asking about how to go about getting into the automotive engineering business. Here are my answers.
I stumbled across your blog through an internet search and found your writing to be very interesting. I am a 24-year-old Mechanical Engineering student, and I have plans to go into Automotive Engineering.

Some advice on the best way to become an Automotive Engineer would be very helpful. I spent 6 years out of highchool as a diesel/auto technician before going back to school. Is this going to be a help for me as an engineer later on?
It depends. If you are going into part of the business that is service related, such as service and diagnostics (the guys who write service manuals, develop procedures, etc.) this is very valuable experience. And it is valuable in general if you are going to be involved in hands-on vehicle work.
Is there any drafting software I can get to experement with on my own time in order to put me ahead of the game later on?
Again, it depends what you are going into. If you are going to be a designer, or a release engineer who releases parts that someone else has designed, CAD is very useful. If you aren't going to be dealing with part design as much, for example you are in the vehicle testing side of things, it is less useful. The concepts among different CAD programs are probably similar, so I wouldn't sweat it too much--it is the thinking in 3D, and the craft of drawing up designs which matters. You can get a cheap copy of TurboCAD and go to town.

And most importantly: I've almost finished up my basic courses and plan to transfer to a 4-year university to finish my education. What qualities do I need to look for in an engineering program?
Look for engineering programs that have relationships with industry. You want to get into an internship, or co-op type situation if you can. This will give you invaluable experience and may line you up for a job later, if they like you. Look for schools that have good placement records--how many students go on to get jobs in their field? Look for schools that offer hands-on activities such as Formula SAE or similar competitions. Look for schools that have lab facilities for engineers where they can actually build and test things.
How much does the university matter to prospective employers?
Not super much. I have met brilliant engineers from smaller, less exclusive schools. I have also met idiots from places like Cornell. If you go to a decent school which has a good reputation in industry, and you do well, you will be looked at.

Some other advice. If you can hook up with an engineering professor who is running a lab and working on neat stuff, especially if it is grant funded neat stuff like military research, do so. Being on a project, doing real work, is always a plus.

Volt: Quicker With Gas

Edmunds did a track test on the Chevy Volt.  One interesting result is that the Volt is nearly 1s faster from 0-75mph when using the gasoline range extender than in pure EV mode.  Hmmm... could it be because some gasoline torque is going to the wheels?  Just asking.

ಮಂಗಳವಾರ, ನವೆಂಬರ್ 2, 2010

Cheap car shipping from Alabama to California

Are you looking for cheap auto shipping from Alabama to California! Aaat.com comes up with cheap auto shipping services for the people residing globally. We are licensed, insured and reliable auto transporters provides guaranteed moving services all over the world.

Special technology has been initiated to ensure that you have chosen a right cheap auto shipping company of America. All sorts of vehicles will be moved from one place to another in more safe and secured manner.

As per the auto shipping order pickup and drop will be arranged, so that excellent customer services can be provided for the customers.

For more information on car shipping and car shipping quotes, visit car shipping.

2011 Honda CR-Z Mugen Unveiled at SEMA

2011 Honda CR-Z Mugen

We'll soon bring you the full low-down on the customized and conceptual Honda CR-Z models from the SEMA Show in Las Vegas, but to whet your appetite, here's a brand new Mugen-accessorized version that will enter production in the spring of 2011. Only 300 of these kits will go on sale in the U.S. with pricing details to be made available closer to the on-sale date.

For information related to auto shipping, visit aaat.com

SEMA 2010: Honda CR-Z Hybrid Tuning Galore

Honda CR Z Hybrid

As promised, here are the rest of the tuned CR-Z hybrids featured in the Honda booth at the 2010 SEMA Show. If you follow the break, you can find the CR-Z in a variety of tunes ranging from Honda's own subtly accessorized HFP (Honda Factory Performance) model to Wraptivo's HKS supercharged prototype. Scroll down and tell us which one grabbed your attention the most.

For information related to auto shipping, visit aaat.com

ಸೋಮವಾರ, ನವೆಂಬರ್ 1, 2010

History of Trucking industry in US

The trucking industry has played a major role in the development of economic as well as the political history of the United States in the 20th century. Trucking was first used extensively in military during World War 1. Trucking began to gain popularity in 1930s and soon became the target of various governmental regulations. Construction of Interstate Highways in 30s and 40s accelerated trucking further, linking various cities across the continent.

Movies on trucking and truckers were a massive hit in 60s and 70s which further boosted the trucking industry. With the implementation of satellite and GPS satellite navigation technology in the trucks, the industry has shown increase in productivity and brought new opportunities for the truckers. The trucking industry that also includes the auto shipping companies continues to be the lifeblood of the U.S. economy and underpins the massive distribution system that supports US high living standards.

For more information about car shipping, visit aaat.com

2011 Honda Civic Type R Euro Launched in Japan

2011 Honda Civic Type R Euro

Honda has introduced a new model year version of its British-built Civic Type R Euro in Japan. The 2011MY batch will be the last of this model series to make its way to Japan as production of the current generation three-door Civic Type R has been terminated in Europe because its 2.0-litre VTEC engine does not meet the Euro V emissions regulations.

The Japanese automaker had imported 1,850 examples of the Civic Type R Euro from Britain in late 2009. This time, Honda will bring a total of 1,500 units of the 2011MY version of its high-revving hot hatch. The only changes over the previous model year are the addition of a new Crystal Black Pearl color, some trim updates such as the different finish of the fuel cap and a new numbered plaque.

For information related to auto shipping, visit aaat.com

Sema 2010: Hyundai sonata turbo

Hyundai Sonata Turbo

In an effort to boost awareness of its recently launched Sonata 2.0T, Hyundai has partnered with RIDES for a SEMA-bound version of its swoopy new sedan. We'd like to point out that Hyundai's press release calls the Sonata Turbo's modifications "clever and tasteful," and while we don't wholeheartedly agree, we'll admit that this Sonata is indeed sinister and speaks to all things SEMA.

The mods begin with a RIDES-designed body kit comprised of front and rear bumpers, side skirts, rear wing and roof spoiler. From there, the car was painted in a matte pearl color, 20-inch Rennen Modular M9 wheels were added and Audi-like LEDs were fitted to the front fascia. The headlamps have been painted, the taillamps have been smoked and the grille is now matte black. But the best body mod? The chrome beltline strip has been blacked out and ties in with the rest of the darkened bits.

For information related to auto shipping, visit aaat.com