Monthly Archives: August 2013

  • Auto Sales Finally Bounce Back

    Rearview Mirror Icon - Auto Sales

    We all know that it has been a rough several years for the auto industry. The recession had many people cutting back by keeping their old cars, trucks, and SUVs longer, delaying purchases and negatively impacting auto sales. The industry has been seeing positive trends, and this year may finally get us over the hump. The numbers won't be official until some time next week, but numerous reports are saying that August is on track to be the best month yet since 2006! Projected retail sales are said to be close to 1.27 million units. In addition, the past year has already been fairly strong with 9.13 million new vehicle sales occurring through July 2013. Sales for the year could be as high as 16 million units, according to some projections, though this may require top makes and models to ramp up production to meet demand. Ford, Hyundai, and Subaru are all experiencing low supplies of some of their popular vehicles.

    If the August numbers are as high as predicted, auto sales will be 12% higher than last August. In addition, as average car prices climb higher, the total spent on the estimated 1.27 million vehicles is much higher too. The average price of new vehicles this year topped $31,000; multiply this by 1.27 million vehicles and you get over 39 billion in new auto sales. This number may in fact break the record for single month auto revenue, even if the number of vehicles does not quite hit the record. JD Power explains that these great sales numbers are in part driven by the quirk of our calendar system. This year, August has five weekends, rather than the typical four. Also, factor in that Labor Day Weekend starts in August this year, and you have the perfect combination of events for great August sales numbers.

    Are you part of the auto sales boom? Are you one of the 1.27 million who bought a new vehicle this past month or year? Please let us know about your experience in the comments!

  • Table Talk and Tonneau Covers

    My wife and I were having dinner with three other couples last week and the topics of conversations were all over the map.  The most interesting topic by far was my buddy’s new pickup truck.  It’s funny how men glow when they talk about their new vehicles, almost like a woman when she speaks of her newborn.  Everyone at the table congratulated him on his purchase for which he scraped and saved many years AND then it happened…someone asked my opinion on something!  I was asked, undoubtedly because of the business I am in, if I could put one aftermarket product on my new truck what would it be?  Really?  Are they really asking me that?  At least give me a question that requires some thought!

    The answer is so simple –I would outfit my truck with a tonneau cover and I would encourage all truck owners to do the same.
    Tonneau covers have a very interesting history dating all the way back to 1903 when the Model A first used one.  Tonneau is a French word meaning barrel, cask, or container.  They were originally invented to protect unoccupied seats in roadsters and convertibles.  Most early tonneau covers were fixed in place; however, some cars did have removable covers.  In the 1930’s lake racers lined their cockpits with removable fabric to reduce drag and give themselves the competitive edge.  This was the very beginning of tonneau covers being used for something other than their intended use.
    Fast forward to today.  Today we still use tonneau covers to protect unoccupied seats in roadsters and convertibles.  However, the tonneau is most popular among pickup truck owners for a myriad of reasons.  The tonneau’s appeal probably starts with the fact that consumers have choices when it comes to purchasing a cover.  Tonneau covers come in hard and soft material and can be hinged, roll back, or fold.  Some tonneau covers even come with a remote control and can open with the push of the button.  Truck owners use it for its sleek style; others use it to conceal the contents of their truck.  Some truck owners say a tonneau cover will provide better gas mileage; however, there is scientific data that disputes this claim.  One thing is certain, no matter why you use a tonneau cover you are protecting the bed and the contents of your bed from weather and elements. is proud to offer its customers many different options when it comes to tonneau covers.  We sell many brands – all of which are top quality - but we’ve heard a lot of wonderful feedback lately on the Tonneau Pro .  We offer Tonneau Pro three different ways – a hard tonneau cover, a roll-up tonneau cover, and a tri-fold tonneau cover.  Tonno Pro also has a no drill installation and provides superior protection.  Tonno Pro also gives its customers a limited lifetime warranty and we here at sell it at a low price that’s hard to beat.  Protect your bed, protect the stuff in your bed and do it with style – do it with Tonno Pro!
    Tonno Pro Tonneau Covers

  • Good Samaritan Returns Found Money to Shopper

    Good Samaritan

    If you found a pile of cash outside a supermarket, would you gather it up and return it, or would you take the money and run? Those were the circumstances that greeted two men about a month ago in Jennings, Missouri. The two men were outside of a Schnucks grocery store, presumably to do their weekly shopping. Instead they found 20, 50, & 100 dollar bills blowing in the wind. The two men began gathering up all the cash they could get their hands on, and then they reached the critical point. One man, our Good Samaritan, took the money back inside. The other man quickly left the parking lot.

    Our Good Samaritan, who declined to give his name, said that he and the other man debated what to do with the money. He tried to talk the other man into staying, but it did not help. In addition, some bystanders in the parking lot tried to talk our Good Samaritan into taking the money as well. But he knew that the right thing to do was to return the money. He thought of how terrible it would feel to lose so much money all at once, and knew he had to turn the cash in. It also helped that he found an insurance card, which would allow for the money to be returned to the proper person.

    Though two people tried to claim the money wrongfully, the owner was tracked down via the insurance card. Reports said that she was more excited to get a portion of the money back, $640 out of over $1,000, than she was upset to lose the rest. Our Good Samaritan received high praise from the owner, the Schnucks manager, and fellow shoppers. Security guards are analyzing video footage to try to identify the other man.

    Click Here for more information on this story. Do you have any Good Samaritans you’d like us to mention on the blog? Let us know in the comments!

  • New Trends for Truck Bedliners

    In today’s extensive after market world people go through great lengths to protect their vehicle.  People have become more creative today with the things they can do to the vehicle with all the products that are on the markets today. It’s a time of customization and taking it to a whole new level.  One of the new trends for truck bedliners is taking the rugged look of a bedliner and applying it to the whole vehicle, inside and out.

    Some advantage which makes this better then a custom paint job are there is no need to worry about any scraping or scratching. Any parking lot scratches or dings make it easy to clean and take care of. Maintenance is much easier no need to worry about waxing the car, just a basic wash will do the job.

    Before you do this make sure it is something you want, this is not something that you can just peel right off.

    While this may make your vehicle indestructible, it is not to the environment or your pocket. Everyone is up to some DIY projects to save money, however this spray does contain isocyanates and VOC’s (Volatile organic compound) which makes it harmful to the environment as well as the person applying it when sprayed in an open area.  While there are a few different spray on bedliners out there the cheaper ones seem to fade and peel and may also hold dirt. The better quality ones however cost more money. To spray your whole truck you might spend anywhere from $1,500 to 2,500. You still have to worry about the harm it will cause you and the environment.  To take your vehicle to a shop to have it done where they have proper spray rooms, can cost you 3,500 to 5,000.

    I recently did some modifications to my truck, I now have a bedliner in the bed of the truck. Being a person of concern for human health and the environment I did not go with a spray on bedliner, however I made a smart choice and went with a drop in bedliner from Duraliner. The liner was molded to fit my vehicle and I didn’t have to worry about the hazards of spray-on products. I can now put things in the bed of my truck with no worries of scratching the bed. The liner is made of durable, UV-protected material, and resistant to scratches and dents.  Besides the hazards of spray-on, it also adds weight to the vehicle, which means you will use more gas. I know I made the right choice. :)

  • California Legacy License Plates Available for Preorder

    The state of California has announced that it is releasing legacy license plates that will be available for purchase. The plates will be similar to those released in the 1950s, 1960s, & 1970s, and will be stamped rather than screen printed. The current illustration of the 1950s legacy license plate is yellow with black letters. The 1960s plate has a black background with yellow letters. The 1970s plate also has yellow letters, but on a blue background. However, keep in mind that the final designs have not been released yet, so these descriptions may change.

    These legacy License Plates are great news for classic car owners! If you own a retro vehicle from the 1950s to 1970s, you can now have a retro license plate to match. Your look will no longer be ruined by a modern license plate on your retro car. The license plates can also be a fun throwback if you were born in the ‘50s-‘70s or if you had your first car during this period.  Keep in mind that the plates can be purchased as a gift.

    Currently the legacy license plates are not guaranteed to be manufactured, as the program requires 7,500 pre paid application per plate to be implemented. So far, the 1960s black plate has the most orders, with 4224, and seems likely to be manufactured. Unfortunately both the 1950s (yellow) and 1970s (blue) plates are lagging behind, with 1213 and 901 orders, respectively. These pre-orders will continue until January 1, 2015 and cost $50. Participants can choose a personalized plate or a sequential plate number, but the personalized plates are subject to approval. If this program is successful, I can definitely see California releasing more retro plates, and maybe other states will get in on the action too.

    Legacy License Plates

    For more information and to fill out an application, go to the California DMV.

  • Back To School Packing Tips

    It's that time of year again, back to school. Packing your car or truck for college can be a daunting task, some consider it an art or even a puzzle, making sure everything fits in the best place. The key to packing a car for college is to utilize every available space and to pack wisely. No need to worry if you have a compact car or a pick-up truck there is plenty of room if you pack smart. Best advice I have heard is to leave the front seat open and only have your overnight bag with the essentials.

    After you have bought everything you need and didn't already own, invest in some plastic storage containers (of assorted sizes) to actually pack your stuff in. These can be reused once you are moved in and on your own. Stackable plastic crates make great bookcases as well as laundry baskets, and can also slide right under your bed for more storage.

    So you are one of the people that have a small car, and there is no room left for your clothes, now what. All cars have a roof, use it. Get yourself a car top cargo bag and pack it up with your clothes, don’t worry they will be safe these bags are very durable.

    Maybe you are a pick-up owner and now you have two things that you are concerned about. Without thinking you have packed over the tailgate and now cannot close it and have not an inch to spare. Good thing for last year’s Christmas gift, that AMP bed x-tender will sure come in handy keeping all your college needs in the bed allowing you to keep that tailgate down. Next issue, you didn’t take the time to tape the boxes closed and also have some light weight things in the truck bed, what to do. One drive slow this will cut back on the wind and second get a truck bed net to safely secure the  cargo inside the back of pickup.      

    Once you've packed, you're ready to go. Start your engine. You are on your way, and remember these are the best years of your life!

    One more thing, once you are moved in and all set up, make sure to like us on Facebook. Once we have reached 500 fans we will choose two fans at random for a $30 coupon towards their next purchase. Just click here

  • Save Money While You Drive

    As a mother of four I try to save money anywhere I can. I have noticed that I spend more time in my car driving the kids all over the place and with the price of gas I find myself not wanting to drive at all. If you are a parent like me spending alot of time on the road driving the kids all around town from school, to birthday parties to soccer practice you then know how much gas these short trips burn. If you’re looking to save some money on your day-to-day driving here are some helpful tips to keep your fuel consumption low and save you money. Keep tires properly inflated: Under inflated tires increase the contact area and friction of your tire to the road and burn more gas.  You can improve gas consumption by up to 3.3% if you keep your tire pressure at optimal levels. Switch your tires: Take off your winter tires in the summer.  These tires burn more gas in the summer than all season tires. Plus using winter tires when it’s not snowing will decrease the life of the tire. Clean the junk out of your trunk: Keep your trunk organized. Extra weight in your vehicle is burning more gas in your tank when you drive. Take the heavy items out of your car and leave them at home. Get a regular oil change and tune up: This will reduce your gas consumption by 20%. Don’t speed: The faster you drive the more gas you burn. Aggressive driving will also increase your gas consumption.  Avoid quick acceleration and hard braking. Cruise control will keep you at a constant speed, even on hills. Reduce AC usage: Running the air conditioner burns up to 8% more fuel. Only use AC on the highways, roll down the windows during slower speeds. Turn off the car: It’s a myth that running your car while waiting for someone is better than turning it off and on.  If you have to wait more than one minute turn off the car.  An idling car burns 30% more gas. Manual transmission is better: If you have a choice, buy a car with a manual transmission vs. automatic. When driven properly manual transmission burn less gas.

    The only way to save gas while driving is to 'Drive Smartly'. Know how to handle your car on the road and it will save you money by getting better gas mileage. By changing just a few of your driving habits, you can make a difference in how far that tank of gas will take you. Give it a try.

  • Michigan Attempts A Mini Cooper Record

    Do you know who holds the record for largest Mini Cooper parade? Yes, there is an actual Guinness Record for the largest Mini Cooper Parade! Back in 2007 it only took 273 Minis for a group in Virginia Beach to claim the record, but by 2009, that record had grown more than five times higher to 1.250. That record was made in London, and George Sharpe Jr. from Grand Rapids, MI decided to try to bring the record back to the US.

    That was the beginning of Mini on the Mack, an attempt to gather as many Mini Coopers as possible to parade across the Mackinac Bridge and break a Mini Cooper record. The five mile bridge connects the upper and lower peninsulas of Michigan. Sharpe, thought that bringing the record to Michigan would be apropos because Detroit is the location of the 500,000th Mini Cooper sold. Drivers came from as far away as California to try to break the record. Unfortunately, nowhere near enough of the 500,000 vehicles sold showed up to Mini on the Mack, and so the London record still stands. Those who did show up, nearly 850 drivers in total, said they still had fun. It was still the largest gathering of Mini Cooper’s in the United States.

    So London will retain the record for now. The United Kingdom also has another Mini-related Guinness World Record on their soil: the most people crammed into a Mini Cooper. Last November at the David Lloyd Health Club, 23 people fit into a single Mini Cooper. Still, it was not a complete loss on the Mackinac, as the gathering may have broken a different Mini Cooper record for Largest Ensemble of Car Horns!

    For more information on the World Record attempt, click here. Were you at the Mini Cooper record attempt? Have you ever been part of another world record attempt? Do you hold a Guinness World Record in anything? Please let us know in the comments!

  • What Kind Of Green Car Are You?

    There is a green car for everyone.  Thinking about becoming environmentally friendly but don’t know where to begin in your green car search?  First you should know a little about green car technology. Did you know that hybrid and electric cars consume less petroleum than a standard vehicle. Instead, they take advantage of renewable energy sources and keep the air cleaner for Earth’s preservation. So is it time to shop? More and more companies are making green cars since more people are buying them. What car is right for you?

    The Lap of Luxury: If you have the money and you enjoy surrounding yourself in luxury, take a good look at the Lexus GS450h. One of the highlights to this vehicle is the luxury package that includes a 17-speaker audio set, a pre-collision warning system that monitors eye motion and, of course, a navigation system. These perks add $14,200 to a base ticket price of $59,825. It’s efficient, as well with an EPA fuel economy of 29/34 mpg, V-6 gasoline engine and a two-motor hybrid system. It’s safe and it’s green. Go big or go home, right?

    Mid-life crisis:  The kids are gone and now it is time to ditch the minivan and get something for you to enjoy. Not looking for attention so no need for the Lexus, but you do want something nice, turn your eyes to the Tesla Model S. What better car to look at than a car made by a company that only manufactures electric cars. The Tesla is quick, agile and fun to drive. It can range from $52K to $100K depending on the size of battery you choose and its features. If a sleek and sexy exterior doesn’t completely do it for you, maybe the large panoramic windows and the 17 inch touch screen will. Get the largest battery and you can go hundreds of miles in one charge.

    Young and Sleek: Consider the green and sporty Honda CR-Z Base Hatchback. It has an available six-speed manual with a sleek look. Most impressive feature maybe it’s sticker price which starts at a little over $20K, which makes it appealing to your wallet as well. This Honda offers impressive fuel economy at 35/39 mpg and a digital dashboard. The car has also been ranked very high in its safety class.

    Now that you are considering a hybrid or electric car and have narrowed your car search to a few make and models, you should still make sure you know about the pro’s and con’s. Returning a car because you just do not like the way it drives is not as easy as returning a pair of pants because you do not like the way they fit.

  • Good Samaritan Loans Car to Stranded Family

    When you see someone stranded on the side of the road, do you stop to help? If you learned that their vehicle was out of commission, would you stay and wait with them? And if you discovered that they would need to rent a taxi to drive them to their destination, would you offer up your car instead? That is exactly what Good Samaritan, David Tolley did!

    Rick and Dawn Frosolone had already driven nine hours from New York in their mobile home along with their five children. The family ran into some trouble on I-90 in Rapid City, South Dakota when they got two flat tires on their mobile home. They were still 40 miles from the campground where they were supposed to be staying. The family explained their situation to Tolley, expressing their concerns for having to split up into two trips to take a taxi to a local motel.  So David Tolley did what very few people would be willing to do: he handed over the keys to his SUV.

    Trolley said that it was a “split-minute decision”, partially made because he learned that Rick Frosolone was a New York firefighter. He is also a father himself. Trolley instructed the family not to eat, drink, or smoke in his vehicle, and called his fiancée for a ride. The Frosolone family brought the SUV back the next day as promised, returning it to Rapid Motors, where Tolley works as lot manager. Tolley also helped sell the family some new tires for their mobile home, and turned down any reward money.

    David Tolley hopes that if he is ever in a similar situation, that someone would do the same for him. And the Frosolones are making sure that they tell others about their Good Samaritan in South Dakota on the remainder of their road trip! Click Here for more information on this story.

    Do you have any Good Samaritans you’d like us to mention on the blog? Let us know in the comments!

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