It wasn’t that long ago that people were less than thrilled about purchasing used vehicles. Let’s look at the facts. Used cars are not unlike the kittens and puppies at the pound – they are unwanted by the original owner. Next is the fact that they have something in common with your favorite, worn out sneakers – used vehicles tend to also have a lot of mileage on them. The biggest slap in the face might actually be that the used automobile you’re driving is sporting dings and dents that you didn’t even have the pleasure of causing yourself. Times have certainly changed.
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We are springing our clocks ahead this weekend and now is the time to start thinking about hitting the happy trails whether it be in the car or on a bike. With so much of the country experiencing a brutal winter, it’s no wonder that people are desperate to grab and hold onto even the smallest sign of spring. The weatherman said today that the NY/NJ/PA tri-state area will see temperatures rise to the low 50’s this weekend. Since this area has spent the last few weeks in a Polar Vortex I am sure that the spring like weather will be met with smiles and many different outdoor activities.
When you think about your childhood do you flashback to Cabbage Patch Dolls and Gameboys? I was born in the 1970’s so when I think of being a kid, I think of riding in the bed of my father’s pickup truck on a warm summer night. I would love it when my dad would put my brother and me in the back of the truck and take us to the lake to swim. While these memories make me smile, I suspect that lying down in the bed of a pickup truck while my dad tooled around town has something to do with me having serious motion sickness as an adult. I am chuckling to myself thinking about my mother’s station wagon. It was seriously ugly and the fights that took place in the back seat between me and my siblings should go down as some of the most brutal and violent back seat fights in history.
The future of automobiles is more exciting than ever. It wasn’t all that long ago that when people spoke about the future of automobiles that they were talking about flying cars. While I don’t think we will see flying cars anytime soon, I do think we will see some fascinating things come from this ever evolving industry.
Recently, the auto show in Detroit took place. The Detroit Auto Show is known to be the hot spot to unveil new cars, trucks, and SUV’s and to also showcase the latest in concept cars. This show never disappoints and 2014 was no exception. We were blown away by the latest and greatest, the coolest and the hottest, and basically just some of the sickest things we’ve seen in a long time.
Let’s start with Ford. Many people see the future in the automotive world in electric cars. While that may be true, the technology still needs to be developed further before the entire driving world can crossover from gasoline and diesel powered automobiles to those running on electricity. In the meantime, fuel efficient vehicles are what people are gravitating to and what we hope to see more of in the future. The best example of a company trying to cash in on the fuel efficiency market is Ford. The new F-150 went on a crash diet and lost 700 lbs! The new Ford F-150 was unveiled in Detroit and its makeover is sharp…AND smart! Ford has announced the F-150 will be made of aluminum instead of steel resulting in almost a 700 pound weight loss. The other notable change in this pickup truck is the frame which will be made of high strength steel. With these modifications Ford says it will now have the most fuel efficient F-150 ever. While Ford didn’t provide any data backing up their fuel efficiency claim, common sense tells us that any vehicle that drops 700 lbs. is sure to keep more gas in their tank.
It was no surprise that Mercedes, Lexus, and Porsche all debuted fancy new automobiles at the Detroit Auto Show. But what took the automotive world by storm did not come from a luxury or sports car manufacturer, it came from KIA! When we think of the future of sports cars we think of the Corvette or a Lamborghini. The future of the sports car might just rest with KIA. The KIA GT4 Stinger is a rear wheel drive concept car that shows KIA has the chops to build a head turning ride. This car boasts a 2.0 liter, turbocharged four cylinder engine that spits out 315 horsepower making it not only a car for the everyday driver but also a car that could hold its own on a racetrack. This car is sporty and trendy, and although KIA says they have no plans to produce it, we still have our fingers crossed!
The future of automobiles is ever changing and manufacturers are scrambling to keep up with the needs and wants of consumers. While we might not see flying cars in 2014, we will certainly see big strides by automotive manufactures to make vehicles as fuel efficient as possible and more and more concept cars to give us a glimpse into what the future might just hold for the car buyer.
We are less than a week away from what many think of as the romantic day of the year. Trying to find a Valentine’s day gift ideas for the car lover can be extremely difficult to say the least. When your special someone is a car enthusiast why not give them an experience rather than a gift. We’ve compiled several ideas that, when paired with dinner out, can give your car enthusiast a day they will always remember.
The first place any car enthusiast would be tickled to see is the Barret-Jackson car action in Scottsdale, Arizona. Dubbed as “The World’s Greatest Collector Car Auction” this place has it all. New cars, old cars, and vintage automobiles are on display to drool over and, if the mood strikes, you can also bid on your dream car. Tickets to this amazing auction are available online for $25 – what a small price to pay to give your one and only an experience they will remember forever!
If you happen to be in the Los Angeles, CA area why not bring your sweetheart by the Peterson Automotive Museum. This museum is housed in an old store on Wilshire Boulevard and houses up to 200 historic vehicles at a time. In addition to cars that are just plain cool, this is of course Hollywood so there are cars displayed from movies and celebrities. Check out a Batmobile or the 1983 400i Ferrari automatic-tranny convertible once owned by Rod Stewart. If your Valentine is a motorcycle aficionado the Peterson Automotive Museum has you covered with a separate area dedicated to vintage bikes.
For your someone special who is a fan of all things racing, may we recommend the International Motorsports Hall of Fame in Talladega, AL. With five separate buildings to explore, your car enthusiast’s heart will go pitter patter exploring all of the vintage NASCAR & Indy memorabilia. And since this museum is AT the Talladega race track, why not pair your museum visit with a race? This is one experience your love will never forget!
Lastly, if you are looking for an over the top, indulgent experience why not fly you and your Valentine to Wolfsburg, Germany to explore the Volkswagen Autostadt? This museum consists mostly of German automobiles and has become a top tourist destination. Here you will find the original Beetle along with many other vintage German cars. Here you can computer customize your own car or take a Touareg for a test drive on an obstacle course. Don’t forget to check out the gift shop on the way out for car mats or Beetle shaped baby squeeze toys! All in all, this is the trip of a lifetime for any car lover.
In the end Valentine’s Day is about the one you love. Make sure to put a little extra thought and effort into an experience that is sure to bring them a lifetime of memories and you’ll be rewarded knowing that you went the extra mile.
People who live in Florida or California sometimes only know it is winter by looking at their calendars. However, in the Midwest or Northeast, winter and its elements are bearing down on us creating travel nightmares and making many children happy with frequent school closings. Winter is a season frequently attributed to depression because of the short, dark days and the stress the weather tends to inflict on people. Driving to work on treacherous roadways, straining your back shoveling snow, and lining up childcare for snow days are just some of the reasons how winter can bring some major anxiety to those of us living in the throes of it. What we sometimes fail to remember though is the stress our vehicles endure during these long, harsh winter months as well. There are some simple things you can do to help prevent damage to your ride from the effects of the winter months.
One of the easiest is to invest in a quality set of floor mats. Tracking salt, sand, and snow into your vehicle is the quickest way to eat through the carpeting and possibly the floor causing extensive and expensive interior damage.
The salt used to treat roads can eat away paint and cause corrosion. It is important to treat your vehicle to a wash often during the winter months. Mud flaps are a great way to keep salt from getting up underneath the tire well and causing possible body rot and erosion to your truck.
Window visors are one of the most popular aftermarket accessories available today. Although window visors do not offer protection for your vehicle they do allow you to have your windows open even in inclement weather. Having a flow of fresh air aids in keeping your windows free of moisture build up while keeping rain and snow out of the car.
Keeping your vehicle stocked with a few essential items will also prepare you for any weather emergency you might encounter on the roads. Items that should be kept in your vehicle for an emergency include a flashlight, blanket, gallon of water, and a few granola bars. During the winter a bag of cheap cat litter is a great investment. The cat litter can give your vehicle traction should you get stuck in the snow.
In the end, winter will leave us as it does every year. We are looking forward to a beautiful spring where you can drop those convertible tops and leave winter far behind.
The countdown has begun to what many believe is the hottest new car showcase, not just the United States, but the rest of the automotive world as well. The North American International Automotive Show, often called simply the Detroit Auto Show 2014, begins its twelve day run on January 13th. The start of the show begins with two press only days where only the media has access to the show floor. The next two days are for automotive industry professionals only and that is followed by a charity preview day that will ultimately raise millions of dollars for different charities. The show concludes on the 25th after eight days of admission to the general public.
This year’s lineup will includes over forty automotive manufacturers from around the globe, and as in past years, many will be introducing their new models as well as concept cars. Some of the highlights of this year’s show is sure to be what Ford has done with the newly designed 2015 Ford F-150 pickup.
The F-150 has been the best selling pickup in the market for thirty six straight years and Ford is not about to sit on its laurels as others update their full size pickups. This new design features a complete makeover for both the interior and exterior of the truck. A new, smaller, ecoboost engine is also expected to be offered in addition to their extensive use of aluminum for weight reduction which Ford feels may significantly change the truck’s fuel economy. With other sleek modifications to the truck and new and impressive bells and whistles added, this truck is sure to impress at the NAIAS this year.
Another vehicle that promises to attract a lot of attention is the GT 41 Stinger concept car being displayed by Kia. Best known as for their offering of cost conscious and fuel stingy cars, the Stinger is a sharp looking rear wheel drive sports car. This concept car was designed at Kia’s U.S. design studio in Irvine California and is powered by a 315 hp 2.0liter engine. While many of the concept cars may never see the showroom floor, they often provide insight to the direction a car manufacturer may be heading in the upcoming years. Keep a look out for this one.
The NAIAS show never disappoints and, without fail, brings us the latest and greatest in the future of the automotive world. If you are lucky enough to attend this show please let us know what you thought was the coolest new ride on the floor. We welcome your pictures and your thoughts and hope to see everyone in Detroit.
Super Bowl XLVIII (48) will be played on February 2, 2014, at MetLife Stadium at the Meadowlands Sports Complex in East Rutherford, New Jersey. This will be the first Super Bowl to be played outdoors in the extreme cold weather, as well as the first in 38 years to be played outdoors on artificial turf. It is also the first in which two US states New York and New Jersey will work together with hosting duties.
Not only does the Super Bowl mark the end of the Football season it also marks the last game for the tailgaters untill the start of the next Football season. Extreme-weather tailgating is the ultimate test of any football fanatic. A real fan must be willing to endure often brutal weather conditions that come with winter. The trick is not letting Mother Nature put a damper on your team spirit by following these bad weather “bare essentials.”
What To Eat
A hearty bowl of chili or chowder, hot sandwiches and a tall mug of steaming hot chocolate with marshmallows says it all.. Also, plan your menu wisely to include foods that don’t require a fork and knife, or bare fingers instead opt for food on a stick or anything you can sip so that gloves can stay on while feasting.
How To Dress
Layers, layers, layers. If done correctly, the rule of three layers will retain body heat and keep you dry. The innermost layer should keep moisture away from the body, so look for garments that are made of “wicking” material. The middle layer(s) should trap in warm air – think wool, down and thermal garments. The outermost layer is for protection against the elements, whether rain, wind or snow. Even if you layer perfectly, a cold head or cold feet will counterbalance your success, so hats are critical at all times and shoes/boots should always be waterproof.
Get In Bed- Add a rubber or carpeted bed floor or mats. Make a tent that can fit over the truck bed for protection against the cold. Add a cap this will also keep it warmer in the bed of the truck. Fill the bed with lots of blankets, hand warmers and anything else you can think of that will help in keeping warm.
There’s A Hitch- Load a trailer with your folding chairs, and if you can find some, grab some large sheets of Styrofoam to lay on the ground. The Styrofoam will keep your feet from being on the cold ground which will keep you warmer. Bring an extra grill for extra heat.
Don’t miss the fun at the tailgate party because of the raw weather conditions. These tips for tailgating in cold weather will keep you warm and in the middle of the tailgating activities, you love so much.
Winter is tough on vehicles and travel. Snow, cold temperatures, ice, slush and salt play havoc on a vehicle and our driving. The odds of us having a driving emergency are much greater in winter than in the other three seasons. One of the primary concerns is the winter weather’s ability to knock out heat, power and communications services to your home or office, sometimes for days at a time. Heavy snowfall and extreme cold can immobilize an entire region. So, it pays to keep a kit in your trunk with all the things you are likely to need.
- Blanket: If you are stuck with a car that won't start, or that has conked out, and have to wait in cold weather for help, you will want a decent warm blanket as an extra layer.
- Snow shovel: Get a short-handled shovel, probably a coal-type shovel, to stow in the trunk in case you need to remove snow from around the wheels of your vehicle. You can buy plastic ones, but you may want to opt for a metal one in case you also need to chip at some ice or compacted snow.
- Flashlight: Self explanatory. Keep a good-sized, water-proof flashlight with fresh batteries in case your breakdown is at night. Pack emergency candles too, as a back-up.
- Hand warmers: Smash the bag and the chemical reaction inside creates warmth to defrost fingers that may be trying to change a tire or fiddle with an engine.
- Matches: You never know when you will have to manufacture heat. It's better than rubbing two cold, snowy sticks together, hoping for the best.
- Bottle of water and a few protein, snack bars. You hear of people surviving on ketchup packets that have fallen between the seats, but some planning will yield a better menu under emergency conditions.
- Syphon Pump: If being out of gas is your problem, and you get offered help by a good samaritan, you want t be able to get a gallon or two of gas out of another gas tank to get you going quickly.
- Light sticks: These cost almost nothing at a dollar store and can be used either as a light source or to wear in case you are shoveling snow around your wheels at night.
- Flares: These should be in your trunk in all seasons for putting next to your car if you are pulled over in distress.
- Whistle: It can be used to either signal for help to someone who can't hear you yell, or to scare someone who may be trying to take advantage of your distress.
Some other items that may help are: first aid kit with pocket knife, battery-powered radio, extra hats, socks and mittens, tow chain or rope, road salt, sand or cat litter for traction, booster cables, and an extra cell phone charger.
During a winter accident or a breakdown, your vehicle becomes your shelter. By having a winter emergency survival kit, you and your passengers can await rescue safely, comfortably and without fear.
We here at BUY AUTO TRUCK ACCESSORIES, we want to know that you are safe during these next few months of winter weather. Happy Holidays and drive safe.
We took our kids to see Santa two year ago, and it went pretty well considering that our youngest who was one and a half at the time fell asleep while waiting in line. Last year we put a little more planning into our trip, when was a good time of the day, when would the lines be the shortest, was there a better day then the next, anything and everything to avoid any meltdowns. So last year our youngest was able to tell us that we were going to see Santa, but he didn’t really “get” Santa last year. On line at the mall we talked about how all the boys and girls were sitting on Santa’s lap and said when it was his turn that he could sit on Santa’s lap. He said “Santa’s lap” multiple times as we were approaching his turn. We thought great he is going to do it. Then he started saying, “Santa’s lap…no” while shaking his head. So…we were *those* parents. The ones forcing their toddler to sit on Santa’s lap, just so we can have a picture. Yep. That was us.
This year no mall for us, as we will be traveling. I still want the Santa experience but not the mall experience, I want something different. So if you're traveling over the holidays like us, don't worry about missing Santa Claus. I have heard St. Nick will be making extra efforts to reach his pint-sized admirers by showing up on skis, trains, boats and much more. These unique Santa meet-and-greet experiences offer more than just the chance to report good behavior and make special gift requests! They make great childhood memories to be past down from generation to generation. Don’t know where you will be this Christmas season, but I have found some places that have something different to offer across the states. Here are what seems to be the top 8
1. Santa's Workshop, Colorado
2. North Pole Experience, Arizona
3. Santa Claus, Indiana
4. The Polar Express (offered in many states)
5. California Surf, California
6. Skiing the Slopes (check for closest resort hosting Santa this season)
7. In and Around Atlanta
8. Stylish Arrivals (how about Santa on jet skis)
How else would Santa arrive at the Jolly Beach Resort & Spa in Antigua other than by boat with gifts in his (waterproof) sack and ready for a party? In Rockland Maine, he didn't arrive by any old boat. Instead the Coast Guard gave him a lift earlier this month. When in Hawaii, Santa will do as the Hawaiians do ... yup, at the Outrigger Waikiki on the Beach, the Big Guy arrives by outrigger canoe on December 14 where he'll be met by hundreds of Santa fans who are invited to join him for a meet-and-greet and photo-taking in the lobby.
I'm sure the beach is a nice change of pace for St. Nick, but I suspect that he is most at home in the cold, so it came as no surprise that the Christmas season will find him on the slopes. Imagine a whole ski slope of skiing and snowboarding Santa’s. Sounds like that’s what you’ll find at Big White in British Columbia on December 21st during "Dress Like Santa or Mrs. Claus & Ride for Free Day" (for the first 30 people to arrive at the Village Centre Mall in full Santa or Mrs. Claus attire).
Santa and Mrs. Claus will also be welcoming guests into their home, lovingly recreated in Busch Gardens' Christmas Town in Tampa and Williamsburg. Their house will be buzzing with Christmas cheer as elves busily prepare to help Santa bring joy to children around the world. Stop by Mrs. Claus' kitchen and snag a holiday cookie before an elf leads you into Santa's private study. There, Santa Claus eagerly awaits your company, where you can meet, share stories, take pictures and whisper your wish list to the jolliest man around.
So sure, you can go visit Santa at the mall, wait in the long lines, listening to the screaming kids and hope that you get an “ok” picture ... but wouldn't it be more fun to find the old guy out on an adventure?