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The Latest News And Reviews
Throughout The Car Industry

Categories: Miscellaneous

Don't You Just...

On: Sat, Sep 3, 2011 at 11:14AM | By: Peter C Sessler

Don't You Just... test 2

Don’t you just hate it when someone rushes into your lane from a side street and then slows to a crawl?

Don’t you just hate it when you’re stuck behind some loud, jacked-up, beat-up pick-up truck spewing noxious fumes?

Don’t you just hate it when you see a trooper’s lights come on behind you?

Don’t you just love it when, as you move over to stop, he quickly passes you to get that guy in the jacked-up, beat-up pick-up truck?

Engine Flushing - Does It Work?

On: Sat, Sep 3, 2011 at 8:48AM | By: Peter C Sessler

Engine Flushing - Does It Work? test 2

This subject has been getting more and more attention these days—it is internal engine cleaning, better known as flushing. This is being promoted by the quick oil-change people, among others, with the advice that if you clean out the engine of accumulated sludge, deposits, and other yucky stuff, it will run better and hopefully longer. Is this effective or not?

As usual, when it comes to things automotive, the answer is both yes and no.

Chevy's Calming New Commericals (Video)

On: Fri, Sep 2, 2011 at 5:24PM | By: David Walter

Chevy's Calming New Commericals test 2

A couple weeks ago, we showed you the funny, new Dodge Durango commercials and Nissan’s “we’re back now” ads a week later. Now Chevy has a few new commercials for its Silverado and Tahoe. But unlike Dodge and Nissan’s which rely heavily on narration and comparing themselves to other car makers, Chevrolet’s new commercials are the exact opposite—not a single word spoken or rival company belittled.

According to Autoblog, the new Silverado and Tahoe ads will air mostly on The Outdoor Channel which makes complete sense once you watch them. They feature the soothing sounds of nature, the warm glow of sunrise, camouflaged good-ol’ boys… and, of course, Chevy trucks.

Admittedly, I’m not much of a hunter or fisherman, but even I can appreciate these ads. In 30 seconds, they provide that calming beauty of becoming one with nature experienced by waking up super early and sitting in a tree stand all day without waking up super early and sitting in a tree stand all day (sorry, hunters).

All three companies’ commercials—in my opinion—are marketing money well spent, but it’s nice to take a break from the mudslinging and name-calling and let the product tell its own story.

Read on to watch the videos.

Haunted Highways: A Series Exploring The Ghosts of Cars Gone By (Quickly)

On: Fri, Sep 2, 2011 at 2:05PM | By: Lou Ruggieri

2003 Ford SVT Mustang Cobra test 2

For well over three decades, the battle for Ponycar supremacy has raged on between Mustang, Camaro, Firebird, and a host of other pavement pounding miscreants at race tracks, stoplights, and bar stools across the country. Each new edition of one car brought about new brags and taunts about how antiquated the other car was in contrast. 

Over and over it went, and throughout most of the 1990s, the LT1 and later LS1 Camaros and Firebirds wreaked havoc on the psyches of Mustang owners everywhere. Even though the more 'advanced' single and dual overhead cam modular motors of the Mustang GT and Cobra theoretically had a technological edge over the GM's antiquated pushrods, the Blue Oval just got out-muscled by the General's good 'ole fashioned torque and tuning. Mustang owners noticed, as did Mustang builders. 

In a pound-for-pound fight, there was no fight. A bone stock Camaro SS or Firebird WS6 would obliterate any Mustang Cobra (discounting the ultra-limited 2000 Cobra R model, but even then in a straight line it was still a driver's race). At the turn of the millennium, even though the Mustang was the decidedly more popular car (thanks in no small part to enormous V6 sales) it seemed that not all 300-horsepower cars were created equal, and the General's 325 Thoroughbreds were more than the 320 Clydesdales that Ford was offering up at the track. But then in 2002, everything changed and the Mustang struck back with a one-two punch that knocked the Camaro out for the next seven years.


A Pulsing Problem

On: Fri, Sep 2, 2011 at 10:48AM | By: Peter C Sessler

A Pulsing Problem test 2

There are many reasons for vehicle brakes to pulsate, or move up and down (you can feel the pedal actually moving). This is often most noticeable when you have to slow down quickly from a high speed, and it can be unsettling.

As with any other repair, the first thing to do is eliminate the most obvious and easy reasons why this is happening. If your car has ABS brakes, are you sure that it isn’t that system causing the problem? If you know what the wheel speed sensors look like and see a bad connector or some other ABS-related component, it could be the source of your troubles. This is a long shot, but you never know.

Radar And Laser Detectors

On: Thu, Sep 1, 2011 at 12:42PM | By: Peter C Sessler

Radar And Laser Detectors test 2

For the past 40 years or so there has been an escalating electronics war between the police on one side and motorists on the other who prefer to travel at speeds that are higher than those posted. The reason police use radar and other methods to detect speeding vehicles is primarily a safety issue—the faster you go, the more likelihood there is of having an accident. That may or may not be true, but like everything else, there’s more to it than meets the eye. Besides the safety issue, issuing speeding tickets has become a lucrative source of income for certain localities across the country. You’ll find that small community police forces will prey on unsuspecting out-of-town traffic (mostly) by posting speed limits that are unrealistically low.

Anyway, my personal feeling is that speed limits, especially on the interstates, are routinely ignored by the vast majority of drivers. All you have to do is drive on some of the local Interstates. People drive at whatever speed they feel comfortable—legal or not.

Sunday And Other Drivers

On: Wed, Aug 31, 2011 at 12:43PM | By: Peter C Sessler

Sunday And Other Drivers test 2

There are certain drivers out there who have an annoying way of driving. Probably, the best way to summarize their behavior is to say they are somewhat more self-absorbed than most of us, and so they fail to notice the effects of their driving on others. I think I could tolerate them if they drove just on Sundays, but, unfortunately, they are out there every day.

The stereotypical Sunday Driver is one who drives a bit (quite a bit, at times) more slowly than everyone else. "Look Martha, at all the nice trees and leaves." Meanwhile, of course, you’re trying to make it to the bank before the drive-up window closes.

Are You A SUV Or Minivan Type?

On: Wed, Aug 31, 2011 at 9:02AM | By: Peter C Sessler

Are you a SUV or Minivan type? test 2

Over the past 25 years or so, the most popular vehicles in America have been minivans and SUV vehicles.  And one of the areas where the automakers have concentrated their research dollars is in finding out who buys these vehicles, the reasons behind it and what it says about them. And this research has affected the way these vehicles are designed and marketed.

If you look at this group by median income, age, occupation, family size and where they live, minivan and SUV buyers seem, at first glance, to be very similar.  The typical buyer of a minivan or an SUV is more often than not, an affluent couple in their 40s with children. And even though minivans have a reputation of being “Mom’s” car, like, SUV’s, the principal drivers are male.

Synthetic Oils - Are They For You?

On: Tue, Aug 30, 2011 at 10:19AM | By: Peter C Sessler

Synthetic Oils - Are They For You? test 2

You’ve probably heard a lot about synthetic oils, good and bad. Still, there are things you should consider, before you decide which is better for your car – conventional or synthetic oil. First, now every manufacturer offers their synthetic oil version and existing brands have been reformulated and improved. There are more synthetic blends around, too. The blends are supposed to bridge the gap between true synthetics and regular oils, in terms of price and performance.

There are lots of reasons why you should consider synthetics.

Driving Abroad

On: Mon, Aug 29, 2011 at 5:27PM | By: Peter C Sessler

Driving Abroad test 2

Think American drivers are bad and undisciplined? You don’t know how good you have it until you’ve driven abroad. Since I’ve had the opportunity to drive in several foreign countries, I’ll save you the trouble of finding out yourself.

First, let’s take a look at the cars themselves. Generally, you’ll find that use of automatic transmissions is still lagging abroad. The reason for this is fairly simple. Automatic equipped cars cost more, and also use more gas. With gas costing more than it does here, the typical foreign driver prefers to use a manual transmission. Don’t worry, for those of you who don’t know how to shift, rental cars are typically equipped with automatic transmissions.

Driving habits obviously differ from country to country – it is to be expected. English and German drivers are more disciplined than those here, especially the Germans. Because they drive much faster in Germany, you’ll find that slower drivers do stay in the slower lanes. You won’t find self-appointed speed-limit wardens holding up traffic, because it’s downright dangerous to do so – cars will be cruising at speeds way over 100 mph, and you don’t want to get in their way.

How To Detect Drunk Drivers

On: Mon, Aug 29, 2011 at 2:29PM | By: Peter C Sessler

How To Detect Drunk Drivers test 2

Even with all the stigma attached to driving under the influence (DUI), public warnings, increasingly stiffer sentences, etc., people just don’t seem to get the message. Tens of thousands of people still die each year because of drunk-driving—and it could be anyone. You really can’t assume that there are particular classes of people who DUI.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has put together a booklet that lists visual clues that can be used to identify whether a nighttime driver is likely to be drunk or not, based on the results of field studies in which clues were observed in more than 4,600 patrol stops correlated with driver blood-alcohol concentrations (BAC). These clues or cues account for more than 90 percent of all DUI detections.

I‘ve listed the cues below. The number given with each visual cue is the probability that a driver exhibiting that cue has a BAC equal to or greater than 0.10.