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Automotive Trends for 2014


With 2013 behind us, it is the perfect time to look ahead at what the year of 2014 has in store for the automobile industry. As modern vehicles continue to evolve every year, there are imminent changes on the horizon for companies, vehicles and even individual features. On both the large and small scales, 2014 will usher in new additions, as well as the demise of some things in the automotive world.

In With the New

Each and every year, the automotive audience waits eagerly for the newest vehicles and news. First of all, the upcoming year will see the resurgence of diesel-powered vehicles and producers beginning to focus on rolling them out. With a stronger performance than its more common counterparts, diesel engines will have drivers thinking that their vehicles could double as power systems once again.

Another major addition in 2014 will be an entire manufacturer to the forefront—Qoros. Although it is based in China, Qoros is an international producer that appears ready to break into the market with a sedan and crossover model. One more large-scale trend in 2014 will be collaboration between manufacturers. With Hyundai and Kia already set to build another plant together, we may also see joint efforts from GM and Ford, Toyota and Subaru, as well as others.

On a slightly smaller scale, the new year will see even more smart cars. It will be difficult to find a new car that doesn’t talk to you, or at you, either with actual words, like Siri reading your messages, or with noises, like that annoying beep when you get too close to an object. Even more advanced are the semi-autonomous vehicles that can perform some functions on their own, such as blind-spot detection and emergency breaking.

Out With the Old

Just as new things will be introduced on the macro and micro scale, so will some old things be on the decline. For instance, 2014 will witness the exodus of Mitsubishi as it follows the trend of manufacturers leaving the US market. Additionally, Toyota will be abandoning the Scion in the upcoming year as the manufacturer is giving dealers the option to not sell Scion products, as well as revealing that there will be no new Scion models coming in the near future. Another major trend of 2014 will be the loss of support for ethanol as fuel. Along with the rise of domestic oil production, the potential negative consequences on farming and food supply are encouraging a drop-off in the popularity of ethanol.

Some smaller trends, such as the fallout of several regular vehicle features, will also come in 2014. First of all, the CD player will begin to die out this year. Although it will be some time before we see the CD player become completely extinct, the popularity of XM radio and the ability to connect smartphones with personal music to vehicles are certainly making CD players a thing of the past. Manual hand brakes will also fade away in 2014; with the introduction and increase of the electronic emergency brake, manufacturers are beginning to leave out the old-fashioned hand brake.

Thanks to the emergence of advanced automatic gearboxes, manual transmissions will no longer be the preferred method for better fuel economy. Since carrying just one transmission option will be cheaper for manufacturers, the manual transmission will be trending downward in the upcoming year as it is supplanted by its automatic counterpart. Finally, and perhaps most disturbing, the trend of vehicles that consumers cannot work on themselves will be at large in this new year. Due to the fact that dealers and manufacturers don’t want people doing their own maintenance on vehicles, items like plastic panels are becoming more prevalent in new models to make it hard for anyone but the automakers to get to certain components, such as the engine.

4 Essential Steps to Storing Your Car in the Winter


Some cars are just not meant for the rigor and abuse a harsh winter can deliver, so it’s into the garage for your baby. Whether you’re in possession of a classy BMW, an iconic ’69 Corvette Stingray, or you just don’t want to drive that Audi convertible through the salt-laden ice and snow, there are a few steps that you should take in order to stash your ride for a few months.

Winter can wreak havoc on a vehicle, even if it isn’t being driven. Just because you aren’t trampling over the dirt, grime, salt, rocks, moisture and dust doesn’t mean that your baby isn’t going to come into contact with these nasties. It is important that you keep this in mind, because there is a delivery method for winter problems: the wind.

When the wind whips up, it carries those particles, and they begin to accumulate on car surfaces. Also, critters are another concern, because your vehicle looks like a lovely home for them. There’s a good chance that you’ve experienced this before: the month of April arrives, you gleefully skip over to your pride and joy, remove the cover and find patches of rust and other cosmetic evils! How can this be?

Let’s avoid such a tragedy this year.

1. Store a Clean Car

Before your Chevy hibernates for the winter months, you need to clean her. No, we don’t simply mean just a quick scrub — we mean a thorough, total, elbow-grease-driven kind of clean.

Be sure to remove any problem areas that already show dirt, as this will attract and hold moisture like a sponge. Also, don’t allow any rust spots to persist, as these will only worsen over time, and especially over the winter. Similar to how that lovely-smelling ocean salt spray can damage your car’s paint job, the wind-blown salt from the roads will do even worse. That kind of salt is actually more damaging and will likely accelerate rust corrosion.

Next, protect your ride with a good, dirt-rust-moisture-repelling wax. If there are any exposed metallic surfaces, then be sure to hit those with a protective polish. Even WD-40 will do a fantastic job at keeping the evil grime-monster at bay.

Last, clean out the inside of your vehicle. Not only will it be nice to come back to a spic and span beautiful car, but leaving that old Twinkie rapper and bag of curly fries in the back seat could cause more than just a stench problem. It could toss up a flag that says, “Please live in me! I have food!”

2. Critter Proof

Now that we’ve gotten the hardest part out of the way, it’s time to start thinking about that other issue of winter storage: critters. Tiny rodent creatures will find just about any crack or crevice to turn into a lovely winter home. This might be convenient for them, but it could be very bad for you.

First, you will want to shove a sock in the tail pipe. This makes sure that nothing will live, or die, in there. The implications of a critter living in your tailpipe should be somewhat obvious.

Unfortunately, mice are also a major issue, but the biggest problem with them is their size. These guys can climb into just about anything. It’s said that dryer sheets and mothballs might do the trick of keeping them away. However, there really is no foolproof way of keeping them out. The key is to make it less inviting and a little bit harder to access.

3. Car Cover

This step is arguably the most important. You need to get yourself a car cover that will fit your particular vehicle and not leave any surface material exposed. The car cover will not only keep out the rain, ice and snow, but it will also make it just that much more difficult for a critter to find a home in your baby.

There are plenty of nifty custom car covers that will fit snuggly over your vehicle. The best part about them is that they give your ’72 Corvette a snazzy place to hibernate for the winter.

Unfortunately, car covers will not block out the wind, which means they won’t be able to keep all moisture out, but it is certainly better than exposing your car to the elements.

Master Your Car Remodel: How to Finance New Repairs

When your car starts making a funny noise, you can only avoid it for so long. After meeting with a mechanic, you’ll likely find yourself raising your eyebrows at the estimate that you receive. Even the most basic of repair bills can rise to $1,000 or more, but you can find a few ways to cut those costs or finance the job.

Master Your Car Remodel How to Finance New Repairs

Use a Short-Term Loan

A short-term loan is a loan that you pay back within one year or less. Most banks and credit unions won’t finance loans with shorter terms because the lenders won’t make back much money on that loan. You can take out an auto title loan, or a payday loan to pay for the repair bill, or you can use a peer to peer loan. Peer to peer lenders are available online, but you can also borrow money from family or friends. Some mechanics also offer payment plans and in-house financing.


Compare Costs

Never settle for the first price you receive from a mechanic. You wouldn’t hire the first person who offered to repair your roof, and you shouldn’t hire the first person who looks at your car either. After the mechanic gives you a price, take the job to other technicians. If you ask five different mechanics for the cost of repairing a small problem, you’ll receive five different answers.


Ask for an Estimate

Always ask for a written estimate that includes the cost of any materials needed, and the labor involved in that job. You can find a number of websites that tell you the average cost of various jobs. These websites show you how much the parts cost, how much labor should cost on the job, and what other mechanics charge per labor hour. Use that information to determine if your mechanic offers the best rates.


Opt for Used Parts

Buying used parts is the secret to turning a big estimate into an affordable job. Whether you need SS Monte Carlo parts, or parts for a vintage automobile, used car parts often cost half or less than new parts do. Talk to your mechanic about lowering the cost of your repair bill with a few used parts. Used parts typically come with the same guarantee that you would receive on new parts.


Not everyone can afford to pay a high repair bill, but you can lower your price with used parts. Don’t forget to compare rates from other mechanics and look at financing options available to you.

Five Ways to Make Your Auto Dealership Stand Out at the Next Tradeshow

Does your auto dealership have a unique brand backing it? If you want to promote your brand and stand apart from the crowd, participating in an industry tradeshow is key. But if you spend the money to buy space at an industry tradeshow, you need to make sure that you stand out and that you attract attendees to your booth to hear what value you can offer them. If you are planning on participating in an upcoming tradeshow, here are five ways you can guarantee that your company will be seen.

Five Ways to Make Your Auto Company Stand Out at the Next Tradeshow

A Dazzling Display is Key

If you have a boring tradeshow display, persuading people to come to your booth instead of the one with a modular display and flashy design will be virtually impossible. Remember that people gather a first impression of your company in just three seconds based on looks. If you want to impress your audience, invest in a custom display that dazzles the eye.


Have a Professional Face

If you are not the type to get in front of an audience and speak comfortably, make sure you have a very energetic person representing your brand. Did you know that you can hire people to represent your brand at tradeshows? Have a professional face and very social people walking around the event to drive traffic to your booth.


Send out Mailers

You will find out your booth number early as you are preparing for the event. Make sure to order invitation mailers and marketing postcards so that you can send your prospects and customers invitations. Letting people know that you’ll be participating in the tradeshow could drive more traffic to your booth.


Engage with Mobile Applications

Be sure to keep your audience engaged. With so many people using mobile devices to connect to the internet, you can truly benefit from designing a mobile app just for your tradeshow. Find suppliers and mobile app creators in the Cleveland, Ohio, area. By giving participants tools to engage with you at the tradeshow, you can show them videos and keep them excited about your brand.


Give a Gift that Keeps Giving

Many attendees go to tradeshows to learn about new cars or to receive gifts. Consider educating them but don’t forget to give promotional products that reinforce your brand. These useful items can be imprinted with the name of your dealership and contact details.


Tradeshows are a great platform for auto companies to promote their brand. If you want to show off a new model or dazzle an audience with your advanced features, drive the traffic to your booth by using these tips. If you put in the effort, it will pay off with ROI.

Why Every Man Needs Driving Gloves

If you are thinking about simple car gadgets for men that you can acquire without denting your wallet, you cold consider men’s driving gloves for a change. These are found in a number of department stores, gadget shops and boutiques; they are also available online for those who don’t have the time to go shopping in town. You only need to do an online search for some of those reputable shops and you will acquire for yourself some fashionable driving gloves that will actually be delivered to your address and you begin enjoying the experience.

Some gadgets for men such as driving gloves have been around for a while but they are now slowly making a comeback. Originally, these were used as a protective accessory to protect a driver’s hands especially during those days when steering wheels were either wooden or metallic. You can now use them to enhance your safety while driving because they enable you to have a better grip of the steering wheel. Even though modern cars have greatly improved safety features on the steering wheel, there are men who are now combining fashion with safety and this has seen the proliferation of leather driving gloves once again.

Apart from safety as a reason for having men’s driving gloves, comfort is another important purpose why you may require them. These gloves are normally made from some very exquisite materials and are lined with a fabric that is extremely friendly to the skin. Wearing a pair of these gloves will eliminate any form of discomfort that can be associated with driving. One other feature that you will love about them is the fact that they are actually breathable and, as such, the skin on your hands cannot be stifled as a result of the hardness of leather. This unique quality also ensures that you are not affected by episodes of sweating on the hands due to excessive heat. With this car gadget for men you will actually arrive at your destination with smooth hands that are devoid of sweat or any sores.

Anyone who is in love with car gadgets for men will definitely consider driving gloves as a simple accessory that will enhance their comfort and safety on the road. Even if you are comfortable with the state of your car’s steering wheel, you may want to take over these gloves due to their aesthetic value. Driving in leather gloves definitely makes a big fashion statement and because they come in chic designs and different bold and attractive colors, everyone’s taste can easily be taken care of. You want to combine the look of a fashionable driver with some form of sophistication; this is something every man will want to be associated with.

The best way to find men’s driving gloves is to do your shopping online; the online shop will give you greater variety in terms of design and color schemes. You can also browse and compare features and prices from different online shops so that you get the best value for money. There are retailers selling car gadgets for men who stock the leading brands and with them you can comfortable shop in a secure environment without any hassles.

About the author:

This blog post is offered by Mohit Jain who is a gadget geek and loves writing on gadgets and gizmos. If you are someone who shares the passion for car gadgets for men then he recommends you visit Men’s Gear. Its an uber cool site that features amazing and unique not to be found elsewhere gadgets, gears and gizmos.


Prevent Car Trouble This Year With Five Simple Steps

In order to keep a car running superbly and ensure it has a long, productive, safe and efficient life, there are five proven, simple maintenance steps car owners need to follow. These steps can either be done by car owners themselves, or will be inexpensive maintenance tasks that can be done by a reputable, local garage. When it comes to your car, you want to get the most out of your investment. Protect and prevent costly repairs and other major trouble by using your time now to maintain it.


Change The Oil Regularly

Oil is the liquid that lubricates an engine. To lubricate properly, the oil has to be clean. This usually means changing it at least every 3,000-5,000 miles. Dirty oil will definitely shorten the lifespan of any car. Make a schedule for when to change it, and learn how to do it to save yourself time and money later.


Top Off All The Other Fluids

In addition to keeping the oil clean and having adequate amounts of it in a car at all times, it’s equally important to keep all the other fluids in the car at appropriate levels. These fluids include the coolant/antifreeze, the brake fluid, the power steering fluid, and the automatic transmission oil. Make a schedule to keep these fluids on track as well.


Flush The Radiator and Change The Transmission Fluid

The coolant/antifreeze mixture should be flushed and refilled with fresh fluid at least once a year. The automatic transmission fluid and filter should also be changed annually as well for the greatest longevity for the vehicle. Most car owners will want a repair shop to perform these maintenance tasks.


Always Check The Tires

With poor quality tires, a car will be dangerous to drive. Less than adequate tire air pressure, balding, loss of tire tread, or even over-inflation can lead to diminished steering and braking capacity. That’s why it’s so important to have tires professionally inspected at a nearby tire shop. At, car owners can find out more.


Change The Air Filter Regularly

Only very expensive air filters are meant to last for a vehicle’s entire lifetime, so the chances of a car owner requiring regular air filter changes is quite high. It should be visually inspected every three months. Even more if a lot of driving on dirt roads is done.


By adhering to all of the aforementioned five simple tips, car owners can finally have peace of mind each and every time they start up their vehicle to take a drive. Use a schedule and common sense to keep your car running smoothly.

Saving for Parts: How to Finance Your Car Remodel

Making the decision to remodel a vehicle can be very exciting, regardless of whether you plan on remodeling the interior, exterior, or both. Still, a car remodel can also be very expensive. Depending on the amount of work that needs to be done, you could end up putting thousands, or even tens of thousands of dollars of your hard-earned money into your car remodel. Fortunately, there are some tips that can help you get the financing you need to pay for your dream car.


Consider Selling Old Parts

Even if the car’s existing parts are old or worn, you may still be able to get some money for them. Not to mention, selling old parts also helps keep them out of junk yards and is a great way to recycle. The money that you make from the old parts can be put towards buying new ones, and another driver may be able to find a use for the existing part. It is truly a win-win situation for all involved.


Do Some Work Yourself

To save on labor costs, you may consider doing some of the remodeling on your own. Of course, it is probably best to leave major work, such as installing a new engine, to the experts. However, installing a new audio system, or even putting on new tires is something that you may be able to do on your own, provided that you have the proper tools. This can save you hundreds or thousands of dollars down the road that can be better spent on parts than labor.


Seek Out Financing

If you know you are not going to be able to come up with all the funds needed to remodel your car, then you may benefit from taking out a loan to finance the remainder. Loan amounts anywhere from a few hundred, to several thousand dollars can be obtained through financing companies, such as Power Finance of El Paso, to help you get the money that you need for your new car parts. This money can be used not only to buy parts, but to cover labor and other expenses as well. By paying off the loan in a timely manner, you build your credit in the process. When you consider how your remodel will be saving you in costly repairs later on, this small loan could save you thousands.


Remodeling a car can be a very fun and rewarding experience. With financing and smart ways of saving money, give some or even all of the above tips a try. You will have your car looking like new in no time.

Three Beautiful Cars Destroyed In A Movie

We’ve all seen it in movies: a classic car, maybe something cherry red and gleaming from a fresh wax and rubdown with a chamois cloth. The hero, possibly with a buddy or love interest in the passenger seat, sends the beautiful vintage automobile flying down the streets of a major metropolis, looking awesome.


And then. Oh, man, cover your eyes, because then that beautiful antique vehicle, worth a hundred thousand dollars or more but really priceless because it can’t ever be totally replaced … crashes. Metal, glass flying everywhere — maybe the car even sinks into a lake or the ocean. Either way, it’s like watching someone setting fire to art. Just heartbreaking.


But, if we’re going to be honest, also totally fun to watch. Here are five movies that committed unforgivable acts of cinema violence to beautiful classic cars, and kept millions entertained while they did it. And luckily, there’s a place like to repair any kind of car from any kind of drama, onscreen or off.


1. The Porsche 928 from Risky Business


Oh, Tom Cruise, you irresponsible son, you. In 1983′s Risky Business, not only does The Man Who Would Be Famous fool around on his parent’s stairs with a floozy, and not only does he touch the stereo, but he sends his father’s beloved Porsche 928 to a watery grave in Lake Michigan. Cruise says in the film: “Porsche. There is no substitute.” Maybe a boat might serve better. Just sayin’. Damage: $107,000.


2. Starsky & Hutch’s 1974 Ford Torino


One of the big differences between TV shows and the movie adaptations they inspire is that the latter sport much bigger budgets. This means that car crashes on TV tend to happen offscreen with either recycled footage from the one car the stuntmen were allowed to wreck or simply sound effects and reaction shots instead of showing the destruction. In 2004′s movie of Starsky & Hutch, not only do audiences get to see an immaculate Torino jump right past villain Vince Vaughn’s boat and into the ocean beyond, but they also get outtake footage of a slightly sloppy stunt driver accidentally shredding the front end of one of the film’s classic cars. Don’t look; it’s too painful. Damage: $32,000.


3. The 1963 Modena Spyder California from Ferris Bueller’s Day Off


This is a car so beautiful, so rare, so classic that even the big budget Matthew Broderick film couldn’t afford to destroy the real thing. That lovely vehicle that crashes through the window of Cameron’s dad’s display room was a replica — the real thing cost $350,000 in 1986 ($750,000 today). But here’s how you know a car is something special: when its replica sells for over a hundred grand. And that’s after it was towed away, destroyed, from the Bueller set and completely restored. Damage: Real thing, $750,000. Replica, $120,000.

FMCSA To Hold Public Listening Session On Entry-Level Training

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration FMSCA announced that they would be holding a public listening session on January 7, 2013 to get feedback and ideas regarding the safety training for all entry-level commercial drivers. The feedback from this meeting will be taken into consideration as the government agency makes revisions to the current Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act (MAP-21) bill. The listening session offers a unique opportunity for those in the industry to have a real say in the legislation and regulations imposed on commercial drivers.

Moving Ahead for Progress Bill

The MAP bill was signed into law back in July by President Obama and will remain in effect, until mid-2014. The bill not only addresses safety for commercial vehicle drivers but also ruled on funding provided to states to improve the conditions and safety of their roads, transit systems, and bridges. The Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood expressed the bill was completely bipartisan with the aim of increasing up safety efforts in roads, transit, and motor carrier safety.

Importance of Adequate Safety Training for New Drivers

When it comes to introducing new drivers into a fleet, they need to be trained fully in safe practices as well as the extensive regulations placed on commercial drivers. A recent article from Fleet Owner spoke with the director of safety and policy with the Truckload Carriers Association, David Heller, who explained that generally changes to training requirements are well received when they benefit the industry. He went on to state that the FMCSA should be focusing on ensuring entry-level drivers are receiving the best training and that the processes surrounding this training are sound.

Getting Involved and Making Your Voice Heard

Those who will be impacted by any changes to the MAP bill such as drivers and fleet owners/supervisors should ensure that their thoughts are heard. The FMCSA asks that all that choose to participate and provide suggestions and ideas also include studies and research when applicable.  All information presented will be reviewed by the agency and considered when drafting revisions to the training. The driver safety training talk will be extremely important in deciding future laws and regulations for drivers.   The more training commercial drivers have can lead to less accidents on the road.  Making sure these drivers are prepared to the fullest before they get on the road is extremely important.  Some of these changes could lead to an overall safer experience for all drivers on the road.

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Chuck Stevens is an avid blogger always looking to share his experiences and recommendations. He loves traveling, is a huge football fan and works everyday towards preparing you drivers for the road.  You can follow him on Twitter @chuckstevens12.

Why Buy A Used Car?

Just because you have a poor credit score doesn’t mean you should be eliminated from buying a used car. After all, that car may play a key role in getting you to and from the very job that will pay the bills, and therefore help increase your credit score. If you can’t afford, or unable to qualify for new car financing, then buying a used car may be the right option for you. However, buying used cars is not only for people who are unable to qualify for new car financing. Timothy Allen, who sells used cars in Brownsville TX, says, “Buying used cars is no longer something mean for people who can’t afford a brand new car… it’s a smart decision for first-time car buyers… particularly young adults who don’t want a pricey car as their first vehicle.”

Below are the two biggest benefits to buying a used car:

Saving Money
The most obvious benefit of buying a used car is of course, saving money. A used car usually costs a significant amount less than a brand new car and often is in great shape – it just has a few extra miles on it. Depending on your budget, you may be able to buy a used vehicle that’s like new… otherwise it may require a few minor fixes to get it into shape. Buying a used car is perfect for a shopper on a budget or someone with less than perfect credit.

No Worrying About Minor Damage
It’s a fact of life that your car is going to suffer a few minor bumps, scrapes, and bruises whether you  buy it new or used. However, when you buy a used car, you don’t have to worry too much about a tiny dent from another door hitting it or a scratch from a tree branch that was just a little too close. New drivers are more likely to get into fender benders so by buying a used car, you won’t have to worry about spending a lot of money to fix such a minor problem as you would if the car is new.

As Timothy Allen, who sells used cars in Brownsville TX said, “Used cars are becoming more and more popular among consumers in today’s economy.” If you simply don’t have the money to put down for a new car or you’d rather spend that money elsewhere, buying a used car is a great option. Whether you’re a brand new driver or simply don’t see the sense in buying a brand new car, start looking into used car dealerships around you to see what they offer – there’s most likely something out there that’s perfect for you and your needs.

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  •  License: Royalty Free or iStock source:|

Samantha Wideman is part of a team of writers and specializes in writing about current news events.