Archive for November, 2015|Monthly archive page

Hanging onto Current Vehicle vs. Buying New a No Brainer

Buying a new car might sound cool and exciting, but keeping your current vehicle, and continually maintaining it at recommended intervals, makes more economic sense than purchasing a new one, says the non-profit Car Care Council.

“From the down payment to the monthly car payments and higher insurance rates, the cost of buying a new car adds up really fast,” said Rich White, executive director, Car Care Council. “By simply budgeting the equivalent of just one new car payment, you could cover an entire year’s worth of basic maintenance on your current vehicle and redirect the rest to beef up savings, take a vacation, or pay off credit card debt, college loans and other bills.”

In order to realize savings by extending the life of your current vehicle, the Car Care Council recommends following a vehicle service schedule, such as the free personalized service schedule and email reminder service. You should be sure to have your vehicles inspected if you suspect there is a problem and remember to address minor repairs before they become more complicated, expensive repairs. A copy of the Car Care Guide should be kept in the glove box as an auto care reference and can be ordered free-of-charge at http://www.carcare.org/car-care-guide.

“The average vehicle cost about $3,900 in the early 1970s, but didn’t last anywhere near as long as cars do now. Today, that cost has jumped to over $33,000, and the average age of passenger vehicles is 11.5 years,” said White. “With proper routine maintenance, the typical car should deliver at least 200,000 miles of safe, dependable, efficient and enjoyable performance.”

The Car Care Council is the source of information for the “Be Car Care Aware” consumer education campaign promoting the benefits of regular vehicle care, maintenance and repair to consumers. For a free copy of the council’s popular Car Care Guide or for more information, visit http://www.carcare.org.

Read more at: http://www.carcare.org/2015/11/hanging-onto-current-vehicle-vs-buying-new-brainer/

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New Jeeps to be shown at LA

Jeep will show two special editions at the Los Angeles Auto Show: the 2016 Grand Cherokee SRT Night and the 2016 Jeep Wrangler Backcountry.

The Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT Night, due in the first quarter of 2016, adds a black roof, lightweight performance wheels, and other touches, while the Wrangler Backcountry, coming late this November, is winter-themed.

In addition to the black roof, the Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT Night will have a gloss-black rear spoiler, front grille bezels, B and C pillars, and side window surrounds, with a satin-black front appliqué, hood and rear liftgate badges, and split five-spoke “5Ten” 20-inch wheels (which reveal red Brembo brake calipers). Inside, the Night comes with black Laguna leather with Silver accent stitching and metallic black bezels. Colors are Velvet Red, Billet Silver, and Granite Crystal.

As with any Grand Cherokee SRT, the Night has a 6.4-liter V-8 engine with 475 horsepower and 470 lb.-ft. of torque, an adaptive damping suspension, and a Selec-Track Traction Control system; and can do 0-60 mph in 4.8 seconds.

The Jeep Wrangler Backcountry is based on the Wrangler Sahara, and has decals on the front fender and rear quarter panel, front and rear powder coated bumpers, 17-inch Rubicon wheels painted in mildly glossy black, and a black fuel fill door; it has Rubicon rock rails with no-charge-optional Sahara side steps. A black hard top is standard but a body color hard top is optional. Colors are Hydro Blue, Black, Bright White, Granite Crystal, and Xtreme Purple, a color unique (within the Wrangler range) to Backcountry.

The interior has glossy black vent rings, door handles, and grab handles, with black leather seat bolsters and mesh inserts. The console lid and door armrests have light gray accent stitching. Rounding off the package are a nine-speaker premium Alpine sound system, all-weather slush mats, and the Bluetooth hands-free Connectivity Group.

Read more at: http://www.allpar.com/news/index.php/2015/11/new-jeeps-to-be-shown-at-la-30560

Jeep: When will it hit another million?

Early in the morning of January 5, 2015, Allpar spread the word that worldwide Jeep sales had reached one million in 2014.

This year, the question isn’t whether Jeep will pull off a repeat: it’s whether Jeep can hit a million sales in November, or how far past a million Jeep will get in 2015.

FCA’s hottest brand in the U.S. (and fastest-growing brand in other markets) continues to make a splash around the world. The new Renegade, now being produced in a new plant in Pernambuco, was just named “Car of the Year” in Brazil, where it’s already the best-selling SUV.

Pontus-Haggstrom-WebPaul W. Smith of Detroit radio station WJR interviewed Pontus Häggstrӧm, CEO of FCA Japan, on the opening day of the Tokyo Motor Show (listen to the interview here*). Jeep is the top-selling U.S. vehicle brand in Japan, and Häggstrӧm said the Wrangler is the top-selling Jeep model. The Cherokee was voted one of the top ten cars last year, becoming the first American vehicle to make the list. The Swedish executive said he hopes the Renegade, just introduced to Japan, will be another top ten winner.

During the presentation of the most recent five-year plan, Jeep brand CEO Mike Manley noted that worldwide Jeep sales hit 85,000 in April 2014, an all-time record for monthly volume. Just over a year later, in May 2015, sales in North America hit 90,825. Add another 7,558 for Europe and the four markets saw 98,383 Jeep sales, 16% more than the entire world just a year earlier.

Through the end of October, Jeep has delivered 791,376 new vehicles in North America. It’s the top-selling SUV brand in the U.S., with a 13% share of the crossover/SUV market that includes 25 brands.

Last month, Jeep sold 12,775 more utilities in the U.S. than second-place Ford; for the first ten months of the year, Jeep is beating Ford by 81,248 sales.

Number one is a great position to be in; number one in the fastest-growing market segment is even better. In October, the segment grew more than four percentage points to 38% of total sales, second only to passenger cars with a 41% share.

Sales are also up 12% in Canada, though they are off by 10% in Mexico.

October Jeep sales in North America were up 30% compared to October 2014, and year-to-date deliveries have grown 22%.

In the past couple of years, Jeep has gotten about 17% of its total annual sales in the last two months of the year. Using that as a guide, Jeep may come tantalizingly close to a million sales in North America alone — about 950,000 sales between the three countries.

Adding in the latest European Union numbers (September), Jeep hits the million mark with room to spare. Factor in the Asia-Pacific and Latin American regions, and Jeep could get close to 1.2 million sales this year.

Read more at: http://www.allpar.com/news/index.php/2015/11/jeep-on-the-way-to-another-million-30530

2015 Jeep Wrangler Review

The 2015 Jeep Wrangler Rubicon Hard Rock is
noisy, inefficient, floaty and bouncy — but like an ugly puppy, you
can’t help but love it.

The Jeep Wrangler is one of the most
iconic vehicles on the road today. Even though this latest model shares
no parts with the original Willys Jeep that helped the Allies win World
War II, the shapes, the mission and the image of the Wrangler remain the
same: Go anywhere, anytime.

There are few vehicles in the world
that can do what a Wrangler can do – take you to nearly any corner of
the wilderness and navigate rush-hour traffic without undue stress. Even
fewer can do it for the Wrangler’s sticker price. But as good as
Wranglers are in the mud and on trails, do they work as daily drivers?
Hundreds of thousands of people own and love them, but is buying one
setting yourself up for disappointment?

For 2015, Jeep tweaked
just a couple of things in the Wrangler, adding an optional nine-speaker
Alpine sound system and changing out a few paint colors (compare the
2014 and 2015 models here).
I spent a summer week with a new 2015 Wrangler Rubicon Hard Rock
two-door — Jeep’s top off-road-ready rock-crawler — to see what life
with the dedicated 4×4 is like.
Exterior & Styling
Park
a Wrangler next to an original Jeep, and the resemblance is clear. The
design has gotten significantly larger and safer over the years, but
like the Porsche 911 and Volkswagen Beetle, there’s no mistaking the
current Wrangler if you’ve seen its forebear.

My test model was a
two-door Rubicon Hard Rock, the top-spec off-road model. As such, it
had some cosmetic differences from lesser Wranglers: a winch-ready steel
front bumper with red tow hooks; black rocker panel guards; a “power
dome” hood with functional heat-extractor louvers; and unique wheels
with chunky off-road tires. It looks like a Tonka toy, with oversized
features and scoops and flaps. In other words, it looks fantastic —
exactly how every Jeep should look.

The proof of the Rubicon
Hard Rock’s style came during my brief visit to a dealer. While
trundling through the parking lot, top down and doors off, a family with
a young boy stopped and stared. The boy sported an ear-to-ear grin,
pointed and declared: “THAT’S the one you should get, Dad!”
How It Drives
Unlike
some small SUVs — which look the part of off-roaders but are actually
modified, tall-riding compact cars underneath — the Wrangler behaves
exactly as it looks. It’s a true go-anywhere 4×4 machine.

What
does this mean on the street? It’s loud, with tire noise from the chunky
mud-ready tires, wind noise (because it’s about as slippery through the
air as a box of Kleenex) and road noise through the cabin combining to
create a highway cacophony that’s impressive, in a sense. Put the top
down or drive around with the doors off, however, and you won’t care in
the slightest.

The handling characteristics are best described as
“approximate,” meaning the truck steers approximately where you want it
to. The soft off-road suspension and beefy Dana 44 solid axles, front
and rear, give an acceptable ride quality. The body, however, dips and
squats when accelerating and stopping, then dips again with each gear
change of the long-throw, six-speed manual transmission.

Highway
directional stability is awful, with the Wrangler wandering all over
the lane and requiring constant adjustment. The off-road tires don’t
help, either, meant as they are for traction in dirty, muddy conditions
instead of tarmac.

The steering behavior is also unusual.
There’s very little return-to-center motion, meaning that after
completing a turn you’ll need to center the wheel instead of just
letting the truck straighten itself out. The four-door model, called the
Unlimited, smooths out a lot of these rough edges; its longer wheelbase
adds considerable stability to the formula.

All the qualities
that make the Wrangler awful to drive on the street make it amazing in
the rough. The SUV can scale hills you’d have trouble walking over,
blast through deep water and thick mud — you name it. But know that if
you’re considering one as a daily driver, it comes with compromises.

One
area that has improved dramatically over previous Wranglers is the
engine. Since 2012, the Wrangler has come only with a fully modern
3.6-liter Pentastar V-6 engine. That’s the same one found in nearly all
V-6-powered Fiat Chrysler Automobiles products these days. It puts out a
healthy 285 horsepower but doesn’t feel like it, as the Wrangler is
geared for better off-road traction, not on-road snap. So while it has
plenty of guts and not a lot of weight, it’s not what anyone would call
quick (unless you’ve driven the previous six- or four-cylinder Wrangler;
then it will seem speedy).

A six-speed manual transmission is
standard, while a five-speed automatic is an option. The
four-wheel-drive system is part-time only, with a transfer case shift
lever that you use only when you’re in situations that call for it:
namely, slippery conditions that let the front wheels spin a bit. Use it
on dry pavement, and you risk damage to the axles. The Wrangler’s isn’t
an on-demand all-wheel-drive or full-time four-wheel-drive system like
most modern SUVs have.

The big benefit of the new engine comes in fuel economy. The new
Wrangler is rated 17/21/18 mpg city/highway/combined (manual and
automatic), a significant improvement over previous generations. My week
of testing included a good mix of city and highway miles, but I had the
top down and doors off more often than not, adding considerable
aerodynamic drag to an already bad situation (a Kleenex box with holes
in it?).  As such, my week with the Wrangler netted about 16.5 mpg on
average. This likely would have been improved with the automatic
transmission, as the temptation to keep the Wrangler in a lower gear for
better acceleration is eliminated.
Interior
Pop
open one of the Wrangler’s free-swinging doors (they’re restricted only
by a fabric strap door check without détentes like a normal car door)
and climb up and in. You’ll be greeted by a very upright, very
old-school driving position.

The steering wheel is close to both
you and the dash, but there’s some thoughtful and logical arrangement
of everything in the truck. The audio and climate controls are located
high in the dash, making for easy operation while driving but also
keeping sensitive electronics out of the danger zone in case you decide
to ford some deep water.

There’s all-weather carpeting in the
Wrangler, with drain plugs in the floor in case you need to hose out
your rig – something you can actually do, if you’re careful about where
you spray.

Because you’re sitting up so high and the Wrangler
has nearly vertical body surfaces, outward visibility is quite good.
It’s even better when you take the doors and top off, producing arguably
the most open-air vehicle you can buy short of a motorcycle.

Front
seat comfort isn’t bad at all, with decent-sized, supportive chairs.
Backseat room is acceptable, as well, but does require a bit of twisting
to climb into the space. Legroom is at a premium in back. That’s
ameliorated by the longer Unlimited, but at a price premium.

The
Wrangler is truly at its best when you can make the outside your inside,
however. Lowering the top and removing the doors takes a little
practice, but it’s not as convoluted or difficult as it has been in
previous-generation models. The Sunrider top even lets you fold back
just the portion over the front seats for a big sunroof effect. Dropping
it entirely requires you to unzip and remove the rear window, as well
as both left and right side panels. You then either store them in the
backseat or leave them at home.

Obviously, the ability to gain
access to the inside of your Wrangler by simply unzipping a window means
you shouldn’t leave anything valuable in the truck, ever, unless you
opt for the marginally more secure three-piece hardtop. Accidentally
leaving the center console unlocked while the doors were off resulted in
someone stealing the tool kit that contained the door bolts I’d stored
inside it.

Removing the doors is also simple: Just unclip the
electrical wiring harness (if you have power windows), use the included
tool kit to undo two Torx hinge bolts per side, lift it off and store it
somewhere safe. The feeling of driving around without doors, while
likely horribly unsafe in the event of a side-impact crash, is a thrill
unrivaled in the motorized world, save anything with only two wheels. A
few blocks in a completely open Wrangler can immediately make you forget
all the truck’s ills and foibles. You’ll find yourself grinning like an
idiot and saying to yourself, “Y’know, this really ain’t bad at all!”
Ergonomics & Electronics
Not
much has changed in the Wrangler in recent years with regard to
electronics. The gauges still incorporate old-style, dot-matrix LCD
displays, and the stereo head unit is still last-generation Chrysler
corporate, as are the climate-control knobs. It all works just fine, but
doesn’t look as updated as it could.

Jeep has updated the audio
system, however, with a standard eight-speaker stereo or an optional
nine-speaker Alpine premium sound system. The Alpine system relocates
the subwoofer from the side of the rear cargo area (where it was in the
2014 model) to the floor. How wise it is to put a speaker grille at the
bottom of a cargo area is uncertain, especially in a vehicle likely to
get sandy and dirty in normal use, but the quality of the Alpine system
is undeniable. It’s the first sound system I’ve ever heard in a Wrangler
that sounds good, top up or down.
Cargo & Storage
Given
that the Wrangler is not physically all that big inside, you have the
choice of carrying people or stuff, but generally not both. Space behind
the rear seat is a limited 12.8 cubic feet, but that rear seat can be
folded forward or even removed, making for a much more usable 55.0 cubic
feet of space. That said, doing so leaves you with just a two-seat SUV,
so if you need to carry more people when you get where you’re going,
that could be a problem. The four-door Unlimited is much more spacious,
featuring 31.5 cubic feet of room behind the rear seat that’s expandable
to 70.6 cubic feet in total. It’s more suitable for people who
regularly need to haul people and stuff together.

If you think
you can make up for the lack of cargo room with a trailer, well, you
won’t be able to haul all that much, either. The two-door Wrangler is
rated to tow only 2,000 pounds, while the four-door can tow 3,500
pounds. That’s a very, very small pop-up camper or a Jet Ski, but the
Wrangler’s relatively short wheelbase prevents it from safely towing
anything too heavy.
Safety
The
Wrangler has been crash-tested, and the news isn’t good. For some
reason, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has rated the
Wrangler only for rollover protection, where it earned three out of
five stars. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety has tested the
Wrangler more extensively, and the results are mixed (see full results here).
The Wrangler scores good (out of a possible good, acceptable, marginal
or poor) only in the moderate overlap front test, which is admittedly a
tough one. But it goes downhill from there, with the Jeep earning a
marginal score in the small overlap front test and in the head
restraints and seats test. It earned a poor rating in side-impact
protection (the tested vehicle wasn’t equipped with the Wrangler’s
optional side airbags).

There is no available electronic
forward-crash detection system, blind spot warning, automatic braking,
parking sensors or even a backup camera. The backup camera would be
welcome to mitigate the Wrangler’s terrible rear visibility, due in part
to the full-size spare tire mounted directly behind the rear window.

See what few safety features can be had on a Wrangler here.
Value in Its Class
So
the Wrangler is primitive, loud, bouncy, inefficient, not terribly
crashworthy and offers hellacious amounts of fun. It’s also expensive. A
base Wrangler Sport starts at $23,990 including destination fee, but
you’ll never find one on a dealer lot anywhere close to that price. That
Sport comes with a manual transmission but without air conditioning,
which can be added separately or as part of the better equipped and much
more common Sport S option package.

Next in line is the fancier
Sahara model for $29,990, including considerably more standard
features, body-colored fenders instead of black plastic, an optional
body-colored painted hardtop, 18-inch wheels and more. The top of the
line is the Rubicon, which starts at $33,190 and includes a host of
off-road upgrades, such as a dedicated off-road suspension, beefier
axles front and rear, 32-inch mud-terrain tires, a stronger 4×4 transfer
case, electronic sway bar disconnect and more.

My test model
was a Rubicon with the Hard Rock Package, which includes a combination
of cosmetic changes, like the power dome hood, and option bundles like
air conditioning and USB connectivity. My as-tested price was $38,835.
Build a Wrangler your way here.

That’s
a lot of coin for a truck as primitive as the Wrangler, but it costs
that much because Jeep can charge that much for it and get it. The
reason? There are no direct competitors to the two-door Wrangler. The
closest in abilities is the Land Rover Defender 90 (not sold in the
U.S.), the super-expensive Mercedes-Benz G550 or possibly a Nissan
Xterra Pro-4X. Most of those, however, are four-door SUVs and
considerably more expensive, and few have the provenance and fanatical
following the Wrangler commands.

Xterra drivers don’t wave at
each other like Wrangler owners do. There isn’t a massive nationwide
G-Class enthusiast group that organizes three-dozen off-road events
around the country, like the Jeep Jamboree network. And on none of these
can you take the top and doors off.

As read on: http://www.cars.com/jeep/wrangler/2015/expert-reviews/?review=0&reviewId=64048

Dick Scott Automotive Group 8th Annual Toys for Tots Collection Drive

We are excited to announce our 8th Annual Toys for Tots Drive has Begun! We will be collecting donations during normal business hours until Friday December 11th at Dick Scott Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram, Dick Scott Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram Pre-Owned Center, Dick Scott Classic Motorcycles and Dick Scott Collision – Plymouth. Dick Scott Motor Mall and Dick Scott Collision – Fowlerville will be collection donations until Friday, December 18th!

Our last seven years have all been a great success and we have been able to donate wonder toys to kids in need! We are again collecting NEW,
UNWRAPPED toys this year and are looking forward to another great year!

Thank you to all our generous
Community Members, Customers and Employee’s who help make our Toys for
Tots Drive such a success year after year!! It is only with your help that we are able to make a difference in so many children’s lives this time of year. We are honored to have the opportunity support such a great cause
year after year!

PLEASE
NOTE: Toys for Tots is always in need of gifts for 9 to 12 year olds,
both boys and girls. Craft or hobby kits, makeup kits, electronics and
CD’s, are always great choices!
(Please no stuffed animals as they can no longer be distributed because they can harbor germs.)

You may drop your unwrapped Toys off at ANY
Dick Scott Location:

Dick Scott Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram
684 W Ann Arbor Rd
Plymouth, MI 48170
(734) 451-2110
http://www.DickScottDodge.com

Dick Scott Motormall
3030 Fowlerville Rd
Fowlerville, MI 48836
(517) 223-3721
http://www.dickscottmotormall.com

Dick Scott Classic Motorcycles
36534 Plymouth Rd
Livonia, MI 48150
(734) 542-8000
http://www.dickscottclassicmotorcycles.com

Dick Scott Collision – Plymouth
1035 S Mill Street
Plymouth, MI 48170
734-451-2555
http://www.DickScottCollision.com

Dick Scott Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram Pre-Owned Center
200 W Ann Arbor Rd
Plymouth, MI 48170
734-656-1166
http://www.DickScottUsedCars.com

Dick Scott Collision – Fowlerville
3030 Fowlerville Rd
Fowlerville, MI 48836
517-223-3721
http://www.DickScottCollision.com

The secret behind the Ram Rebel X

The folks at Mopar have put together an impressive spread of eleven vehicles to fill their huge indoor display at the 2015 SEMA Show in Las Vegas. The split is three from Ram, one from Jeep, three from Dodge, two from the Chrysler brand, and two from Fiat. All showcase Mopar parts that are either on sale or being considered, along with some features and names that are not yet available – but which would drive the Mopar world wild.

Ram Rebel X

Ram Rebel X

The Ram Rebel-based SEMA show truck has been been modified to sit one inch higher than the “normal” Rebel in its highest setting, making plenty of room for the 35 inch mud tires wrapped around 17 inch beadlock wheels. Mopar then added a prototype 2-piece skid plate, larger wheel flares, side step rails, smoked headlights and taillights, a tonneau cover, unique badges and a prototype active air intake hood setup.

A Ram spokesman said that the lift came entirely from the air suspension, put to its maximum setting. This might be a one-off attention-getter, but it might also be an experiment to see how people react to a taller Ram Rebel. Perhaps, if there is a strong enough demand, Ram might start investing the surprisingly large amounts of cash required to actually customize the suspension to have a higher lift — assuming it doesn’t wreak havoc on economy figures.

Ram 2500 Dragmaster

The Ram 2500 Dragmaster is the ultimate race hauler, starting with the powerful Ram 2500 Promaster and adding an extensive cargo storage system inside to hold everything that you need for a day at the drag strip. This storage setup isn’t available from Mopar, but it shows how the huge van can be customized.

No day at the track with the Dragmaster 2500 would be complete without the baddest Mopar factory race car ever, so this big hauler is hooked up to a trailer carrying the new supercharged 354 V8 Challenger Drag Pak.

Ram Promaster City Deep Dive

This compact Promaster City is named the Deep Dive, and like the larger Promaster 2500, it has been modified to serve as an ideal work vehicle — this time for a diving shop, with equipment in custom storage compartments.

There is also an extensive paint and graphics package to allow this Promaster to serve as a rolling billboard, while a flat screen TV mounted inside of the rear door allows divers to watch their videos while getting out of their wet suits.

Read more at: http://www.allpar.com/cars/concepts/SEMA/2015/ram.html

Steps to a “Greener” Car

It doesn’t matter if the car you’re driving is new or old, big or small. There are preventive maintenance steps every vehicle owner can take to make sure their car is as “green” or environmentally friendly as possible, according to the Car Care Council.

By following a few simple preventive maintenance steps, you can help protect the environment by improving gas mileage, which in turn saves money at the pump.

Keep your car properly tuned for optimum performance- A properly maintained vehicle can improve its efficiency, reduce emissions and save you money. Regular engine performance maintenance will help you burn less gas, pollute less, and prevent car trouble down the line. This will include checking the spark plugs, replacing the fuel and air filters, replacing ignition system and/or emission system parts if needed and ensuring the onboard computer control system is working properly.

Improve gas mileage by 4% on a proper tune-up and up to 40% when fixing a serious maintenance problem such as a faulty oxygen sensor. Worn or fouled spark plugs can cause the engine to lose power or misfire and waste fuel.

Drive Smart – How you drive has a lot to do with fuel economy. Avoid sudden starts and stops and go the speed limit. Minimize unnecessary miles by combining errands in one trip. Drive wisely and minimize unnecessary miles by consolidating errands, getting good directions and avoiding excessive idling. Other guidelines to follow include:

– When possible, use your vehicle’s cruise control features.

– Use your air conditioning only when needed. Parking in the shade and using a reflective windshield shade can help your car stay cooler when parked, meaning it takes less to cool it off when you get back in.

– Speeding and Aggressive Driving: Most cars lose fuel efficiency over 50 miles per hour (MPH) at a rate of about $0.24 per gallon for every 5 mph over 50. Aggressive driving (speeding, rapid acceleration and braking) can also reduce gas mileage – as much as 33 percent on the highway and five percent on city streets.

Lighten the Load – Get the junk out of the trunk and the stuff out of your car, with the exception of emergency items such as a spare tire and a first-aid kit. Extra items weigh the vehicle down and cause an increase in gas usage.

Regularly check and replace dirty air filters- An air filter that is clogged with dirt, dust and bugs chokes off the air and creates a “rich” mixture that causes the engine to lose power. Replacing a clogged air filter will improve your car’s performance and acceleration, but not miles per gallon. The air filter should be inspected at each oil change, and replaced annually or when restricted, torn, water or oil-soaked.

Have spark plugs checked and replaced if necessary- A vehicle can have four, six or eight spark plugs, which fire as many as three million times every 1,000 miles. This results in a lot of heat, electrical, and chemical erosion. A dirty spark plug also causes misfiring, which wastes fuel.

Maintain the cooling system- A cooling system thermostat that causes the engine to run too cold will lower the fuel efficiency of a car by as much as one or two mpg. There also are improved radiator caps on the market today that allow the cooling system to operate at a higher temperature before boiling over, increasing the system’s efficiency and reducing emissions.

Tire Checks – Proper tire pressure can improve gas mileage by 3.3 percent or 10 cents per gallon.

Tire pressure should be checked at least monthly, including the spare. Tires that are not properly inflated add rolling resistance that makes the engine work harder to move the vehicle. Remember, tires can lose pressure due to seasonal temperature changes. According to the Rubber Manufacturer’s Association, a tire can lose up to half of its inflation pressure and not appear to be flat. Optimal tire pressure for your vehicle is listed in the owner’s manual or on the car door sidewall.

Gas Caps – Check your vehicle’s gas cap. A loose, cracked or damaged gas cap allows gas to escape from your tank as a vapor, wasting fuel and increasing vehicle emissions. It’s also wasting your gas money!

Fill-Ups- When filling up your car, remember to stop when the nozzle shuts off! Topping off the gas tank can release harmful vapors into the environment and waste money. Remember, your tank needs some extra room to allow the gasoline to expand. Some pumps engineered to protect the environment draw extra vapors back into the pump, meaning you pay for more gas than you are getting, according to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

A/C Maintenance and Use – The A/C system should be inspected annually, during which a technician checks pressures to test operation, refrigerant charge and outlet temperatures. Use the window to help keep the car cool.

Vehicle Fuel System – By properly maintaining your vehicle’s fuel system, such as replacing your car’s fuel filter every two years or 24,000 miles and having your fuel injectors flushed our every 30,000 miles, you will not only have a cleaner, ‘greener’ car, but you will save money at the pump.”

Emission systems – Emission systems control a vehicle’s emissions, exhaust and pollutants using an array of sensors, computerized engine controls and the exhaust components. Emission systems substantially reduce harmful gases such as carbon monoxide (CO), unburned hydrocarbons (HC) and oxides of nitrogen (NOx), and prevent harmful gasoline vapors from escaping at the fuel tank. Your car’s emission system keeps the engine running cleanly and efficiently in all sorts of operating conditions, and keeping it in proper working condition can save money and protect the environment. Fixing a faulty oxygen sensor can improve gas mileage by 40%!

Maintain and repair your car as outlined in the council’s Car Care Guide- The guide helps drivers understand their car, the care it needs, and when it needs it and why. Single copies of the free guide may be ordered here on the Car Care Council Web site.

Questions to ask your mechanic:

1. What is the most important thing I should do to my car to make sure I’m doing my part to protect the environment?

2. If my car emits a lot of exhaust, does this mean there’s something wrong with it?

3. Is the refrigerant in my car environmentally friendly and if not, what should I do?

4. Where can I take my used oil, oil filter and other fluids for recycling?

Read more at: http://www.carcare.org/go-green/steps-to-a-greener-car/

Dodge broke Laguna Seca, other track records

The original Dodge Viper went on the road and bested cars costing multiple times the price. After a brief period of being slammed as not living up to its price, the 2016 Dodge Viper ACR has done it again — breaking lap records at 13, including the world-famous Laguna Seca, Road Atlanta, and Virginia International Raceway.

The Sports Car Club of America (SCCA) has certified that the 2016 Dodge Viper ACR now holds more track records than any other production car in the world.

Credit goes to the Viper ACR’s optional Extreme Aero package, which delivers 1,700+ pounds of peak downforce at top speed.

Dodge’s SRT vehicle dynamics and development engineer Chris “The Wolf” Winkler, an SCCA champion with over two decades of experience, set eleven of the Viper ACR’s thirteen track records.

At the Laguna Seca Raceway, Dodge used Randy Pobst, who already had dozens of track records there. His new time was 5.27 seconds faster than the past ACR’s track record at Laguna, and 1.24 seconds faster than his previous Laguna track record in the 887-horsepower, $845,000 Porsche 918 Spyder — the equivalent of 11 car lengths after just one lap.

The Viper ACR is a street legal car. Copying the success of the old Ramchargers and Golden Commandos, many SRT engineers also race their own cars; they also learned from the factory-based racing Viper GTS-R that won the GTLM class driver and team championships in 2014 in ALMS.

As with the Hellcat series, the Viper was designed to run at the track for long periods without a performance falloff. Full information/more photos

Read more at: http://www.allpar.com/news/index.php/2015/11/dodge-broke-laguna-seca-other-track-records-30504

2016 Jeep Grand Cherokee Review

Although many expected a radical change and innovation with the new model 2016 Jeep Grand Cherokee, it will unfortunately not happen with this generation of Cherokee model. According to verified information, this model will next year go on sale as a model for 2016 year. The biggest change will be the new automatic transmission. Standard for each new model are minor changes in some segments of the interior and exterior. Major changes on Cherokee should not be expected before 2017, maybe and later.

2016 Jeep Grand Cherokee: Specs

It is hard to decide whether it is better to drive this model on ordinary town road or enjoy in the temptations, steps and inclines through forest roads. In this adventure, 2016 Jeep Grand Cherokee on the best way showing its main characteristic – reliability, regardless of the road conditions, and weather. This model also provides pleasant feeling in driving. Nominated is as a chief in its competition.

2016 Jeep Grand Cherokee: Design

Italian designers have marked the interior. Distinctive appearance characterized rich segments, constructed from high quality materials and with digitized all the commands. Tech adds in interior include 8.4″ touchscreen, then 19-speakers, more than 90 info on the panel and 12 different parameters for tractions. Luxury and style, great sound isolation and satisfactory parameters will follow and 2016 Jeep Grand Cherokee. Exterior will not have radical changes. For expect is that new model bring new design of light-groups, re-stylish grille, bumper and air intakes. Offer could include and new body colors.

2016 Jeep Grand Cherokee: Engine

Better fuel efficiency, slightly advanced aerodynamic characteristics and handling will follow new model. Under the hood will be engines with more power, which will cause higher towing capacity. 2016 Grand Cherokee will run 3.6-litre V6 engine. This Pentastar product is capable to produce up to 290 hp. The second option is a 5.7-litre V8 Hemi engine with more power than its predecessor, more than 360 hp. Towing capacity will be more than 8000 pounds (3,630 kg). Engines will be paired to the automatic ZF gearbox with eight speeds. EPA estimates will be better. Previous model was rated with 20/23 mpg (3.6L engine) and with 23/30 mpg (5.7L engine) in city/highway driving (consumes 7.5 liters on 100 kilometers).

2016 Jeep Grand Cherokee: Price and Release

This model of SUV category will have main rivals in models such as Ford Explorer, then Honda Pilot LX and Toyota Highlander. Also, new model will offer and diesel engine. 2016 Jeep Grand Cherokee EcoDiesel will continue competition with similar models from Volkswagen, Porsche and Mercedes-Benz. Model will be released early next fall, with the same range of price. So, new model will cost between $ 30,590 and $ 65,390.

Read more at: http://2016carsreview.com/2016-jeep-grand-cherokee/

300-hp Dart GLH coming, turbos for all?

Work on a Dart SRT has yielded one result, according to an Allpar source: the Dart GLH, borrowing a name from hot Omnis of the past.

Carroll Shelby claimed that GLH stood for “Goes Like Heck,” and it’s likely that the new Dart will do just that, with its long-rumored turbocharged engine.

In addition to the Dart GLH, other Darts will be available with the optional “Hurricane” turbo, though probably not tuned to the GLH’s 300 hp. Indeed, we were told earlier to expect more like 240 hp from the engine, which has been reported as being 1.8 or 2.0 liters.

It seems likely that the engine will eventually be available everywhere the 2.4 World Engine is, except for the current Compass and Patriot.

Production times are unknown and could be one or two calendar years away.

Increased competition likely put the kibosh on an SRT4, but the GLH, if it comes to fruition, would probably be the car that was once to be badged as an SRT. The moniker is only used on cars that are at the top of their class, for the price.

The above rendering was designed to illustrate rumors of a Dart SRT4.

Read more at: http://www.allpar.com/news/index.php/2015/08/dart-glh-coming-turbos-for-all-29765