Archive for August, 2017|Monthly archive page


In honor of Joanne Lindsay’s memory the Dick Scott family has donated a brand New Chrylser 300 to the Ted Lindsay Foundation that will be raffled off.  The drawing will take place at The 17th Annual Ted Lindsay Foundation Celebrity Golf Outing on Monday, September 11, 2017 at Detroit Golf Club in Detroit, Michigan.

The Ted Lindsay Foundation does so much to raise awareness and help find a cure for autism.

Only 1,200 raffle tickets are available at $99 each. The ticket is tax deductible. Not only will the winner receive a brand new car, they will also receive $9,500 to help pay the state and federal taxes on the taxable value of the car!

Foundation president Lew LaPaugh joined Fox 2 Detroit in the studio yesterday to tell more about the foundation and the raffle. You can hear from him in the video player below.

People interested in purchasing a tax deductible $99 ticket can go to or call Lew LaPaugh at 248 202 6194.

*The drawing for the winner will be held on September 11, 2017 at the Ted Lindsay Foundation Golf Outing, held at the Detroit Golf Club.  The winner does not need to be present to win.


Routine Auto Care Drives Home Savings

Whether changing the oil, replacing the wiper blades or checking the tires, finding the time to perform simple preventative vehicle maintenance is money in the bank, says the non-profit Car Care Council.

According to research conducted by IMR Inc., one out of three consumers that put off routine vehicle maintenance do so because they cannot find a convenient time. In addition, millennials and those who own older vehicles are more likely to delay routine maintenance.

“There is an old adage that if you take care of your car, your car will take care of you,” said Rich White, executive director, Car Care Council. “Making time to perform routine auto care not only ensures a safer, more dependable vehicle, but car owners can preserve the trade-in value and save money by addressing small issues before they become more complicated, expensive repairs.”

The most common maintenance procedures to keep a car operating safely and reliably while maintaining its long-term value involve checking the oil, filters and fluids, the belts and hoses, brakes, tires and air conditioning. The Car Care Council also recommends an annual tune-up and wheel alignment.

To make it easier for car owners to remember to include auto care in their busy schedules, the Car Care Council offers a free custom service schedule and email reminder service. This simple-to-use online resource can be personalized to help make auto care more convenient and economical.

In addition, the council’s popular Car Care Guide for motorists and is available at no charge, electronically or by printed copy, in English and Spanish. The guide covers major services, component groups within the vehicle, service interval recommendations and much more.

IMR Inc. has been an industry leader in automotive research since 1975 and conducts syndicated and proprietary market research studies that focus on do-it-yourself and do-it-for-me consumer vehicle maintenance behavior, automotive parts and services, repair shops, technicians and vehicle technology trends. To learn more, visit

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 the latest car care news, visit the council’s online media room at To order a free copy of the popular Car Care Guide, visit the council’s consumer education website at

7 Easy Ways to Calculate Your New Car Budget

So you’re looking for a new car? Congrats! If you’re in the market for a new vehicle, you should first determine what you can actually afford. And if you’re considering leasing or financing a vehicle, you should understand the total costs involved. That’s because the total amount you can spend = the approved loan amount + cash down payment + trade-in amount. Consider the following factors when calculating your new car budget.

1. Total Price

The total cost of your vehicle is more than just the sticker price; it will also include things like the sales tax, title and registration fees, and optional items, like extended warranties. Keep these in mind and leave yourself some wiggle room with your budget when shopping for a new vehicle. Remember that you will also need to worry about auto insurance, gas, regular maintenance, repairs, registration, and other costs associated with owning a car.

2. Monthly Payments

If you will be financing or leasing a vehicle, then you’ll need to calculate your ideal monthly payments. Keep in mind that your monthly payment will include both principal and interest. The loan term, interest rate, and down payment will all affect your monthly payment. If you can wait to make your purchase until interest rates are lower, then you can afford a more expensive vehicle or save money on your payments.

3. Down Payment

Most vehicle purchases are made with a down payment. The more you can devote to your down payment, the lower your monthly bill will be.

4. Trading In Your Old Car

Have you considered trading-in your old car? It will help reduce the total cost of the new vehicle and can improve your loan terms. Trading in your vehicle may also give you more pull when you are attempting new car negotiations.

5. The 10%–20% Rule

For drivers who want to be frugal with their purchase, you’ll want to devote about 10% of your income towards your vehicle. This means that if you make $3,000 per month, you’ll want to devote $300 per month towards monthly payments for all of your vehicles. (Most people spend about 20% of their income on their transportation, so this may be a more realistic estimate.)

If you’re not planning on financing your new car, then the 10%-20% rule still applies. You’ll want to take 20% of your annual income to determine what you can afford to spend on a vehicle. For instance, at $36,000/year, you’ll be able to spend $7,200 yearly on your vehicle ($36,000 x .20 = $7,200).

6. Your Total Debt

If you currently have a lot of debt and don’t want to add too much onto your load, then there is a simple 36% rule to follow. Consumer Reports found that it is best to spend no more than 36% of your gross monthly income on debt. Itemize what all of your monthly debt payments are, including mortgage, credit cards, and loans. Once you’ve totaled those, subtract them from 36% of your income to determine how much you can realistically add. For instance, if your income is $3,000 per month and you already spend $800 per month on credit card and loan payments, you can only afford a new monthly auto loan payment of $280, calculated as ($3,000 x .36) – $800 = $280.00.

7. Affordability Calculators

Every person’s situation is different, so only you can determine what your budget is and what you are willing and able to spend on a new car. Fortunately, there are a number of free affordability calculators available online that can help you calculate your ideal price range. They can even account for things like your loan term, finance rate, down payment, and the value of your trade-in (if you have one). An auto loan calculator can also help you find the ideal total price, based on how much you can afford to spend every month.

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Demon – The SRT® Hellcat’s Big Brother

The SRT® Hellcat’s Big Brother
As if the 6.2-liter HEMI® V8 powering the SRT® Hellcat wasn’t hot enough, to ensure consistent 9-second quarter-mile performance — not occasional visits — the 2018 Dodge Challenger SRT Demon packs an 808-horsepower wallop (or 840 with 100-octane racing gas in the tank), low-drag front tires and the all-out computer calibration mode included with the Pre Stage Kit.

So how did Dodge grab all that extra power from the already-crazy-potent SRT® Hellcat HEMI engine? To find, out we cornered Dodge factory insider Jim Wilder for answers. Wilder told us: “Dodge CEO Tim Kuniskis is really the man responsible for this. At the start, we shot for low-10-second capability. That’d have made it about a half-second quicker than a Hellcat.”
We have to stop here to remember that Kuniskis is one of a rare breed of auto industry CEOs with gasoline in his veins and grease under his fingernails. While climbing the corporate ladder he owned and raced a well-respected breed of American turbo V6 muscle cars in his spare time. Wilder continues: “So we had these regular progress meetings and Tim pulls me aside and says; ‘Jim, low-10-second cars are fast … but 9-second cars are unheard of. How can we make it even faster?’ At every meeting Tim was pushing us to leave no stone unturned.”
Stones that Wilder’s HEMI V8 development crew turned include bumping the Demon supercharger capacity from 2.38 to 2.7 liters, which elevates maximum boost from the SRT® Hellcat’s 11.6 to 14.5 psi, stiffer valve springs to enable a 6,500-rpm redline (versus 6,200 for Hellcat) and the industry-first SRT Power Chiller™.

Supercharged cars like the Demon compress the incoming air before it reaches the combustion chambers. This effectively “force feeds” the cylinders a much greater volume of fuel and air than they could otherwise ingest on their own. But when air molecules get jammed together like that, the resulting friction heats them up. Ironically, this can reduce the total air volume and diminish the benefits of the supercharger.
But … if the compressed air is routed through a cooling device like an intercooler, then much of that density can be restored. For Demon, Jim Wilder and his team of engineers took a look at the on-board passenger compartment air conditioning system – which is standard in every Demon – and tapped into it to help keep the HEMI engine’s intake charge cooler, denser and more potent. Dubbed the SRT Power Chiller, the system retains the Hellcat’s twin intercoolers then adds another two air-to-glycol (liquid coolant) heat exchangers.
To activate the SRT Power Chiller, just dial up Drag Mode on the gauge cluster then sit back and relax as part of the air conditioner output is re-routed to chill the HEMI V8’s induction system. Thanks to the SRT Power Chiller, inlet air temperature drops by as much as 45 degrees F, making the age-old practice of packing the intake manifold with ice bags between races a thing of the past.
Beyond these fortifications to boost the Demon’s HEMI engine output to as much as 840 horsepower, numerous body, suspension, calibration, brake and driveline modifications were made to the Demon package to ensure Tim Kuniskis’ quest for a 9-second passenger car bore fruit. We’ll explore them in the next chapter in this series of Demon blog postings.

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End of Summer Marks Perfect Time for Car Care

Preventative maintenance now can help ensure worry-free driving this winter

The vacations are over, the kids are back in school and cooler evenings have begun. Take advantage of the lull to prepare your vehicle for the winter ahead, advise the pros and the non-profit National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE). Breakdowns, never convenient, can be dangerous in cold weather period.

The following tips from ASE should give parent and student alike a road map to fall car care.

First things first

Read your owner’s manual and follow the manufacturer’s recommended service schedules. There are usually two schedules listed: normal and severe.

Engine Performance

Have engine driveability problems (hard starts, rough idling, stalling, diminished power, etc.) corrected at a good repair shop. Cold weather will make existing problems worse. Replace dirty filtersair, fuel, PCV, etc.


Put a bottle of fuel de-icer in your tank once a month to help keep moisture from freezing in the fuel line. Note, too, that a gas tank that’s kept filled helps prevent moisture from forming in the first place.


Change your oil and oil filter as specified in your manual more often (every 3,000 miles or so) if your driving is mostly stop-and-go or consists of frequent short trips.

Cooling System

The cooling system should be flushed and refilled as recommended. The level, condition, and concentration of the coolant should be checked periodically. (A 50/50 mix of anti-freeze and water is usually recommended.) If you’re doing your own work, allow the radiator to cool down completely before removing the cap. (Newer vehicles have coolant reservoirs.) The tightness and condition of drive belts, clamps, and hoses should be checked by a certified auto technician.


The heater and defroster must be in good working condition for passenger comfort and driver visibility.

Windshield Wipers

Replace old blades. If your climate is harsh, purchase rubber-clad (winter) blades to fight ice build-up. Stock up on windshield washer solvent you’ll be surprised how much you use. Carry an ice-scraper.


The only accurate way to detect a weak battery is with professional equipment. But do-it-yourselfers can do routine maintenance. Scrape away corrosion from posts and cable connections; clean all surfaces; re-tighten all connections. If battery caps are removable, check fluid level monthly.

A word of caution:

Be sure to avoid contact with corrosive deposits and battery acid. Wear eye protection and rubber gloves. Note too that removal of cables can cause damage or loss of data/codes on some newer vehicles so refer to your manual for instructions.


Inspect all lights and bulbs; replace burned out bulbs; periodically clean road grime from all lenses with a moistened cloth or towel. To prevent scratching, never use a dry rag.

Exhaust System

Your vehicle should be placed on a lift and the exhaust system examined for leaks. The trunk and floorboards should be inspected for small holes. Exhaust fumes can be deadly.


Worn tires will be of little use in winter weather. Examine tires for remaining tread life, uneven wearing, and cupping; check the sidewalls for cuts and nicks. Check tire pressure once a month. Let the tires “cool down” before checking the pressure. Rotate as recommended. Don’t forget your spare, and be sure the jack is in good condition.


Carry gloves, boots, blankets, flares, a small shovel, sand or kitty litter, tire chains, a flashlight, and a cell phone. Put a few “high-energy” snacks in your glove box.

For ASE’ Glove Box Tips, click here.

The National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) was founded in 1972 as a non-profit, independent organization dedicated to improving the quality of automotive service and repair through the voluntary testing and certification of automotive technicians. ASE-certified technicians wear blue and white ASE shoulder insignia and carry credentials listing their exact area(s) of certification. Their employers often display the blue and white ASE sign.


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Vehicle Checklist for Back-to-School Carpool Season

School carpool season is upon us and the non-profit Car Care Council reminds drivers to make sure their vehicles are kid-safe and road ready with a five-point checklist:

  1. Check lights and wipers for visibility. With shorter days and inclement weather ahead, make sure lights and wipers function properly so that you can see and be seen.  Check the exterior and interior lights and replace any that are dimming, rapidly blinking or not functioning. Check wiper blades for signs of wear and replace if necessary.
  1. Get an annual brake inspection. The braking system is your car’s most important safety feature. Before carpool season gets in full swing, make sure that your brakes are functioning properly. Schedule a brake inspection and look for warning signs that your vehicle may need brake services, such as an illuminated brake light or screeching, grinding or clicking noises when applying the brakes.

      3. Check tires for under inflation or excessive wear. Check tire pressure and refill underinflated tires, including the spare, and look for uneven wear and check tread depth. An easy way            to do the latter is by placing a penny head-down in the tread groove. If the tread does not cover Lincoln’s head, it’s time to replace your tires.

  1. Make sure everyone is buckled up. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) website has important tips on seat belt fit and position. For the younger ones riding along, the site has information about how to install car seats as well as guidelines on selecting a car seat or booster based on your child’s age and size.
  1. Consider a back-up detection device. Consider having a back-up detection device installed that provides rearview video or warning sounds when moving in reverse. While drivers should not rely solely on these devices, they can help to reduce the risk of backover incidents along with following other prevention tips from NHTSA.

“Back-to-school time is hectic for most families, but scheduling a complete vehicle inspection is time well spent,” said Rich White, executive director, Car Care Council. “Knowing your vehicle was checked by a professional technician will give you peace of mind and make all those trips to school and activities safer and less stressful.”

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

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Are Your Brakes Trying to Tell You Something?

If your brakes are trying to tell you something, you should pay attention. A properly operating brake system helps ensure safe vehicle control and operation and it should be checked immediately if you suspect any problems, says the non-profit Car Care Council.

“While an annual brake inspection is a good way to ensure brake safety, motorists should not ignore signs that their brakes need attention,” said Rich White, executive director, Car Care Council. “Knowing the key warning signs that your brakes may need maintenance will go a long way toward keeping you and others safe on the road.”

The Car Care Council reminds motorists to look for the following warning signs that their brakes need to be inspected:

– Noise: screeching, grinding or clicking noises when applying the brakes.
– Pulling: vehicle pulls to one side while braking.
– Low Pedal: brake pedal nearly touches the floor before engaging.
– Hard Pedal: must apply extreme pressure to the pedal before brakes engage.
– Grabbing: brakes grab at the slightest touch to the pedal.
– Vibration: brake pedal vibrates or pulses, even under normal braking conditions.
– Light: brake light is illuminated on your vehicle’s dashboard.

Because brakes are a normal wear item on any vehicle, they will eventually need to be replaced. Factors that can affect brake wear include driving habits, operating conditions, vehicle type and the quality of the brake lining material. Be sure to avoid letting brakes get to the ‘metal-to-metal’ point as that can mean expensive rotor or drum replacement.

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How to Be Safe During the 100 Most Dangerous Days of Driving

The period between Memorial Day and Labor Day is often referred to as “The 100 Deadliest Days” because of the high number of traffic deaths among teenage drivers. On average, the number of fatal teen driver crashes climbs 15 percent compared to the rest of the year. Over the past five years, more than 1,600 people were killed during this deadly period in crashes involving teen drivers ages 16-17, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

What’s more, a recent study by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety revealed that drivers younger than 18 are almost four times as likely as other drivers to be in a crash, and nearly three times as likely to be involved in a fatal crash. That’s because teen crashes spike during the summer months because teens are out of school and on the road, according to Dr. David Yang, AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety executive director. He added that the Foundation’s research indicates that inexperience paired with more exposure on the road could create a deadly combination for young drivers.

But it doesn’t have to be this way. Here are a few tips to remember when you get behind the wheel, followed by footage of teen drivers moments before crashing, illustrating the dangers of distracted driving.

– Use safe-driving skills, especially when your teen is with you. Lead by example.
– Before hitting the road, make sure everyone is buckled up.
– Always obey the speed limit and all traffic laws.
– Never drive impaired. If you’re going to drink alcohol, have a plan. Either appoint a designated driver or hire a taxi to get you home safely.
– Stay focused on driving. Avoid distractions, such as cell phones and daydreaming, and never text while driving.

A study and video analysis by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety found distraction was a factor in nearly 6 out of 10 moderate-to-severe teen crashes. Researchers analyzed the six seconds leading up to a crash in nearly 1,700 videos of teen drivers from in-vehicle event recorders. Here, footage from some of those videos.

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Community Car Care Events Show Most Vehicles Need Service

Community car care events conducted across the country reveal that the majority of vehicles need service on one or more inspected areas of the vehicle.

“At the Car Care Council, we stress the importance of preventative vehicle maintenance and provide free tools, tips and information to help motorists become more car care aware so they can avoid the hassle and expense associated with unexpected car trouble,” said Rich White, executive director, Car Care Council. “By implementing a proactive auto care plan, car owners can identify and fix small issues now before they become more costly repairs later.”

The community car care event inspections checked a variety of vehicle components including wipers, belts, hoses, air filters, lighting, tires and lubricant/fluids. The Car Care Council gathered and tabulated the results and found that eight out of 10 vehicles need some type of service. The top areas showing the highest failure rates include:

– Engine Oil – 22 percent of vehicles tested had low, overfull or dirty oil.

– Belts/Hoses – inspections revealed 18 percent of belts were unsatisfactory and at least 12 percent of vehicles needed a new hose.

– Air Filters – nearly one out of every five vehicles inspected needed a new air filter.

– Check Engine Light – 14 percent of vehicles had an illuminated check engine light, slightly higher than the previous year’s results.

– Batteries – battery cables, clamps and terminals were found to be in need of repair on 18 percent of vehicles inspected.

The Car Care Council has a free Car Care Guide available at, providing motorists with a useful resource that can be kept in the glove box or accessed online. The guide features service interval information, questions to ask a technician and other helpful auto care information that can help drivers better maintain and protect their vehicle.

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 the latest car care news, visit the council’s online media room at To order a free copy of the popular Car Care Guide, visit the council’s consumer education website at

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Back to school with Ram ProMaster

REV Group’s Collins Bus subsidiary is using the Ram ProMaster van as the basis for its first-in-class low-floor special needs school bus.

The new bus debuted at the recent School Transportation News Conference & Trade Show in Reno, Nevada. It takes advantage of the ProMaster’s ground-hugging design to eliminates the need for a lift, which is needed by other special-needs buses.

Collins is the first school bus with a truly low entry height.

Instead of a lift, the Ram-based bus has a driver-deployable ramp so the many children who use wheelchairs can enter and exit the bus without assistance. The Collins system also eliminates the downtime and maintenance costs of a wheelchair lift.

The ProMaster’s front-wheel drive setup allowed Collins engineers to design a true low-floor vehicle with a single entry with a nine-inch-high entry step when the ramp is retracted.

Collins also pointed out that the ProMaster has a smaller turning radius than competitors, making the bus more maneuverable in neighborhoods. The front wheel drive also helps traction on snow and ice.

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