Hyundai recalls Tucson SUV

Hyundai recalls many of its vehicles and they’ve had to do so once nearly every year. This is because the company is trying to produce competitive cars at the same rate as its opponents and the factory line is moving too fast to keep up with regulations. Now Hyundai recalls the first few lines of the Tucson SUV because of an airbag issue that shouldn’t have passed vehicle safety regulation.

 

What happened?

During the time between 2011 and 2014, the Tucson SUV that was developed didn’t undergo scrutiny as it should have and only eight days ago the Hyundai group began the recall. They found that the two bolts that were supposed to securely hold the drive-side airbag in place may not have been properly tightened.

The reason why it went unnoticed for so long in the Tucson SUV was because, until there were complaints on the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration site, they simply didn’t know about it. Even still, the Hyundai recalls weren’t about injury but about the complaints were geared more towards the pains of having the module fixed rather than any personal injury.

Why two bolts makes a difference?

The way an airbag works is off of pressure sensitivity and that’s how it only activates when you get into a car crash. The two bolts that were supposed to keep this airbag tightly wound may have come loose, changing the level of sensitivity that it needed to go off. This would essential mean that if it was done properly it would only activate if you hit something hard enough to cause the car to stop working. However, since the module may come loose in the Tucson SUV, then the airbag may only need a slight bump in order to explode.

The Hyundai recalls of the Tucson SUV is meant to prevent this potential accident causing fault before anything happens. While nothing hasn’t happened yet, the Hyundai company would still like to prevent lawsuits from arising.

What will happen to those who bought a faulty Hyundai?

The Hyundai recalls of the Tucson SUV isn’t for the whole car but instead just to repair the issue. Unlike most defects large enough to enforce a Hyundai recall, the car itself won’t be replace with a safer car. This comes as a shock for most of the people driving the Tucson SUV because the defect is of such importance that those who have answered to the Hyundai recalls end up trying to sell the car back to Hyundai for a safer car.

Top 5 Most Reliable Cars

The first thing one must do is to define “reliability”. When it comes to cars, this definition is fairly simple: How reliable is a car? = How often does it break down?

Reliable car

Interestingly, the lists of most reliable cars differ depending on whether you ask drivers in the U.S.A. or the UK, or whether the question is more specific such as, “What are the most reliable family cars?” Let’s take a quick look at all three.

Top 5 in the USA

1. Chevy Camaro: this car scored in terms of reliability and power and had no near competitors in the polls in the midsize compact sport range
2. Honda Fit: the 2011 Fit took the #1 dependability spot in the sub-compact car category in 2014
3. Kia Rio: this car took the #2 dependability spot in the same category as the Honda Fit in 2014
4. Nissan Versa: while it took the #3 spot in the sub-compact category, its rating was down a little over the previous year
5. Buick Lucerne and Lexus LS: these two vehicles took top honors in the large car and large premium car respectively. The Buick made the list despite the fact that it is no longer even in production. Just behind the Buick were the Toyota Avalon and the Ford Taurus. Tied with the Lexus was the 2011 Cadillac DTS.

Top 5 in the UK

1. Honda Jazz MK2: scores very highly with owners who don’t care that the car is not stylish or an exciting ride but do care that their car is not going to break down often.
2. Toyota Prius MK3: like the Jazz, this Toyota scored over 98% with drivers polled in Britain. This car not only doesn’t break down often, it’s also reliable in terms of fuel and repair bills.
3. Toyota Prius MK2: an additional factor that creates confidence in this car is the fact that there are still a number of older models going strong on the road.
4. Lexus CT: this hybrid car is extremely dependable and a further bonus is that there is an excellent and broad dealer network if repairs are required.
5. Audi Q3: in addition to its inherent reliability, this car comes with a 60 000 mile (96 561 kilometers) warranty that includes break-down cover.

Top 5 most reliable family cars

The cars ranked most reliable in this category are obviously those that are less prone to breaking down and are drawn from vehicles that are not in the sporty or compact vehicle groups but in those that are the right size and have the range of features one looks for in a car one will use to transport children daily. This list is:

1. Toyota Corolla
2. Honda Civic
3. Honda Accord
4. Mazda3
5. Toyota Auris followed closely by the Toyota Prius.

Tips for Negotiating with Car Dealers

So, you have looked at the reviews and images, read about the features, checked out performance ratings, maybe even taken a test drive or two, and you have now finally chosen the car you want to buy. The next step is the all-important negotiations with the car dealer so that you can get the car without blowing your budget. How do you do that?

Car dealer

Secure Vehicle Financing ahead of time

Visit your local bank or credit union and secure the financing you will need before heading to the dealership. Car dealers make a high percentage of their profits by financing deals. You will save a significant amount of money by financing through a reputable financial institution, not through the dealership.

Obtain quotes from several dealerships

Before settling on a dealership, visit several to get the out-the-door price of the vehicle you want. Having these figures at your fingertips will help you to get dealers to compete for your business, giving you an edge when you go to the dealership.

Time your visit to the dealer

Don’t visit the dealership when you are rushed or over-tired because the negotiations shouldn’t be rushed and you need to be alert. Go to the dealership on weekdays because on nights and weekends the large number of customers might make it harder for you to negotiate because the salesman won’t be as focused on you.

Look at the invoice

Before you start any negotiations, ask to see the invoice because it will give you a lot of information on the car and, importantly, what the dealership paid for it. Although the dealer must make a profit, you’ll have a sense of the profit the dealer is trying for.

Remember you can—and should—say “No”

You are in charge. Don’t allow the dealer to force, rush, or sweet talk you… and he will try! Be prepared for those tactics and be ready to say, “No” to a price or deal that you don’t like. You should even be prepared to walk out if necessary.

Make the dealer be the one to make the offer

If the dealer asks you how much you’d like to pay, don’t name a figure. The dealer asks you how much you are able to pay: side-step the question. If he wants to know what you are currently paying: be honest. The bottom line is not to give a figure you are willing to pay as it might be higher that the one the dealer had in mind and he won’t tell you that! You need to get the dealer to name a figure and then negotiations can begin.

Tell the salesman you already have financing

It is crucial that you don’t—under any circumstances—tell the dealer or salesman that you have pre-arranged financing until the price is negotiated and agreed!

Final Buyer’s “Do’s” and “Do not’s”

Firstly, establish that you are a serious buyer that knows what he/she wants: “I’m thinking about buying a Ford” versus, “I want to buy a Ford Fusion with certain extras. I’ll buy it where I get the best price”. Secondly, don’t raise the issue of a trade-in prematurely as it can complicate matters or shift your focus from price. In addition, don’t discuss any incentives or rebates until you have agreed on price. Finally, try to negotiate the dealer fees and don’t get bullied into extras like warranties.

Review: The 2014 Volkswagen Jetta

The 2014 Volkswagen Jetta has introduced a number of improvements from the new turbo-charged engine to the more spacious interior. However, the reviews haven’t all been entirely positive.

2014 Volkswagen Jetta

The new Jetta sedan has a 1.8lt turbocharged 4-cylinder engine. The GLi trim has been given an additional 10 horsepower. All of the trims have independent rear suspension and the VW Car-Net telematics system. What reviewers have been less positive about is the fact that VW hasn’t yet made the most of the turbocharge engine, the sedan has a plastic and cheap-feeling interior, and the fuel economy with the 2.0- and 2.5lt engines is 26 mpg city/36 mpg hwy with the manual and 25 mpg city/36 mpg hwy with the automatic.

The standard transmission is a 5-speed manual but a 6-speed automatic is available. The 1.8-liter inline 4-cylinder in the Jetta SE and SEL makes 170 hp and 184 lb-ft of torque; the TDI has a 2.0-liter turbodiesel 4-cylinder delivering 140 hp and 236 lb-ft of torque with a 6-speed manual or 6-speed dual-clutch automated manual. The Jetta GLI and GTi hot hatch offer the 2.0-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder with 210 hp and 207 lb-ft of torque and the GLI motor provides 22 mpg city/33 mpg hwy with the 6-speed manual and 24 mpg city/32 mpg hwy with the 6-speed dual-clutch automated manual.

The Volkswagen Jetta 2014 is offered as either a sedan or a wagon with five basic trims each of which has different optional extras available:

  • The entry-level 2.0S provides air conditioning, 15” steel wheels, full power accessories, cloth upholstery, heated exterior mirrors, height-adjustable front seats, a tilt-telescopic steering wheel, and an audio system. The 2.0S with Sunroof offers a front center console with armrest, cruise control, and sunroof.
  • The 1.8T SE has all the above plus 16” steel wheels, partial power front seats, leatherette upholstery, leather trim, and a rear center armrest. VW also offers the 1.8T SE with Connectivity, the 1.8T SE with Connectivity and Sunroof, and the 1.8T SEL. Each has additional features.
  •  The base TDI model gets mostly the same equipment as the 1.8T SE with Connectivity, but the TDI lineup features a soft-touch dashboard like the 1.8T SEL. The TDI with Premium and the TDI with Premium and Navigation also offer further features on the base-line trim.
  • The base GLI comes with different 17” alloy wheels, a subtle exterior body kit, red-painted brake calipers, fog lights, darkened taillights, sport pedals, red interior stitching, front sport seats with driver lumbar adjustment, cloth upholstery, a soft-touch dashboard, iPod/Bluetooth connectivity and the 6-speaker touchscreen stereo. To this trim VW have added the GLI Autobahn and the GLI Autobahn with Navigation.
  •  The SportWagen’s options structure differs. It starts with a unique 2.5-liter S model is a hybrid of the 2.0 S and 1.8T SE trims regarding equipment. The SportWagen is available as a TDI with the same general features.

In terms of safety, the 2014 VW Jetta has stability control, airbags, and 4-wheel anti-lock disc brakes as standard. If the Car-Net telematics suite is in the vehicle, it affords crash notification, roadside assistance, stolen vehicle location assistance, remote vehicle access, and boundary and speed alerts.

In summary, the 1.8T is, overall and despite some shortcomings, a recommended upgrade for Jetta supporters because the fuel economy is reasonable, the car corners very well, and it offers solid handling and responsive steering. Other positives include a refined ride, a roomier rear seat, and lots of space for cargo. The 2014 Volkswagen Jetta ranks 22 out of 41 Affordable Small Cars.

Review: The 2014 Toyota RAV4

Toyota’s RAV4 has been popular for several years, and when the company launched the 2014 model they wanted to make sure that didn’t change. Many reviewers think they got it right!

Toyota RAV4

The new model is not bigger or more powerful than the previous one. However, there are improvements in the areas of functionality and looks, both of which are important for buyers. The first change is that a flip-up lift gate has replaced the swing-out rear door of previous models, and the spare has moved from the rear to below the cargo floor. In terms of power, the 2.5-lt 4-cylinder engine produces 176 horsepower. A V-6 option is no longer offered and the engine is now linked to a 6-speed automatic. The fuel consumption is an efficient 24 to 22 mpg depending on conditions and whether one uses 2-wheel or all-wheel drive.

There are three trim levels to choose from:

1. RAV4 LE ($24,500): cruise control, air conditioning, 17” steel wheels, automatic headlights, a CD player, power accessories, split-folding and reclining second-row seat, a center-mounted 6” touchscreen system, a USB/iPod interface, a rearview camera, and power folding mirrors

2. RAV4 XLE ($26,000): all the features of the RAV4 LE and 17-in alloys, a power sunroof, dual-zone automatic climate control, fog lights, heated side mirrors and roof rails.

3. RAV4 Limited ($29,300): in addition to all of the other features, the Limited comes with heated front seats, a power driver seat with memory, a power lift gate, synthetic leather upholstery, hands-free keyless entry with a push-button starter, and an auto-dimming rearview mirror.

There are several add-on extras available too: a JBL sound system, an Entune infotainment system, a navigation system, and Bluetooth and app connectivity.

Safety has always been a feature, and the new RAV4 is no different as it offers several over and above those mandated by law: side airbags, side curtain airbags, and driver’s front knee airbag. These features meant that in the latest government crash tests the RAV4 received 4 out of a possible 5 starts. Additional optional safety features include blind-spot monitoring and a rear cross-traffic alert. This vehicle handles and rides very well as the power steering is responsive even in tight turns, and the suspension can easily handle bumps and unevenness in the road. These various factors make the driver feel secure and in control. Strangely enough, the RAV4 Limited trim handles rough surfaces less well than the others, perhaps due to the 18” tire and wheel package.

Generally speaking, the 2.5lt engine has enough power; however, if the vehicle remains in Eco-mode then the 6-speed transmission begins to feel a little unresponsive, even sluggish. When in Sport mode the engine is more than up to it.

In summary, while there are more powerful SUV’s out there, the new RAV4 has the power most people need, improved styling and driving feel, a very fuel efficient engine, reliability, and the good resale value we have come to expect from Toyota. In addition, this vehicle ranks at 17 out of 22 in Affordable Compact SUV’s.

5 Tips for Saving Gas

Even if recessionary times are easing in some places we all still need to control expenses and costs where possible. One area where we can make a difference—sometimes a considerable one—is by saving gas and reducing these costs. Here are some useful tips for saving gas.

Gas

Tip 1: Check tire pressure regularly

All tires lose pressure over time, and as a result of lower pressure they will have more rolling resistance, which in turn leads to higher gas consumption. In addition, use stock tires rather than changing to the popular, modern thick ones as a wider tire with also result in higher rolling resistance and using more gas.

Tip  2: Fill the gas tank

The more gas there is in the tank the less air there will be. Gas evaporates very quickly and the more air there is in the tank the faster this will happen and the more gas you will lose in the process. You want gas you can use, not useless vapor. Furthermore, when filling your car or buying gas, purchase a high-quality gas for improved engine performance and gas consumption.

Tip 3: Tread lightly on the accelerator

If you ease up or use a light foot on the accelerator, the engine will burn less gas. A heavy foot combined with frequent braking will increase gas consumption. Driving at a moderate speed will also improve gas consumption levels.

Tip 4: Be smart with gears

Not only is the wise use of gears easier on your engine, but it will also help to save you gas. Using higher gears at a low speed, or low gears at high speeds, will result in using more gas. If the driver shifts or changes gears with care and drives at are fairly steady and moderate speed gas will be saved.

Tip 5: Keep your car’s engine in good condition

It’s important to have your car serviced at regular and appropriate intervals. In between services, it is wise to have air filters cleaned regularly, to check the handbrake, the clutch, and the levels of the various lubricants. If any of these items are not clean or in a good state of repair, especially the air filters, it can adversely affect gas consumption in a vehicle.

It’s easy to feel that we have limited ways to make savings each month, but if you implement these tips it will make a difference to you budget and wallet each month.

Review: 2014 TESLA Model S

2014 Tesla model S is pretty much same as its previous versions and remains the only luxury sport sedan with battery electric power. This vehicle is very sleek five passenger vehicle with an optional feature of an all-wheel drive. It is stylishly designed with its low, long, smoothly tapered and aerodynamic nose.

 2014 TESLA Model S

It comes with special features like aero wheels and tires and claims to have the lowest drag coefficient of any car that is in the market currently. Its door handles are also exclusively designed to retract flush in its body, and therefore it slides out to permit the driver with the key fob, to operate it. 2014 Tesla model S is completely made of aluminum and weighs around 4600 pounds. Therefore, it belongs the category of a mid –size to full-size sedan.

Simple and clean

Tesla model S is simple, clean and its dashboard is largely dominated by a big 17 “full color display with touch screen functionality. Its display is superiorly clear, bright and is very fast in response. With comfortable front seats, passengers are able to sit inside with their legs slightly extended than in case of other cars, since its battery pack is situated in the floor pan.

Powerful

The battery packs come in two sizes of 60 and 85 kilowatt hours and they correspond to EPA rated ranges of 208 and 265 miles. This range will deteriorate in cold climatic conditions, but the EPA numbers mentioned above are with respect to the results in the summer. The standard motor of this car produces up to 362 horsepower or 270 kilowatts. But it is possible to opt for the performance edition which comes in a larger battery pack and can go up to 416 horse power or 301 kilo watts, and produce a 0 to 60 mph acceleration time of below 5 seconds. This plug- in electric car has no real direct competition from other cars in similar class.

One of a kind

This widely popular model earned several awards in its introductory year in the market due to its admirable performance, ability and competence. This model holds the role like it is a sports car, because its centre of gravity is comparatively lower than any other sedan car. It has good air suspension that acts as a good shock absorber over bumps, potholes and uneven roads.

But it is important to ensure that the battery packs are recharged fast. There are Tesla specific charging stations that provides power of one or two onboard chargers of 10 kilowatt and another option is the 20 kW charging, which is impressive and is three times faster than any other plug-in car.

This zero- emission car is much better in performance than what the industry expected and was the recipient of numerous prestigious awards for a fully electric car. It is very well built, strong and can be easily used for long road trips. There are no reports of any major safety or quality glitches with 2014 Tesla model S. Overall, an impressive car with superior performance, comfortable interiors and an efficient fuel economy.

 

Review: 2014 Nissan Altima

The 2014 Nissan Altima is a popular family sedan which is very safe and comfortable too. It has a simplified power train line up and a meticulously dressed up cabin, high in infotainment and comfort. The interiors are spacious and seats are of admirable quality. Irrespective of whether it is a harsh or premium ride, the car is found to possess better balance and assertive handling, much better than its previous models.

2014 Nissan Altima

A luxury ride

The 2014 Nissan Altima comes with a new shape, advanced manufacturing techniques, good styling and an attractive new body. The front end of the Nissan is angled and arrowed, and the side glass forms a tapering pattern towards the back. The interior of the car is drawn conservatively with straight lines that divide the center control stacks from the passengers and the driver. It is also spacious enough to accommodate large LCD screens and advanced infotainment systems.

This model is a five seater with a 109.3 inch wheelbase and it is 191.5 inches in length. The seats are very comfortable that can seat passengers for several hours, especially in case of passengers in the front seat. The front seat can be adjusted for the driver in six different ways and in four ways for the passenger. Optional features include power driver seat and heated front seats. Some people even use leather seats. The rear seats can be folded down to expand it and give access to the trunk.

Nissan Altima sedan rides on an independent suspension and the latest model has been upgraded to Sachs shocks to gain better ride control and a luxurious feel as well as a stylish electro hydraulic steering. The ride in this car is tightly controlled and displays excellent compliance on any kind of surfaces.

Horsepower 

For this machine, 182 horse powers is the standard power train and there is a 2.5 liter four cylinder that is blended to a continuously variable transmission. It gives a good mileage of 27 miles per gallon for city and for highways; it is 38 miles per gallon. Safety and good fuel economy are selling points of Altima and Nissan has updated the Sedan technology by including many advanced features. These features are standard or optional rearview camera, lane departure warning systems and blind-spot monitors. It is one of the safest cars to drive around and even scores high in an overall crash-test performance.

Amazing features

It comes with audio and Bluetooth, audio streaming and incoming text-to-voice translation, CD player and an auxiliary jack. You can even stream from Pandora; get mapping information from maps like Google maps etc. It has a central display that displays all relevant information to the driver while driving. Some other features that can are available I this model are automatic headlights and LED tail lights, a USB port, heated rearview side mirrors, satellite radio, Bose audio, a navigation screen which is of 7 inches, dual zone climate control, a wide view rearview camera, push button start and a glass sunroof. The cost of an Altima sedan is $21, 500.

Review: 2014 Chevrolet Traverse

The 2014 Chevrolet Traverse is listed as one of the most affordable Midsize SUVs. This list was compiled after carefully analyzing published reviews and Chevrolet Traverse test drives. The reliability and safety parameters were also taken into account. From this data, the Chevrolet Traverse is ranked under lists like Affordable crossover SUVs, Affordable Midsize SUVs and Affordable SUVs with 3 rows. It comes with notable qualities like spacious interiors, easy maneuverability, refined ride and sufficient space for cargo.

2014 Chevrolet Traverse

Designed for power

The V6 engine of this model is powerful enough to power the car and there us a standard six-speed automatic transmission provided, that is smooth while shifting. 17/24 mpg is the EPA-estimated fuel economy for this car which can be considered to be average for its class. Chevrolet Traverse provides a comfortable ride, easy maneuverability in narrow spaces, nimble handling and precise accuracy in steering. The cabin of the Traverse is very spacious and all the materials used in its construction are of fairly high quality that is soft to touch.

Designed for comfort 

 

Up to 8 people can comfortably sit in this car and the front seats are found to be especially comfortable. It also has some good space for cargo, when compared to any other SUV in the market. It comes with distinct features like a back up camera, satellite radio, HD radio and Bluetooth. The optional features include MyLink Infotainment system which has a good display, Bose stereo, forward collision alert, rear-seat entertainment system and warning for lane departure.

Stylish 

Chevrolet Traverse has classy styling, admirable functionality for daily usage and an enormous cabin. There is huge market for crossover sport utility vehicles, which provides space for families like that of a conventional SUV, but given good fuel efficiency like a sedan. This model has been superiorly restyled and upgraded and is a great cross over car. It comes at a price of around $35000. The reversed interior is found to be spacious and comfortable and use better quality of materials when compared to the previous models of this car.

Regarding the seating arrangement, the first and second rows are found to provide enough space and are comfortable for long drives. Manually adjustable bucket seats and cloth upholstery are some of the standard features of Chevrolet Traverse, but optional features like leather upholstery, heated front seats and power-adjustable seats are also provided.

Safe

It scores high in safety and offers safety features like Driver air bag, Side head air bag, Passenger air bag, Rear head air bag, 4 wheel disc brakes, day time running lights, traction control, child safety locks, 4 wheel ABS, and electronic stability control. Since it has strong brakes and good handling, it is considered to be a solid cross- over car. Its tow ratings are respectable, as well as the fuel economy rates are efficient.

The smooth and comfortable ride, stability and quick reflexes make it a car worth investing in. It is reasonably agile with small amount of lean in the corners. Overall, it is a reliable car with no safety problems.

 

Review: 2014 Mini Cooper S

The new Mini Cooper S is a very comfortable car and is as sporty as you can get with a 2 liter motor. The 2014 Mini Cooper S is much bigger than the previous generation Cooper and it has spacious interiors for a car in its league. It has turbocharged 2-liter engine with four cylinders and has a 6 speed transmission enabling it to move very swiftly even in the mid level gears.

One important feature of this model is that it has a ring around the gear level that can support three modes of driving and that includes sport mode, mid and green mode. All of them interacts with a centre circular console with the help of a giant 8 inch screen and illuminates the LED light around it to improve the speed, acceleration and efficiency.

2014 Mini Cooper S

A fun drive 

2014 Mini Cooper S is a lot of fun to drive around, since it has a huge speedometer set in sport mode when you are jumping gears. The cost of a Mini Cooper S is around $25,000 when all the additional gadgets, accessories are added. It comes with advanced technology when compared to its predecessors. For instance, it comes with notable features like iDrive-style rotational control located towards the left side of the driver, right behind the gearstick. It provides very easy control and lots of full color visuals on the screen centre, so that you are well aware of the happenings and can make the suitable adjustments.

Customizable 

Other cool features include routes can be planned in advance for set dates by plugging the phone into this system. This data will get extracted to notify you on the correct day and time that was set. Optional features like height adjustable heads up display, which communicates with on-board cameras and you come to know the current speed limit in real time as it is captured from the car. The car also has a lot of visual appeal with its distinct and unique style. The interiors of the car reveal that it is a custom car with styling qualities like mock carbon fiber paneling, interior door handles that light up and several other stacks of customization options.

Comfort and style 

It looks fabulous from various angles and is comfortable to drive, making it a top car of its class. It is often referred to as a ‘mini BMW’ for the style, comfort, tech features and many other options that it provides. 2014 Mini Cooper S is slightly larger than its previous models, is upholstered and done up in a better way and is more secure and comfortable. It has decreased in the blinding design glare section of its previous model. But the price of this model is not increased significantly when compared to the previous versions, although it has many additional features. It has an innate upscale spunk associated with it that makes it a fun care to drive. It is a top choice car with its exceptional style and handling. Its playful presentation and premium feel are bonus factors.