The New York International Auto Show has been a truly brilliant event this year, as always. One new car in particular caught our eye: the stunning new Jaguar XF. We’ve always had a soft spot for the beautiful Jaguar range and the XF is one of the best.

It has a sleek, curvy design that has been sculpted and carved to perfection in the new version. It, of course, features all the hallmarks of Jaguar’s luxury and exclusive brand.

2016 Jaguar XF

The new XF looks set to hit the road in 2016 and critics are singing its praises already. Let’s take a more detailed look at the new model and find out what you can expect.

What’s new? – As well as the sleek new cut and design, there has been a major chassis alteration. Jaguar have made the entire car significantly lighter thanks to a modern 75% aluminium chassis. They’ve also reinforced it with strengthened steel and a more precise build. All of this has achieved a lighter, but stronger car. It is a complete reinvention in the construction of the vehicle, for the better.

What about the engine? – Under the bonnet is Jaguar’s familiar 3 litre supercharged V6. It’s the same purring engine that we know and love and should come complete with an eight speed gearbox. The engine will produce up to 380bhp and tackle 0-60mph in a fraction over five seconds. That’s faster than its rivals at BMW and Mercedes. Jaguar’s fantastic engine mixed with the lighter body has made for a seriously fast car.

Comfort – Jaguar has always been synonymous with luxury, so how comfortable is it? Well, we’ll need to take the car out and put it through its paces for a full answer. But all signs point to a very comfortable vehicle. The new model will feature an advanced adaptive surface response system. It will monitor the road below you and alter the steering, suspension and braking settings to match.

Infotainment – Jaguar has always led the way when it comes to infotainment. Just look at the current interior specification at www.hafoxjaguar.co.uk to see for yourself. The new XF is going one step further. With a powerful touch screen display, Jaguar are taking the XF into the future. It will also feature gesture controls and harness the power of apps into its device.

Anything else? – Well, if the specification is to be believed, Jaguar are making huge leaps in the self drive race. Self driving cars are highly anticipated in the world of motoring. In the luxury sector, Mercedes have led the field. With the XF, it looks like Jaguar will close the gap. The new car will feature autonomous braking and adaptive cruise control to monitor itself on the road. It also features one of the most sophisticated automated parking systems on the market. It will find a space and park itself without the touch of the driver.

The new XF looks to be a very special vehicle indeed. Jaguar have teased us by unveiling it at the New York Auto Show. Now we just need to wait and get behind the wheel!

The rise of the SUV has been unstoppable. What was once the preserve of off-roading farmers and workmen is now a school-run staple. The chunky work horse has become a status symbol in the school car park.

Many 4x4s have forgotten their roots, or had no roots in the first place.

However, one car manufacturer clings to those roots and still leads the field. That’s the Land Rover family. Now a successful part of the Jaguar Land Rover clan, these are the true off-roaders.

2013 Land Rover Range Rover

That’s not to say they haven’t moved with the times. Quite the opposite. The Range Rover Sport, for example, is one of the most luxurious, comfortable and stylish cars on the road. It is driven by footballers with prices reaching the £100,000 mark. But the fact remains, if you take it off road, it becomes a whole different animal. We respect and admire Land Rover for that reason. They consistently produce brilliant road vehicles that pay tribute to their beginnings. With that in mind, let’s take a look at the family.

Range Rover – The Range Rover is the best vehicle in Land Rover’s arsenal. Quite simply, it’s the best 4×4 out on the road. It is luxurious and kitted out to an astonishing spec as standard. Some of its rivals are a little faster, but this 4×4 isn’t built for speed. The biggest competitor in the range is, surprisingly, Porsche. You wouldn’t typically expect Porsche to perform here, but the Cayenne is one of the best out there. But, the latest Range Rover Sport takes the crown once and for all.

Range Rover Evoque – This is the Range Rover’s lighter, smaller and more stylish younger brother. It is new to the Land Rover family but it’s already winning plaudits across the motoring world. Critics praise its practical, compact design and stunning good looks. It’s also the most fuel efficient Land Rover on the market, and comes in at an affordable price. Don’t think for a second you’ll sacrifice on off-road ability either. The Evoque has all the terrain response of the others.

Discovery – The more affordable Discovery is the back-to-basics Land Rover. Playing to its strengths, it the perfect adventure vehicle. It has a powerful towing capability and is practical to its core. It has stadium seats for the kids and more boot space than you know what to do with. Best of all, it’s smooth and comfortable out on the road. The Sport version is a streamlined, compact version of the classic and comes in a little cheaper.

Defender – The Defender is the rough and ready work horse we all know and love. The design has barely changed from the original Land Rover concept. It is rugged, iconic and still the best choice for the true adventurers. Its four wheel drive is still top of its class providing strong, dependable power when you need it most. They may have kept the classic design on the outside, but the inside is comfortable and modern. The perfect combination.

Land Rover has an iconic status in our hearts and long may it continue! Which is your favourite model?

When you buy any car these days, regardless of its age, you have the choice of opting for a manual or automatic model. Many people enjoy the freedom that driving a car with a manual transmission offers. These days, there seems to be a shift in the trend of what gearboxes people prefer in their cars.

Growing numbers of motorists are heading over to the “dark side” and getting automatic vehicles! There used to be a stigma attached to autos. Many people stereotyped them as getting driven by Americans or the elderly.

auto-car

These days, even the Generation Y motorists are opting for automatics!

The big question is this: does it makes sense for you to buy an automatic today? Here are some surprising facts about today’s autos:

They are more advanced than the slushboxes of yesteryear

Do you remember when some cars came with three-speed automatic gearboxes as standard? They were jerky and seldom offered gear changes at the right time. Nowadays things are much different.

Today’s automatic transmissions have more gears (some as much as ten!) and are computer-controlled. In general, the more gears an auto box has, the smoother the gear changes. It’s not uncommon for some auto models to outperform their manual brothers in terms of power delivery and fuel economy!

They let you change gear like you would in a manual

Take Volkswagen’s DSG (direct shift gearbox) units, for example. A simple look at any VW for sale on sites like motorlinedirect.co.uk reveals “+” and “-” options next to the standard gears.

They allow you to shift up and down the forward gears as if you were driving a manual! It’s great news for people that want more control out of their cars on the road. And it means that you don’t have to use a clutch pedal. The gearbox is also intelligent enough to change down a gear if you forget, so you won’t end up damaging your car’s engine.

They make your car more valuable

Many people are concerned about the future value of their vehicles. They want to make sure that their cars don’t lose much value as they age.

The great thing about cars with automatic gearboxes is that they help to increase your car’s value! It’s especially true if the model you want is rare if it has an automatic transmission.

They are more reliable than manuals

If you own a manual car, you will doubtless be aware that you have to change the clutch on it every so often. The clutch is a component that sits between your engine and the gearbox. Automatic gearboxes have torque converters, and they don’t need to get replaced for the life of your vehicle.

That means they are more reliable than cars with manual gearboxes! Owners of manual diesel cars often have to pay for expensive dual-mass flywheel replacements. But, as an automatic owner, you won’t have to suffer from such expensive costs!

So, do you still think manual cars are a good idea?

Photo credit : Flickr

Skoda is a firm known for producing affordable vehicles based on Volkswagen’s automobile architecture. It’s no secret that the Fabia is one of their best-selling models in their current lineup. Now in its third generation, the model has a refreshed image and set of features for 2015 onwards.

If you’re thinking of buying a hatchback car soon, it’s likely that the Skoda Fabia will be on your shortlist. But, is it a model you should consider buying?

2015 Skoda Fabia Combi-1

In today’s blog post, I run through the car’s main selling points. And I’ll also let you know what to expect (good or bad). Here is what you need to know:

What’s different from the previous generation?

There are plenty of engine and gearbox choices for the 2015 Skoda Fabia. Despite there being a plethora of fun and frugal options, there’s no vRS on the cards. That’s because the Czech car maker decided that it wasn’t worth the production expense.

The vRS only accounted for 3% of global sales! Instead, buyers can choose the sporty-looking “Monte Carlo” edition. But it won’t have sporty performance sadly. Also gone is the option to have factory navigation fitted. Again, poor sales of it on the outgoing model (1%) make it an unviable option to offer.

Engines and transmissions

As with the previous version, the 2015 Skoda Fabia will offer buyers plenty of choices under the bonnet. It’s likely that the most popular choice will be the 1.2-litre TSi engine. It boasts 88 or 108 brake horsepower, depending on the variant you choose.

Gone is the 1.6-litre engine. There’s also no mention of a 1.4-litre unit either. Instead, you’ll have to go for the diesel option if maximum displacement is your thing. And what about transmission choices? According to the www.rrg-group.com site, new Fabia owners can get a five-speed manual. They can also choose the seven-speed DSG.

The DSG (Direct-Shift Gearbox) is more than “just an auto box.” It also lets you shift between all seven gears manually, with the exception that you don’t need to use a clutch pedal.

Stability on the road

One notable difference between this generation and the outgoing one is the handling. The new 2015 Skoda Fabia feels more stable on the road, thanks to the new MQB platform used by some of today’s VW Group cars.

The second-generation Fabia was notorious for feeling unstable at high speeds. This was due to the high centre of gravity the car had. Even the sporty vRS didn’t improve things a great deal. The good news is that those problems are a thing of the past with this new generation Fabia.

Equipment

New Fabia customers will be happy to learn that their cars come with a wealth of equipment as standard. For example, the entry-level “S” comes with a DAB digital radio and CD player. You’ll also feel safer, thanks to six airbags and stability control. You even get a tyre pressure monitoring system too!

On the face of it, the new 2015 Skoda Fabia offers plenty of exciting new features and styling for today’s drivers. But some might avoid the car, given that there’s no high-performance vRS option anymore.

Passing your driving test comes with an amazing sense of relief and achievement. You’ll be free to explore the roads and go on adventures. You can take road trips with your friends or simply stop relying on mum and dad for lifts! You might even have the perfect car sat on the drive just waiting for you to drive it. It really will open up your world and give you the freedom you deserve. There’s just one small detail, you need to pass your test!

pass

The driving test is a nerve wracking hour of maneuvers, signalling and independent driving. With the examiner breathing down your neck and watching your every move, it’s a stressful time. There’s only one thing worse than taking your driving test, and that’s having to take it twice! We know drivers who have been through five or six driving tests before they passed. This is the last thing you want. Today we’re going to show you the tricks of the trade and make sure you pass first time. Ready? Let’s take a look.

 

The theory test – This is the really easy part and we advise getting it out of the way early. Make sure you have passed your theory test before you’ve booked the proper exam. If you have a disaster on the theory test, you’ll have to rearrange. This is a simple test of the highway code and hazard perception. There are plenty of resources online to help you pass this. Book your theory test online and start swotting up! Get this out of the way and you’ll be ready to take the physical exam.

 

Take enough lessons – This may seem like an obvious suggestion. Unfortunately a lot of driving students simply don’t put in the time behind the wheel. Your instructor knows all the techniques and tips you need to know to pass your test. Only book the test when they say that you are ready and prepared. The number of lessons will vary according to your ability. However, most companies suggest at least 25 lessons. Some will insist on 40 lessons before the test takes place.

 

Practice, practice, practice – Outside of the instructor lessons, you ought to practice at home. Pick up some learner plates and convince mum or dad to come along with you. Practice the techniques you learned in the lessons over and over again. Repeat the parallel park until you get it just right. Get comfortable with the sensation of driving and allow your natural instincts to develop. Driving gets easier with practice, so drive as much as possible.

 

Familiarise yourself with the test area – Once upon a time, you could find the exam routes online. Unfortunately, these have now all been removed. Having said that, you should know your local area well enough to predict a likely route. Get to know the area and be prepared. Take note of where certain lanes merge or where difficult maneuvers are needed. Get comfortable with the roads around the test center so you’re not caught out on the day.

 

Practice your weaknesses – Every driver has that one maneuver they can never get right. It could be the parallel park or the turn in the road. Whatever it is that troubles you, practice it again and again. There will be at least two maneuvers on your test and you can pick up a number of faults here. Keep practicing until you get it perfect.

 

Understand the biggest reasons for failure – There are two main ways you can fail your test. The first is too many major faults. This could be dangerous driving, speeding or pulling out in front of others. The second is too many minor faults. You can incur quite a lot of minor faults before you fail, but they add up quickly! The biggest reasons for failure are these minor faults. Within that, the biggest culprit – by far – is failing to check your mirrors. Every time you don’t check your mirror before turning, indicating or stopping you’ll get a minor fault. These add up quickly over the test. Always remember your mirrors!

 

Book an extra lesson before the test – On the big day, it’s worth booking an extra lesson. There should be no pressure on this lesson at all. It’s all about getting into your groove as a driver. Get comfortable in the car again and get used to the drive. It will help you settle in before starting the test. You’ll shake any cobwebs and build a little confidence. If you like, you can practice some maneuvers to get you in the mood.

 

Keep yourself calm and focused – It’s really important to keep the nerves in check before the test. A good long drive beforehand will help. However, it’s worth taking a few extra precautions too. One tip that we swear by is taking some chewing gum along. If you get nervous, your mouth tends to dry up which is infuriating! Chewing gum will easily solve the problem and help you forget your nerves. We all have our own way of dealing with this, find yours.

 

Learn the ‘show me, tell me’ questions – The very first part of the test is the ‘show me, tell me’ part. It’s a simple question and answer session about your car. It could be ‘show me where the oil should go’. It might be ‘tell me how to check the brakes are working’. There are only about 12 of each and they’re very simple. Learn them all so you can answer confidently. Getting these right will give you confidence and you’ll get into the car knowing you got it right.

 

Confidence – Confidence is the most important part of passing your test. You know you can do this! You’ve practiced everything, you know the local area and you’re a comfortable driver. Just do everything you’d normally do and you’ll be fine. Try to settle in and – dare we say it – enjoy yourself!

 

Follow this advice and you’ll pass with flying colours! You can celebrate with your new certificate and enjoy your new found freedom!

Photo credit : Flickr

It’s no secret that the Lamborghini Gallardo is the first model to get built under Audi’s ownership. When you first check out the car in person, you will soon spot the German car maker’s influence on the vehicle. But is that a good thing, or should you avoid the car like the plague and head over to your nearest Ferrari dealership?

Well, let me tell you that Audi cars are known for their excellent build quality and attention to detail.

Lamborghini Gallardo LP 570-4 Squadra Corse-1

And their influence on the design and build process has brought the Gallardo up to Audi standards. In today’s car review, I’ll give you the lowdown on this Italian stallion and explain why you should consider buying one!

You will fall in love with that V10 engine note

Under the hood, the Gallardo is powered by a 5.0-liter V10 motor that boasts an impressive 493 horsepower! It will get you from zero to 60 mph in just 3.9 seconds and has a top speed of 196 mph. Of course, to achieve such speeds you would have to drive on a racing circuit or unlimited parts of the German autobahn.

It’s a 40-valve supercar that should get avoided by people that want a frugal car. Good gas mileage isn’t what this car is about; in case you wondered, it offers a woeful 14 mpg! The reasons you might want this car is simple: it’s fast and loud!

Let’s say you reach an open stretch of road, or you’re at a test track somewhere. Put your foot down on the gas pedal, and I can guarantee you that the Gallardo will leave you with a massive grin on your face! I recommend that everyone drive the car at least once in their lives. Whether it’s through buying one or borrowing one through an exotic car rentals company!

It offers excellent handling

As standard, the Lamborghini Gallardo comes with all-wheel drive. Having such a system will instantly make any car handle better on the road. But, in the Gallardo, the handling will be something you have never experienced in your life before!

You can go around any corner at speed, and the car is still firmly planted on the ground. Saying that the handling is phenomenal is likely the understatement of the century! You might think that I am exaggerating when I say this. But the Gallardo will be the best handling car you will ever drive in your lifetime.

You can drive it on any roads without losing your teeth

One thing I love about the Gallardo is that it’s a car that you can drive on public roads. As you know, you will seldom find a town or city where the roads are in excellent condition. They are full of potholes and ruts. Many supercar owners are used to dealing with poor handling in “everyday” driving conditions.

But, where the Gallardo leaves its competition behind is that it’s a car you can drive on any paved road, regardless of the driving conditions. So, why are you still here? Go out and get a Gallardo NOW!

Buying a used car can be an unnerving experience for most of us.

Unless you are an experienced mechanic, there is no way of telling whether the vehicle will make it back to your home or not.

Deception is rife, but thankfully, there are a few things you can do to reduce your risk.

used-cars

1: Make Contact

Your first contact is vital when you are buying a used car. Kick off on the wrong foot and the seller might think they have you where they want you. But ask some key questions and you will give off the impression you know what you are talking about. Ask if everything is original, or whether there have been updates/replacements put in. You need to know specifics on spare parts, so ask for them – even if you don’t know what they mean.

Then ask about any damage to the car, including bumps, scratches or flaws in the paint. Move on to safety issues and mechanical problems, before asking if the car has been involved in any accidents. This should be a warning sign. Accidents could be the sign of a careless driver, who are far less likely to take care of their vehicle.

Finally, get a grasp on the price. You need to have something to work with when you finally meet.

2: Research

Research similar cars to see if those prices match up. It’s a good idea to visit used dealer sites to see what they are offering. If you are after a Chevy, for example, then looking for vehicles at Smithchevyland.com/ can give you a good insight into what the car is worth to the dealer in resale value. You can also have a good stab at guessing what they paid for it. Your goal should be towards the lower of those two figures, and certainly no higher.

You also need to look into everything you can about the make, model and year of build. This will help you when it comes to talking about it. Have a look online at other people’s reviews of the vehicle. Are there common problems that crop up? Everything you find out can be used to lower the price and avoid getting stung.

3: The Meeting

Now you are armed with the knowledge, you can head into a meeting. Arrange it at a time that suits you, but don’t rush in. This could make you look too eager. Bring a friend or family member with you on the day of the meeting – you should never go alone. Make a good impression and be friendly. They should be your focus first off, not the car. You need to come across as knowledgeable, so put all your homework to good use.

Look the car over, including under the hood. Check for leakages, and double check anything the seller has said is faulty or has been replaced. Take it for a drive if you can, but this won’t always be possible. If you like it, don’t make an offer just yet. They may say that others are interested, but don’t be pressured into making a decision immediately. Go home. Think about it. Ring them the next day and negotiate a good price based on what you already know. If you have followed this advice to the letter, they will probably sell.

Congratulations, you have just bought a used car like a pro.

Image source : Flickr

Cars with a few years on them eventually start to squeak and groan.

The noise will come from things like your car’s door, the hood or the trunk.

Luckily with the application of a few lubricants you can get your car to be nice and quiet again and probably avoid repairs too.

The lubricants we will be discussing here are :

Car_Repair

WD-40 Penetrating Oil – a very popular penetrating spray for the lubrication and freeing up of sticking metal assemblies. Available a most hardware stores and auto parts stores.

White lithium grease – A thicker grease great for metal-to-metal joints like hinges and latches. Same availability as above.

Graphite lubricant – The right choice for delicate mechanisms. It is a dry powder compound and as such won’t attract dirt and dust to mechanisms like oils will. Also available a most hardware stores and auto parts stores.

Here are four known “squeak areas” that mechanics suggest you lubricate periodically:

  • Hood Hinges – Lift up the hood on your car and you will see two scissors- like hinges holding the hood to the car body. Spray these hinges with white lithium grease. Do this at least twice a year so the mechanism works freely.
  • Lock Mechanisms – Most of today’s cars have electronic locks but if you have an “old fashioned” key lock on your car’s doors, it should be lubricated periodically. You can keep these delicate mechanisms moving freely with a blast of dry graphite powder inside the lock tumbler. Spray a little into each lock and move the cylinder with your key several times to work the graphite into the mechanism. Make sure to do this to both of your doors, and your trunk lock too.
  • Gas tank lid – This hinge is out in the open and gets hit with a lot of grit and salt spray. Give it a squirt of WD-40 a few times a year to keep it from rusting up.
  • Hood Latch – Your car’s hood latch will be at the front of the car and it secures the hood in the down position. They typically grab a circular metal loop that is located on the front of the hood. These latches get dry and this often makes unlatching the hood difficult. Locate the latch mechanism (there may be two) and give it a good blast with the white lithium grease. Then open and close the hood a few times to work it in. Lubricate your trunk latch the same way.

Article source : PaulConteChevrolet

Today’s cars are very reliable so breaking down is uncommon event but it still can happen.

Bad weather, dead batteries, flat tires can happen to anyone at anytime, regardless of the age of your car.

When things like this happen, few people are prepared. And you know Murphy’s Law; when something does happen, its going to happen during horrible weather too. So, lets get prepared with a set of tools and some emergency gear so you are ready for whatever occurs.

Car_Repair

Flashlight – Why? Because we can guarantee that the next time your car breaks down it will be at night. Get a good flashlight too. The cheap $2-$3 dollar lights aren’t “mission ready” for this sort of thing. You need a quality light and fresh batteries.

First Aid Kit – If you have kids, you will likely dig into a first aid kit long before your next car issue occurs, so you need one right away. Most pharmacies and large box stores have nice first aid kits for short money.

Hand Tools – At a bare minimum, have phillips head and standard screwdrivers, a set of common metric wrenches and a set of pliers. Better yet, purchase a kit containing all of these tools in a convenient plastic case. Most auto parts stores carry these as well

Work gloves – A set of work gloves is a great thing to have in your emergency kit. You may need them just to keep your hands warm during cold weather.

Snow Brush with Ice Scraper – A good snow brush is mandatory in the winter.

Jumper Cables – You don’t want to be stranded with a dead battery and not have jumper cables. Everyone should have a pair in their car. Spend the extra money and get good ones because they will work better and last longer.

Kitty Litter – Sand or clean kitty litter will also help provide traction if you get stuck in snow. You don’t have to carry a lot but you may find this provides just enough traction to get you out if you are stuck on ice.

Fix-A-Flat – Don’t want to mess with changing a tire? You might be able to use Fix-A-Flat. Fix-A-Flat is an aerosol can that you connect to the valve stem of a wheel. When it is sprayed into the wheel, it fills the tire with air and seals the leak from the inside. They don’t always work (it depends on how big the tire leak is) but it’s always worth a try.

There are other supplies you may want to consider too. If you have enough room, perhaps a blanket, an old jacket, and drinking water. Take a few minutes to think of some of the additional items you can equip your car with plus the necessary stuff, and you can drive with true peace of mind.

Source: Kolosso Chrysler

Is a light out on your car or truck? If it’s a tail light or headlight, there is a good chance that you will be pulled over by a police officer soon and given a warning. You can drop it off at your local car repair shop and have the bulb replaced but there is another option – go DIY. Today most automotive lights are easy to replace. Here’s what to do:First, verify that the light isn’t working. Headlights are easy, just turn them on and look for low and high beam operation.

2016 Kia K5

Turn signals and taillights are easy too. For parking brakes and backup lights, you might need someone to stand behind the vehicle and watch while you operate them.

Most light assemblies on today’s cars are designed to be easily accessed and the bulbs replaced. Usually this just requires unsnapping some plastic clips, unscrewing a plastic thumbscrew or using a phillips screwdriver to remove a retaining screw. If you are unsure how to do this on your model car, consult your owner’s manual or see if there is a Youtube video covering it. Chances are that you will find some sort of video either made professionally or by an owner that shows how it’s done.

After you get the bulb out, inspect it and see if it’s burned out. If the filament is broken, then the bulb needs to be replaced. Note that there are usually two filaments — one for the low beam and one for the high beam – in the headlight bulbs and only one is generally burned out.

You can obtain replacement bulbs from a number of places. You can find them at most auto parts stores, your local dealer and certainly on-line. If you need additional help, generally the folks at most auto parts stores will walk out to your car and give you a hand.

Article Source:EastHillsChevroletofRoslyn