Posted by admin on September 3rd, 2015 in Category Auto Salvage, Car News, Cash for Clunkers, Cool Cars, Fun and Humor, Marketing and Promotion, Our Affiliates, Our Green World, Recycling News, Retire your Ride, Site News, Uncategorized, USA, Used Car Parts, Used Cars (no responses)
Do you know what to do every time you step in the drivers seat, and what features are available to help make your driving experience better and easier?
While automakers are spending billions of dollars loading up their vehicles with technologies of all kinds, many owners are not using them and would rather use their smartphones instead, according to the first-ever J.D. Power 2015 Driver Interactive Vehicle Experience (DrIVE) Report.
The market research firm found that at least 20 percent of new vehicle owners have never used 16 of the 33 technology features that DrIVE measured. For the consumer, this means they are paying for something they are not using, said Kristin Kolodge, executive director of driver interaction & HMI research at J.D. Power.
The report looked at driver experiences with in-vehicle technology features during the first 90 days of ownership and was based on responses from more than 4,200 owners and lessees of 2015-model-year vehicles.
Features that owners did not use
43 percent—In-vehicle concierge feature such as OnStar.
38 percent—Mobile connectivity, such as a factory installed Wi-Fi hot spot.
35 percent—Automatic parking system, which aids in either parallel or perpendicular parking with limited interaction by the driver.
33 percent—Head-up display.
32 percent—Built-in apps such as Pandora.
“Tired and impatient, car buyers just want to get out of the dealership, often without becoming fully oriented with all of their new car’s features,” says Tom Mutchler, Consumer Reports’ automotive human factors engineer. “But many high-tech features aren’t immediately obvious or intuitive, especially when trying to decipher their use for the first time when driving.”
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Posted by admin on August 13th, 2015 in Category Affiliate News, Canada, Car News, Cool Cars, Our Affiliates, Recycling News, Site News, Uncategorized, USA, Used Car Parts, Used Cars (no responses)
Recently there have been multiple issues with connectivity when it comes to hackers and safety, so before it is available to the masses it must be protected as well.
Connected vehicles hold tremendous potential for improving road safety while simultaneously reducing energy consumption and road congestion through data sharing over the next 10–15 years.
Unfortunately, that potential may never be realized unless there is a dramatic change in the way automakers and suppliers handle cyber security. The recently revealed security vulnerability in Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) products with Uconnect telematics systems demonstrates some of the flaws in the current landscape.
Wired.com recently ran a report highlighting a flaw in the Uconnect telematics system discovered by noted white hat security researchers Charlie Miller and Chris Valasek. The pair worked out how to remotely connect to the vehicle’s cellular modem, a key component of Uconnect and all other telematics systems. From there, they were able to access a port in the vehicle network that provided entry to vehicle control systems, including steering, braking, and other functions. The article noted that Miller and Valasek notified FCA and waited until a fix was developed before publicly disclosing the flaw. So far, so good.
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Posted by admin on July 15th, 2015 in Category Affiliate News, Auto Salvage, Canada, Car News, Cash for Clunkers, Charity News, Cool Cars, Cool Green Future, Fun and Humor, Green News, Green Tips, Interviews, Marketing and Promotion, Our Affiliates, Our Green World, Recycling News, Retire your Ride, Site News, Uncategorized, USA, Used Car Parts, Used Cars (no responses)
With technology advancing in the automotive industry and with the results skyrocketing new tech features are the most important piece of the puzzle. However, car makers have discovered this fact which may to them continuing to keep information close to home.
Carmakers are limiting the data they share with technology partners Apple and Google through new systems that link smartphones to vehicle infotainment systems, defending access to information about what drivers do in their cars.
Auto companies hope that the vehicle data will one day generate billions of dollars in e-commerce, though they are just beginning to form strategies for monetizing the information. Apple and Google already make money from smartphone owners by providing a variety of products and services, from digital music to targeted advertising, and connecting phones to car systems will almost certainly extend their reach.
But as infotainment systems such as Apple’s CarPlay and Google’s Android Auto become more widespread, auto companies hope to keep tech providers from gaining access to a wealth of potentially profitable information collected by computer systems in cars.
Some auto companies have specifically said they will not provide Apple and Google with data from the vehicle’s functional systems — steering, brakes and throttle, for instance — as well as information about range, a measure of how far the car can travel before it runs out of gas.
“We need to control access to that data,” said Don Butler, Ford Motor Co.’s executive director of connected vehicle and services. “We need to protect our ability to create value” from new digital services built on vehicle data.
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Posted by admin on June 20th, 2015 in Category Affiliate News, Auto Salvage, Canada, Car News, Cash for Clunkers, Charity News, Cool Cars, Cool Green Future, Fun and Humor, Green News, Green Tips, Interviews, Marketing and Promotion, Our Affiliates, Our Green World, Recycling News, Retire your Ride, Site News, Uncategorized, USA, Used Car Parts, Used Cars (no responses)
The scheduled release of General Motor’s new hybrid cars will soon make them stand out in hope to compete with other companies in the electric field of automotives.
General Motors has mapped out a comprehensive electrification strategy that includes a reinvented 2016 Volt plug-in hybrid, a 2016 Malibu hybrid, the retail launch of the Spark EV in Canada and other markets, and the Bolt EV.
The Bolt, with a range of 321 kilometers, will be priced at $30,000, subsidies included.
All will be sold in global markets through GM dealerships, covered by factory warranties and backed by service procedures proven over the five years the current Volt has been on sale – with more than 70,000 Volts in the hands of customers.
Despite all this, Tesla remains the darling of the EV set. GM has made a demonstrable commitment to putting affordable electrified cars in the hands of the masses, but Tesla is considered a “buy” by a number of Wall Street analysts.
For instance, Morgan Stanley analyst Adam Jonas has a $320 per-share price target on Tesla (trading today at about $266), yet the company continues to lose money. The first-quarter loss at Telsa amounted to $154.2 million (U.S.). Nonetheless, the stock market puts a market cap on Tesla of more than $30 billion.
By contrast, GM today was trading at $35.43, for a market cap of about $57 billion. This begs the question: Does it gall Pam Fletcher, GM’s executive chief engineer for electrification, and her team to see such buzz about Tesla, but not so much for GM? She pauses and says, “We just showed you a video of a real car.”
She also points out that GM purposely puts key electrified vehicles into the Chevrolet brand. GM’s hybrids, plug-in and pure electric cars are not just for the elite, she says, taking a jab at Tesla. The base price of a Model S in Canada is $77,200, or more than twice the expected price of the coming Bolt – or the estimated $33,000 price tag of the Spark EV when it hits retailers in Canada this October.
GM is anxious to get out its electrification message, naming it one of the key elements of the Chevy brand moving forward.
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Posted by admin on May 14th, 2015 in Category Car News, Green News (no responses)
Is the push for lowering emissions actually doing enough to protect our health and prevent premature deaths from breathing the harmful substances? Maybe not, because the vast majority of these automotive pollutants come from a very small number of vehicles, found a study by researchers at the University of Toronto in Canada.
To examine the emissions of 100,000 vehicles, the researchers used a technique that was capable of taking immediate readings. They set the equipment up on College Street in Toronto and monitored the results. The analysis found that just 25 percent of the cars tested created 95 percent of the total soot and 93 percent of the carbon monoxide.
“As we looked at the exhaust coming out of individual vehicles, we saw so many variations. How you drive, hard acceleration, age of the vehicle, how the car is maintained – these are things we can influence that can all have an effect on pollution,” author Greg Evans said in the university’s announcement of the results.
In a separate study, Evans and his team used a mobile lab to take real-time emissions readings. While air quality is known to be poor even up to 270 yards away from major roads, the researchers found that pollutants can still be double their normal levels over 300 yards away for those downwind of a highway. People living around multiple high-traffic areas can experience even higher levels.
While both studies focus on emissions only within small geographic areas, they indicate that there’s still a lot to be done to lower air pollution from vehicles.
Read more here.
Posted by admin on April 22nd, 2015 in Category Affiliate News, Auto Salvage, Canada, Car News, Cash for Clunkers, Charity News, Cool Cars, Cool Green Future, Fun and Humor, Green News, Green Tips, Interviews, Marketing and Promotion, Our Affiliates, Our Green World, Recycling News, Retire your Ride, Site News, Uncategorized, USA, Used Car Parts, Used Cars (no responses)
Is your car ticking, squealing, or knocking? Each sound means a different problem with your car. Read the following sounds to find the problem and solution required for each noise your car makes.
You hear a high-pitched squeal that stops when you shut off your engine: Readjust or replace the belt. These belts should have about half an inch of play and shouldn’t be frayed, cracked, or glazed on the underside.
You hear a continuous high-pitched sound that may continue after the engines shut off: Check the radiator pressure cap. The rubber gasket may be worn.
Something ticks rhythmically while your engine idles: Shut off the engine, wait ten minutes for the engine to cool and the oil to settle, and then check the oil level. If you have enough oil, have a mechanic check the valve adjustment.
If you hear a loud tapping or knocking sound in your engine, pull to the side of the road and call for road service. The source may be a loose rocker arm or carbon buildup inside the engine, but if it’s a loose bearing or a faulty piston, it can destroy the engine.
Mild knocking or “pinging” may be the result of using fuel with the wrong octane rating.
You hear the engine running after you turn off the ignition: Your engine is dieseling. This condition only happens to cars with carburetors. It is usually caused by an idle speed that’s set too high or excessive carbon in the combustion chamber.
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Posted by admin on March 18th, 2015 in Category Affiliate News, Canada, Car News, Cool Cars, Cool Green Future, Fun and Humor, Marketing and Promotion, Our Affiliates, Site News, Uncategorized, USA (no responses)
There are 4 million car crashes in North America each year. Hopefully self-driving cars will one day lower that statistic.
Self-driving cars could generate billions of dollars a year in revenue from mobile Internet services and products, even if occupants spend only a fraction of their free time on the web, according to a new study by McKinsey & Company.
The study, released Thursday, also projects that widespread adoption of self-driving cars could lead to a 90 percent reduction in U.S. vehicle crashes, with a potential savings of nearly $200 billion a year from significantly fewer injuries and deaths.
In addition, the McKinsey study warns of several risks to established companies, including vehicle manufacturers, dealers and even insurance companies.
McKinsey projects that future owners of self-driving cars could save up to 50 minutes a day, some of which is likely to be spent surfing the web.
The consulting firm estimates the additional free time in the car could generate about $5.6 billion a year in digital revenue for each additional minute that vehicle occupants spend on the internet – as much as $140 billion if half their free time in the car, or roughly 25 minutes, is devoted to daily web surfing and shopping.
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Posted by admin on February 27th, 2015 in Category Car News, Cool Green Future, Green News, Our Green World (no responses)
It turns out not all electric vehicle owners are being equally environmentally friendly, some electric vehicles are greener than others, according to a new Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences study.
The study is important for those looking to buy a new car as they consider a number of different electric vehicle like the Tesla Model S, Chevrolet Spark EV, Ford Focus Electric, Kia Soul EV, and BMW i8.
Click here to read the full study, titled “Life Cycle Air Quality Impacts of Conventional and Alternative Light-Duty Transportation in the United States.”
The study found that it depends on how the electricity to charge the EV’s batteries is being produced.
“Our assessment of the life cycle air quality impacts on human health of 10 alternatives to conventional gasoline vehicles finds that electric vehicles (EVs) powered by electricity from natural gas or wind, water, or solar power are best for improving air quality, whereas vehicles powered by corn ethanol and EVs powered by coal are the worst,” said the authors, researchers from the University of Minnesota.
Electric vehicles getting their charge from plants that generate electricity by using natural gas, water, solar power, or wind can reduce harmful impact by 50 percent or more compared to gasoline powered vehicles. Surprisingly, EVs charged by coal-fired plants or vehicles powered by corn ethanol can increase the impact by 80 percent.
Unfortunately, coal is used to generate a good amount of the nation’s electricity, nearly 39 percent, according to the U.S. Department of Energy. Coal power is actually on the decline however.
A Department of Energy study pointed out that from 2002-’12 all but six U.S. states showed reductions in their coal use to generate electricity. States with declining coal usage are actually replacing it with power sources that are more environmentally friendly, according to the study.
The study points out that natural gas generates nearly 27 percent of the electricity in the U.S. Natural gas is followed by nuclear (19 percent), hydropower (7 percent), other renewable sources (6 percent), petroleum (1 percent) and other gases (less than 1 percent).
Read the full story here.
Posted by admin on January 22nd, 2015 in Category Car News, Green News, Our Green World, USA (no responses)
Gas won’t stay cheap forever. That’s why President Obama is encouraging American’s to choose fuel-efficient cars today.
Low gas prices typically make fuel-efficient cars less attractive to consumers, and right now prices are very low indeed.
Yet President Barack Obama hopes U.S. car buyers won’t clamor for gas guzzlers.
He cautioned that cheap gas prices won’t last indefinitely, and encouraged Americans to buy more fuel-efficient cars in an interview with The Detroit News.
That interview came just ahead of Obama’s speech at a Ford assembly plant in Wayne, Michigan, Wednesday promoting the success of the auto-industry bailout.
The plant produces the Focus and C-Max, but it’s been idled due to low demand for those fuel-efficient vehicles.
One has to admit, that’s a bit ironic.
Obama said the current low gas prices are temporary, and that people are better off buying more-efficient cars because of long-term environmental benefits—and to avoid a rude awakening when prices eventually increase.
If prices suddenly return to $3.50 a gallon, Obama said, “you are going to not be real happy.”
Read the full story here.
Posted by admin on December 31st, 2014 in Category Car News, Cool Green Future, Green News, Our Green World (no responses)
With 2014 coming to a close, it’s the right time to take stock of the achievements and advancements over the past year.
So how did 2014 measure up in terms of boosting vehicle fuel efficiency and reducing emissions?
According to the National Resources Defense Council (NRDC) advocacy group, it was a very good year indeed.
In a summary blog post, the NRDC says tightening fuel-efficiency standards and increased electric-car adoption made 2014 particularly green.
The group cites Environmental Protection Agency data showing record new-car average fuel economy of 24.1 mpg for 2013 models (the most recent with available data).
That upward trend is likely to continue in 2014. The Wards Auto Fuel Economy Index already estimates average fuel economy at 25.1 mpg for the first 11 months of 2014.
The NRDC also cites U.S. Energy Information Administration data showing that gasoline usage dropped 1.3 percent in the first nine months of 2014, compared to the same period in 2013.
The same research anticipates a further 1.4-percent drop in demand in 2015–despite currently-low gas prices and an expected increase in personal-vehicle use of 0.5 percent.
That’s largely due to efficiency improvements resulting from impending Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) regulations–which mandate a fleet-average 54.5 mpg by 2025 (equivalent to 42 mpg on the window sticker).
Read the full story here.