Archive for January, 2012

What’s The Deal With This Acura Super Bowl Ad?

Tuesday, January 31st, 2012

It's no secret that Jerry Seinfeld loves cars. In fact, he may be second only to talk show host Jay Leno in terms of celebrity auto enthusiasts. So it likely comes as no surprise that Seinfeld is appearing in a Super Bowl ad, but what is a bit of a shock is the brand he is appearing for. The stand-up legend is featured in the recently-released ad for Acura, a stark change given his well-known affinity for Porsche products.

The 90-second spot places Jerry in an Acura dealer in line to get the much-anticipated NSX. He wants to be the first to have the sleek concept car, but unfortunately finds himself in the number two spot behind another lucky, and stubborn, shopper. Not to be denied, Seinfeld pulls out all the stops to try to bribe the car away from his rival. He seems to finally have it until he is thwarted at the last second by a surprise guest.

It's understandable that Seinfeld would want to be the first behind the wheel of the NSX. The impressive ride made it's debut at the 2012 Detroit Auto Show, and according to Motor Trend, it was quite a sight to behold.

The NSX has not been in the North American market since 2005, but it is back and better than ever. The V-6 engine is augmented with three electric motors which give drivers the ability to power each wheel individually. Despite the impressive features, the car is still three years away from an official release.

Seinfeld is not the only big name celebrity to already throw his hat in the Super Bowl ad ring. Earlier this week, Honda released its Ferris Bueller spoof featuring Ferris himself – Matthew Broderick.

These Repairs Will Hurt Your Wallet

Tuesday, January 31st, 2012

Sometimes it may seem like expensive car repairs are unavoidable. After all, things happen and you just have to bite the bullet and pay for a costly fix. However, other times that is simply not the case, and the repair could have been avoided with a little preventative maintenance or by paying close attention to how your car is running. With that in mind, MSN Autos recently provided what it considers to be the most expensive car repairs you should keep an eye out for.

A catalytic converter is crucial to detoxifying exhaust emissions, which can be especially important to people looking to reduce their carbon footprint. Though many of them are built to last 15 to 20 years, sometimes a misfire or broken oxygen sensors can significantly shorten their lifespan. Due to their pricey parts, a new one can cost nearly $3,000.

The injection pump is one of the most important parts of car, as it is responsible for delivering fuel into the engine cylinders. Unfortunately, it can sometimes become clogged, which requires it to be changed. In smaller cars, the fix is not too expensive, but in SUVs and trucks it can labor intensive. Luckily, regular maintenance like routinely changing air filters can prevent the problem, the news source reports.

Cylinder failure can be one of the biggest issues a driver faces, but the good thing is that it can be caught early by addressing smaller problems like misfires. However, if the warning signs are ignored, it can lead to repair costing as much as $8,000.

"There are typically many warning signs," Art Jacobsen of CarMD.com told the news source.

Sometimes repairs are inevitable, and in that case you should head to New Jersey State Auto Auction's Total Car Care center. Located in Jersey City and open to the public, the center offers everything from general upkeep to fixes.

Diesel Becoming More Accepted in U.S.

Tuesday, January 31st, 2012

Diesel-powered cars have long been popular in Europe, but they have yet to catch on in the United States. That may change in the near future, auto industry experts say, as surveys show Americans are becoming more comfortable with the idea of driving a car that runs on the alternative fuel, USA Today reports.

The growing trend is reflected by the results of a recent poll from auto-technology supplier Bosch. The company found 32 percent of respondents said they would consider purchasing a diesel-powered vehicle. While certainly not an overwhelming proportion of the population,  it is compared to 2006 when only 12 percent said the same thing.

The reason for the changing attitude may have to do with the fuel economy of diesel engines. According to the publication, they get about 30 percent better mileage on the highway, and although they may not perform as well around town, this is enough for some drivers.

Volkswagen has emerged as the leading manufacturer of diesel-powered cars in the United States. In fact, 85 percent of Volkswagen Jetta SportWagens are sold as diesel models. Additionally, 55 percent of Golfs sold are the same variety.

Though Volkswagen is currently the most popular, a number of other companies seem to be noticing the shifting trend. Many American-based manufacturers are planning on releasing diesel versions of popular models in the coming years. For instance, USA Today's Drive On blog reports that Chrysler is expected to release a diesel version of its Jeep Grand Cherokee as well as the Wrangler and Dodge Durango.

Whether you're looking for a diesel-powered car or a more traditional car, New Jersey State Auto Auction has plenty offer. With a wide variety of makes and models at affordable prices, there is certainly something for everyone.

What Automotive Fixes Can I Do by Myself?

Monday, January 30th, 2012

The average driver may not think they're qualified to perform repairs on their car. While there are certain fixes that should only be attempted by professional mechanics, there are a number of other common maintenance issues that even the least mechanically-minded car owner can perform.

One of the easiest do-it-yourself aspects of auto maintenance is checking and filling your tires. Since most gas stations have free air pumps, all you need to purchase for yourself is a tire pressure gauge and familiarize yourself with the appropriate levels. Not only is this easy, but it's important as well. Having properly inflated tires is crucial to safety because it improves handling, and according to Edmunds, inflating your tires can save you ton of money not only on service costs but on fuel economy as well. Properly-inflated tires have proven to save around $120 a year on gas.

Changing your air filter can be done in your home as well. The process takes about five minutes and only requires you to have a screwdriver and a new filter on hand. While most mechanics might suggest having a professional do it, the website suggests it's not necessary.

When a light bulb goes out, it can be more of an annoyance than anything else. Having to drive to a garage for such a simple fix may seem unnecessary and according to some experts, it is. The only obstacle is finding out how to reach the bulb in the first place, but the owner's manual can usually solve that problem.

Though there are some fixes that can be done in the comfort of your own home, for more intricate repairs and a routine check up you should head to New Jersey State Auto Auction's Total Car Car Center.

Barack Obama’s Former Car up For Sale

Monday, January 30th, 2012

It's not every day you can say you've driven the same car as the Commander in Chief, but for one person that just might be the case. A car that belonged to President Barack Obama is up for sale on eBay and its owner has slapped quite a hefty price tag on it – $1 million.

The car is a 2005 Chrylser 300C that Obama drove from 2004 through the summer of 2007 while he was a junior senator from Illinois. During that time he put just 19,000 miles on its Hemi-powered engine. Despite its age and the fact that it hadn't been used much, Obama still traded it in for a Ford Escape hybrid when he began his presidential campaign, MSNBC reports.

This isn't the first time that the car has been up for sale on eBay. Several years ago, its owner Tim O’Boyle says he put it on the website but it was taken down after people jokingly ran the bidding up to $100 million. To make sure that doesn't happen, prospective buyers have to make a $2,000 deposit just to place a bid. So far the car has been up for more than a week and there have been no takers.

Obama has come a long way since his days driving the eco-friendly Ford Escape. Today he rides in the presidential limousine nicknamed The Beast, and it has certainly earned every bit of the moniker. According to Motor Authority, the car, manufactured by Cadillac, includes a number of impressive features. Among its highlights are eight-inch thick armor-plated doors, independent oxygen supply, night vision cameras and Kevlar-reinforced tires – just to name a few.

Perception Trumps Experience When Purchasing Cars

Friday, January 27th, 2012

Results of a new J.D. Power and Associates study reveal why people choose their cars, and the reasons might be a bit surprising. Consumers are more likely to base their purchase on common knowledge or opinions rather than any personal experience with the vehicle in question.

The research was conducted as part of the firm's annual Avoider Study, which aims to find out why consumers stay away from certain cars while they flock to other models. A large portion of responders, 43 percent, said that their perception of a particular brand's reliability and quality is what swayed their decision.

About 38 percent said that reading a poor review was what made them stay away, while only 14 percent said that their actual experience is what made them think poorly of a particular brand. The findings indicate that some automakers should place an emphasis on changing their public perception.

"For some brands, namely those that have created marked improvements in their quality and reliability in recent years, it's even more vital to tell their improvement story, rather than just waiting for perceptions to change over time," said J.D. Power and Associates' research director Jon Osborn said.

Instead of basing your decision on reputation, you should consider several other ways to determine the quality of a used car. Of course, the test drive will be an important factor in your decision because taking a car out on the road is the only way to get a feel for how it actually operates. Not only that, but you will want to look into the car's vehicle history to understand any potential pitfalls.

Regardless of how you choose your used car, New Jersey State Auto Auction will have the vehicle for you. Additionally, since each automobile is Carfax certified you know it is a reliable choice.

Women Better at Buying Cars Than Men

Friday, January 27th, 2012

When it comes to finding a good deal on used cars, the battle of the sexes seems to have beeen won by women. A new report from LeaseTrader.com found that women regularly get better prices on cars than their male counterparts and according to NPR, it is indicative of a growing trend in the auto industry.

The reason women are able to get better deals is due largely to the fact they do more research beforehand. As a result, they are better equipped to ask specific questions regarding everything from safety and performance to vehicle history. Women are also more likely to talk dealers into a lower price, experts say.

"Our data specifically says that women not only have a larger interest in cars overall, but women today are taking a more active role in the negotiating process of a vehicle and in the car-shopping process in general," LeaseTrader's John Sternal told NPR. 

While women were concerned about reliability and quality, the same cannot be said for men. The survey revealed that they care more about aethestics and technology. The findings demonstrate the longheld perception that women are not as interested in cars as men is simply not true

"That our data illustrates a deepening relationship between women and cars comes as no surprise," LeaseTrader said in a press release.

Whether male or female, drivers can find a good deal at New Jersey State Auto Auction. With a wide variety of makes and models at affordable prices, its likely you'll find the perfect car for you. Furthermore, each vehicle is Carfax certified so you know you're getting a reliable ride.

How long can my tires last?

Thursday, January 26th, 2012

Though they may not get the attention that some other components of the car get, the tires are one of the most crucial aspects of a vehicle. After all, they are the only part that is contact with the ground at all times and if they are not in good shape it can put a serious dent in your car's safety. Still, some people may not know how to best maintain their tires and when it's time to get new ones.

It can be complicated to know when the time is right. Some people may judge their quality based on age and others say that tread quality is the best indicator. To get a good gage on when you should replace your tires, there are a few things you should take into consideration, Edmunds says.

Where you're driving can have a significant impact on how long your tires last. According to the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA), climate can play a substantial role in the lifespan of tires, and factors such as heat and exposure to sunlight may mean they won't last as long.

How you take care of your tires is also important to take into consideration. For one thing, if they are not properly inflated or if you drive recklessly (like occasionally running over curbs) then chances are your wheels will  wear out faster.

While there are no set NHTSA guidelines regarding the the age limit on tires, other groups are a little bit more forthcoming with information. According to Edmunds, some carmakers say that tires should be replaced after about six years, while tire manufacturers say that their products can top out at 10 years.

Lindsay Lohan Slapped With Another Driving Lawsuit

Thursday, January 26th, 2012

It's safe to say that Lindsay Lohan has had her fair share of troubles. Whether it be run-ins with the law or stints in rehab, the former child star has not had a smooth adulthood. That is especially true when she gets behind the wheel of a car, and now the "Mean Girls" star has found herself in hot water once again. Lohan is being sued by a woman who claims she was struck by the actress' car while she was crossing the street in  September 2010, The Associated Press reports.

The allegations stem from an incident in which Lohan struck the woman with her Maserati while she was in a crosswalk in West Hollywood. The victim wants Lohan to pay for the "injuries, pain, suffering and anguish" she faced and is also seeking compensation for time she missed from work.

This certainly is not Lohan's first trouble behind the wheel. Earlier this month, she was slapped with another lawsuit from a paparazzo who says that a vehicle carrying the actress struck him while he was trying to take pictures of her, the AP reports.

In fact, her driving troubles date back almost five years. She is still on probation as the result of a drunk driving arrest in 2007. Lohan was arrested several times that year due to suspicion of her being impaired while behind the wheel. One of those incidents resulted in a civil case settled outside of court, while another filed by three men in the car at the time may go to court later this year, according to the AP.

Though Lohan may be the most notorious bad driver, she is certainly not the only celebrity to have some vehicular issues. Perhaps most famously, Britney Spears has been accused of doing everything from driving with her infant son on her lap to excessive speeding.

What do I do When I’m Storing my Car?

Wednesday, January 25th, 2012

Sometimes you have to store your car for a long period of time, whether it be the result of life changes or impending weather. While it might seem like an easy task, there are a number of things to take into consideration before you stow your car away, and you should take great care to prepare correctly.

One of the first things to do before you store your car is to make sure it gets washed. According to Edmunds, it might not seem important to have a clean car if it's not being used, but making sure your vehicle is free of debris and water stains can help keep its paint looking good while it's not being driven.

Along with keeping it clean, you will also want to take measures to prevent any animals from making their home in certain places of your car. Experts suggest blocking any gaps such as the exhaust pipe or an air intake with steel wool. If you're leaving town for a while, you may also want to enlist the help of someone who can check the garage sporadically while you're away – just to make sure.

Another tip that may seem counter intuitive is to fill it up with gas before you store it away. If you're planning on keeping it in the garage for the more than 30 days, a full tank of gas can prevent moisture from building up on the inside and lower the chances of seals drying out, Edmunds says.

Above all else, you will want to make sure it is up-to-date on its maintenance. Whether this means having the oil changed or getting a new battery, a well-kept car will make it through storage much better. New Jersey State Auto Auction's Total Car Care center is a great place to go for services ranging from repairs to regular upkeep.

Toyota Tops Brand Perception Survey Once Again

Wednesday, January 25th, 2012

Consumer Reports released the results of its annual Car-Brand Perception Survey, and while Toyota topped the list once again, there were some surprising changes. The gap between the top four brands is shrinking and smaller companies seem to be reaping the benefits of changes in perception of larger manufacturers.

Toyota led the way in terms of brand perception but it did suffer a bit. While the company may have dropped in favorability in a few key categories, one place it did not suffer was quality. The publication found that Toyota's quality rating stayed at 19 percent – its same level as in 2011 – while competitors such as Honda dropped from 25 to 19 percent, and Ford dipped to 19 percent from 23 percent.

Another area where Toyota performed well was in its perceived friendliness to the environment. Though it dropped eight points from  2011 to 38 percent in 2012, it still placed well above other brands thanks in large part to the popularity of the hybrid Prius.

The dip in brand perception, which affected other manufacturers including Honda, Ford and Chevrolet, seems to be a result of an overall shift in attitude in the auto industry.

"Dramatic events in the automotive industry seem to be affecting how consumers view auto brands," the report states. "Erratic gasoline prices and a struggling economy have pushed consumers to prize low operating costs and good reliability."

Whether you view Toyota favorably or are more partial to Honda, New Jersey State Auto Auction has the perfect model. With a wide variety of used cars at affordable prices there, New Jersey Auto certainly has something for everyone.

Heat Star Dwyane Wade receives $230K McLaren

Tuesday, January 24th, 2012

You might think that Miami Heat star Dwyane Wade has everything. The seven-time All-Star is on one of the best teams in the league and already has one NBA Championship to his credit. However, for his 30th birthday, Wade was given a pretty impressive gift – a $230,000 2012 McLaren MP4-12C, TMZ.com reports.

The present was given to Wade by a local dealership for which he happens to be the brand ambassador. The car is certainly a sight to behold. Much like its sister car, the iconic DeLorean DMC-12, the MP4-12C has iconic gull-wing doors, and it is definitely deserving of the hefty price tag. While the car may be the most captivating, perhaps most impressive is how it was presented to the 2006 NBA Finals MVP.

According to the website, the dealership wanted the ride to be waiting for Wade when he walked into the hotel pool area, and he wanted it to be waiting on a platform in the middle of the pool itself. Naturally, the car couldn't be driven in – it had to be airlifted by a crane.

The car was just one of the highlights of an impressive birthday bash for the NBA superstar. The party featured many famous attendees including Wade's two ballyhooed teammates – LeBron James and Chris Bosh. There were guests outside of the NBA world as well such as Usher and rappers T.I. and Common.

While you may not be behind the wheel of a $230,000 McLaren, that doesn't mean you shouldn't take care of your current ride like it's worth that much. New Jersey State Auto Auction's Total Car Care center provides the public with general upkeep and repair services so their vehicles can run smoothly.

What to Look for During a Test Drive

Tuesday, January 24th, 2012

The test drive can be one of the most important steps in buying a used car. No matter how much research you do or how many reviews you read, what it all comes down to is how you feel behind the wheel, and you should make sure to place a heavy emphasis on taking the car out for a spin before purchase. Some people may not know what to look for during the test drive, but here are a few tips.

While you might think the test drive begins once you turn the key, it should actually start just before that. In fact, the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) advises you to check some of the components that don't have to do with the driving experience. For instance, you may want to inspect storage areas, door handles, seat and mirror adjustments, and signaling devices.

You should also look under the hood and in the trunk for a variety of reasons. For starters, the DMV says looking in the trunk can reveal tell-tale signs of flood damage such as water lines and mildew. Additionally, checking out the engine makes it easy to inspect fluid levels and other important criteria.

Once you're out on the road, perhaps the most crucial thing is to try out the car in a variety of situations. The test drive does not have to be long but you should make sure the car handles well, whether it be in stop-and-go traffic or on the highway. While on the road, test out all the systems including the heat, air conditioning and radio to make sure they function properly.

If you test drive a car at New Jersey State Auto Auction, there's a good chances you'll come out feeling confident about your decision. That's because New Jersey Auto provides a wide variety of makes and models at affordable prices – all of which are Carfax certified.

Chevrolet Volt Cleared by NHTSA

Monday, January 23rd, 2012

When the news of several post crash test engine fires in Chevrolet Volts came to light late last year, there was much speculation over whether it signaled a fundamental flaw in the car's design. However, an exhaustive investigation by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) found that Chevrolet is not to blame for the fires, USA Today reports.

The report comes nearly two months after the NHTSA opened the investigation in November and also found that General Motors' response to the issue will prevent it from happening again. Among the changes GM made was an extra steel casing around the battery to ensure that coolant doesn't leak in the event of the crash. Leaking coolant was deemed responsible for the fires.

"The agency's investigation has concluded that no discernible defect trend exists and that the vehicle modifications recently developed by General Motors reduce the potential for battery intrusion resulting from side impacts," a statement from NHTSA read.

The study also determined that electric cars are at no greater risk for engine fires than gasoline-powered vehicles. The announcement is certainly good news for the Volt, which has suffered somewhat of a damaged image as a result of the fires. It had already suffered a bit in terms of sales, with Chevrolet only delivering 7,671 vehicles in 2011 – falling short of the goal of 10,000 units, Bloomberg reports.

The Volt may be cleared, but regardless of what car you have, it could be at risk for many mechanical errors without proper maintenance. New Jersey State Auto Auction's Total Car Care center provides drivers with everything from basic upkeep to repairs to make sure their vehicle is kept running smoothly.

Dealers Eager for Trade-Ins

Monday, January 23rd, 2012

The economic collapse in 2008 has lead to a dearth of used cars. Many drivers are holding on to their vehicles longer than in previous years and as a result are not trading them in for updated models. In an effort to replenish a depleted used car market, many in the industry are putting in a significant effort to convince drivers now might be the time to trade in their vehicles, The Detroit News reports.

The unique situation has led some dealers to take drastic measures to find used cars. Some will look at their service departments and make drivers offers well above what they would normally pay. Others have turned online to find cars on websites like eBay. The shortage is reflected in the number of cars sold at auction.

"The number in 2010 was 8.4 million," Tom Kontos, executive vice president of Adesa Analytical Services, told the newspaper. "My expectation this year is it won't reach 8 million. So we are down somewhere between 1.5 [million] and 2 million cars, even with new-car sales increasing."

While it may be bad news for dealers, the shortage of used cars is great news for people considering trading in their car. However, even if the demand is high, there are still some steps you can take to ensure you get the most money possible.

According to Bankrate.com, one of the best ways to ensure a fair deal is to come prepared with all your service records. Additionally, you should do some research beforehand to have an idea of how much your car is worth.

New Jersey State Auto Auction is a great place to go to trade in your used car. Thanks to being an Autotrader.com trade-in marketplace, New Jersey Auto can provide you with a fast appraisal that will you have you driving away with a used car in no time.

GM Wrestles Top Spot in Sales From Toyota

Friday, January 20th, 2012

General Motors had somewhat of a resurgence during 2011 and it recently put an exclamation mark on its path to recovery. The automaker announced earlier this week that it sold more than 9 million vehicles, vaulting it past Toyota to take the top spot, Bloomberg reports.

The figures mark a significant increase compared to 2010, when the company sold about 8.39 million vehicles. That 7.6 percent rise, coupled with the Japanese earthquake and tsunami that disrupted Toyota's production, made for a standout year for GM.

According to the news source, the accomplishment is especially good news for GM given its experience over the last several years. The last time it was the number one seller, in 2007, GM lost nearly $39 billion despite selling the most cars. This year, however it brought in an $8.1 billion profit.

"The difference between this title and other times is that they are profitable and that's where the bankruptcy was helpful," Rebecca Lindland, an industry analyst with IHS Automotive, told Bloomberg. "It's great to be No. 1, but it's a lot more fun to be profitable."

At the front of GM's resurgence was the performance of Chevrolet. The storied brand sold 4.76 million cars, the Los Angeles Times reports. The figures look especially more impressive if one considers that Chevrolet itself sold more than entire companies like Honda and Nissan.

Whether you're loyal to Chevrolet, Buick or GMC, New Jersey State Auto has the General Motors car you're looking for. Even if you want to go outside GM, the dealer has a wide variety of makes and models at affordable prices.

Do Your Research When Looking for a Used Car

Friday, January 20th, 2012

Sometimes finding the right vehicle can seem like a struggle. No matter how much you look, it can appear nearly impossible to find the perfect car for the right price. Though everyone has their own methods when it comes to buying a used car, some habits are more effective than others and can go a long way in helping you land the ideal automobile.

A lot of the success of the purchase has to do with what brand you choose. While most people may be dead-set on only purchasing a top-end brand, the lesser known makes and models may get you an equally reliable vehicle at much less the price. According to the Toronto Star, having an open mind when it comes to brand selection can yield excellent results. Some of the best undervalued manufacturers are Kia, Mitsubishi and Suzuki.

Experts may advise against being too committed to a particular manufacturer, but the same cannot be said for a budget. The publication reports that setting a budget and sticking to it is  important because it can narrow your focus and, most obviously, keep you from spending too much money. Additionally, you may want to consider trading in your previous car to take a few thousand dollars off the price.

Like any major purchase, research is a must, and luckily there are plenty of options to learn about the history behind your potential purchase. At New Jersey State Auto Auction, all the cars on the lot are Carfax certified so you know you're getting a vehicle with no hidden issues.

Of course, having a reliable stable of cars is not the only advantage offered by New Jersey Auto. The dealer carries a wide variety of makes and models at affordable prices, whether you're looking for a Ford, Toyota or Jeep.

Car Loan Payments Just Part of Life For Some

Thursday, January 19th, 2012

Results of a new poll reveal some startling figures regarding how people feel about car loans. The study discovered that 64.3 percent of respondents believe that they will have a car payment during the rest of their life.

The research, conducted by LeaseTrader.com, polled 500 people in December and is indicative of a changing mentality among motorists. In a similar survey conducted five years ago, researchers found that only 48.6 percent felt that having a car payment was just part of life. However, things seems to have changed considerably since then.

"Because there are a lot of similarities between cars and cell phones today people also look at car payments with the same pay-as-you-go mentality," said Sergio Stiberman, CEO and founder of LeaseTrader.com. "More people today realize having a car payment is just something they will always have."

Aside from the obvious benefits of not having a monthly payment hanging over your head, paying  a car loan in a timely fashion has many other advantages. This is especially true for people who may have a bad credit history. Making loan payments on time is a great way to rebuild your record and put you on solid footing.

Though it might seem difficult to get approved for auto financing if you have bad credit, there's no need to worry thanks to New Jersey State Auto Auction. As the result of a partnership with the Credit Acceptance Corporation, New Jersey Auto is able to offer guaranteed credit approval to anyone who applies. Not only that, but approval usually occurs in just a matter of minutes so you can be driving off in a used car in no time.