Archive for March, 2012

Famous and Exotic Cars Will Be Showcased at Charity Event in Florida Next Month

Friday, March 30th, 2012

In a few weeks, celebrities and car enthusiasts will gather in Celebration, Florida, for the Ninth Annual Celebration Exotic Car Festival, which will run from April 12 to 15. The event will feature a number of exotic cars, as well as many cars and trucks made famous on the silver screen.

The first two days of the charity gala will be filled with racing and other exciting events right on the Daytona International Speedway, including an owner-driven Ferrari race. On the 14th, guests can check out more than 250 exotic and Hollywood cars displayed on the lakefront. Lamborghini, McClaren, Bugatti, Lotus and other high-end cars will be side-by-side with some of the most famous vehicles from TV and movie history.

The 1990s comedy hit Dumb and Dumber featured a fancy Lamborghini, but the "Mutts Cutts" van decked out to look like a giant pooch was the real iconic ride from the film. Both vehicles will be on display this April. One of the many DeLorean DMC-12 vehicles from the Back to the Future series will also be on hand, along with the Batmobile, the Star Wars Landspeeder, the Flintstones car and even Herbie the LoveBug.

While exotic cars may make your mouth water, you may not be able to afford one. Most of these vehicles have starting prices well above $50,000. However, you can still drive in style without breaking the bank. Plenty of used luxury vehicles are affordable, and you can explore your options at the New Jersey State Auto Auction. With a wide variety of makes and models, you'll be sure to find the car of your dreams at NJ Auto.

Mystery Driver in Batman Suit Revealed

Friday, March 30th, 2012

The internet was abuzz recently over the strange image of a man dressed in a Batman costume being pulled over by the police. While rumors flew about what the motorist was doing dressed like the Caped Crusader behind the wheel of a black Lamborghini, the mystery is over. According to The Washington Post, his secret identity is actually a Baltimore County businessman named Lenny B. Robinson, who dresses as Batman to visit sick children.

The heartwarming story adds a positive spin on what was a bizarre photo opportunity. The 48-year-old Robinson, who has been immensely successful, uses his wealth (and his Batman obsession) for the greater good, and often travels to hospitals not only meet with kids battling cancer and other diseases, but also to hand out Batman paraphernalia. Though he's not fighting crime like his idol, he still feels the need to do his job.

"It feels like I have a responsibility that’s beyond a normal person," he told the newspaper. "And that responsibility is to be there for the kids, to be strong for them, and to make them smile as much as I can."

Although he already drives an impressive ride (his Lamborghini is peppered with Batman logos), Robinson has some bigger plans in the works. Specifically, he is having a Batmobile custom built to resemble the one used in the movies, but it won't come cheap. The ride will cost him about $250,000.

Not everyone can cruise around town in a Batmobile or Lamborghini, but that doesn't mean you can't hit the road in style. New Jersey State Auto Auction has plenty of cars to choose from, so you'll be sure to find the right make and model for you.

Paced by Auto Sales, Consumer Spending Up

Friday, March 30th, 2012

The economy has been well on its way to recovery over the last several months, and nothing is more indicative of this than recent findings on consumers spending. The Commerce Department found spending rose 0.8 percent in February, with much of the rise thanks in large part to auto sales, Reuters reports.

The report is yet another reason to feel optimistic given that spending rose a bit more than economists had predicted. Before February, most had anticipated about a 0.6 percent gain, and although it is not that much higher than the forecast, it is still an encouraging sign and the biggest increase since September.

Perhaps the most quickly-rising segment of consumer spending is auto sales. In particular, analysts found that car purchases in February rose 10 percent compared to the same month in 2011, and Edmunds.com suspects the trend will continue into March. According to The Wall Street Journal, the website believes that auto sales will grow 17 percent compared to March 2011.

."Vehicle trade-in rates have achieved sustained highs in recent months, which suggests that consumers have decided that they've held onto their cars for too long," Edmunds analyst Jessica Caldwell told the newspaper.

Anybody looking to contribute to the growing trend may want to head to New Jersey State Auto Auction. In addition to offering consumers a wide variety of makes and models at affordable prices, NJ Auto is also an Autotrader.com Trade In Marketplace Dealership, so it can be easy to take advantage of the high trade-in values. Additionally, you can get a quick appraisal of your vehicle to speed up the process.

Honda Issues Recalls for CR-V, Pilot

Friday, March 30th, 2012

Honda's two SUVs, the CR-V and the Pilot, are some of the most popular on the road, but the company recently issued a substantial recall. Honda says that about 550,000 of the vehicles could be susceptible to a problem that causes them to lose low beam headlights.

The recall impacts CR-Vs from model years 2002 through 2004 and Pilots from 2003. Experts say the problem is likely caused by a wiring issue that results in the lights shutting off, which could certainly result in some problems for nighttime driving. Despite the concern, Honda officials say they have not received word of any accident caused by the issue

The recall could impact many people who have bought used Hondas over the the last decade, as the brand is one of the most popular for pre-owned vehicles. Still, while it's a large number, it pales in comparison to the recent recall issued by German luxury brand BMW. The automaker recalled 1.3 million cars, with about 367,000 of them in the United States, for an electrical problem in the trunk that could result in a fire. Much like Honda's recall, there have not been any significant issues reported.

"We've got one known case of actual fire here in the U.S., having sold 367,000 cars," BMW spokesman David Buchko told The Associated Press recently.

Along with paying attention to recall notices issued by automakers, drivers should stay on top of maintenance themselves. New Jersey State Auto Auction makes that easy thanks to its convenient Total Car Care center. Located in Jersey City and open to the public, its knowledgeable staff can provide everything from repairs to general upkeep.

Difference Between Sexes Apparent in Car Selection

Thursday, March 29th, 2012

When shopping for a car, men look for different qualities than women. In fact, a recent LeaseTrader.com survey indicates women are more thorough in their research when purchasing cars than men.

"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," John Sternal of LeaseTrader told National Public Radio.

They also tend to choose different vehicles, and Inside Line looked at Polk data to determine the top 10 cars women buy more than men. Roughly 57.9 percent of Volvo S40 drivers are women, making it the most popular car for the female population. The Nissan Rogue came in second, with 56.9 percent of its buyers being female.

Rounding out the top five were the Volkswagen Eos, Beetle and Toyota Matrix. The Beetle only had 54.6 percent of female buyers, even though the car is often associated with ladies because of its "cute" design. However, the 2012 and 2013 models have been revamped to look tougher and appeal to more drivers, which is why Inside Line believes the Beetle isn't higher on the list.

The Hyundai Tucson, Honda CR-V and Toyota Rav4 also made the top 10. Tow vehicles tied for ninth place – the Nissan Juke and the Jeep Compass. Roughly 52.7 percent of buyers of each these cars were female.

Ladies who want to find the perfect ride, whether or not their car of choice falls on this list, should head over to New Jersey State Auto Auction. NJ Auto has a huge selection of different makes and models to choose from, so every driver will be able to find the perfect vehicle to suit their needs.

Cadillac Introduces Improved Safety Features

Thursday, March 29th, 2012

Safety technology is one of the fastest-changing segments of the automotive industry, and Cadillac is the latest brand to introduce new technology to its vehicles. The American luxury brand recently announced the addition of numerous sensors and cameras to improve visibility and safety in its 2013 lineup.

"New technology in the XTS and ATS is intended to extend the vision around the car to help drivers identify obstacles," said Don Butler, vice president of Cadillac Marketing. "When necessary, the vehicle may take action to help them avoid a collision. Cadillac expands its lineup dramatically in 2013, and these technologies are an important component."

Safety seat alerts use subtlety in the form of vibrating seats to alert drivers when potential crash situations may be ahead or behind them. This technology is a variation of collision alert systems found in many other vehicles. Some drivers may not like the idea of a flashing light or a beeping alarm that could frighten them when they're behind the wheel.

Cameras, radars and other sensors will also be installed in new ATS and XTS models to assist with collision, lane departure and blind spot warnings. The new vehicles will also have automatic braking, adaptive cruise control and forward lighting to improve visibility at night.

While the new technology may not be available on older vehicles, drivers can take steps to improve the safety of their current vehicles . Regular maintenance can catch mechanical problems early so drivers don't find themselves stranded on the side of the road. The knowledgeable staff at New Jersey State Auto Auction's Total Car Care Center in Jersey City will be able to perform routine tuneups and repairs to keep vehicles running smoothly and safely.

Spring Maintenance Tips

Thursday, March 29th, 2012

As the weather starts to warm up, many motorists are getting ready to hit the road. It's not uncommon for drivers to be more active in the spring and summer than they were in the winter, so it's imperative to ensure that your car is in excellent shape. There are a number of maintenance issues you should get checked out to prepare for the spring season.

Having brakes that are in working order is imperative any time of year, but if you're gearing up for a few months of road trips and vacations, it's even more crucial. It will be a smart idea to have a mechanic look at brake pads, rotors, calipers and other hardware to ensure you won't hit any snags in the near future.

Along with brakes, you should make sure to check the oil now that spring has arrived. In particular, warm weather can take a toll on motor oil, and you should be cognizant of both the level of oil and how clean it is, especially with the summer months fast approaching.

One component that could go overlooked is lighting – headlamps, tail lights and turn signals. It can be easy to miss, but if they are not in working order, this could make it more difficult to drive at night or in foggy conditions.

"Now is the time for motorists to ensure that their vehicles are in shape for summer driving," said industry insider Jim Sassorossi. "The safety, performance and life of a vehicle hinges on preventive maintenance."

New Jersey State Auto Auction's Total Car Care center can take care of all your preventative maintenance needs so you can be out on the road as soon as possible.

Car Loan Payments Consumers’ Top Priority

Thursday, March 29th, 2012

Results of a recent study show how important making car payments is to American consumers. Research from TransUnion found that people are paying off their auto loans before other expenses, including mortgages and credit card bills, The Associated Press reports.

The credit information company looked at how roughly 4 million Americans paid off their debts. To be included in the analysis, the subjects had to have at least one car loan, one credit card, and a mortgage. TransUnion discovered that the auto loan took priority above all else. Only around 10 percent of people were late on car loan payments, while 39 percent were late on mortgage payments. Additionally, 17 percent were late on credit cards.

The findings are a bit different from when the company looked at similar figures in 2006. Back then, analysts found that staying current on a mortgage was the most important thing, while car loan payments were toward the bottom. Some believe that the shift has to do with how important it is to have a car.

"I can work with the credit card companies. They won't shut off or take away anything," Maryland residnet Matt Saxton told the AP. "I won't have the ability to get to work or even get another car if they repossess this one."

Anybody having trouble getting a loan because they may have a bad credit history will not have an issue being approved at New Jersey State Auto Auction. Thanks to a partnership with the Credit Acceptance Corporation, NJ Auto can guarantee approval, and you'll be on your way to rebuilding your credit score.

Performance Ford Explorer to be Released This Year

Thursday, March 29th, 2012

The Ford Explorer has been a popular SUV for nearly 20 years thanks in large part to its family-friendly appeal and ability to hold plenty of passengers and cargo. However, the company is getting ready to add a dynamic new element to the Explorer lineup, a so-called "performance version," Ford announced recently.

The re-tooled SUV will be made available to consumers later this year and will not only get better mileage than previous models, but it will also feature a turbocharged V-6 engine that provides around 350 horsepower. According to the manufacturer, it will get around 22 miles per gallon on the highway, which is about three miles more than the Jeep Grand Cherokee and Dodge Durango, two of the Explorer's biggest competitors.

"By carefully beefing the chassis and suspension, precisely calibrating the Terrain Management System and adding comfort and convenience features, we’ve delivered an SUV that delivers great dynamics and performance – while towing up to 5,000 pounds," said Carl Widmann, vehicle engineering manager at Ford.

Although the updated Explorer will feature improved performance it will also look a bit sleeker. The exterior, for instance, will be highlighted by a special grille. Inside, the Explorer will feature leather trimmed seating, with a similar style available for the steering wheel.

Though it may be some time until the updated Explorer is available as a used model, there are still plenty other pre-owned versions of the popular SUV available to the public that are just as appealing. To find out which vehicle is best for you, head over to New Jersey State Auto Auction. With a wide variety of makes and models at affordable prices, you're sure to locate a used Ford Explorer that fits your needs.

Buying a Used Car? Here’s a Few Tips

Wednesday, March 28th, 2012

Purchasing a used car is a big decision. However, there are a wide variety of makes and models to choose from, so it can sometimes seem like a hard one to make. Luckily, there are a few time-tested guidelines that can help make the process a little bit easier, and AAA recently released what it thinks some of the best are.

"There are numerous factors to consider, many of which take place long before a buyer ever hits a car lot,"  said John Nielsen, AAA's Director of Automotive Engineering and Repair.

The most important thing to think about when shopping for a used car is your price range. Of course, what is and is not affordable varies from person to person, but most experts recommend that no more than 15 to 20 percent of a person's monthly budget should go toward car expenses. 

While your financial situation is something that should weigh heavily in your decision, how you drive and what you're going to use the car for should also come into play. If you need to make frequent long drives, a smaller, more fuel-efficient car is a good option. However, if you need to shuttle kids to and from school, one with a lot of seating and cargo space is the right pick.

You can't ignore auto financing either. You should do some research on loans beforehand and come equipped with the knowledge on things such as interest rates and the length of the loan.

All these aspects of car buying can easily be taken care of at New Jersey State Auto Auction. Along with plenty of quality used cars, NJ Auto also provides guaranteed credit approval thanks to a partnership with the Credit Acceptance Corporation.

Young Motorists Value Technology for Safety Purposes

Wednesday, March 28th, 2012

There may be an assumption that young drivers prefer style over function when it comes to their cars, but a new study proves that's not always the case. A recent survey from Accenture found that motorists between the ages of 18 and 24 prefer having technology in their car that helps them with safety rather than entertainment, USA Today reports.

Although flashy gadgets appeal to young drivers, the more functional ones stood out the most. In particular, features such as crash avoidance and roadside assistance that calls for a tow truck appealed the most. In particular, nearly all the respondents (eight out of 10) said they want a car that has lane change and blind spot warning capabilities. The results may surprise some people given the long held beliefs toward the attitude of young adults.

"Our findings show that younger car-buyers, who have grown up with gadgetry that centers around social tools such as email, smart phones and related connectivity, have a preference for (in-vehicle) safety technologies over those they use in their everyday life," Accenture's James Robbins told the publication.

The sentiment was similar among drivers between 25 and 35, the study found. In fact, they want features like ones that call emergency vehicles immediately in the event of a crash to an even higher degree than their younger counterparts. 

Though it may be some time before such safety features come standard in every car, there are other ways to make sure you are safe on the road, and that includes performing regular maintenance. At New Jersey State Auto Auction's Total Car Care center, you can be sure to kepe your car running safely thanks to its talented team of mechanics.

BMW, Toyota Team Up to Create New Battery

Tuesday, March 27th, 2012

Two competitors in the automotive world are teaming up to lead the push toward alternative fuel. Toyota and BMW have joined together to begin research that could lead to the creation of next generation batteries and as a result, cleaner vehicles, Bloomberg reports.

In particular, the manufacturers will be focusing on lithium ion batteries. Researchers are hoping to find a way to increase both the performance and capacity of the devices by utilizing new combinations of materials. The partnership is nothing new, BMW said in a statement, and is a mutually-beneficial endeavor for the two companies.

"The agreement follows the memorandum of understanding concerning a mid-to-long-term collaboration on next-generation environment-friendly vehicles and technologies announced by the two companies," in December, the automaker said.

In particular, the move is a good one for Toyota because it gives the company an opportunity to expand its appeal in Europe while also helping create a new fuel-efficient vehicles, the news source reports. As for BMW, industry analysts say it's a smart decision to team up with the leading builder of hybrid as a way to fend off challenges from Audi in the luxury car realm.

The announcement comes as a greater focus is being put on electric vehicles. Most recently, Honda announced it is going to be releasing a plug-in hybrid version of its popular Accord. Additionally, a brand new electric car, the Coda, is expected to hit select markets sometime later this year, according to USA Today.

While electric vehicles are still pretty uncommon the road, there are plenty of  other fuel-efficient cars out there for drivers looking to save money on gas. You're sure to find some of them at New Jersey State Auto Auction, which has a wide variety of makes and models at affordable prices.

Smaller Cars May Not Always Have Best Mileage

Tuesday, March 27th, 2012

When it comes to fuel-efficient cars, there's often an assumption that the smaller a ride is, the better its gas mileage. That may not be the case, some experts say, with subcompact cars sometimes not faring any better than the larger, more spacious, compact models, CNNMoney reports.

To illustrate the point, consumers need look no further than the Chevrolet Sonic. The tiny car gets a respectable 33 miles per gallon, and while that's certainly impressive, it's the same as the larger Chevrolet Cruze. The small Hyundai Accent also gets the same mileage (33 mpg) as the bigger Hyundai Elantra.

The biggest reason for the phenomena is that cars can only get so aerodynamic. Vehicles have to be a certain height for passengers to fit comfortably, as a result the shape of subcompact cars often is not as aerodynamic as it could be, and  the gas mileage suffers.

"You can shorten it up and make it narrower, but the height of a car can only be so small," Scott Miller, director of mass, energy and aerodynamics at General Motors, told CNN.

Since size is not the only factor to consider when looking for a fuel-efficient used car, and you should take a few other things into consideration, experts say. For instance, there are certain amenities that may cost you some mpgs later on. One of the biggest, some say, is a sunroof. An open sunroof creates more drag and could lower a car's fuel economy.

Anybody looking to save money not only on gas, but also on their used car, should head to New Jersey State Auto Auction. With a wide variety of makes and models, including everything from subcompacts to SUVs, there's something for everyone.

BMW, GM Issue Recalls

Tuesday, March 27th, 2012

BMW drivers should take note. The German automaker recently issued a recall of nearly 1.3 million 5 Series and 6 Series vehicles across the globe. The move was made to address an electrical issue that could spark a fire, The New York Times reports.

The recall affects about 367,000 cars in the United States and is targeted at vehicles made between 2003 and 2010, so even if you've purchased a used BMW, your car may be included in the recall. At the heart of the issues is a bolt connection securing battery cables that could come loose. As a result, the manufacturer says the malfunctioning electrical system could cause the car not to start or spark a fire under extreme circumstances.

"The worst-case scenario is a fire," Thomas Plucinsky, a BMW spokesman, told the Times. "We are aware of one fire in the United States."

The recall comes as another similar announcement was made regarding some more recent models of General Motors cars. In this case, the 2012 versions of Chevrolet Suburban and GMC Yukon XL SUVs have been recalled due to problems with steering. The automaker says that some gear pitman shafts may not have hardened correctly during the manufacturing process, which increases the chances that a driver could lose steering completely and crash, according to USA Today.

Paying attention to see if your car falls under certain recalls in an important part of staying safe on the road, and so too is staying on top of auto maintenance. New Jersey State Auto Auction's Total Car Care center is the place to go for motorists looking to keep their cars running smoothly. Thanks to a talented and knowledgeable staff of mechanics, you can ensure your car does not run into any problems on the road.

What Cars Cost the Most to Fill Up?

Tuesday, March 27th, 2012

The average price of a gallon of gas is rapidly approaching $4, so it's safe to say that almost all drivers are feeling the pain. However, some may be hurting a little more than others depending on what car they're driving. According to Forbes, there are some cars which are likely to reach the three-digit mark when you're filling up at the pump.

At the top of the list is one of the most luxurious SUVs on the road today, the Cadillac Escalade. Though it's a popular ride among celebrities and athletes, it may be a bit more difficult for the average family to contend with the $120 it takes to fill up the Escalade's gas tank, according to the publication.

While the Escalade may be more of a luxury vehicle, there are some more affordable rides that still will cost a great deal to fill up. In particular, the Chevrolet Silverado, one of the most popular pickup trucks in the country, gets only 11 miles per gallon and could cost as much as $100 to fill up. General Motors seems to have noticed, and according to Forbes, is working on a more fuel-efficient version of the truck.

The Ford Expedition was once one of the most common SUVs on the road, but as gas prices rose and a push for fuel-efficiency reigned supreme, fewer consumers decided to get behind the wheel of the enormous family vehicle. Today, experts say filling up the tank could cost as much as $129.

While buying one of these cars may not be the best choice right now, New Jersey State Auto Auction offers plenty of other suitable alternatives that will save you money at the pump. With a wide variety of makes and models at affordable prices, everyone will drive away happy.

Mitt Romney Nods to Family’s Car Connection with Secret Service Code Name

Tuesday, March 27th, 2012

The Secret Service assigns codenames to presidential leaders and candidates, and Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum recently got to pick theirs. Santorum's handle is "Petrus" and Romney chose the code name "Javelin," according to National Public Radio. They are not given free reign over their security nicknames, or you'd probably wind up with a lot of "Mavericks" and "Eagles." Instead, the Secret Service presents presidential candidates with a list of possible options to choose from.

Romney's choice was not a nod to the Olympic track and field device, but a muscle car produced by the American Motors Corporation (AMC) from 1967 to 1974. AMC, which was bought out by Chrysler in 1987, was once run by Romney's father, George M. Romney. AutoBlog attempted to find similarities between the Republican presidential nominee and the classic car he identified with, and only managed to see contrast between the company's reputation for being nearly broke during the entirety of its existence and Romney's well-funded campaign.

The Huffington Post states Romney's code name is appropriate, as many conservatives view him as a machine not unlike the Transformers, ready and able to change his shape at a moment's notice.

The more likely case is that Romney saw the word on the list, thought of his father and chose the name. An AMC Javelin is not exactly easy to come by either, so Romney won't be seen driving one around any time soon.

Those looking to get behind the wheel of their own muscle car or another vehicle that means a lot to them can head to New Jersey State Auto Auction. NJ Auto has a wide variety of makes and models, so drivers will be sure to find the car they're looking for.

Spring Cleaning for Your Car

Monday, March 26th, 2012

Most people associate spring cleaning with making their homes spotless, but the yearly tradition should also be applied to your car. A long winter can certainly take its toll on your vehicle, and there are a number of ways to ensure it is ready for the upcoming season and beyond. According to Consumer Reports, there are a few things every driver should do once the weather turns warmer.

The first thing you want to turn your attention to is the interior. Very frequently drivers can accumulate a great deal of trash over the winter without even noticing it, so make sure you clean up all the discarded cups, bags and bottles that may have built up over the last few months. Additionally, vacuuming is an important step as dirt, sand and other debris were likely tracked in during the winter.

After the inside of your car is taken care of, the website suggests tackling the exterior. Washing and waxing your vehicle is the best way to return it to its pre-winter shine. Experts say you should be sure to never to wax your car in direct sunlight or if the paint is hot, as this could make it more vulnerable to scratching.

Of course, having your car looking nice and running well are two different things, and you should be sure to pay attention to maintenance during the spring cleaning process. Winter can take its toll on everything from the brakes to tires so you may want to make sure everything is in working order before you embark on the first long road trip of the spring.

New Jersey State Auto Auction's Total Car Care center is the perfect place to go for all your springtime maintenance needs. With a knowledgeable staff, they'll be able to complete everything from repairs to general upkeep.

Honda Set to Release Plug-in Hybrid Accord

Monday, March 26th, 2012

The Honda Accord has been one of the best-selling cars on the road for years, but a 2007 hybrid version was never able to take off the way the manufacturer wanted due to lower-than-expected fuel economy. However, it looks like the automaker is ready to dust off the hybrid design once again, and is set to release a plug in hybrid version of the Accord for the 2013 model year, Cars.com reports.

There are few details available about the hybrid model, but the automaker did provide some specifics regarding the battery. Along with an electric range of about 10 to 15 miles, the battery can be charged in as little as 90 minutes with a 240-volt charger and four hours with a 120-volt charger. If drivers select the all-electric setting they will have to sacrifice performance a bit, as it will only have a top speed of 62 miles per hour. The new model is expected to be available sometime in the late fall or winter, the website reports.

The announcement of a new hybrid Accord comes as yet another electric car is slated to hit the market. According to USA Today, the  2012 Coda electric sedan went on sale in California last week, and although it comes at a price lower than originally anticipated, its $37,250 price tag may turn some potential consumers away. The Coda is expected to get as many as 88 miles on a single charge, besting the Leaf's 73 miles, and although it's currently only available for purchase in four cities, more locations are expected to follow suit.

Electric cars are still a long way from being a mainstay on America's roads, but there are plenty of used, fuel-efficient options for motorists looking to save money on gas. New Jersey State Auto Auction offers a wide variety of makes and models with high gas mileage, so there is something for everyone.