Archive for June, 2012
The average cost of used vehicles has started to decline modestly, but luxury cars and SUVs are not seeing the same benefits of the improving economy as other styles. A recent report by the National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA) found the inventory of pre-owned luxury vehicle will be 13 percent lower in 2012 compared to last year. The decrease in supply will result in a 1.9 percent price increase across all luxury brands.
"The falling used supply will raise used-vehicle luxury prices again this year, but overall appreciation will be mild by recent standards," said NADA senior analyst Jonathan Banks. "Used-vehicle prices have risen over the past couple years because of economic conditions that lowered supply and increased demand."
Different brands will likely experience varied levels of price increases. NADA predicts the cost of used Audis will jump 3.3 percent, Acura will see a 4.8 percent rise in price, Lincoln will increase 2.6 percent and the average price of a used Lexus will be up 1.6 percent over 2011. Cadillac and Mercedes-Benz will have more modest increases for used vehicles of 0.5 and 0.7 percent, respectively. Conversely, Volvo and BMW are expected to see declines in the average cost of used models of 3.1 and 0.2 percent.
Drivers looking to get behind the wheel of a used luxury vehicle might want to consider checking out Volvo models to find the best deal. The Swedish automaker has a reputation for safety and reliability backed by high crash test ratings by the National Highway Traffic Administration and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety for most of its lineup.
Those shopping for used luxury models can head to NJ Auto Auction. The dealer carries a wide variety of makes and models, and due to a partnership with the Credit Acceptance Corporation, everyone is approved for financing regardless of credit history.
In an effort to familiarize consumers with the completely redesigned Ford Fusion, the automaker is teaming up with TV and radio host and producer Ryan Seacrest and other celebrities for the new "Random Acts of Fusion" marketing program. The company plans to market the midsize sedan by creating and presenting a story that will be told across a variety of channels, including TV, radio and the internet.
"We are taking a completely unique approach to introduce the new Fusion with a transmedia program, launching this transformational vehicle that over-delivers with its distinctive blend of style, intelligence and technology," said Jim Farley, Ford group vice president of marketing, sales and service. "Combining social media, entertainment and unexpected consumer experiences will allow us to connect with audiences through every type of media, making Fusion's profile larger than ever."
The Fusion is not just a new car for Ford's lineup, but it is a shining example of the direction the American automaker is heading with its design. The car is sleek and elegant, with an expressive grill, slim headlights and small touches that lend the car a unique appeal never before seen in a Ford model. It will be available as gasoline-only, hybrid or plug-in hybrid, and is expected to reach dealerships this fall.
Drivers who cannot wait for the release to get a vehicle, but still love the Fusion, can consider used options. They will not have the same fresh look, but they might still fit the bill. Edmunds.com reports used models from 2006 through 2011 range in price from around $7,200 to $15,500. New Jersey State Auto Auction has a wide variety of makes and models, and may carry a number of Fusions. Every vehicle on the lot is CARFAX certified as well, so drivers know they'll be getting a reliable ride.
As the economy continues its recovery, the number of consumers being approved for auto loans is on the rise. Between January and March of this year, there were $52.5 billion in auto loans originating from finance companies, which is 49 percent higher than at the lowest point in the recession, according to figures from Equifax.
The statistics were part of a larger report from Equifax that indicated the improvement in the realm of auto loans. Specifically, researchers found the auto delinquency rates in March were the lowest of any loan type and are currently at pre-recession levels, certainly good news for anyone considering the purchase of a new or used car.
Although the findings reveal some encouraging statistics, a separate report found that consumers may not be as on top of their finances as one might think. The survey, conducted by CouponCabin.com, found that nearly half of people in the United States do not know their credit score, something which could hinder the ability to get an auto loan. Having a good credit score is one of the best ways to ensure you'll be approved for financing.
"In fact, more than one-third of people we surveyed said they are concerned about how long it will take to pay off their cards," said Jackie Warrick, president and chief savings officer of the website. "Keep your swiping in check and always have a grasp on the number of cards you have and how you’re using them."
Although a low credit score may prevent some consumers from being approved for a loan, that's not the case for people who shop at New Jersey State Auto Auction. Thanks to a partnership with the Credit Acceptance Corporation, everyone is guaranteed approval regardless of their credit standing.
An uncertain economy has made consumers especially wary of prices for everything from used cars to groceries. While that may still be the case, a recent survey found when it comes to vehicles, there's something that trumps their price tags. Researchers say motorists still place a car's safety above everything else.
The findings come as the result of a Swapalease.com survey and reveal that around 60 percent of respondents said safety was the most important criteria of a new or used car. That placed it well above other factors including style and appearance, which came in at a distant second with 30 percent. About 12 percent said luxury and convenience were important while 9 percent cited electronics.
"Safety has long been high on the list for prospective car buyers or lessees, and our survey shows that changing times don't always change people's priorities," said Scot Hall, executive vice president of operations at Swapaslease.com. "Thanks to today's technology, we have an ever-growing list of features that make cars safer than ever before."
The study also delved into what safety features were most important to consumers. Blind spot warning systems proved to be the most popular, which was interesting to some analysts because the feature is one of the most expensive available in the industry. Hands-free calling and back-up cameras were also well represented.
There's nothing saying you can't get a safe and affordable used car, and at New Jersey State Auto Auction that is certainly the case. With a wide variety of makes and models at affordable prices, you'll be able to find the car that offers you the greatest peace of mind.
While most Top 10 lists for cars encompass foreign and domestic models, TotalCarScore puts emphasis on American-made vehicles each summer with its 10 Best American Cars of the year list based on its scores. This year the Cadillac CTS luxury sedan was ranked the best domestic vehicle of 2012 with a Total Car Score of 86.49. The company computes scores for each vehicle based on rankings and other information provided by up to nine leading industry experts.
After the CTS, the Buick LaCrosse and Chevrolet Traverse were next in line with scores of 85.01 and 84.87, respectively. The LaCrosse was ranked highly due to a youthful redesign, a smooth ride and a powerful engine. The Traverse is noteworthy for its comfortable three-row seating and smooth ride. The Ford Flex (84.44) and GMC Acadia (84.18) rounded out the top five. Other vehicles that ranked highly included the Cadillac CTS-V, Chrysler 300, Ford Taurus, Cadillac SRX and Chrysler 300 SRT-8.
"It's worth noting that while no compact domestic models made the list, Ford's 2012 Focus was less than half a point behind the 300 SRT8," said Karl Braur, CEO and editor-in-chief of TotalCarScore. "With a growing emphasis on small cars and high fuel efficiency, it's likely we'll see a domestic economy car in next year's Top 10 Best American Cars list."
No matter what vehicle you're looking for, New Jersey State Auto Auction is sure to have the perfect ride to fit your need. The dealer carries a wide variety of makes and models that are all CARFAX certified, so you know you'll be driving away in a reliable vehicle.
Cars that drive themselves are already being tested by numerous companies such as Google and Nissan, but many are concerned with both how people will adapt when their vehicles begin to take over certain driving tasks. General Motors recently examined how driver behavior changes when they are behind the wheel of vehicles that offer semi-autonomous features such as self-steering and forward collision alert. They found motorists were 126 percent more attentive to the task of driving when they had safety systems and self-driving tools available to them.
"Drivers are already engaging in risky behavior, and are likely to continue doing so given the prevalence of smartphones and other portable electronics, so why not make it safer for them and the people around them?" asked study author Dr. Eddy Llaneras of the Virginia Tech Transportation Institute. "Offering some form of vehicle automation with the proper safeguards might be better than what is happening on our roads today."
It is not likely fully autonomous cars will be available to the public anytime soon, but technology intended to assist drivers is already beginning to become commonplace in new vehicles. The equipment is being implemented to improve safety, and is not meant as a way for drivers to take their focus off the road completely. There will still be a need for drivers to pay attention, at least for now.
Motorists who would prefer something a bit more tradition can head to NJ State Auto Auction to check out the dealer's wide selection of makes and models. Some newer used vehicles feature modern safety technology, such as brake assist and lane departure warnings, and all the vehicles on the lot are CARFAX certified, so car shoppers know they'll be getting behind the wheel of a reliable vehicle.
Independence Day is just a week away, and this means many people will be packing up the car and heading to the shore to celebrate. This July 4, it is especially important to drive safely and cautiously, as the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) reports this is the deadliest day for motorists – especially teens.
The entire month of July has proven to be the most dangerous month for drivers, and the number of fatal accidents peaks on July 4. According to the IIHS, teen drivers account for approximately 10 percent of fatal accidents on the holiday. This puts them, as well as other drivers, at risk on the road, so parents should remind their teens of the importance of safety behind the wheel.
"These tragedies are compounded by the fact that many crashes are preventable," said Phil Telgenoff, field vice president of Allstate in California. "Driver error, speeding and distractions are the main causes of crashes, and seemingly simple activities such as switching radio stations or interacting with friends can significantly impair a teen's or adult's ability to react quickly to changing traffic conditions. Staying focused on the road, wearing seat belts and following the speed limit and other road rules are simple steps we can all take this July 4 to make sure that we return home safely."
Another way to stay safe on the road is to make sure your vehicle is running smoothly before you head out on the highway to avoid potential problems while you are driving. The experts at NJ Auto Auction's Total Car Care Center in Jersey City can perform routine maintenance and address any necessary repairs to ensure you're safe this Independence Day and all summer long.
As is the case with nearly everything, most drivers have a personal preference when it comes to their favorite automaker. Whether it be Ford, BMW or Toyota, there's always something about a certain manufacturer that draws people in, and a recent Harris Interactive poll found the most popular brands. After surveying 38,000 people, researchers found Honda and Mercedes-Benz stood above the rest.
Mercedes-Benz captured the title of Lead Luxury Auto Brand for the second year in a row, beating back a strong challenge from Lexus. Analysts point toward the brand's reputation for quality and craftsmanship as what makes it stand above the other luxury manufacturers. Cadillac, Acura and Infiniti also performed well.
"Mercedes has ranked at the top for two years in a row and four of the last eight years, while Lexus has made it to the top spot three times," said Mike Chadsey, senior consultant for Harris Interactive's Customer Relationship Consulting team. "BMW is also usually within the top three, with especially strong scores over the last three years."
While Mercedes-Benz earned praise in the luxury segment, it was Honda that won the coveted title of America's Favorite Full Line Automaker. The win was a surprise for Honda because it was up against some very stiff competition, but it still managed to jump over both Toyota and last year's winner Ford to claim the title.
Whether you prefer Ford, Honda or Mercedes-Benz, if you're looking for a used car in New Jersey, head to NJ Auto Auction. With a wide variety of makes and models at affordable prices, there is something for drivers of all kinds.
Every year, Kelley Blue Book's website kbb.com releases a list of its picks for the Top 10 Coolest Cars Under $18,000 to serve as a guide for car shoppers. This year, the list included the boxy and fun Kia Soul hatchback. The editors at kbb.com look for vehicles that are fun to drive and own while still being affordable, so it makes sense the Soul was on the list.
"Our intention with Soul was to design a vehicle that is both fun and economical, and its recognition by Kelley Blue Book's kbb.com as a 'cool' vehicle is further indication that we hit the mark," said Michael Sprague, executive vice president of marketing and communications for Kia Motors America. "Everything about Soul, from the viral sensation 'Share Some Soul' campaign featuring LMFAO's hit single 'Party Rock Anthem,' to performance improvements and a strong list of standard technology and safety features, has contributed to its appeal among young buyers and those who are young at heart."
The Soul also has an impressive fuel economy that makes it even more appealing to drivers shopping on a budget. The entry level model gets an estimated highway mileage of 35 miles per gallon and 27 mpg in the city. It's also got a decent amount of power under the hood, with a 1.6-liter GDI engine that gets 138 horsepower.
Drivers who like the Soul but want to purchase a used car can find older models at New Jersey Auto Auction. The dealer has a wide variety of makes and models, so car shoppers will be sure to find the perfect ride to suit their needs whether they opt for a pre-owned Soul or another "cool" car.
It may not be something that crosses your mind every day, but when you find bird droppings on your car you might be enraged, disgusted, irritated or even amused. If you drive a crimson-colored car, you might encounter this problem more than if your vehicle were green or silver. As it turns out, red stands out most to birds when they are flying overhead and need to unload, according to a recent study conducted by Halfords in the U.K.
The researchers examined 1,140 cars and found crimson, blue and black were the most commonly pooped-upon vehicles, while green, silver and white were less desirable to winged creatures. Of the red cars in the study, 18 percent were marked, while 14 percent of blue cars, 11 percent of black, 7 percent of white, 3 percent of grey and silver and only 1 percent of green cars were targeted. The study revealed little variation depending on location, so drivers should take heed no matter where they live.
"This research does have a serious side because the problem annoys drivers, causes damage to paintwork and affects the value of vehicles," said David Howells, a car cleaning expert. "To protect your bodywork from damage, droppings should be carefully cleaned off as soon as possible."
If you're planning on purchasing a used car from New Jersey Auto Auction, you may want to think twice about what color you would prefer. If you don't mind scraping bird droppings off your car from time to time, feel free to indulge your desire for a cherry red car. Otherwise, you might want to take preventative action and buy something in a shade that birds won't want to deface.
No matter how affordable it may be, car repairs are something many drivers hope to avoid. Still, sometimes having to pay up for a fix is a necessity, but according to the CarMD.com, there are certain states where repairs are a bit more pricey.
Wyoming came in at number one. The website found that motorists paid around an average of $398 for car repairs – 17 percent more than the national average. Perhaps most significantly, drivers paid more for parts, an average of approximately $247.
Experts say the biggest contributing factor to Wyoming's place atop the rankings is the harsh weather and high altitudes that make driving a bit more treacherous. Additionally, since there are many remote locations it can cost more to get parts to each garage. The findings also highlight the importance of taking care of your car.
"With the higher cost for repairs in popular western vacation destinations, our data illustrates the need for summer travelers to make preventative maintenance and vehicle safety checks paramount in their road-trip preparation," said Art Jacobsen, vice president of CarMD.
Of course, Wyoming was not alone with being home to pricey car repairs. Utah landed in second place with an average of $378.54 per repair, while California was third-most expensive. Montana and Arizona rounded out the top five.
New Jersey was not included in the top five, so you should head to NJ State Auto Auction's Total Car Care center for your repairs and auto maintenance. This way, you'll be able to save money and help avoid any costly repairs down the line.
Christopher Nolan's theatrical interpretation of Batman, from the origin story of Batman Begins to The Dark Knight, has captivated moviegoers for years. The next installment of the Dark Knight storyline, The Dark Knight Rises, is set to premiere across America on July 20, and in anticipation of the movie's undoubted box office success Chrysler hitched itself to the film's rising star.
The American automaker recently released a commercial for the Chrysler 300 entitled "Imported from Gotham City," according to a blog post by Chrysler marketing chief Olivier Francois. The 60-second spot features a time-lapse video of a crew disassembling a 2012 Chrysler 300S and reassembling it with custom parts to create a superhero-worthy sedan. The new parts include matte black wheels and stealth body panels, and an advanced infotainment system from which the driver can program and control the weapons built in behind the grille. Of course, the 300S features a jet engine with a large flame-throwing exhaust similar to that of the Batmobile.
The entire commercial is set to a score written for The Dark Knight Rises, giving the commercial an epic overtone that feels like the commercial could easily be a part of the movie itself. Don't expect to see Batman behind the wheel of the 300S on the silver screen, however. While Mr. Wayne is likely going to spend much of the film behind the wheel of the Batwing, you can look forward to Catwoman cruising around in a Lamborghini Aventador. A few clips of the exotic car have found their way into the previews.
While the Batwing, the Batmobile and weapon-laden the Gotham City 300S may be out of reach for regular drivers, they can still feel like superheroes by purchasing used cars from New Jersey Auto Auction. Every vehicle on the dealer's lot is CARFAX certified, so drivers know they'll be leaving the lot in a reliable ride.
Most vehicles built in the last year or so have been rolling off the line with some form of infotainment system. This area of automotive technology is one of the fastest growing, but as automakers race to make their vehicles as modern and technologically advanced as possible, they are encountering a few snags along the way.
"Until recently, this type of sophisticated technology was found primarily on high-end models," said David Sargent, vice president of global automotive at J.D. Power and Associates. "However, over the past few years, it has rapidly found its way into the automotive mainstream. For example, in 2012, more than 80 percent of owners indicate that their new vehicle has some form of hands-free technology."
J.D. Power and Associates recently released the results of the annual Initial Quality Study (IQS), and while overall scores have seen a 5 percent improvement, the onboard technology segment took a hit. In fact, in the 26 years the study has been conducted, this is the first time more problems were reported concerning navigation, audio and entertainment than any other area of car ownership.
When it came to hands-free technology, which is designed to reduce distractions behind the wheel, drivers reported these systems commonly fail to recognize commands. The rate of this problem has increased 137 percent in the past four years, making it the most prominent issue in the industry.
"As smartphones become ubiquitous in the lives of consumers and are ever-more sophisticated, expectations about the complementary technologies being offered in new models will only get higher," explained Sargent.
Drivers looking to buy used cars with infotainment systems, built-in navigation or other modern technology do have options. They can visit NJ Public Auto Auction, which carries a wide selection of makes and models, to find the car of their dreams.
Rapper Will.i.am is the proud owner of a custom DeLorean, but his overindulgence of style was his undoing on the streets of Los Angeles. The hiphop star was pulled over while cruising around downtown L.A. late last week because he did not have his license plates on display, according to TMZ.
When the officers reviewed his information, they found an error in his registration paperwork in addition to the lack of plates. They impounded Will.i.am's DeLorean and issued him a few citations, but the news source reports the musician was cooperative and polite.
The car itself is a far cry from the Back to the Future DeLorean that Marty McFly drove across time. However, the custom ride is the first to come out of Will.i.am's new custom car company, IAMAUTO. Will.i.am's car is completely white with a wine-colored leather interior, blue LED headlights and a hexagonal front fascia. AutoBlog reports the car was built using OEM Chrysler parts, as well as an old DeLorean and a Dodge Challenger. It also has a Beats by Dr. Dre sound system. No reports have been made about what the rapper is bumping under the hood, but it's unlikely he's got a flux capacitor in the engine bay.
While the car has not been very well received by the public, Will.i.am loves it and will be able to get it back once he deals with his bills. Drivers looking to customize their own ride who don't have the expertise or the tools to do the work themselves may want to talk to the professionals at New Jersey Auto Auction's Total Car Care Center. They may be able to help install aftermarket parts or stereos to get drivers rolling in style.
As more automakers place an emphasis on improving gas mileage, some have turned to interesting tactics to reduce weight. One of the most popular methods is removing spare tires from new cars, the Detroit Free Press reports.
Taking away spare tires seems like a good idea, experts say. A temporary spare can weigh around 30 pounds, while a full-size spare and the tools that come with it can add 50 pounds to the total weight. When compared to around five or six pounds for the tire sealant kits manufacturers have replaced the tires with, the choice is obvious, especially when you consider reducing a car's weight by 10 percent can increase fuel economy by between 6 and 7 percent. Despite the advantages, there are some who are not sold on the idea.
"Engineers sweat bullets to reduce a car's weight by grams, and this is a way to shed 40 or 50 pounds," Bill Visnic, Edmunds.com senior editor and analyst, told the newspaper. "Not every customer is comfortable with it, though."
Statistics show the average drivers tends to get a flat tire once every 30,000 to 40,000 miles, and although some people may not be comfortable driving without a spare, as a whole drivers have become more confident thanks to improved tire quality and cell phones.
Having properly inflated tires will help remove some of the concern of getting a flat while out on the road. New Jersey State Auto Auction's Total Car Care center can help give you peace of mind behind the wheel. Not only will its skilled technicians check your tires but they can take care of any other issues.
Kia recently revealed details for the 2014 Kia Sorento and the new design is quite a change from previous models. The new SUV features a redesigned front fascia, eye-catching 19-inch alloy wheels and exterior LED lights among many other upgrades and changes to improve the popular vehicle.
"Since its introduction in 2009, the second-generation Kia Sorento has achieved more than 620,000 sales around the world. Today it is manufactured in Korea and the U.S., attracting over 130,000 U.S. customers last year to rank as the best-selling Kia model in the States for the second year in a row," said Thomas Oh, Kia's executive vice president and COO of the International Business Division. "We have given very careful attention to owners' feedback, and the upgraded Sorento is not just a cosmetic exercise but a major step forward for our popular SUV."
The new model will include a seven-inch display screen on the dash, a wider variety of body paint colors to choose from, and the option of a five- or seven-seat arrangement. Previous models are also available with five or seven seats, so drivers can find a car just right for their needs.
Those looking to get behind the wheel of used cars in New Jersey like an older model Kia Sorento can head to NJ Auto Auction. With dozens of makes and models to choose from, drivers are sure to find the vehicle they're looking for at an affordable price. Plus, every car on the lot has been CARFAX certified, so car shoppers know they'll be driving away in a reliable ride.
When soldiers return from serving overseas, they need to take care as they readjust to civilian life. The U.S Department of Veterans Affairs reports car accidents are the leading cause of death for veterans in the first few years following their return home. When soldiers are driving vehicles on the battleground, the tactics they use behind the wheel are much different than those needed to drive at home, but it can be difficult for some to adjust the the change, according to Fox News.
"It was a complete culture shock coming from the military back to Houston," former U.S. Marine Corps sergeant Bryan Escobedo told the news source. "For a long time, when I was driving on the highway, I always thought that there was IEDs [improvised explosive devices]. Anything that I saw on the side of the road, I'd swerve all the way."
Many veterans and active-duty soldiers on leave have had similar problems behind the wheel. USAA, a military insurer, told Fox there is about a 13 percent risk of car accidents among post-deployment troops who returned home, and that risk was as high as 36 percent for those who had served three or more tours of duty overseas. However, the odds of getting into a crash drop significantly after about six months of being stateside, the news source indicates.
Returning soldiers looking to purchase used cars in New Jersey can head to NJ State Auto Auction, which carries a wide variety of vehicles. Whether veterans would feel more comfortable in a used Hummer or they want a smaller vehicle, NJ Auto is sure to have the right vehicle to fit the bill.
Before The Walking Dead was a hit AMC TV show, it was a beloved comic – one that is still being written. In honor of the comic's 100th issue, Hyundai got together with creator Robert Kirkman to design a special edition Elantra Coupe Zombie Survival Machine. The real-life car, based on a concept created by Kirkman, will be unveiled at the San Diego Comic-Con next month.
The sketches, which were leaked by AutoBlog, are based on the Elantra, but Kirkman added a few zombie-killing features including barred windows and lights and an undead-impaling spiked plow that make the car look like it came from beyond Thunderdome. In addition to showing off the post-apocalyptic vehicle, Hyundai will be giving away an Elantra GT covered with a vinyl rendition of the cover of issue 100, which was drawn by Charlie Adlard.
"I had a good experience working with Hyundai and Future US last year, and I thought it would be totally awesome if a fan of the comic were able to win a great new car made even cooler with Charlie's artwork," said Kirkman. "Designing the Zombie Survival Machine was just the icing on the cake. I'm very excited to see the amazing job they are doing in turning my doodles and ideas into a truly awesome car. I hope they will let me do a test drive before Comic Con!"
Drivers who want to find used cars in NJ that will be suited for the zombie apocalypse can head to NJ Auto Auction. The dealer has a variety of makes and models to choose from, and each is CARFAX certified, so car shoppers know they'll have a reliable ride to help them escape the hordes should the dead ever walk the earth.