Archive for January, 2013

Cold weather could leave you in a bit of trouble

Tuesday, January 15th, 2013

Winter is here, and many drivers have been warned to keep up with car maintenance in an effort to prepare for the frosty temperatures. However, it seems as though Mother Nature is putting some people in quite a predicament.

Reno news affiliate KOLO8 reports that some motorists are finding themselves stranded due to the cold weather. The news provider indicates that the Nevada Highway Patrol has experienced an influx of calls from drivers who were stranded on the road due to the chilly temperatures.

“In these bitterly cold mornings, it doesn’t take long for a motorist sitting in a vehicle that’s stranded – no heat no ability to stay warm-it doesn’t take long for that person to get cold,” Trooper Chuck Allen told the news provider.

Allen continued that it’s important people take their care in for regularmaintenance to lessen their chances of being stuck on the road. Some of the tips he suggested include making sure tires are properly inflated and examining the tire’s tread.

There are other ways that drivers can make sure they are prepared for the cold weather. Weather.com reports you’ll want to check your brakes, ignition and fan belts. You should also have a pair of jumper cables and tire chains stored in your vehiclein the event of a winter emergency.

Being prepared on the winter roads is key, but some people may not feel safe in their vehicles. Luckily, New Jersey State Auto Auction has a number of used cars available for people to choose from. This way, individuals who are in need of a new set of wheels will not be forced to break the bank, and they can feel better prepared to battle the winter roads in a reliable ride.

Volkswagen Breaks Four-Decade Sales Record In 2012

Monday, January 14th, 2013

Many consumers have seen the clever commercials for Volkswagen‘s “sign and drive” deal, and apparently a few people did more than just watch. It was recently announced that the German automaker recently surpassed its American sales for the first time in 40 years.

Autoblog.com reports the company behind the VW Bug, Bus and Rabbit sold a total of 586,286 vehicles in 2012 alone, surpassing the four-decade-old record by a total of 2,899 cars. Breaking it down even further, the brand sold 438,000 in Volkswagen’s and 139,000 in Audi vehicles – an increase of 35.1 percent and 18.5 percent respectively.

Volkswagen is also behind a few ultra luxury brands including Bentley, which had a total of 2,315 sales in 2012, a growth of 23.3 percent. Close to 520 units of Lamborghinis were sold for a 52.9 percent increase, while the Bugatti was predicted to be “right on track.”

The Jetta proved to be the most popular ride in the Volkswagen lineup with 170,000 models sold, while the Passat was right behind it with 117,000 bought in 212.

“Our employees and our dealer and supplier partners have worked very hard to establish foundations for success in the U.S. market, and they deserve so much credit for setting this new record,” said Jonathan Browning, president and CEO, Volkswagen Group of America, Inc. “We are pleased to see all of our brands contributing to growth and setting this new landmark.”

Those in the New Jersey/New York Area who are in the market for a Volkswagen, but who cannot afford to buy new, might want to head down to the New Jersey State Auto Auction to find a more affordable and still reliable used model. The inventory is always changing so consumers can check back frequently to find the Jetta, Passat or Golf of their dreams. Plus, every car on the lot is Carfax certified, so buyers know they’ll be getting behind the wheel of a reliable ride.

Many Drivers Prefer Smartphones to Other Navigation Systems

Friday, January 11th, 2013

Many newer cars come equipped with built-in navigation systems, and drivers of older models often keep a third-party GPS navigation system handy to help them get from place to place. A recent J.D. Power and Associates study found that more and more drivers are relying on their smartphones over the other options to provide them with directions. Approximately 46 percent of surveyed drivers indicated they would prefer an interface that integrates their phone navigation system with a centrally located screen in their vehicle.

"Manufacturers of navigation systems face a serious challenge, as smartphone navigation usage continues to rise and gains preference among vehicle owners," said Mike VanNieuwkuyk, executive director of global automotive for J.D. Power and Associates. "Free apps, up-to-date maps and a familiar interface allow for quicker routing and improved interaction, including better voice recognition."

Drivers who would prefer to use their smartphones may think they can only buy newer used cars that have connectivity options already built in, but they could soon have more options.

Technology company Delphi recently unveiled its new Connected Car devices at the 2013 CES convention in Las Vegas, according to AutoBlog. The device plugs into the on-board diagnostic system (OBDII) port in any car, integrates with the on-board computer and then gives the driver a few new options. After downloading the accompanying app, the driver's phone can act as a key fob, providing remote start, locking control and a panic button. This is the first step to giving drivers similar technology in older cars to that which is included in new models.

Shoppers in the market for used cars can head to New Jersey State Auto Auction, which carries a wide selection of makes and models. Every vehicle on the lot is CARFAX certified, so even if a car doesn't have a built-in infotainment system, drivers will know they're getting a reliable ride.

1 in 6 Used Cars Have Been in Accidents

Thursday, January 10th, 2013

When you're looking to buy a used car, you probably already know that it's not going to be in perfect condition. However, what you might not consider is that there's a pretty good chance the used car has been in an accident. A recent CarGurus report found that about one in six used car listings (16 percent) in the U.S. had an accident on their vehicle history reports. This includes about 8 percent of newer models that were made between 2009 and 2011. An accident history can reduce the value of a car between 3 and 12 percent, so a lower price than you expect could be a red flag.

"There is great savings potential in buying a used car, but there's also the potential to get burned if you don't do your homework," said Langley Steinert, founder and CEO of CarGurus. "A minor accident or prior fleet ownership does not have to be a deal breaker, but it is information you absolutely need to know as you consider the purchase and the price."

You don't have to worry about buying a car with a mysterious background when you shop at New Jersey State Auto Auction. Every model on the lot comes with a CARFAX vehicle history report, so you will know right away if the auto you want has been in accidents in the past.

For added assurance, it can be a good idea to have an independent mechanic inspect the car you want before you buy. This typically costs between $75 and $150, and the expert may be able to spot an issue that you might overlook, such as a worn part that will soon need to be replaced. This can help you make a more informed decision, and it might even give you leverage when negotiating prices with the dealer.

Falling Asleep Behind the Wheel Could Be Due to Snoring

Thursday, January 10th, 2013

Getting behind the wheel when you are feeling a bit sleepy may not seem like a major risk factor for car accidents, but drowsy driving is in fact a very dangerous behavior. According to AAA, operating a vehicle while feeling sleepy can have similar effects as driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol. It can slow your reaction time, and negatively impact your judgment and awareness.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently surveyed more than 147,000 motorists about drowsy driving. The results revealed a few factors that could be connected with this risky issue.

First of all, 4.2 percent of the participants admitted they had fallen asleep while driving in the past month. This was found to be more prevalent among men than women, but there were other circumstances that contributed to drowsy driving as well. Self-reported snoring and getting less than six hours of sleep at night were both linked to dozing off while driving.

"Drowsy driving is a serious risk to personal health and public safety, and snoring is an important warning sign that should not be ignored," said Dr. Sam Fleishman, president of the American Academy of Sleep Medicine, according to SleepEducation.com. "Loud and frequent snoring is a common symptom of obstructive sleep apnea, a sleep illness that causes excessive daytime sleepiness."

It is important for drivers to take precautions to avoid drowsy driving. ZZZ recommends getting at least six hours of sleep before a long drive, scheduling breaks every two hours or 100 miles and stopping the car if you begin to feel tired.

In order to stay even safer on the road, drivers should look for vehicles that have plenty of safety features, including lane departure warnings and brake assist. Many newer used cars have these technological devices, so car shoppers may be able to find safe cars at New Jersey Auto Auction.

Tips to Keep Your Car Running Well into 2013: Part 1

Wednesday, January 9th, 2013

The best way to keep your car in good shape is to stay on top of regular maintenance. You should be monitoring your car in between regular tune-ups to spot problems early. The sooner you catch an issue, the easier, and cheaper, it will be to fix. There are some things you can do at home, but for more complicated procedures, you may want to visit a mechanic, such as one of the experts at New Jersey State Auto Auction's Total Car Care Center. Here are a few steps you can take to keep your car running well between tune-ups.

There are a few things you can do yourself that can extend the life of your vehicle and help improve fuel economy.

First, check your air pressure. This only takes a few minutes and can usually be done for free, or with a few quarters when you visit the gas station. Keep in mind the psi (pounds per square inch) printed on the tires is the maximum amount they can handle. The proper amount of air pressure can be found in the owner's manual and on a sticker usually located inside the door frame. You should check the tire pressure at least once a week or so, as the correct pressure will help improve your car's fuel efficiency.

Keep an eye on the fluid levels as well. If you notice the oil or coolant is getting low, be sure to top it off. You'll want to take a peek again in a few days to ensure the levels haven't dropped drastically. If they have, you might be dealing with a leak somewhere in the system. In this case, it is best to bring your car to an auto shop and have an expert take a look. NJ Auto Auction's mechanics can address these and other issues, and the Total Car Care Center is open to the public.

Come back soon to learn more at-home car maintenance tips.

Top Fuel-Efficient Used Cars

Wednesday, January 9th, 2013

Fuel efficiency has been a major factor for the majority of drivers in recent years, and the integration of hybrid and electric vehicles has made it easier for car shoppers to find models that suit their needs. However, the sheer number of options can be overwhelming, especially for those looking to buy used cars. Many automakers have been striving to deliver fuel-efficient vehicles in the past few years, which means there are a number of previously-owned options that drivers may find on used car lots.

2011 Mini Cooper
The Mini Cooper is a fun subcompact car that is built especially for city driving, since its small stature makes it easy to snag that barely-big-enough parking space. It was also chosen as one of the top 10 most fuel efficient small cars of 2011 by Popular Mechanics. The British car gets an impressive 37 miles per gallon (MPG) on the highway, and 29 MPH in the city, so you can zip around for days on end without having to fill up your tank. The unique, retro design of the Mini Cooper doesn't hurt its appeal either.

2012 Volkswagen Passat
The Daily Green chose the 2012 Volkswagen Passat as one of if its most fuel-efficient models, as this vehicle runs on clean diesel. It is important to note that while diesel does cost more per gallon, this is made up for by the Passat's combined 35 MPG.

Chevrolet Volt
Chevrolet introduced the Volt in December 2012, and it quickly became the most popular plug-in electric car among American drivers. Green Car Reports indicates that more than 23,000 Volts were sold in 2012, and shoppers may be able to find previously owned models on used car lots.

Other popular options for cars with good fuel economy include the Toyota Prius and Ford Escape hybrids, Hyundai Elantra, Honda Civic hybrid and Ford Fiesta. Drivers can check out these and other options at New Jersey State Auto Auction, which has a wide selection of makes and models to choose from.

Actress Kaley Cuoco to Star in Toyota’s Super Bowl Commercial

Tuesday, January 8th, 2013

The NFL headed into the postseason last weekend, and as the playoffs get underway, many are already looking forward to Super Bowl XLVII – especially the commercials. Every year, a large portion of the ad space is bought up by automotive companies, and Toyota recently announced its ad will feature actress Kaley Cuoco. The "Big Bang Theory" star will also be sharing her screen time during the big game with one lucky fan.

Toyota is hosting a "Get In The Big Game" contest in which people who love football, cars and hot blonde actresses can submit their photos on social media sites Instagram and Twitter and include the phrase "(hashtag)wishgranted." Toyota will choose one photo to include in the Super Bowl commercial, which will air during the first quarter of the game.

"Not only are we pumped to have Kaley as part of our Super Bowl commercial, but we're also excited to give fans a chance to have their photo appear in a nationally televised Toyota spot during one of the biggest sporting events of the year," said Jack Hollis, vice president of Toyota Division Marketing at Toyota Motor Sales, USA, Inc. "We look forward to sharing our commercial with the millions of viewers who tune in to watch the ultimate football showdown."

While Super Bowl commercials tend to advertise new products, Toyota lovers don't necessarily need to look to 2013 models to find vehicles that will suit their needs. The Japanese automaker has been producing quality vehicles for many years, and the Camry has been one of the best-selling cars in the country for more than 14 years. Car shoppers will have no problem finding used cars like the Camry and Avalon that are reliable, fuel-efficient and stylish. Those in the New York/New Jersey area can head to New Jersey State Auto Auction and browse the wide selection of makes and models to find their next ride.

“Best Cars” Lists Can Help Drivers Choose Their Next Vehicles

Monday, January 7th, 2013

When you are thinking about buying a used car, you may be overwhelmed with all of the options you have. Not only are there dozens of makes and models to choose from, but you also have to factor the model year into the equation to find the perfect ride. Thankfully, the internet is a major boon to those in the market to purchase used vehicles. Major automotive publications often issue lists of their choices for the best cars based on a range of different criteria. If you're shopping on a budget, you may want to look at compilations of affordable vehicles, such as the San Francisco Chronicle's Coolest Cars Under $25,000.

The Chronicle looked at new models, including the 2013 Dodge Dart and the Toyota Prius c, but there were also a few vehicles on the list that have been on the market for at least a few years. The Mazda Miata MX-5 was chosen for its impressive performance, and this particular model has a base price of around $24,000. However, since the Miata has been on the market for 25 years, you may be able to find a used model that is only a couple of years old for much less. If you're in the New York/New Jersey area, you can check out NJ State Auto Auction, which carries a wide selection of vehicles, to find the ride you're looking for at a reasonable price.

Lists like this can help you narrow down your selection based primarily on your budget. The Ford Mustang, Chevrolet Camaro and Volkswagen GTI also made the grade, so there are plenty of options for drivers on a budget who want to own a fun, sporty car. Plus, when they shop at NJ Auto Auction, motorists will be able to drive away in confidence knowing that they're getting behind the wheel of a reliable ride because every model on the lot is CARFAX certified.

Many Americans Prefer Taking Shorter Vacations

Monday, January 7th, 2013

While the U.S. is no longer in the throes of an economic recession, many Americans are still recovering financially. This means that fewer people are taking long trips abroad, but many are still finding ways to take vacations. A recent survey by Hotwire Group found that 72 percent of Americans prefer shorter trips to nearby destinations. A number of participants expressed that this allows them to take multiple trips each year instead of just one big one, while others explained they can only afford to travel this way these days.

"Every season, we analyze top deal destinations globally, but this time around, we're giving travelers what they told us they need – nearby locales that are ideal for a quick, affordable getaway," explained Clem Bason, president of Hotwire Group. "Results of the study show that many Americans are continuing the trend of price sensitivity this year, which is resulting in a focus on shorter trips, which tend to be more affordable and easier to take."

Shorter trips offer many advantages – you can get away for a weekend and save your vacation days, and it will typically cost much less than going somewhere farther away. Plus, when you choose a closer destination, you can drive there and avoid expensive airfare. If you live in the New York/New Jersey area, you have plenty of options to choose from to take fun and even educational short trips. Washington D.C., Philadelphia, Boston, the Catskills and the Poconos could all make fun destinations for your next getaway.

Before you hit the road on your next trip, make sure to get your vehicle tuned up. Have a mechanic, like the experts at New Jersey State Auto Auction's Total Car Care Center, change the oil, check for signs of wear or damages that could be problematic on your trip and even give your used car an alignment if needed. 

KBB Reveals Most Researched Vehicles of 2012

Friday, January 4th, 2013

At the end of the year, many major automotive publications look back at the top performing models of the previous year. This can be a boon to those looking for used cars who may not be sure where to start. Kelley Blue Book recently released the top 20 most researched models of 2012, and Honda's CR-V came out on top. The crossover SUV was followed by the Toyota Camry, Honda Civic and Accord and Hyundai Elantra. The Ford F-150, Hyundai Sonata, Ford Escape, Nissan Altima and Mazda Mazda3 rounded out the top 10.

"The Mazda 3 resonated with KBB.com visitors during 2012 as gas prices were fluctuating, and due to its affordability it continues to remain top-of-mind among new-car shoppers," said Akshay Anand, KBB's market intelligence Web analyst. "During 2012, Mazda had a solid year with its refocused brand image and SkyActiv Technology, which touts fuel efficiency and technology innovations."

Now that car companies have begun rolling out their new lineups for 2013, many drivers might soon trade in their current rides in order to get the latest vehicles. This means that cars like the 2012 Mazda 3 will soon become available to used car shoppers, since new car owners often hold onto their vehicles for only one to three years.

Drivers in the New York/New Jersey area can head to NJ State Auto Auction to find the models they want. With more than four acres of cars, trucks and SUVs, it will be easy for shoppers to find the models they are looking for, whether they're hoping to find a 2012 Mazda or they want something a few years older. Every car on the lot is CARFAX certified, so drivers know they'll be getting behind the wheel of a reliable ride.

Superstorm Sandy Still Affecting Cars in New York and New Jersey

Friday, January 4th, 2013

It has been a few months since Superstorm Sandy ravaged the New York/New Jersey area, and while people continue to rebuild, they are clearing out tons upon tons of ruined vehicles and demolished materials from the affected areas. The destruction caused by the storm is estimated to be worth upwards of $60 billion, and officials believe roughly 230,000 cars, trucks and SUVs were damaged. A small portion of these vehicles (about 15,000) have been relocated to the Calverton Executive Airpark in Riverhead, New York, AutoBlog reports.

The runways are now completely jammed with cars and trucks awaiting decisions on their fate. According to the new source, the models that can be salvaged will likely be repaired and auctioned off, but those that suffered more damage are going to be checked for useable parts and then scrapped. Local photographer Doug Kuntz recently shared his photos of the affected cars and his experiences in the aftermath of Sandy with AutoBlog.

"I saw some of these cars parked on the streets…with the bags deployed," Kuntz told the news source. "I talked with tow truck drivers and mechanics who moved these cars… The tow truck drivers confirmed the airbag deployments, and the mechanics agreed about the problems taking time to show, and being very expensive to fix, and, in some cases, not worth the cost."

Flood damage is tricky, as the water can carry dirt and debris into the inner workings of a car and cause serious damage that may not be noticeable to the naked eye. Drivers buying used cars may want to have them inspected by mechanics like the experts at New Jersey State Auto Auction's Total Car Care Center to ensure the vehicles are in good shape before they complete the purchase.

Drivers can also buy vehicles from NJ Auto Auction. Every model on the lot is CARFAX certified, so they won't have to worry about getting stuck with a flood-damaged lemon.

Experts Predict Auto Industry Growth Will Continue in 2013

Thursday, January 3rd, 2013

As 2103 gets underway, the sales numbers for December are beginning to trickle in, and the auto industry's success in the past year is growing more apparent. The Washington Post reports that preliminary estimates show roughly 14.5 million new vehicles were sold in 2012, which is 13 percent higher than in 2011.

It doesn't look like the trend shows any signs of slowing either, as experts from market research firm Polk as well as those at Edmunds.com are predicting that 2013 will see sales top 15 million. This is only a 6.6 percent increase according to Fox Business, but it looks as though 2013 will be a year of innovation and competition between brands.

"What's especially encouraging is the current competitive strength among the automakers," said Dr. Lacey Plache, Edmunds.com's chief economist. "Consumers will continue to benefit from exciting new models and technologies – and potentially lower prices – as automakers continue to battle for market share."

As more drivers purchase new models, the pool of available used models will grow as well. This is largely due to the fact that Edmunds expects there will be 500,000 more leases that end in 2013 than there were in 2012. The result could be an average price drop of $200 to $300 per used model this year, making it a good time for car shoppers to begin looking.

Drivers in the New York/New Jersey area who are in the market for used cars may be able to find the ride they want at NJ State Auto Auction. The dealer carries a wide selection of makes and models with a constantly changing inventory, and every vehicle on the lot is CARFAX Certified. This allows drivers to buy with confidence, as they will know that they're getting behind the wheel of a reliable ride.

Ford’s Sales Success in 2012 Mainly Due to EcoBoost Engine

Wednesday, January 2nd, 2013

New Year's Day has passed, but automotive experts are still crunching the numbers for 2012's sales, and it appears as though Ford had a very successful year. The automaker is projecting its annual sales topped 2 million units for the second year in a row. If this prediction is accurate, Ford will be the only car company to have such high numbers in American sales in 2012.

More than 25 percent of Ford's overall sales were attributed to the lineup of efficient models that feature the environmentally friendly EcoBoost engine. The engine is designed to use less gasoline than a traditional combustion engine, while still providing plenty of power. This is made possible due to a highly pressurized fuel injection system that delivers fuel directly to each combustion chamber in the engine. A typical motor first mixes the fuel with air, but the EcoBoost method helps to improve efficiency and performance while also cutting down on emissions.

"In just three years, Ford has transformed our global small car lineup and started winning over customers worldwide with vehicles that are not only fun to drive but also fuel-efficient – largely thanks to our award-winning EcoBoost engines," said Jim Farley, Ford's executive vice president of global marketing.

Since the American automaker has been using the EcoBoost engine for several years, drivers in the market for used cars may be able to find fuel-efficient vehicles as old as 2009 model year Ford cars. New Jersey State Auto Auction carries a wide selection of Ford models, and the constantly changing inventory makes it easy to find the vehicle you want. Plus, every car on the lot is CARFAX certified, so you know you'll be getting behind the wheel of a reliable ride no matter which one you choose.

Teens Work to Encourage Safe Driving Habits for Young Drivers

Wednesday, January 2nd, 2013

New drivers tend to be at a higher risk of getting into car accidents as they are still learning the ropes, but teens at a high school in Denver are working to find ways to encourage safe driving habits. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, teens are four times more likely to be involved in crashes than older drivers, making safety a priority for this demographic.

A group of high school juniors from Cherry Creek High School have been working with a driver safety system known as ROVR, which is used in commercial fleets around the world, to see if the advanced technology can help younger drivers. This system tracks teens' driving habits, including dangerous behaviors like speeding, hard braking and rapid acceleration and then ranks participants on a ROVR Scorecard.

"The program still has a few weeks to go, but the results confirm that young drivers can and will adjust their behavior behind the wheel," explained Keaton Skudneski, a junior at Cherry Creek and the leader of the DECA team that developed the ROVR. "… Kids are motivated to drive safer because it is fun to compete with their peers, and they like the rewards program, which provides participants with free gas money."

While good driving practices are key to keeping young motorists safe behind the wheel, the type of vehicle they drive can also contribute. Many new safety features have been introduced over the years, from brake assist and lane departure warning to rearview cameras and new materials to minimize crash impact. Since some of these advancements have been available for a few years, drivers can find used cars that are stocked with safety features. New Jersey State Auto Auction provides a wide selection of makes and models to choose from, and every car on the lot is CARFAX certified as well.