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Media Post: The Ferrari with a tragic story that cost $38million and became the most expensive car in the world

May 21st, 2015 No comments

Ferrari_250_GTO_1962

Have you ever wondered what the most expensive car in the world to be sold at auction was? Online car buying service, Sell Your Jamjar, recently asked this exact question and posted an article on its site about the Ferrari that cost a staggering $38 millon. The car in question was a 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO Berlinetta and was sold by an auction house in California in August 2014 to an unknown buyer but the car had a somewhat tragic history. According to the research by Sell Your Jamjar, the car which sold for $38,115,000 to be precise, was originally owned by Formula One racing driver Jo Schlesser. The Frenchman he took ownership of the 250 GTO from the Ferrari factory on September 11, 1962 and raced it with co-driver and friend Henri Oreiller.

But Oreiller, a 1948 Winter Games gold medallist in alpine ski racing, crashed the car after suffering a tyre blow out at 100mph and was killed. It appears Schlesser sold the car before he lost his own life six years later when he was killed at the 1986 French Grand Prix at the age of just 40. Another racing driver, Ernesto Prinoth, bought the car after it was rebuilt – although he also crashed it causing the roof to cave in (he was unharmed) – before Ferrari enthusiast Fabrizio Violati became the new owner after paying him $4000 (about $33,500 back then) for it. When Violati died in 2010, his family auctioned the car but even they could not have known that the 250 GTO – with its tragic history – would have become the most expensive car in the world to be sold at auction. Click here for the full story.

Categories: Uncategorized

Media post: DIY Car Hacks

May 11th, 2015 No comments

Lamborghini Huracan Europe November 2014. Picture courtesy of caranddriver.com

Any self-respecting petrol head has reached that point with their car where they’ve decided to start tinkering with it. Of course, you can switch out parts and make it run good, but why not make your motoring life a lot easier by trying out a few DIY car hacks.

If you don’t know where to begin then don’t worry, we’ve come up with a couple of things you can try out on your car at home that are relatively simple and quite awesome.

Carry Hand Sanitizer in Your Car

Of course if you have filthy hands or you’re just concerned about hygiene then hand sanitizer will be a priority item in your car, but you can also use this tiny tube of cleanliness to de-ice the locks on your car.

Thanks to the high alcohol content of hand sanitizers you can give a frozen handle or door lock a couple of squirts and sit back and watch the ice just melt away in seconds. Pretty handy for those mornings where a frosted up car could make you late for work.

iPhone holder

Convert Your Ash Tray

A number of people smoke in their cars, but that’s gradually being phased out so what better way to use that now defunct ash tray by turning it into something useful.

One thing you can try is converting it into an iPhone dock, all you need is an iPhone holder or plastic bracket that fits your empty ashtray space and you’ve got a place to store your mobile.

Create a Coat Rack

Cars aren’t the best place to hang your coat, but with a few bungee cords strapped to the grips on the interior roof, you could have a secure elastic mesh that you can store your coat on. Plus, if you use enough cords you could create a small space to shove a few light weight items if your car is full of passengers.

Make a Car Computer

If you’re not the most tech savvy of people you could try melding your tablet and car together to make a rudimentary computer. Similar to the iPhone dock, all you need is a tablet bracket that you can slot into the centre console or you can use ball joint pipes to have your tablet on a stand that’s supported by your ash tray.

Nail polish

Remove Scratches with Nail Polish

We’ve all been there, you park your car up somewhere only to come back later to find that it’s covered in small scratches from unknown sources. But, instead of paying your local garage to cover them up with a new paint job, you can try fixing them yourself.

All you need is nail polish that’s the same colour as your car and you just apply a few coats to your car. Obviously this is a lot simpler to do if your car is black or matte colours.

Carry a Razor Blade

Of course, you could use a razor blade for its traditional purpose of shaving, but a better use for it when it comes to cars is cleaning small dead insects and other grime off your windscreen. The sharp edge of razor blades are perfect for getting every last speck of dirt – just make sure you store it somewhere safe afterwards as you don’t want to slice your hand open when you accidently find it.

These are just a few DIY hacks you can try with your car, so why not make your motoring life a lot easier by using a few of them the next time you go on a tinkering spree with your car.

Other DIY Projects:

http://www.buzzfeed.com/readcommentbackwards/42-creative-diy-hacks-to-improve-your-home-dmjk#.tmrAM3XXy

http://www.pgbingo.com/fun-and-easy-diy-recycling-ideas/

http://bestplants.com/24-diy-garden-projects-anyone-can-make/

 

Categories: Uncategorized

Media Post: Why selling your car is now easier than ever

May 6th, 2015 No comments

Selling your car. Picture courtesy newsroom.aaa.com

If you’re looking to sell your beloved vehicle then the good news is it’s never been easier. There are so many different advertising methods available out there, with some being 100% free. Before choosing a particular method however, it’s always good to do a little research and compare the options in front of you. Below you’ll discover just some of the best options out there.

Selling online

The internet has opened up a whole new range of advertising methods. Taking just a couple of minutes of your time, your car could soon be advertised online to thousands of potential buyers. The main methods available include:

  • Paid online ads
  • Free online classifieds
  • Auction sites

Paid online ads used to be the more popular option, though they are quickly being replaced with the free ads. It’s unsurprising really. After all, who would pay money for something that they can get for free? There are still benefits to paid ads, but generally speaking it’s worth seeing if you can take advantage of free advertising wherever you can.

Free auto classifieds are frequently popping up. The Telegraph has recently reported that the RAC has become the latest company to offer free ads. The company is looking to add at least 500,000 cars onto its classified site, giving consumers a huge choice no matter which part of the UK they live. The free ads are currently only available to private sellers, though this will change on May 1st to include dealer ads too.

Auction sites are also a great choice. eBay is particularly popular, though it does come with a pretty high fee if you manage to sell the car. There’s also a risk that the buyer won’t come through with the money – although the site is pretty good in these situations.

Deciding how to sell your car

Remember when you passed your test and realised just how much thought needed to go into buying your first car? All of the rules of the road and the essential driving skills were fresh in your mind and you were fully focussed on putting those to good use and making the best decision possible.

Well, the same applies when you’re trying to sell for the first time (in fact moments such as this are a useful trigger to make you refresh your own knowledge of the road, especially given that it’s free and easy to do so – get fully into that first time buyer’s mindset).

There are many things you need to think about before you place an advertisement. The two main options you have when it comes to selling include:

  • Selling privately
  • Selling via a dealership

The Money Advice Service provides great information and advice on both options. If you choose to sell privately, you’re more likely to get a higher price for your car. Dealerships take a fee and can often try to rip you off. However, if you do choose to sell privately, it will take longer to sell and there’s also a chance you will be messed around. There are clear advantages and disadvantages to both options. So you really do need to do your research before you make a decision.

Overall selling your car is easier than ever before, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t plenty of things that you need to think about beforehand. Always do as much research as you can into the different methods available to ensure you are using the best option to fit your circumstances.

Categories: Uncategorized

Media Post: We know the cars you want to buy… What about the cars you want to sell?

April 7th, 2015 No comments

Image credit Oast House Archive, Used under Creative Commons BYSA 2

We know the reason you’re really here is to talk about the best cars on the market – the trusted brands and models that the British public love enough to buy in their thousands – but we recently came across some interesting data telling us the other side of the story; the cars Brits are selling on.

In the UK, the best-selling cars are well documented. The Ford Fiesta has dominated the sales charts for years, and the VW Golf has doubled its own sales in the past few months to claim second place. Vauxhall’s Corsa and Astra take third and fourth, while the Ford Focus is the final model to make the top 5.

However, knowing the cars’ popularity is one thing – but what about those that are fast losing favour?

Using data from the car-buying service We Buy Any Car, we’ve discovered the top 5 cars that drivers are most keen to get rid of*. Here are the cars most frequently bought by the company.

  1. Ford Ka

A car with a badly spelled name was never going to be a big-hitter. Certainly a model that people are attracted to for its price rather than its design or driving quality, the Ka has the cute factor but, in all honesty, little else going for it. This soon becomes apparent to drivers of the car, making it the fifth most commonly sold car in the UK.

  1. Vauxhall Corsa

Drivers hoping to get rid of their Corsa are not necessarily won over enough by the ‘cheap to buy, cheap to run’ aspect of the model. While online reviews suggest that it provides a reasonable drive, we were struck by the averageness of the car; no outstanding features, and nothing to surprise the driver. It’s just, very much, an average car. The number of people eager to sell it on in search of a better model seems to suggest the same thing.

  1. Ford Fiesta

Despite being the most popular car to buy – it’s currently at first place in the UK – this car is being flogged to We Buy Any Car quicker than any other. Maybe its reported transmission problems are to blame – or perhaps it’s more to do with its Lynx-wearing, driving-school connotations.

  1. Ford Focus

Again, this is a pretty standard car that – despite being a popular seller – is really nothing special. While being well-recognised for its good handling, cabin quality pales in comparison to its nearest competitors, and most (if not all) extra features are add-ons. As a result drivers are desperate to sell their Focus so they can move onto their next (and better) ride.

  1. Renault Clio

Clios have been around forever, it seems. So much so, that they’ve slipped out of the top 5 cars bought in the UK – meaning people are losing their Clios much quicker than they’re buying them. While still popular with first-time drivers, their size and quality gets quite old, quite quickly. Drivers wanting to impress – or indeed, just have a little bit more luxury in their lives – are therefore getting rid of their Clios fast, making it the most commonly sold model in the UK. … Next!

So, of the top 5 sold, only the Golf and the Astra manage to remain in the hands of their buyers. Which car do you regret buying? And where do you draw the line between economical buy, and a straight-up mistake? Let us know in a comment!

*Data provided by webuyanycar.com and is based on total cars bought by the company in 2014.

Categories: Uncategorized

Media post: America needs more truck drivers

March 29th, 2015 No comments

Truck Driver. Picture courtesy pixgood.com

The U.S. economy is back to its very dynamic self with the 2009 recession now a definite thing of the past. Along with economic growth comes rising consumer demand and housing and as a result trucking companies are starting to struggle to find drivers to bring goods to market. According to industry lobby group the American Trucking Associations (ATA), the industry is short about 35,000 truck drivers, and this shortfall could grow to around 240,000 drivers by 2020 if it is not addressed – a very significant and daunting number. The over 1 million of trucking jobs currently listed on employment sites attest to the challenges of attracting and retaining drivers for long-haul trucking companies.

Shortages of truck drivers often occur when the economy accelerates because some drivers opt for construction and factory work that don’t require living on the road. But this time it’s different, as the current shortfall is also triggered by regulatory and demographic changes. 2013 federal regulations have limited the hours truckers can drive, and a government system tracking driver records since December 2010 has deterred drivers with checkered safety records. Also, the average truck driver is now 55, more drivers are retiring and not enough younger workers are signing up.

Higher wages can fix the problem. According to ACT Research, in 1980 the average trucker earned four times the wage of a food service worker. But the $40,940 the average truck driver makes today is just 1.8 times that of food service workers. “You’re paying someone not very much to live in a box in a parking lot,” Kenny Vieth, president of ACT Research said. “This isn’t a truck driver shortage, it’s a truck driver pay shortage.” Trucking companies are starting to cover the up to $7,000 cost of obtaining a license for drivers who commit to driving for a fixed period, others offer signing bonuses, ranking from $500 to $12,000, depending on geography. Bonuses are higher in energy states like Texas or Pennsylvania, where competition for drivers is intense. Bob Costello, the American Trucking Associations’ chief economist, said recent pay increases across the industry have averaged 10 to 15%. But he expects pay to keep rising.

Parts of this article were first published on Reuters.

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Media post: Around the World in 15 Taxis

March 18th, 2015 No comments

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Click on the image to see the infographic

Wherever you are in the world, you can always rely on a cab to get you from A to B. However, depending on where you call home, you’ll be faced with a number of different options when calling up or hailing a taxi, as this infographic and article (click here to view) from The Taxi Centre shows. From the vehicle – or animal – that will be picking you up, the flat rate you’ll pay, and tipping expectations, taxis worldwide vary widely. Should you ever find yourself in Venice, Nigeria, the Maldives or more without a ride, read on for some useful tips.

Categories: Uncategorized

Media post: Signs You Are Becoming a Dangerous Driver

March 12th, 2015 No comments

Dangerous driver

There probably isn’t a driver in the world who hasn’t experienced at least a fleeting moment of irrational, traffic-induced rage or distraction. If you haven’t, you will at least have seen it around you on the roads. Most of the time, these incidents pass, and you continue about your day. But, occasionally, they turn just bad enough that you’ll be glad you have insurance. So how do you know if you’ve become a menace on the road? Here are a few signs to watch out for.

You Find Yourself Pressuring Other Motorists to Drive the Way You Want

If you’re stuck behind that oh-so-irritating slow person while you’re running late, it’s tempting to try and gently coax them into meeting the speed limit. However, it’s very likely that what you see as a gentle coaxing comes across as road rage and tailgating, and this can cause a lot of stress on the road. On a bad day, it also causes accidents. You may think you’re a better driver than those around you, but that may be disproved if you cause an accident. If this happens to you, and you are concerned about your insurance provider doing their part, consider chatting with a law firm, such as Patinos, that specialises in this field.

You Find Yourself Zoning Out on Those Long or Familiar Routes

You’ve driven this route every working day for the past ten years. You could drive it while sleeping. And, occasionally, you nearly do. But you feel confident knowing this route, so it’s not a problem… right? Well, statistically, the majority of car accidents happen close to home, in the area we feel most at home and comfortable, and the area we are probably most relaxed as a driver. Keep alert near your home and, if you feel yourself getting complacent on your drive, change the route up a bit to force yourself to concentrate.

You Just Glance – Ever So Quickly – At Your Phone

Whether it’s to change the song or to just skim read the message you just received, you’re finding that using your phone is becoming more and more common while driving. But the danger comes from more than just a second with your eyes off the road. Your concentration is pulled as well, and all it takes is a moment of distraction for the situation to change drastically. As you haven’t been paying attention, your body takes that much longer to switch to a reaction, and you run the risk of being in a truly dangerous situation.

These are three very simple things that can be an indication for you that you may be becoming a little bit too relaxed behind the wheel. Try to find ways to keep calm, keep alert, and keep focused on your surroundings, and you might just avert an accident. The best thing about avoiding them is that you’ll never have to wonder if you could have avoided it. What is your best tip for being a safe driver? Share your suggestions below.

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Media Post: Five Tips for Buying Your Next Second-Hand Car

March 12th, 2015 1 comment

SALE second hand vehicles

Buying a used car can save you money and help you avoid the financial hit usually experienced as soon as a new car is purchased and driven off the lot. Used vehicles can be a solid investment in reliable transportation. These five tips can provide you with added support in making the right moves in the second-hand vehicle marketplace.

Narrow Down Your Choices

Before stepping into the showroom or onto the used car lot, you should have a general idea of what you are looking for in your next vehicle. Spending valuable time looking at cars that are too small, overly large or otherwise unsuited to your needs can not only slow down your search but can reduce the enthusiasm of sales staff in helping you find the right car, truck, minivan or SUV for your needs.

Dealers vs. Private Sellers

Buying from a private seller can potentially save you money in the short run. However, these vehicles typically do not come with a warranty and may not offer the same consumer protections as those sold at brick-and-mortar dealerships. Factoring the cost of any necessary repairs into the overall cost of the second-hand vehicle can help you avoid spending too much for a car or truck that is purchased without a warranty or from a private seller.

Enlist Help from the Professionals

If you do decide to go the private seller route, investing in a thorough inspection by a trained and trusted mechanic can help you avoid purchasing a vehicle with serious issues. While some problems are obvious even to an automotive novice, a professional mechanic can often identify developing issues that can add up to serious headaches for buyers further down the line.

Line Up Financing First

If possible, arrange for your auto loan prior to your trip to the lot. Your negotiating power will be significantly increased if dealers know you have cash in hand to purchase the car or truck you want. Additionally, this tactic can help you avoid paying higher interest rates sometimes associated with dealer financing arrangements.

Do Your Research

Researching the average prices for specific vehicles can provide you with added information with which to negotiate when buying a used car or truck. Obtaining accurate car valuations on Gumtree can give you an edge in these negotiations and can ensure that you get the car you want at a price you can afford.

These five tips can help you acquire the car or truck you want at a reasonable price and can allow you to enjoy greater peace of mind throughout your vehicle search.

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Sponsored post: Toyota lifts Grenoble into the future with i-Road

March 6th, 2015 No comments

Toyota i-RoadToyota i-Road

Toyota has chosen the French town of Grenoble, a city famous for its visionary and innovative governance, for its first “Ha:mo” project outside Japan. Ha:mo is short for Harmonious Mobility and fits within Toyota’s overall future mobility vision, based on four pillars: safety, comfort, ease of use and ecology. Later this year Toyota will launch Citélib by Ha:mo in Grenoble, an innovative car-sharing service aimed at integrating within and optimising the combination of multiple means of transport. The main idea is to allow commuters to drive the first or last kilometres of their journey for increased flexibility and time-saving, thus contributing to reducing traffic congestion and improving air quality in city centres. In this way it differentiates itself from recent car-sharing services such as Autolib in Paris.

Citélib by Ha:mo is a “one way” short car-sharing service based on ultra-compact EVs, the Toyota i-Road, seen as an extension of public transportation networks. It aims to promote interconnectivity of public transport methods (trams, buses, trains), offering a new type of personal mobility using small vehicles that don’t take up as much space as a normal car. Indeed, recent surveys show that the average daily commute in Europe is around 45 minutes. Increasingly, commuters use public transport, but most of them still have to walk a good 15 minutes to reach their final destination. This is where the Toyota i-Road comes into play.

One scenario could be that during your tram ride, you visualise the available i-ROADs at your usual stop through the Citélib app, you reserve and pay. Another app can also allow you to see the status of traffic and public transport before you leave, so you can plan the best route that day. The Cité lib by Ha:mo is the result of combined work by five partners – The City of Grenoble, the state of France, its metropolitan area Grenoble-Alpes-Métropole, the energy company EDF and its affiliate Sodetrel, Toyota Motor Coporation and Cité Lib. The experimental service will be offered to residents of Grenoble for 3 years from October 1st 2014. It comes with a smartphone app not only confirming the availability of the station, charging status and reservation of EVs, but a route-planner with car-charging stations and itineraries within Grenoble.

But how is it really to drive the i-Road? Just like skiing really! The left and right front wheels move up and down independently synchronized in response to the driver’s steering, and the vehicle automatically selects the optimal lean angle when cornering. The ultra-compact i-Road is 870mm wide, enabling ease of handling in confined spaces and parking within a quarter of the space usually required for a normal car. As easy to use as a motorbike, but without fear of getting wet in the rain and no need to wear a helmet, the i-Road maintains balance – not the driver – and thus stability is maintained not only on curves but on slopes and over uneven surfaces. Plus, the i-Road is an EV and its Zero CO2 emissions make it completely environmentally friendly.

This post has been sponsored by Toyota, but concerns our own opinion.

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Guest post: Can Your Vehicle Pass an Inspection and Emissions Test?

February 13th, 2015 No comments

Vehicle inspection

Safety inspections and emissions are common in many large city areas. These tests are a way to ensure a vehicle is operating at an optimal efficiency for both safety and environmental concerns. Although many people may feel inconvenienced by this annual process, they should consider the efficiency that is enhanced for any given vehicle. It may actually save money and reduce risks for the driver by operating an automobile in good condition.

Fuel Mileage Alterations

During an emissions test, there could be a variety of adjustments that may be needed in order to pass. Depending on the results, repairs may need to be completed which could directly affect your gas mileage for the better. An optimal performing engine can use less gas to operate than one that has several complications such as a oxygen mixtures or bad spark plugs.

Wheel Alignments and Steering

By having your wheels aligned and steering adjusted regularly, you can reduce risks to yourself and others while driving. With faulty steering, black ice on the road and other hazards may be more dangerous. An accident resulting from bad alignment or faulty steering could also affect your insurance premiums.

Headlight Alignments and Functionality

Headlights allow you to drive at night while reducing risk to yourself and everything else on the road. However, a light that is burnt out or misaligned can become a hazard as it reduces your line of sight. Objects on the side of the road could be unseen immediately before darting out in front of you.

Brakes Are Important

Complications within the brakes can cause severe accidents if not addressed. Although your vehicle may stop while creating an awful noise, you don’t know the extent of the damage. Perhaps that noise is a precursor to brake failure.

Tests such as Pittsburgh state inspection can be greatly beneficial for you as a driver as well as other people on the road. The more efficient your vehicle is, the less risks it presents while possibly saving you thousands of dollars in property damage. Have your vehicle properly maintained and reduce complications and financial burden on yourself.

 

Categories: Uncategorized