The New Must-Haves in Car Shopping

MyFord Touch 6312_sirius-660

The average car in the United States is 10 years old.

In an age when computers and phones are obsolete in 3 years, a decade is an eternity.

Back in 2004, things like USB ports, Bluetooth and backup cameras were fare for top-of-the-line luxury cars, if they were available at all. Today, that kind of technology is considered must-have for many new-car shoppers.

The exponential leap in technology is a major reason some shoppers will consider only new or late-model used cars. Is the latest whiz-bang wizardry worth the extra cash?

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Great Gifts for Grads

2014 Ferrari California

Summer has come, school has ended, and students have graduated. If you have a student in your family, you’re probably wondering what would make a good graduation gift. Well, why not a car? Nothing too expensive or super outlandish, of course. Something with a small price tag, good safety features and good fuel efficiency. Well, if you’re generous enough to be shopping in the automobile market on behalf of a recent graduate, let us point you in the right direction. With fuel economy, safety and, of course, affordability in mind, we’ve compiled a list of vehicles we think would make absolutely phenomenal graduation gifts.

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Introducing the Supercar Unknowns

SSC Tuatara

I was tagged in a Facebook post that said, “Dude, Washington has a supercar!”

The link went to a local story about Washington State company SSC and its Tuatara megacar, which is due to start production in 2015. That car has a very real shot at regaining the title of world’s fastest production car for SSC, whose Ultimate Aero has battled with Bugatti for the title over the last couple of years.

In our parts of the woods, SSC, formerly Shelby Supercars, is not an obscure car brand. Granted, we don’t see any roaming our city streets, but any real car nut knows it exists.

Keep reading for 5 supercars of which even the most pure of heart may not be aware.

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New or Used? The Epic Discussion

new-vs-old-cars-ford-mustang

New cars are one of very few purchases you can make in which you pay at least 20 percent more than what the item is worth.

Pay 40 grand for a new car and by the time you get it home, it’ll be worth about 32 grand. When you think about it with a rational head, that makes zero sense. Depreciating assets are common in this society, though, and the extra money pays for a little thing we like to call peace of mind.

If you’re looking to buy, what really makes more sense, new or used?

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Does the U.S. Finally Stand a Chance?

1968 Ford Mustang

This Thursday, the United States Men’s National Team will take on Germany in one of the most important 2014 FIFA World Cup matches thus far. Both teams have their own futures, plus those of Portugal and Ghana, largely in their hands. While the USA’s Jürgen Klinsmann and Germany’s Joachim Löw have both garnered high praise for their teams’ performances thus far in the tournament, we thought there was still a little room for improvement. We came up with starting lineups we hope Klinsmann and Löw will consider, lest the USA or Germany suffers the same fate as England and makes an early exit after not taking gearhead advice.

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The Upside of GM Recalls

GM-recall

There’s a silver lining in every bad situation.

Sometimes you just have to look on the bright side.

After the rain comes a rainbow.

Every rose has its thorn.

Ridiculous clichés aside, there’s always an upside to even the lowest of situations. The General Motors ignition recall is certainly a low point for the world’s largest automaker, but some people are enjoying the benefits of said recall.

Who could possibly benefit from the disaster and tragedy of one of the biggest and most controversial recalls in history?

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Free Car, or Freak Car?

1984_volvo_240

The online classified ad offered a free car, with a catch.

A 1984 Volvo 240, with 300,000 miles on the odometer but only 150,000 on the rebuilt motor, was advertised for sale at the cost of a case of beer. Why would anyone give away a perfectly good car to a complete stranger?

Economics, of course.

The listing, now removed, had a fantastic description of the car and its mostly reliable travels across the United States, including four trips to the Burning Man festival. The owner said the car would most definitely get its new owner from one point to another, eventually, and if a mobile jump-start kit was carried at all times.

The ad said that whoever got the car would have to contend with one other minor detail:

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The Harsh Reminders of Traffic School

driving safety

Don is about to kill his wife.

Not on purpose, of course, because he loves her. Talking with her and laughing with her are two of the only things in his life that bring Don blissful joy.

Don’s other love is his car. He loves the thrill of pushing its limits and accelerating quickly, even on city streets. By combining those two loves, Don will tragically lose them both within a couple of seconds.

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What Car Could You Drive for 24 Hours?

2012 Maybach 62

From June 19–22, over 150 cars and hundreds of drivers will race the ADAC Zurich Nürburgring 24 Hours endurance race on the Nordschleife (north loop) of the Nürburgring in central Germany. The Nürburgring, with a lap length of over 20 km, allows a driver to race in 150-minute intervals before being required to take a 2-hour break. A driver’s teammate then takes over and does the same. This lasts for an entire day.

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Buying a Car for the First Time?

1994 Dodge Viper 2_dr_rt_10_convertible-pic-502

Remember your first time?

Mine was the culmination of a lot of searching, a lot of saving and then a long journey to find what I wanted.

The effort, time and money finally paid off when I experienced one of the greatest first times a young adult could possibly dream of: I bought my first car.

Actually, my first car was a truck and exactly what I wanted in a first vehicle. I bought it just as summer began and looked forward to many long days and warm nights of newly purchased freedom.

With a new summer dawning, plenty of teens and young adults will be considering their first vehicle purchase. What should they look for?

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