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27
Aug

The Adopt Don’t Shop Labor Day Pet Event

VW Pet EventIf you would like to help out a local dog, or know someone who is looking to adopt come out to Volkswagen of Santa Monica for the Don’t Shop Adopt Event. VW of Santa Monica is partnering with the Eloise rescue to help some of their dogs find homes for the holiday.

 

The Event

This adoption event is being hosted by Volkswagen of Santa Monica at 2440 Santa Monica BLVD in Santa Monica CA. It’s a great opportunity to see some of the adoptable dogs that the Eloise Rescue has available and learn what they are all about. If you would like to learn more about dogs in need in your community, the event begins at 10 am and lasts until 3 pm.

The Eloise Rescue

The Eloise Rescue is a Los Angeles based dog rescue that takes dogs out of high-kill shelters and gives them a second chance. The shelter helps get dogs to loving homes and takes care of them until someone else can.

If you would like to visit the Eloise Shelter you can learn more information about them at (310) 659-1919 or visit their website at www.eloiserescue.org From the site you can donate, view their current dogs available for adoption or learn more about their upcoming events.

Whether you’re looking around for a lovable little fur ball to add to your family or you just want to help out take the time to visit the event and have a bit of fun. The event promises to showcase a variety of different dog breeds and is worth taking a look at.

26
Aug

Critics are Raving about the New Porsche Macan Including Consumer Reports

Well the Porsche  Macan is out now and critics are raving about its performance and its luxurious finish. Consumer Reports purchased their own model of the vehicle and they had nothing but good things to say about the Macan. When a major reviewing firm stops and takes notice of a product like the Macan you know that it has something special to offer.

2015 Porsche Macan

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Interior

While the interior looks nice in photos it’s reassuring to hear from the critic of Consumer Reports that it looks even better in person. He raved about the impeccable layout of the interior, with real wood and brushed aluminum accents the Porsche looks very classy. The real leather seats are incredibly comfortable and providing an excellent level of support. There were a few negatives that came up about the immaculate interior however, the first was the seating in the back, and the second was about the visibility while driving. Unless you plan on toting around small children in the back you probably won’t be using that rear space much because there isn’t much of it. The legroom in the back is pretty non-existent, which is to be expected in a compact performance SUV from Porsche. Porsche chose to use very wide pillars at the front and back of the Macan and this cuts down on overall visibility while driving. It isn’t a deal breaker, but you will certainly want to rely on a backup camera when pulling out of parking spots.

Performance

Even though the Macan is based on the Audi Q5 architecture it’s purely Porsche both inside and out. This little SUV has a high level of agility and makes you feel very much in control while driving. According to the reviewer this car feels tied down around corners and provides a directly in control feeling.

Ride quality

The Macan drives like a Porsche and it drives like one of the best to date according to the review. He raved about the smooth handling of this vehicle at high speeds as well as the nearly silent interior even at high speeds. The Macan is relaxing to drive and just plain enjoyable.

The Porsche Macan has only just been released, but Consumer Reports made a very bold prediction about the little SUV. They stated “We’re not going to be surprised one bit if the Macan becomes Porsche’s best selling model.” This is no doubt due to the attractive price-point of the vehicle and the added utility that an SUV provides over sports cars. With such a bold prediction coming from a reliable source of information like Consumer Reports, there can be no doubt that the Macan is an excellent product and that it wasn’t just a gimmick to attract new customers. The Porsche Macan is pure Porsche, and offers the experience that you would expect from a Porsche.

 

25
Aug

Volkswagen Released Pricing Information for the 2015 E-Golf

Volkswagen recently announced the release price and date of the e-Golf electric hatchback vehicle. It’s set to go on sale in November and the SEL premium model will be sold at around 35,000 not including the destination fee. This price point is relatively affordable for such a capable electric vehicle that produces no tailpipe emissions but the even more remarkable thing is that VW went to the trouble of buying a carbon emission offset from 3Degrees for each of the vehicles produced to help the environment.

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Capable and Spacious

The e-Golf is comfortable on the inside and offers the most interior space of any compact electric vehicle with a whopping 93.5 cubic feet of space for up to five passengers. The rear of the vehicle offers 22.8 cubic feet of storage space unless the seat is folded down and then the number goes up to 52.7 cubic feet in total space.

Performance

The e-Golf is capable of achieving a range of over 100 miles when driven carefully but automakers state that it averages between 70 and 90 miles on a single charge. The 199 lb.-ft. torque provided by the engine offers plenty of power for quick acceleration and enjoyable driving. A rapid charging system makes it possible to recharge the battery up to 80 percent full in just 30 minutes making a series of short trips in the car much more convenient than in other electric vehicles. This compact car is built on the same MQB architecture as the rest of the Golf lineup, giving it a sporty feel and agile handling. The e-Golf is also the first VW vehicle to offer complete LED headlights in the US, giving it a higher level of visibility while consuming less power.

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Tech Features

Equipped with satellite radio, Bluetooth technology and an advanced media system with a remote app, the e-Golf is certainly a well-connected vehicle. It offers all the features that you would expect in the latest luxury sedans and that makes the driving experience all the more enjoyable. Dual-zone automatic climate control keeps the vehicle at an ideal temperature, and three different driving modes help you adjust how much energy you burn through while travelling. Heatable seats and keyless entry add further conveniences to the vehicle and a rearview camera and Park Distance Control make driving more convenient.

The Carbon Offset

Volkswagen worked with 3Degrees to offset all of the CO2 emissions created during the production and distributions of the vehicles as well as for charging the vehicles during the first 36,000 miles of operation. This helps lay the argument of whether electric vehicles are actually useful for reducing CO2 emissions to rest. With the offset purchased the e-Golf is clearly the superior choice for the health of the environment.

This latest release will bring more usable all-electric vehicles to the masses in a fun little platform. No information has been released about lower trim packages if there are going to be any, but the e-Golf SEL looks like a lot of fun to drive around.

22
Aug

Join Us for the Kickin’ Cancer 5K Event on September 14th!

Lexus of Santa Monica is thrilled to be taking part in the 13th annual Kickin’ Cancer! 5K event to help build support and raise funds to help fight cancer. The event includes a serious 5K as well as a family fun run and a variety of other fun activities for families to take part in. It occurs on September 14th from 7:30 am until 11:30 AM and promises to be a fun-filled morning.  Come out to San Vicente Blvd. on Sunday the 14th to check it out. You can learn more about it at kickincancer.com

kickin cancer

 

The Runs

The 5k run is set to begin at 9 AM on the 13th and the Fun Run will begin at 10:30AM. Both activities are designed to raise fund for preventative cancer care. You can sign up to participate in either event through the Kickin Cancer website above.

Why We Do It

Most people are aware of the damage that cancer causes and how deadly it can be and this event is a major fundraiser to provide preventative care for the disease. Last year the event managed to raise over $200,000 toward preventative care, and that money was used to help many patients get the help that they needed. This year we hope to raise just as much and continue providing much needed financial help to victims plagued by cancer.

How to Get Involved

There are several different ways for you to get involved with the event if you want to help out or participate. By visiting kickencancer.org you can register to participate in the 5K or the Kiddie Fun Run yourself, you can donate to the cause, or you can donate to one of the sponsors already setup to run the race. By typing in the discount code”lexus” you can save 5 dollars off the entry fee and get involved for even less. Use this opportunity to test out your physical fitness while generating money for a worthy cause as well.

This is the 10th year that Lexus of Santa Monica has sponsored the event and we’re thrilled to be helping such a worthy cause and excited to promote physical activity as well. Not only are we providing some of the money to set up the event, but we’ve also provided the pace car for all the runners planning on taking part on the 14th.

Get involved with a great cause and come out to San Vicente Blvd. to take part in the Annual Kickin’ Cancer! event. It’s sure to be a morning filled with fun and worth checking out.

21
Aug

The Toyota Corolla is Named one of the Best Budget Tech Vehicles of 2014

The rate of vehicle technology advancement continues to accelerate and features that you never would have dreamt of just a few years  back are now available in vehicles sold at affordable rates. As top level technology is developed it debuts in expensive luxury cars and then quickly moves on to the general public. Kelly Blue book took the time to put together a list of the top ten best hi-tech cars of 2014 that can be had for less than $20,000. On the list of these vehicles was the Toyota Corolla, helping it move away from just a comfortable family sedan to a high-tech vehicle.

2014 toyota corolla

The Technology Packed in the Corolla

The Toyota Corolla made the list of best vehicles mostly because of the very advanced Entune Infotainment system that it comes with. This system is equipped with more apps than any other stock system on the market today and it’s pretty straightforward to use.

When you rely on the Entune system you can check HD weather and traffic information for free and you can switch between FM and Satellite radio seamlessly. You can even program the same set of presets on the system to go to different stations on both of the different radio types.

Checking your email, text messages or social networks is a breeze with the system, and you’ll never suffer from a shortage of music as long as you have a data connection available. This media system can even read back your texts out loud and you can program it to respond to different vocal commands while driving.

Fun Family Commuting

The Corolla is known for providing a comfortable ride that families enjoy but it’s also great for families from a technology standpoint as well. Not only the driver can take advantage of the media system installed in the Corolla. This vehicle is also highly efficient and achieves 28 MPG in the city and 37 on the highway. It’s spacious interior coupled with the efficient engine and advanced tech features make the 2014 Toyota Corolla an ideal vehicle to take trips in.

Holding its Value

Advanced features such as the media system in the Corolla will only serve to help it hold its value over time. Many times buyers get new vehicles because they are looking for those advanced tech features. Since the Corolla is so far ahead of the curve, even used models will often have the desired features that buyers are looking for making them more valuable.

As one of the top hi-tech budget vehicles on the market today, the Toyota Corolla is an excellent option for technology enthusiasts, or buyers just looking to get the most value from their purchase.

20
Aug

Awesome Safety Features that Make the 2015 Subaru WRX STI Safe to Operate

Even though the 2015 Subaru WRX STI is a sporty vehicle and it isn’t very large in size, that doesn’t mean that it’s dangerous to drive around. In fact, it features a wide array of safety features that all come together to make this vehicle very safe to operate. The WRX STI utilizes both active and passive safety features to keep drivers out of accidents and protect them if they get hit by the unavoidable.

2015 Subaru WRX STI Frame

Excellent Passive Safety System

Equipped with seven different airbags the 2015 Subaru WRX STI provides protection to both the driver and the passenger in all the important areas in the event of a crash. The front passenger and the driver are protected from the front and the sides, and backseat passengers are given additional side protection. The Subaru also relies on a ring-structured frame that dissipates crash energy very effectively, reducing the severity of an accident substantially. This technology comes together to help reduce injuries in the event of an accident.

Enhanced Visibility

Subaru went to great efforts to make their latest version of the WRX easier to see out of while driving. Engineers adjusted the shape of the vehicle to enhance forward visibility noticeably. To take care of rear visibility issues a rear backup camera now comes standard with the vehicle. Overall drivers should be able to see where they are going better than ever before while riding around in the 2015 WRX STI.

Enhanced Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive

The WRX STI comes with a powerful symmetrical all-wheel drive system that evenly distributes power between each of the tires on the car. This increases overall traction while travelling down the road and it makes it safer to drive the car on poor roads or in inclement weather. Sure this feature won’t help much when you get into an accident, but it will sure help keep you out of them in the first place.

Brake Override and Brake Assist

Many drivers don’t press down hard enough on their brakes before having an accident so the WRX STI will help out by providing the extra force needed to stop the car. Not only will it enhance your braking force, but the car will also prevent accidental acceleration by not allowing the gas pedal to work when the brake pedal is being pressed. This helps drivers slow down fast enough to avoid accidents, and to prevent them from making the problem worse.

All of these advanced safety features help make the 2015 Subaru WRX STI a very safe care to drive around in. It’s designed to prevent most accidents from occurring in the first place, but when they do it can take a punch and keep passengers safe very effectively.

18
Aug

The Grades of Green Student Leadership Program is Open for the 2014-2015 Year: Submit Your Application Today

Grades of Green is excited to announce that they’re now accepting applications for their 2014–2015 Student Leadership program. Students between 2nd and 12th grade are encouraged to apply if they think they have what it takes to take control and help the environment in a big way. Grades of Green is a well-known non-profit organization dedicated to improving the environment while educating children in the process. The application period for these important volunteer positions will be open until September 15th.

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About Grades of Green

Grades of Green is an organization dedicated to cultivating student interest in helping improve the environment. What started as a simple parent-run volunteer program has morphed into a massive non-profit organization that works with more than 250 different schools in 37 different states to improve the environment. As the group grows more children become educated about the importance of preserving and improving the environment.

The Student Leadership Program

The student leadership program is a chance for students in grades 2 through 12 to get involved with the Grades of Green organization in a hands-on manner. Each of the students who is accepted as a leader is charged with putting together a green project and implementing that project in their own school. The leaders get hands on training from the Grades of Green staff members along with ongoing encouragement and helpful ideas.

Benefits to Your School

Many Grades of Green inspired programs end up benefitting the schools just as much as the environment. While your school learns to cut down their use of harmful substances such as Styrofoam and plastic they also learn to save money through more cost-effective systems. Most schools end up saving a substantial amount of money and once they see how helpful saving the environment is to their budget they won’t want to stop.

Improve Your Resume

High school students can improve their resume noticeably by being accepted as a Grades of Green Leader. Not only will they be helping out the environment, but they will be leading a team to accomplish their goals. This is the type of work that shows true leadership, innovation and good values, all characteristics that colleges and employers value.

If you decide that the Grades of Green Student Leadership program sounds like a good fit for you, or you know a student who might like the opportunity to do good, visit this link for the application. After filling out the full application form and attaching the necessary documents just sit tight and wait for a response from the organization.

16
Aug

The VW e-Golf Regenerative Braking System is a True Pleasure

Most people who are used to driving modern vehicles take for granted the car’s ability to coast for long distances after letting off on the gas without losing much speed. This is not how old cars drove and they would actually slow the vehicle down quite rapidly after you let up on the gas pedal. While this can be annoying in some instances, like highway cruising, it’s a true pleasure to drive a car that brakes in this manner when going around winding courses or when you are traveling down a hill. You can’t get this type of driving feel any longer in modern cars, unless you opt for a vehicle with regenerative braking such as the e-Golf by Volkswagen.

PI-VR GmbH vred 6.07

The e-Golf has built in regenerative braking that activates when you let up on the accelerator. As soon as you let your food up the vehicle begins slowing down. The nice thing about this vehicle is that you have a choice about the braking effect and you can tailor the vehicle to your specific driving conditions and your unique driving style as well.

Four different Engine Braking Settings

When you are driving the VW e-Golf you get to choose between four different intensities for engine braking. The higher the intensity the faster the vehicle will slow down after letting up on the accelerator and the more effectively the battery will be recharged. Drivers should spend time getting familiar with each of the different intensity levels to determine which one works best for them. Having the braking effect up too high actually wastes fuel unless you drive in frequent stop and start traffic or you drive particularly windy roads. However, setting engine braking high enough to handle most of your stopping needs is much more efficient than relying on standard brakes to slow down.

Choosing an Intensity for Your Driving Course

It would make sense to adjust the braking level depending on your trip route as well. For instance very windy or hilly courses may be easier with a higher level of regenerative braking under your control. You could avoid braking at short corners and improve your fuel efficiency in these driving conditions. While doing regular highway driving you could turn the braking down to the lowest level and enjoy those nice long coasts that most modern car drivers are familiar with.

A More Enjoyable Car to Drive

Although it’s nice knowing that you aren’t using any gasoline on your trip electric vehicles aren’t traditionally known for being much fun to drive around. This additional driving mechanic that you won’t find in gasoline-only vehicles is a nice way to make driving an electric vehicle a bit more entertaining. By adjusting the deceleration rate of the vehicle you can get just the right amount of control over it and help improve the driving experience more overall.

The e-Golf is certainly a vehicle worth checking out and more electric vehicles should adopt the e-braking technology that they are making use of. If they choose to we may see an additional element to driving in the future, no matter what type of car you are driving around in.

14
Aug

2014 VW Touareg The 2014 VW Touareg is a Mix Between Utility and Luxury

The VW Touareg has always been known as a rugged SUV with rugged features at a premium price point. With the 2014 edition of the vehicle Volkswagen is changing some of that around by making the Touareg into an SUV with premium features while still holding onto the highly capable driving ability of previous models.

2014 vw toureg hybrid

Looks

Volkswagen made some major changes to the latest model of the Touareg to give it a more attractive appearance. They adjust the grille to make it look more like their other VW models. They also softened up the styling a bit giving the vehicle more of luxury look than before and they made the vehicle bigger. They increased the width of this SUV while making it’s wheelbase longer as well. Not only does this provide more interior space than before, but it also give the vehicle a more natural crossover look than before.

Impressive Performance Options

When you choose to get this SUV you have three different engine options to choose from. You can either get the base gasoline engine, the diesel engine, or the enhanced hybrid engine. The gasoline engine is a 3.6 liter V6 that produces 280 HP. The Diesel version of the vehicle only produces 240 HP but achieves a massive 407 lb.-ft. providing massive power during acceleration and allowing this variation of the vehicle tow up to 7,700 lbs. behind it safely. Finally there is the Hybrid version of this vehicle that isn’t too focused on high fuel efficiency numbers like most hybrids are. Instead this Hybrid SUV is designed to put out lots of power and between the 240 HP gas motor and the electric engine it has a total of 380 HP giving you plenty of horsepower at your disposal. It fairs quite well with 20 MPG in the city and decent fuel efficiency while out on the highway as well for such a high amount of power.

Superior Handling

No matter which version of the Touareg that you decide you want, you’ll have an enjoyable driving experience. This vehicle is equipped with constant 4-wheel drive and is designed for smooth performance. The refined driving feel gives this vehicle a sporty level of power with smoothness found on luxury vehicles. The seats are high up in the Touareg providing a great level of visibility.

A Luxurious Interior

At it’s price point the Touareg is more of a luxury vehicle than it is for utility purposes. When you climb into the interior you’ll see how VW can justify the price point of this vehicle because it looks like the inside of an Audi. The seats in this spacious interior are covered with supple leather, and soft touch materials abound. This quiet cabin is soundproofed heavily making it almost silent while traveling.

There is plenty of space for up to five people to sit, although only four adults will be able to sit comfortably. The rear of this SUV has ample storage space, but if that isn’t enough, the back seat folds flat into the floor for even more space.

This SUV comes with several standard features that you won’t see on budget vehicles. It’s fitted with a panoramic sunroof as well as leather seats with built in memory technology that adjust to suit the current driver. If you choose to upgrade to the executive or hybrid model you get even more features. Either of these models come with a heated steering wheel, rear obstacle detection, keyless entry and starting, heated rear seats as well as a premium radio system. Additional add-on packages are available for navigation or a more powerful audio system as well.

Whether you’re looking for a powerful SUV that’s fun to drive, or a refined luxury vehicle that you can take off-roading the Tourareg is an excellent option. It’s in an awkward position between luxury and utility vehicle, but it accomplishes something very special that many drivers will appreciate.

13
Aug

The Subaru Forester Versus the Jeep Cherokee

Both the 2014 Subaru Forester and the 2014 Jeep Cherokee excel at off-roading and traveling in urban conditions safely. Each is designed to handle most any condition that you can throw at it and both are designed to be comfortable and enjoyable to drive. This comparison between both vehicles will let you know which is the more reliable and which your family should get.

 

2014 subaru forester

Exterior Styling

Although the Jeep Cherokee does feature some nice styling cues it feels a bit underplayed for a Jeep. The grille isn’t as bold as we’d like and the headlamps just look awkward the way they are split apart. The front bumper of the vehicle also looks a bit odd the way it creeps up the edges of the hood. Overall the Cherokee does look masculine but the front end looks a bit off.

The Subaru Forester is far more understated than the Cherokee and lacks many of the masculine cues present in the Cherokee. That being said, it flows better throughout and looks more like your standard vehicle. It has a boxy front end that makes the vehicle look a bit long, but it’s lifted up enough to keep that masculine stance. Subaru actually lowered the hood a bit for the new year making the vehicle more aerodynamic than before, but sacrificing looks a bit as well.

Matching Up Interiors

With either the Forester or the Cherokee it’s obvious that they are made to shuttle groups of people out into the wilderness more than anything else. The Subaru Forester provides more interior space and storage space for this task, but the Cherokee provides more interior flexibility and enhanced ride comfort along the way.

Handling and Performance

The Cherokee is built with either a four cylinder or six cylinder engine, paired to a nine-speed automatic transmission. With nine speeds you would expect shifting to be smooth and responsive, but it feels a bit clunky during acceleration. The Cherokee has a smooth ride other than shifting issues, but it offers lower fuel efficiency than the Forester at around 25 MPG combined and barely over 20 MPG in city driving conditions.

The Subaru Forester comes with either a standard four cylinder engine that provides excellent fuel efficiency figures at 27 MPG combined, or a more powerful turbocharged four cylinder engine that’s a bit more fun. Either option is paired to a continuously variable transmission (CVT) and both shift very smoothly. The Forester offers a bumpier ride while traveling on and off the road, but offers a more reliable grip thanks to its all-wheel drive.

Safety

The Subaru clearly has the Cherokee in the realm of safety with a standard rearview camera, and the forward-collision system it’s easy to avoid many common accident scenarios in the Forester. It also received an IIHS best crash rating with the Top Safety Pick + while the Cherokee only earned the Top Safety Pick designation, a step below the Subaru.

Advanced Technology

In terms of technology both vehicles are outfitted nicely, but the Forester does lag a bit behind the Cherokee. Jeep went all out when putting together the Cherokee’s infotainment package, and it comes with the Uconnect media center, in-car data access as well as a customizable LED instrument panel. The Forester fights to keep up with standard Bluetooth and audio streaming and a powerful audio system, but it fails to do so.

In the end it’s pretty difficult to decide whether the Forester or the Cherokee is better. The Cherokee is a bit more adept at weaving and bobbing through  trees and over rocks while out in the forest and a bit smoother while rolling down the road, but the Forester offers more room, a safer ride, and excellent all-weather handling thanks to its all-wheel drive. If you’re looking for a vehicle to shuttle around children in or to take family camping trips in the Forester is probably a better option, if you don’t care about space and you want the most performance you can get when in the woods the Cherokee is a better fit.