Author: lacarguy

Mike Sullivan’s Weekend Warrior Racing Success Helps Launch Porsche South Bay in Hawthorne

May 23, 2017 lacarguy Porsche, Porsche South Bay Tags: , , , ,

Mike Sullivan has been racing since his teens getting his adrenaline fix on the backs of dirt bikes, but it wasn’t until 2014 that he decided to give Porsche racing a try. After all, they say that racing your brand is an excellent way to connect with it on another level, and that’s absolutely true according to Sullivan. He teamed up with Carl Tofflemire, the Porsche sales manager at LAcarGuy at the time, and they began racing vintage Porsches together.

Mike Sullivan - 1960 Porsche 356
Mike Sullivan – 1960 Porsche 356 – Photo Credit: Dennis Gray @ SportsCarDigest.com

The moment that Porsche came out with the Cayman GT4 Clubsport racer back in 2015, Sullivan snapped up two of them with a price tag of about $200,000 each. That’s when he decided they were going to take part in more serious races, they would enter the 2016 Pirelli GT3 Cup Trophy USA series of races.

At the start of the series Sullivan decided to film the whole thing, and to his amazement the videos began getting some serious views. Within the first year of release his series had more than 180,000 views to his astonishment, and both drivers did better than expected with third place finishes in their categories.

Mike Sullivan Weekend Warriors

It Just Made Sense to Create a Video Series

With nearly $20,000 going into each race, it only made sense for Sullivan to use all the racing footage to help promote his brand and bring more attention to Porsche South Bay. LAcarGUY has an in-house video department that’s responsible for creating videos and promoting them on social media, and the team worked hard to create the Behind the Wheel: GT4 Weekend Warriors series showing off everything that occurred during those 2016 races. The videos are all available at the porschesouthbay.com website.

The series had a production budget of about $50,000 with an additional $15,000 dedicated to social media marketing. The racing series was good business for the store though, and many of the racers featured in the video other than Sullivan and Tofflemire were actually customers that purchased their vehicles at the store as well. Nearly 10 vehicles were sold to racers in the series in 2015 and 2016.

Porsche South Bay Hawthorne California

Expanding the Store

Sullivan’s foray into more serious Porsche racing occurred at the same time that his old Porsche store was being improved upon with an all-new store in Hawthorne California. The $28 million construction is three times the size of the old store, and makes a real effort to show off the racing heritage of Porsche, with displays of some of Sullivan’s vintage race cars for customers to see upon entering the building.

Not only does the new store offer more space, more inventory and a richer presentation platform for the vehicles, but it’s right down the road from the Porsche Experience Center that promises to draw in interested buyers from all over the world.

Sullivan sees a real opportunity to expand his brand further with the racing and the release of the new store. He understands that it’s a chance to broaden his customer base and take things to a more national level. He wants to become the Porsche guy of more people around the country, and with more than 180,000 views on his racing series that seems like a strong possibility.

Porsche Rolls out the One Millionth 911 Sports Car

May 12, 2017 lacarguy Uncategorized Tags: , , ,

Still to this day the Porsche 911 is made mostly by hand, and it’s that attention to detail that creates such a high-quality product. Yesterday was a historic occasion, Porsche produced its one millionth 911 car and it just rolled off the production line. Porsche has been putting out the 911 sports car since 1963, and it finally hit a historic figure that rarely comes for exotic sports cars. The one millionth vehicle produced and it’s not so different than the original produced back in 1963. Sure there’s more tech crammed inside, the engine is significantly more powerful and advanced than before, but the makeup of the car itself remains the same. It’s a rear-engined sports car meant to go fast and offer excellent handling mechanics.

Irish Green Nostalgia

The one millionth 911 sports car was given the same Irish green paint job as the original 1963 model for nostalgia’s sake. The car also comes equipped with a steering wheel that’s partially made up of wood, and the dials are chrome capped just like the originals were. Overall 911 number 1 million looks very different from the original, but Porsche went the extra mile to tie the two together with décor.

The Power Gap

In terms of power and performance the 911 has come a long-long way. Consider this, the original 1963 model offered just 128 HP from its air-cooled engine. The current base model 911 Carrera offers 370 HP and they get much more powerful from there. The high-powered 911 Turbo S can go from 0 to 62 in just 2.9 seconds, a feat that likely seemed all but impossible back in 1963. The original 911 does the same thing in 8.5 seconds, something more akin to a modern-day family sedan.

Not for Sale

If you’re hoping for a chance to bid on the millionth Porsche 911, you’ll be sadly disappointed. No collector will have the opportunity to own the vehicle. Instead it’s going to take a tour of modern racing locations around the world, and it will be retired at the Porsche museum when it’s finished making its trip.

Few performance sports cars hit the one million production car mark, and that’s a real testament to the Porsche 911 and its longevity.

The 2017 Corolla is One of the Safest Budget Cars Available

May 10, 2017 lacarguy Toyota Tags: , , ,

The Toyota Corolla has long been one of the most popular family sedans in the United States, and the 2017 version of the vehicle rolls out enough new features for that trend to continue on into the future. While the latest Corolla doesn’t offer the exciting driving dynamics that you would find behind the wheel of a sportier vehicle, it does pack a whole lot of functionality and safety into a pretty affordable purchase. In fact, if you were to write down all the standard features that come in the 2017 Corolla, you would be hard-pressed to come up with any other vehicle in the price range that can compare in terms of safety or tech.

2017 toyota corolla

Top Level Safety

One of the best features of the 2017 Corolla is all the safety tech that comes packed inside. The sedan comes equipped with the Toyota Safety Sense system as standard, so you get a bunch of preventative safety tech tools without having to pay extra for them. What that means is you’ll enjoy auto high beams, adaptive cruise, automatic emergency braking, a forward collision warning system and lane departure and lane keep assist. All these features will help ensure that you remain safe while out on the road and that most of the common causes of accidents are stopped before they can end up causing a problem at all.

New Enhancements

On the outside of the Corolla you’ll see that the front-end of the vehicle has been redesigned for an all-new look. The interior is also changed notably. There’s a remodeled instrument panel with a more modern look to it. The Corolla also comes with a new set of climate controls. Overall things aren’t too different, but most of the changes to the Corolla are enhancements.

A Comfortable Family Sedan

The Toyota Corolla prioritizes being a family vehicle over everything else. It offers more rear legroom than other sedans in the class, it offers more comfort features than most as well. There is an excellent amount of trunk space, making it easy to pack in important luggage for family trips or camping excursions.

A Real Budget Vehicle

The Toyota Corolla is the ideal vehicle to purchase when on a budget. With a starting price around $19,000 it’s hard to find another brand-new vehicle that’s outfitted as nicely in the price range. Even the top-end XLE that features a 7.0 inch Entune infotainment unit, heated front seats, a power sunroof and a smart key is available for just over $24,000. No matter what grade of Corolla you decide on, you’ll enjoy an affordable price tag on your purchase.

The 2017 Corolla isn’t for everyone. It isn’t a sports car, it doesn’t get fuel economy like the Prius, but it does offer top level safety features, a good set of tech features, and huge rear seating room, and it does all that on a budget.

Our Review on the 2017 Lexus RC Coupe

May 8, 2017 lacarguy Uncategorized

The new Lexus RC coupe is a stylish performer from Lexus, and it’s a good entry-level luxury vehicle for buyers interested in the finer things in life, without taking out a second mortgage. The coupe comes in many power levels, but each one is outfitted with the same style and high quality materials that set this luxury coupe apart from the competition.

2017 Lexus RC

Choose the Engine for You

The Lexus RC coupe comes with a good selection of engine options to choose from. It’s possible to get a turbocharged four-cylinder, two different V-6 engines or a V-8 depending on the model RC that you decide on. The car features rear wheel drive as standard, but it can be outfitted with all-wheel drive on many of its models. With so many different power options, it’s simple to achieve just the right level of power that you’re looking for.

It offers All Wheel Drive

If nothing else sells you on the Lexus RC coupe, the fact that it’s available with all-wheel drive could get some people excited. After all, there’s a short list of luxury coupes that are designed to do well in the snow, and the RC is one of them, provided that you opt for the V6 model with all-wheel drive.

Affordable Luxury

With luxury coupes coming in at $60,000 to $100,000 from many automakers, the starting price of $40,945 from the RC200t seems very reasonable and even the higher trim level versions of the coupe are pretty affordable coming in at mid 40’s. Of course the V8 powered RC F is a whole new story with a price tag of $63,755, but that’s still more affordable than the Mercedes C63 AMG that stickers for $3,000 more.

2017 lexus rc interior

Upscale Interior Furnishings

When you climb inside the 2017 Lexus RC you might be convinced that you’re climbing into the cockpit of a luxurious jet. The seats are contoured for maximum comfort, the gauges and media screen are recessed back into the dash, creating an orderly and segmented layout. A mix of soft touch materials and neutral tones come together to create an upscale feel in the RC, making even the low trim levels feel far more expensive than they really are.

Room to Stretch up Front

Luxury coupes aren’t known for space, and I’m not going to lie and say that the RC offers the space of a minivan within, but it does offer a bit more wiggle room than many other vehicles in the same category. Take the BMW 2 for instance. There’s 5 more inches in the cabin than that car has to offer. There’s even 3 more inches than the BMW 4 series, giving passengers just that little bit of extra space for comfort. That’s not to say that the space is well distributed, because there’s less legroom for rear passengers in the RC than there are in those vehicles listed up above. What that means is that any rear passengers will hate you, but you’ll be incredibly comfortable up front while driving around in the Lexus RC.

 

Why the e-Golf is the Practical Man’s EV

May 5, 2017 lacarguy Volkswagen Tags: , , ,

With so many high-end electric vehicles being released onto the market by the likes of Tesla, Porsche, and quite a few others, it can be easy to overlook the smaller guys, or in this case the less exciting and more practical guys like the e-Golf from Volkswagen. That could be a big mistake to make though. Sure the e-Golf isn’t flashy, it doesn’t offer sports car performance and it won’t take you around the country on a single charge, but it is practical and relatively affordable as well.

2017 VW e-golf

Decent Range and Recharge Times

One of the most important considerations to make when shopping for an EV is how long it takes to charge, and how far it will take you once it is charged. These are two areas that the latest e-Golf does pretty well in. The range of the vehicle on a full charge is over 100 miles, and a standard 240V charger will refill the car in about 6 hours, while the more powerful charging system that costs extra can get the car 80% full in just an hour offering around 100 miles on that single fast charge. For the everyday commuter or town driver the e-Golf makes good sense, and according to Volkswagen, when paying $0.13 per Kilowatt of electricity, the average user will only spend about $550 to drive for the year. That works out to around  $46 a month, which is pretty darned good for the everyday commuter.

It’s Surprisingly Affordable

The e-Golf can be had for as little as $29,000 not including any tax credit, and it is available for as little as $21,495 including the $7,500 tax credit offered by the Federal government. That makes it awfully easy to build a case for the full electric vehicle. After all, it will get you where you need to go the same as any gas powered vehicle, and it will likely cost the same as any other efficient new car that you’ve been eyeing. When compared to Tesla’s current offerings, it’s easy to see how the e-Golf just makes sense.

Speedy and Fun to Drive

The e-Golf is also pretty fun to drive, though it’s not going to compare with a sports car. The car speeds up pretty quick, with 0 to 60 times in 9.6 seconds. It offers good driving dynamics with reliable braking and responsive steering. The only quirk that you have to deal with while driving is the pulsing of the regenerative brakes, but it’s not too bad, and it means that you’ll go through brake pads far more slowly than the average driver would.

Overall the e-Golf just makes good sense. It’s the most obvious EV choice for a buyer on a budget, and it has a lot to offer.

The Lexus RX Leads Canada Sales Surge for Good Reason

May 3, 2017 lacarguy Lexus Tags: , , ,

While many of Toyota’s vehicles are experiencing a decrease in sales in Canada, Lexus is actually experiencing a serious surge in sales. So much of a surge in fact that records are being set. During the month of April Lexus set the tenth consecutive monthly sales record and had the biggest month of sales to date with a total of 2,651 Lexus vehicles sold. Much of this is due to the latest RX SUV that’s selling like crazy all over Canada. Let’s dig into why that is.

2017 Lexus RX

Why is the RX Selling so Well?

Canada itself is well-known for having rough terrain that’s a bit more difficult to traverse than other countries, and that’s partly why SUVs are so popular in Canada, but that doesn’t explain why the RX is selling so well over other models. Lexus has an excellent reputation in Canada, but the RX is standing on its own in terms of quality and features offered. The SUV comes with an excellent selection of safety features that make driving more convenient and crashing much more difficult to do. The SUV is known for its reliability, it’s designed with a rugged platform that can stand up to harsh weather conditions such as snowy roads or mountain driving. The SUV is also highly luxurious.

Luxuriate While Off-Roading

While we don’t recommend taking the RX through tough off-road courses, there are likely some that it could handle just fine. It’s a pretty tough vehicle, but it also comes with all the comfort and aesthetic features that you would expect out of a Lexus. It’s fitted with carefully sculpted heated and cooled seats that are designed to make your drive as enjoyable as possible. The SUV itself looks stunning, and there’s ample space within for five passengers to ride around comfortably.

The 2017 RX is just a good solid vehicle to tackle the elements in style. That’s probably why 966 units were sold in April, a major increase of 11.2% over the previous April’s sales figures. That’s a significant increase and it shows that more people than ever before are interested in the RX and what it has to offer.

Canadian buyers are realizing the value of the RX, whether it’s the 350 or the 450h hybrid model, there’s a lot to like about the vehicle and how it handles in a variety of different driving conditions.

Porsche Cayenne Tows Jumbo Jet

May 2, 2017 lacarguy Porsche Tags: , , ,

There are some critics out there that talk about towing capacity and how it’s not always accurate. There are some companies that reportedly overstate the towing capacity of their vehicles to the displeasure of the vehicle owners, and then there are companies like Porsche, that are apparently quite conservative when it comes to the tow rating of their vehicles, or at least for the rating of the Porsche Cayenne. Just a few days ago Porsche made headlines all over the world, for doing something that seems impossible. The automaker used a couple different Porsche Cayenne’s to tow a 314-ton jumbo jet a total distance of 140 feet. That seems completely impossible when you consider the vehicle has a tow rating of a mere 7,700 pounds.

porsche cayenne jumbo jet

Setting a World Record

While towing the Airbus A380 jumbo jet down the tarmac, Porsche set a new world record exceeding the old production car tow record by a staggering 127 tons. The feat was accomplished at the Paris’s Charles de Gaulle Airport, and it’s going to be something that ever Porsche Cayenne owner takes pride in.

You Can Trust in that Tow Rating

With such a heft accomplishment under its belt, you shouldn’t have any trouble trusting in the pretty conservative 7,700 lb. tow rating put on the Porsche Cayenne. We’re not recommending that anyone go over that limit, but Porsche drove the two Cayenne’s away from the event and they both functioned fine, so owners that go above and beyond the rating occasionally probably won’t suffer from any issues as long as they are careful with how they drive. Either way, it’s an amazing feat, it’s something that every Porsche owner should be interested in, and it shows that good engineering makes it possible to accomplish much more than you think.

Not Just a Diesel Thing

First Porsche relied on a Cayenne S Diesel to complete the feat, but before you go ahead and say that it’s a diesel thing, Porsche also did the same exact thing using the Cayenne Turbo S, a gas-powered vehicle. It’s all in the Porsche engineering, not the type of fuel running the vehicle.

If you’ve been looking around for a rugged SUV to tow stuff with, it’s hard to argue against the stylish and well-equipped Porsche Cayenne. Just don’t expect to tow your jets with it, this was a carefully planned feat and probably isn’t that easy to reproduce by just anyone with a Cayenne and a jet sitting around.

The Audi 2017 Audi Q7 is a Mix of Luxury and Performance

May 2, 2017 lacarguy Audi Tags: , , ,

Audi has long been known as a luxury car manufacturer, but the Q7 makes a strong case for the company’s SUV division. It’s a supreme mix of power, style and comfort and the latest Q7 is arguably one of the best offerings by Audi today. Enough buildup though, let’s get into what makes the SUV special and what helps it stand out above other SUVs on the market, and believe me, there’s quite a bit to like about this smooth rolling crossover.

2017 audi q7

Smooth Powerful Performance

The SUV features a V6 that packs a total of 325 HP. It’s not the most overpowered engine that we’ve seen in an SUV, but it makes takeoff feel smooth and quick. The large SUV seems to absorb bumps as you go over them, and the ergonomically sculpted seats help with that effort even more while providing a supremely comfortable surface to sit on while riding around. The seats are cooled and heated, and they’re comfortable in all different climate types.

Paddle Shifting Precision

With the high quality automatic transmissions on the market today, most people are content letting their vehicles handle gear changes for them, but there’s something enjoyable about being able to do the job yourself, and with the Q7 you can have either or. It’s equipped with a set of paddle shifters that allow you to shift between the eight different gears as you see fit. This is especially helpful for hill driving where you can take advantage of low gears to cut down on braking. There’s also a standard drive and super drive setting, allowing you to be more efficient out on the highway.

Excellent Interior Space

The inside of the Q7 is massive with ample leg room for people in the first and second row of the vehicle. There’s seating for 7, with the third row being a bit more cramped. Not only is there plenty of seating space, but there’s ample cargo room at the back of the SUV for all your gear, groceries or whatever it is that you need to haul around.

Excellent Safety and Driving Aids

While driving the 2017 Q7 you’ll notice that there’s a speed guideline posted near the speedometer. The SUV can actually pick up the different speed limits as you drive around, letting you know exactly how fast you should be driving at all times without actually tampering in what you’re doing. The SUV also comes with advanced safety features, like collision braking to help you avoid crashing into objects in front of you.

The Audi Q7 was released right after the Denver Auto Show, and it shows a lot of promise. It’s refined, it looks nice, offers plenty of interior seating and is equipped with all the safety features that you could want out of a vehicle.

Porsche Using Stickers to Censor 2018 Macan

May 1, 2017 lacarguy Porsche Tags: , , , , ,

The Porsche Macan went from being a strange idea that many Porsche fans rejected, to a popular mainstay of the brand. The Macan has already been through a few evolutions since being released, but Porsche is clearly trying out another one as we speak. The interesting thing isn’t the changes the Macan is receiving, but how Porsche has decided to mask the next vehicle, with stickers.

2018 Porsche Macan Spy

Sticker Covers

That’s right, Porsche has placed stickers over top of the 2018 Macan in order to make it look like a 2017 version of the vehicle. By looking where the stickers have been placed, it’s easy to see what changes are coming on the latest model and what you can expect from the automaker overall. The stickers are actually pretty difficult to notice in pictures, and they’re a brilliant way to block distinctive features on the latest Macan while still getting it out there for testing.

Only Minor Changes are Coming

On the front of the Macan the headlights are clearly being changed up in some way, but it’s tough to see exactly what the change is from a picture alone. It also looks like the Macan is getting a new bumper and fog lights, and it’s very likely that it’s going to have an LED across the entire back, or at least that’s what the full-sized rear sticker would suggest. Overall the cosmetic changes are all just speculation, but there are quite a few modifications coming.

Expect Interior and Engine Upgrades

Not only is the exterior of the 2018 Macan getting some changes here and there, but buyers should expect the interior to be notably changed, and for there to be different engine options than what is currently offered on the Macan. There could even be a plug-in hybrid version of the popular sports SUV offered by Porsche, which would be very interesting.

While the 2018 Porsche Macan doesn’t look like it will be a revolutionary vehicle, it will come with quite a few changes to its front and rear, and it will be interesting to see exactly what those are. Don’t expect to have to wait months to hear about them though, it’s likely that Porsche will put out an announcement and show off the vehicle before the end of summer.

Toyota is Considering Natural Gas Fuel Cells

April 25, 2017 lacarguy Toyota Tags: , , , ,

By now most people have heard of hydrogen fuel cells being used in vehicles like the Toyota Mirai to move them around the road without utilizing fossil fuels to do the job. This technology is pretty cool, and it works surprisingly well, but so far it isn’t’ all that practical on a wide-scale. That’s because hydrogen isn’t widely available just yet, and it could be quite a while before there are enough hydrogen refueling facilities to keep cars running all over the world. That’s one of the reasons that Toyota has been toying with the idea of a natural gas fuel cell instead.

Natural Gas Fuel Cell

A Natural Gas Fuel Cell

Just like the hydrogen fuel cell, a natural gas fuel cell would be used to generate electricity to drive a vehicle down the road. The main difference is that it will use natural gas rather than pure hydrogen. The natural gas would be split into hydrogen and carbon monoxide, and both substances would be used to generate electricity for the vehicle. The fuel cell stack on its own will generate electricity at around 53 percent efficiency, but by putting a heat reclaimer in the system Toyota is able to reach efficiency levels around 65 percent, which is better than its current hydrogen fuel cell.

Not as Helpful to Climate change

One of the major criticisms of this new technology is that burning natural gas is not as good for the environment as hydrogen fuel could be if it was produced using renewable resources, and that’s absolutely true. AT the moment hydrogen isn’t being produced with renewable resources though, and it’s being created with fossil fuels. In other words, relying on a natural gas fuel cell over a hydrogen fuel cell could actually be better for the environment currently. That’s because natural gas contributes less to climate change than gas or diesel fuel does. Making the switch to another fossil fuel might not seem like the right move to help mitigate climate change, but at the moment it’s a step that actually makes quite a bit of sense.

Maybe Not for Vehicle Use

While Toyota is experimenting with this new technology, at the moment it only seems like it’s destined for businesses and residential use to generate power for local energy needs. It isn’t being tested for vehicle use just yet, and it’s possible that the tech will never be used in vehicles. Even still, it’s interesting to look at different technologies and ways of doing things.