Well the 2017 Volkswagen Jetta is now out, and it’s a more exciting vehicle than you might realize. Not only did it receive a bunch of enhancements at the base, mid-range and top-range models of the vehicle, but it’s just as enjoyable to drive around as the outgoing model, and arguably even more powerful and capable as well. If you’re looking for a solid performer that looks nice, offer decent efficiency and plenty of speed, the 2017 Jetta is worth considering.
Exciting New Changes
Quite a few new changes have come about going from the 2016 Jetta to the 2017 model year, and it’s these changes that might have some Volkswagen owners considering making an upgrade. The base trim of the vehicle or the S received more enhancements than any other. If you’re the type of person that buys the very basic version of a vehicle, you’ll love all the enhancements that you get without having to pay for an upgrade.
Both a rearview camera and LED daytime running lights are included on the base now. The car also comes with two-tone cloth seats and 16-inch standard wheels. The cold-weather package and a set of 16-inch aluminum alloy wheels are available for the base model as an upgrade as well, if you would like to enhance the vehicle further.
If you’re the type of buyer that likes to go with a mid-range model of a vehicle, the latest Jetta gets a bunch of enhancements in that range as well. The car comes with a Car-Net app connect system installed and can handle a bunch of connected services. The vehicle also comes featuring a sunroof and leather wrapped steering wheel and shifter knob. There is the helpful blind-spot monitoring system as well as a keyless access system and push-button start to make this version of the Jetta much more tech-savvy than the last.
At the top of the range are a few notable improvements that you won’t find on last year’s model. Rain sensing wipers help keep the view clear, while dual-zone climate control makes keeping the cabin comfortable a bit easier. The car also comes with a built-in nav system, autonomous emergency braking and forward collision warning, and an adaptive cruise control package. To top it all off it’s more powerful with a 1.8 liter 170-hp TSI engine that can really move.
Now that you know all the changes to expect with the 2017 Jetta, let’s do a quick overview of the car and what is nice about it. The latest Jetta is one of the quickest and most enjoyable little sedans on the market for the price, and it’s a good solid value for a driver that likes a car that knows how to handle and is fun to drive around. The base model car comes with a compact little 1.4 liter turbocharged engine that puts out 150 HP and a whopping 184 lb.-ft. of torque. That’s more than enough power to zip around town, but if you want even more you can boost all the way up to a 2.0 liter engine that’s features in the Jetta GLI that puts out over 200 Hp during regular use. There isn’t too much turbo lag in the vehicle, though you’ll notice it from time to time. The 2017 Jetta is remarkably smooth and the standard 5-speed clutch handles gear shifts remarkably well.
Overall the 2017 Volkswagen Jetta is a solid performer and one of the best values for a sedan so far this year. It’s compact, efficient and pretty darned powerful for a car featuring a four-cylinder engine.
Porsche enthusiasts and experts alike weren’t too sure about the Macan when it first came out, and the mid-sized SUV created even more skeptics when a four-cylinder engine option was added as well, but all that skepticism is fading fast thanks to the positive reception that the 2017 Macan has been getting.
Even though the 2017 Macan base model comes equipped with a 2.0 liter 4-cylinder engine, thanks to the turbocharger it’s surprisingly powerful. With 252 HP and 273 lb.-ft. of torque and a silky smooth 7-speed PDK dual-clutch configuration, this SUV offers snappy acceleration that’s worthy of a performance vehicle. Sure it’s not going to tear up any race tracks like more potent V6 variations of the Macan do, but for anyone that isn’t concerned with track numbers, the four-cylinder model makes a lot of sense. It’s more than fast enough for everyday driving, and is a good solution for drivers looking for something a bit more efficient.
The Macan Brings in Serious Customers
The Porsche Macan is an effective marketing tool for Porsche, like none of their other vehicles. That’s because it sells at a lower entry-level price than all the other vehicles in the lineup. It’s picking up brand-new customers that other models sold by Porsche simply cannot. After getting used to the Macan, it’s likely that many of those customers will move on to additional Porsche vehicles in the future as well. Either way, Porsche is bringing in a bunch of money from the Macan that it wasn’t getting from its other models and that can only be good for the automaker.
The Four Cylinder Receives a Good Response
Even though the Macan is mostly based around the six-cylinder power-house variation, there is a decent following for the four-cylinder model as well. So far it’s received a good response and many people heading to dealerships to buy the Macan are interested in the four-cylinder version of the vehicle.
A Long Future for the Macan
While many people thought the Macan would be a short-lived project before Porsche game back to its senses, the more successful that little SUV is, the more likely it’s going to have a long and rich future with the automaker. With small SUVs being so popular in the United States currently it will be very surprising if the Macan isn’t around for many years to come.
Porsche is already looking for new ways to improve the Macan and will likely continue releasing the innovative little SUV for generations to come, with both large and small engines. We might even see a full-electric or hybrid model in the years to come as electric vehicles increase in popularity.
Audi recently released an all-new all-wheel drive system that’s more intelligent, smoother and more efficient than its current system. The enhanced option switches the rear wheels on and off depending on driving conditions, offering just enough power for stable steering in most driving conditions.
Seamless Fuel Economy Improvement
The latest all-wheel drive system is pretty darned cool, because it functions similarly to engine cylinder deactivation technology. Half the all-wheel drive system is deactivated by decoupling the rear wheels to make the car run more efficiently. The fact that the rear half of the all-wheel drive turns on and off isn’t the impressive part of Audi’s new system, the smoothness of it all is what makes this setup worthy of notice. While driving around, you won’t even notice what’s happening as the Audi improves fuel economy behind the scenes.
On when You Need it
The car does so well at boosting fuel economy without taking away from the drive because you still get the full all-wheel drive setup whenever it’s needed to maintain traction and keep your car going down the road without slippage. The system just turns off when it isn’t needed. You won’t even know what’s going on unless you take the time to really study the system and make sure that you understand what’s happening.
Rear Differential Stops
The one way that Audi says its system is so different than other on-demand all-wheel drive systems, is because the rear differential and axle both decouple and stop spinning with the wheels to bolster efficiency a bit more. This is different than most other on-demand systems that keep both the rear differential and the rear axle spinning along with the wheels.
The System Learns over Time
The coolest part of Audi’s new Ultra all-wheel drive system is that it learns over time. The system keeps tracks of the roads that you drive on, and will be able to tell when you need added grip and when it’s not necessary. Over time this means that the system will rely less and less on all-wheel drive, making the vehicle more efficient over time.
The new ultra all-wheel drive is an exciting enhancement that makes Audi vehicles more efficient over time without changing the way that anything handles.
We are just weeks away from moving into our new home in Hawthorne, just off the 405 freeway. We can’t wait to show you the finished product, but we thought we’d give you a bit of a sneak preview and the progress we are making. Mike Sullivan takes you on a guided tour and you can get an idea of just how amazing the new store is going to be.
A few of the highlights of the new store are:
- 50,000 square feet
- A Certified Classic Center (the only one in California)
- Latest Porsche design and materials (We worked with Porsche NA and Porsche AG on this!)
Largest Porsche sign in the country
Have a look at the video and in just a few weeks we will be able to show you the finished product!
When Audi announced the 2017 Q7 it made a pretty surprising remark about the engine options that would be available with it. Not only would the turbo V6 be available to interested buyers, but the company also stated there would be a turbo four engine as well. That’s pretty surprising considering that the Q7 is about 5,000 lbs. in weight overall, which is a whole lot of weight to pull with such a small engine. The new engine offering is designed to appeal to buyers looking to save some money though, and it does offer significant savings to buyers.
A More Affordable Q7
One of the biggest benefits of moving form the V6 engine to a four-cylinder model is all the money it saved vehicle buyers. By switching to a turbocharged engine instead, Audi was able to offer similar performance figures while shaving off nearly $6,000 from the price of the Q7, with a reduction of $5,800 it’s hard not to be excited about the change that Audi made to its latest SUV.
A Loss of Power for Cost Savings
While switching to a turbo four over the supercharged V6 that’s come standard in the Q7 is a good way to cut your costs, it will also shave off power from the vehicle. You’ll go from 333 HP and 325 lb.-ft. of torque with the V6 to about 252 HP and 273 lb.-ft. of torque with the turbo four. That’s a pretty serious decrease in power, which you’ll undoubtedly notice while driving around. That means that Q7 buyers have to choose between saving money, or losing out on power. It’s important to note that the two engine options offer similar fuel efficiency levels, so that’s not even a consideration when trying to decide between the two available options.
Enjoy the Same Luxury Either Way
No matter if you want the larger engine, or the turbo four, you’ll still enjoy that same Audi luxury that you would expect when picking up a luxury SUV. The interior is adorned with buttery leather, the media system is top notch, the seats are supremely comfortable and the interior decor is impressive. You’ll have a hard time pulling yourself out of this SUV no matter which version you get, one is just more enjoyable to drive around than the other.
Driving enthusiasts looking for a bit more oomph will want to go ahead and pay more for the larger six cylinder engine, while those looking to get into a luxury SUV at the lowest price point they can, should take a good hard look at the turbo four. Both options will drive you around capably, one just has more pickup and life than the other.
During my standard commute to work that I completed every day back in the early 2000’s, the right front tire on my Chevy Monte Carlo began to shred apart and made me very late to work. While it wasn’t surprising that my tire popped, it wasn’t the first tire that I lost! What was surprising was the way that the tire looked when I pulled it off the car. It has most of the tread near the outside of the tire, and then nearly all the tread was warn away on the inside. After doing a bit of investigating, I didn’t know very much about proper maintenance back then, I realized that I should have been rotating my tires during all those years of putting miles on my white Malibu.
Out of all the different forms of vehicle maintenance, rotating the tires is one of the easiest tasks to complete, and incredibly important for keeping your vehicle in good shape. Without rotating your tires you’ll set your vehicle up for problems later in life, you’ll spend more than you have to, and you’ll make your vehicle unsafe to drive.
The Benefits of Regular Tire Rotation
Taking the time to regularly rotate the tires on your vehicle does a couple of things for you. It helps them to wear evenly, and gives you a more secure driving platform to rely on. By swapping tires around the vehicle regularly, they all wear evenly and last much longer before they need replacing. They also maintain relatively even surface tread, which is safer to drive on than unevenly worn tread that grabs on in one area and not another. Take the time to rotate your tires and you’ll get more life out of them and enjoy safer driving conditions the whole time as well.
Rotate Tires Every Oil Change
It’s a good idea to get into the habit of rotating your tires with each and every oil change of your vehicle. If you change the oil about once very 5,000 or 6,000 miles, you should be rotating your tires just as often. This helps keep tires from wearing in one particular spot for too long, and keeps them all about equal over time.
Include Your Spare in the Rotation
If your vehicle comes with a full-sized spare tire, it’s important to ensure that it’s included in the rotation as well, so that you can purchase a set of five new tires when it comes time to swap to new tires, rather than having a tire that doesn’t match the rest in the set.
Pay Attention for directional Tires
There is a specific rotation pattern that you should follow when rotating the tires on your vehicle, but that pattern is not the same for every set of tires or every vehicle. That’s why it’s important to research how you should be rotating your tires on your Volkswagen vehicle. Some tires are directional tires and must be positioned on either the right or left side of your vehicle. It’s important to watch out for this issue when planning to rotate your tires, so that you don’t put directional tires on backwards, or have a garage do the job improperly.
If you have your tires rotated regularly, or you take the time to do the job yourself, you’ll enjoy more even wear and better performance out of them over time in general. It’s essential for good vehicle maintenance, and something that you should be doing regularly.
Winter is fast approaching and there are steps that you should take to make sure your car is ready for the weather to come. Cold driving conditions are harder on your vehicle, and snowy roads are more difficult to drive on. It’s important to take the necessary precautions to make sure your vehicle, and you are ready to handle the challenges that come along with the season change.
Check Your Coolant Mix
The coolant that runs through your vehicle’s engine is what keeps it from overheating and dying a very fast death. This coolant must remain a liquid even in subzero temperatures, and it’s the antifreeze that’s added to it that allows it to do so throughout the winter. Before the temperatures get too low, you’re encouraged to check the antifreeze levels in your coolant, to be sure that your mixture is good enough to prevent any freezing.
Pick up a testing kit at your local auto supply store and use it to check your current fluid levels. If they aren’t ready to handle the freezing temperatures that you’ll soon be dealing with, adjust the mixture by adding more antifreeze. It’s an easy process to complete, and really important for keeping your vehicle functioning properly.
Make Sure Your Tires are Ready
The next step is to go over your tires to ensure that they have enough tread to guide you through snow and other adverse weather conditions. Take a simple penny, and insert it into the tread of your tire with the top of Lincoln’s head facing down toward the tire itself. If you can see all of his head you need to get some new tires that have more protective tread. If his head is at least a little obscured you’re probably good to make it through the season.
When winter is approaching you can also consider swapping out your all-weather or summer tires in exchange for snow tires. These tires are designed to handle cold temperatures more effectively, and many can be fitted with studs or chains to help them handle really poor driving conditions more effectively. Just be sure that you pick out a quality brand of tire to use on your vehicle to avoid any potential problems.
Buy Winter Wiper Fluid
You might not realize it, but not all wiper fluid is designed to work well in the winter. Some fluids freeze up nearly instantly when used in very cold environments. That’s why you should purchase a good quality fluid that is going to function properly even when the temperatures fall below zero. Take a look at your local auto parts store, and you’re sure to find a good quality fluid that is going to work well for you all throughout the winter.
Consider a Thinner Oil
Some vehicle owners rely on thin vehicle all throughout the year, but for vehicle owners that are running 10W-30 in their vehicles, it’s worth considering a 5W-30 oil for the winter months. This oil maintains an improved viscosity in colder temperatures and allows the engine to function more freely. Consider making the switch at your next oil change before the temperature drops down too low. You’ll notice that your engine seems to be doing better throughout the colder months.
Making these simple changes can help you get more life out of your vehicle and improve your winter driving conditions. Most are very easy to make, and pretty affordable as well. Take a bit of time to make sure your vehicle is ready for this upcoming winter, you won’t regret it.
How would you like to win $500,000? Through the annual Lexus Eco Challenge, teams of middle and high school students and their teachers compete for the opportunity to take home the grand prize by taking on projects to protect the environment, enrich their community, and learn important science and engineering skills.
“The Lexus Eco Challenge has changed the way I teach. It’s changed my classroom, it’s changed the lives of my students, and it’s changed my school—all for the better. This is such a great way to get kids to care about the world around them and not only think about the ‘moment;’ but also think about what a difference they can make,” said JoAnne Brown, a science teacher at Olympus Jr. High School in Holladay, Utah. Over 600 of Ms. Brown’s students have participated in the Lexus Eco Challenge since 2006.
This year marks a decade of environmental projects started through the Lexus Eco Challenge, and more than $5 million dollars awarded to over 30,000 students across the country. Past winners’ projects have included raising awareness about safe environmental practices, research on renewable energy, protecting native species, and other conservation efforts.
Teams of up to ten students and two teachers select an important environmental issue, and develop and implement a plan to address it. There are two categories to choose from:
- The Land & Water Challenge, August 15-October 16, 2016
- The Air & Climate Challenge, October 19-December 12, 2016
Winners advance to “The Final Challenge”, which takes place from January 16-February 27, 2017.
Learn more about the Lexus Eco Challenge and how your local school can participate at Scholastic. You can also do your own part to help the environment and feel good doing it by driving a low-emission luxury hybrid Lexus model, available now from our new vehicle inventory in Santa Monica, CA.
Pokemon GO! has taken over the U.S.! You’ve seen the YouTube video’s and items on the news where people are driving and trying to catch the Pokemon’s. At Pacific Volkswagen, we’ve joined the craze too! However, we want to help you do this “war driving” safely, so we have created #PokeRide. We are offering to drive you around for free in the iconic Volkswagen Beetle in the “Catch Them Test Ride.” The ride includes several stops at designated hotspots so you can level up from the passenger’s seat. The idea came to the Pacific Volkswagen team when they noticed their dealership was already a pre-designated hot stop on the mobile game.
Please call 424-251-5192 to schedule your “Catch Them” test drive appointment, OR, if you’d rather book your appointment online, please email Pokemon@LAcarGUY.com. Include your first and last name, as well as your preferred drive time and date. Hurry, as this only runs through Sunday at 5PM!
The drive will last around 30 minutes. Good luck!!!
The Prius Prime isn’t out to the public yet, but that doesn’t mean that the press hasn’t already had a chance to give the cars a go. There are several reviewers that have hopped behind the wheel of a Prius Prime, and this is the collective information gathered about the new car thus far.
The New Look
The Prius Prime is easy to tell apart from the fourth gen Prius because of exterior styling cues. The rear shows off a curved red LED strip that tops the whole back end lip. The front end of the car is edgier, more curved and just designed to stand out.
Brimming with Features
The Prius Prime comes standard with navigation on its highly responsive 11.6” touchscreen display. It has a color heads-up display that’s easy to navigate using the intuitive interface and built-in tools. It has selectable driving modes and a bunch of infotainment options that will keep you busy and entertained as you drive around.
It’s a Better Ride
The Prius Prime is the most enjoyable Prius to drive around yet. It’s more responsive than the other models, feels more connected to the road and speeds up much faster than the others. It’s a blast to stomp on the accelerator when a red light changes to green and feel the car zip away. Part of the reason the Prime feels so much quicker is because now both electric motors are being used to drive the car along, instead of keeping one to serve as a generator the whole time. This means that you have 68 kW of power instead of 37 kW. The Prius Prime is built on top of a double wishbone suspension in the rear, and this gives it a more grounded feel so that you feel connected with the road as you drive along.
Making Use of the Drive Modes
The Prius Prime comes with a variety of drive modes, but it’s set to EV as standard. You can choose to force the car to remain in full EV mode all the time until you run out of power by setting it on EV, you can set it to hybrid operation right away, or you can get the best of both worlds by setting the vehicle to Auto before you leave the house. In auto mode the car will rely on electric power fully whenever it makes sense to do so. This is typically at lower speeds. When you travel in the right conditions for the gas engine to be more efficient, it will fire up and you’ll enjoy the top-level of efficiency offered by both power sources at your disposal.
Follow the EcoScore
Just like trying to achieve a new high score in a video game, the Prius Prime offers an EcoScore to drivers to let them know how well they are driving. The higher the score that’s displayed on the dash, the more mileage you’ll get out of the vehicle. Keep a close eye on your score and make little changes to how you drive each day. Over time you’ll figure out ways to improve your mileage and become a more efficient driver overall.
The Prius Prime is the most attractive, most fun and most capable hybrid vehicle sold by Toyota to date. It offers the same fuel efficiency figures as the Prius 4, but it’s clearly the winner anyway. There’s a lot to love about this hybrid, and not too much to dislike, especially if you do a lot of short-range commuting.