On May 2nd Audi Pacific hosted the private preview for Iron Man 3 in Torrance. A BIG thank you to the over 160 customers that came out to experience the fun and see the Audi R8 and Tony Stark in action.
This special preview was before the Midnight first showing for the general public, in fact as the Audi Pacific showing was being ushered into the theatre, there were 10 lines of people waiting for the midnight showing.
This was the second time that Audi Pacific has hosted an Iron Man movie night at the AMC Del Amo in Torrance and it was great to see so many friends out to see it.
There were a number of people from the Audi Pacific and LAcarGUY team at the event including Mike and Sean Sullivan, Jeff LaPlant, Chris Prodromides and his wife Stephany, and many more.
The Audi R8 e-tron® was front and center in the latest Iron Man movie, it was the perfect choice for Tony Stark, power, technology, style, and all done in a way that defies convention!
by Zach McDonald: HybridCars.com
According to a recent report by What Car, Audi has plans to release a small plug-in hybrid boasting fuel efficiency in the neighborhood of 1 liter per 100 km—or roughly 235 mpg. Audi’s head of research and development, Wolfgang Durheimer, told What Car that although the car hasn’t yet been confirmed for production, it’s one of several new plans for high-efficiency vehicles he has been trying to institute since taking over his post in September.
The vehicle would be built around the carmaker’s A1 platform, but would likely be fine-tuned for optimal aerodynamics and outfitted with ultra-lightweight materials. The conceptual and technological underpinnings of the car are based around parent company Volkswagen’s “one-liter” program, which has been experimenting with vehicles capable of hitting the vaunted efficiency mark for more than a decade.
Confirmed for release in Europe for 2014, the Volkswagen XL1 will be the first “one-liter” production vehicle ever sold. A prototype of the two-seat XL1 was photographed testing in March sporting a set of gullwing doors. The car draws its power from a two-cylinder turbo-diesel engine paired with a 27-hp motor attached to a small lithium ion battery pack. The car will be tuned to switch between electric and gas-electric modes depending upon use to ensure maximum efficiency. Audi’s version of the vehicle would likely carry a very similar configuration.
Despite the range of measures geared at optimizing efficiency, Audi’s attempt at a one-liter would remain true to the carmaker’s luxury standards. “I’m not talking about a car with a lot of deficiencies and things lacking, but a car that delivers everything that a car needs to deliver to the customer, in terms of seat space, climate conditions and comfort,” said Durheimer to What Car.
It’s still not known how much the VW XL1 will cost when it hits the market next year, but given the cost of high strength, light-weight materials, it figures to be very expensive for a two-seat car. An Audi version of the vehicle would likely add a significant luxury premium to whatever the XL1 costs. Neither car would be expected to post earth-shattering sales numbers, and at this point it’s a relative long shot that either are headed to the U.S. market.
Still, Volkswagen and Audi are further demonstrating their commitment to high-efficiency vehicles through a wide range of drivetrain configurations headed to different markets around the world. After establishing a reputation for clean diesel TDI vehicles in the 2000s, both Volkswagen and Audi have lagged somewhat in releasing battery powered hybrids or plug-ins. Now, with multiple plug-in concepts headed to market and in test fleets, it’s beginning to look like the Volkswagen Group’s answer to fuel economy will be “all of the above.”
Well, Audi Pacific has been open now for almost 2 weeks, and it’s all very fresh and new! We are about to have our Grand Opening…so we really hope you come and check us out, from the building, to the cars, of course. But for this blog, we’ll stick to being excited about the building!
Walking around the new space, the first word that comes to mind is … BIG. It’s really big. I could easily come up with more to describe the place, but you’ve been reading us for 7+ months now. Wouldn’t you rather hear about the experience of being in the building from those who are actually there every day? We thought so…
Joe, Sales Manager: “The building is just so much nicer to do business in. It’s big, airy and well lit. With all the windows, and especially lit up at night, you can’t not look at our building! And you know how in most new places you notice the new paint smell? I didn’t realize it until now, but there is none because of the green materials.”
Adam, Service Consultant: “It’s a better atmosphere. There are a number of ‘cold’ materials like stone and metal, but it’s really inviting and has a great urban feel. My favorite thing is having a view of the trees and garden outside; I don’t feel as claustrophobic as in our old building.”
Chris, Assistant Service Manager: “In my opinion, the building promotes the same sporty, luxurious feeling that one of our cars does.”
Juana, Cashier: “We changed to greener soaps and cleaning supplies. I really notice the difference.”
Angel, Audi Brand Specialist: “Aside from being ten times bigger [than our last space], it’s nice to just have a modern, green, beautiful building. It’s like I have a small hand in having made the building, just because I’ve been here a few years!”
Chris P., GSM: “The Audi experience redefined.”
We also wanted to share with you a couple comments from those behind the wheel, so to speak, making this building what it was meant to be:
Fred A. Lopez, Sauers Lopez Construction (GC): “We first started this project knowing that it would be a LEED certified. Understanding the day-to-day function of the facility, as well as the LAcarGUY vision for its employees and the planet, pushed us to achieve a Gold LEED building. We’re really proud this facility will now function for the benefit of the employees and the owners.”
Rudy De La O, LEED AP, Project Facilitator, Whitfield Associates (Architect): “The project is a result of owner responsibility, general contractor leadership, and design team diligence. We assumed the challenge and fulfilled an opportunity with a real holistic approach, everyone working together from the start. Let’s do it again!”
A few reminders:
➢ Come by the showroom and check out our Interactive Kiosk to learn about our LEED Gold-certified green building.
➢ While visiting, pick up a “Green Living Guide” for the area that will be a great takeaway!
➢ Feel free to go back through our last 17 posts and learn read about (with links to references) different aspects of our building, but also actions that are transferable to your own business or home!
➢ Keep learning and asking questions and then taking action on living more sustainably!
Audi Celebrates Grand Opening of Audi Pacific First LEED Certified Dealership that Features Largest Audi Showroom in U.S.
LAcarGUY’s new dealership in Torrance, CA will be among the greenest; features the largest Audi showroom in the U.S. showcasing 17 models
Audi of America, in coordination with LAcarGUY, will celebrate the grand opening of the newly redesigned Audi Pacific dealership on Tuesday, November 27. The new dealership will become the largest Audi showroom in the U.S. showcasing 17 models and is the first to be LEED Gold certified incorporating a state-of-the-art design with environmental technology aimed at improving energy efficiency, reducing water usage, as well as promoting the reuse and recycling of materials and waste. The new location marks one of 11 dealerships within the LAcarGUY family, headed by Mike Sullivan.
“Audi remains steadfast in its commitment to advancing green technology and environmentally responsible business practices,” said Mike Cagle, Director, Western Region for Audi of America. “Through the opening of Audi Pacific, we not only celebrate the largest Audi showroom in the United States, but also take great pride in achieving LEED Gold certification.”
LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) is an internationally recognized green building certification process promoted by the U.S. Green Building Council to assess the sustainability of a building’s design, construction and operations. To meet LEED Gold certification, the Audi Pacific dealership features energy efficient water fixtures, low energy use lighting and a 45 kilowatt (kW) DC Solar PV system.
The owner of Audi Pacific and President of LAcarGUY, Mike Sullivan has been in the car business for over 45 years and also serves on the board of Heal The Bay and the Environmental Media Association as well as the Regional Board of Directors for Global Green USA. Having owned this Audi franchise since October of 1999, Sullivan became the first to build an Audi Hangar in California. To continue his encouragment in the adoption of electric vehicles, LAcarGUY recently became the first automotive dealer in the country to offer electric charging stations open to the public at four of its dealerships.
“The LAcarGUY family of dealerships has long been committed to promoting sustainable, greener business operations and supporting environmental initiatives,” said Sullivan. “Our new Audi Pacific dealership facility exemplifies our leadership and focus on ecology, economy and social responsibility across the board.”
General Manager and LAcarGUY business partner Jeff LaPlant will oversee the newly redesigned space which has expanded from 14,000 to 45,000 square feet allowing the dealership to better serve their customers with the expanded capacity and convenience within a compelling environment. The new dealership also follows the new Audi “terminal” design, an ecologically advanced construction method promoted by the Audi’s parent company in Germany. The structure makes an impressive architectural statement on Hawthorne Boulevard, with bold signage and an open two-story showroom, as well as 22 service bays showcasing the brand’s latest collection of luxury vehicles.
“Audi Pacific is very proud to be the first LEED Gold certified dealership for the Audi brand,” said LaPlant. “Environmental stewardship is very much in line with Audi Pacific’s overall business philosophy, commitment to exceptional and award-winning customer service, as well as focus on selling some of the most innovative, quality-engineered luxury products on the market today.”
Audi of America maintains a regional office, two technical facilities and a design center in California to better identify with and service the state’s strategically vital and diverse market. Since 2011, sales in the area have increased by 21.9% and represent 19.2% of total U.S. sales. Other noteworthy accomplishments for Audi in California include an increase in IHG market share from 5.56% in 2006 to 10.1% in 2012, effectively doubling the brand’s presence in the state. The Audi Pacific dealership opening marks the brand’s continued expansion and strong presence in the Southern California market.
We’ve put together a great slide show of pictures of the new store which you can view here
Audi Pacific‘s new home, a LEED® Gold certified facility and the largest Audi showroom in the country is now open. It’s been a long and rewarding process to see this vision come to life.
We’ve put together a time lapse video of the construction so that you can see where we started, and the final finished product!
If you haven’t had a chance, please stop in and see our new home, and the level of detail we went to, to make sure your Audi experience is second to none.
Believe it or not, we open this month! We’re excited and hope you are, too. But we’re still not done sharing our building process with you…because you know education never really ends. We have a couple more of these building-specific posts, and then…there’s going to be very cool information housed in our showroom, and useful takeaways for you!
In our last post, we explained similarities and differences between the LEED certification (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) vs. the State’s CALGreen building code, the nation’s 1st green building code. We noted that LEED provided a basis for ‘leading’ CALGreen into existence and practice. And one of the similarities was “Building Fundamental Commissioning”.
OK, so that’s a mouthful, and yes, it’s not a sexy-sounding topic. But we’re pretty proud of it, and hope you’ll be duly impressed. Actually we are getting two extra LEED points on in the “Energy & Atmosphere” category because of it…kind of like a “gold star” on our homework.
Building Commissioning means a certified independent 3rd party “Commissioner” oversees the design of systems—like HVAC, lighting and thermostat controls, etc.—and the installation. At the basic level, he/she can join a project halfway through design completion and make some suggestions. This is the basic requirement for both LEED and CALGreen.
But that wasn’t good enough for us. Oh no! We brought the Commissioner in early, during conceptual design, for what is called “enhanced commissioning”: reviewing contractor submittals for systems, attending design meetings, and coordinating & supervising different manuals and procedures.
Then to add to our group of technical experts, we asked Southern California Edison to join our preliminary design meetings and iron out our plans alongside the Commissioner, architect, and systems engineers. (Remember how we’re ‘grid tied’?)
Now after we move in to the building, the process isn’t over!
- A few months into use, the Commissioner comes back to make sure systems are still performing as planned and everyone is happy.
- Six to eight months in, the building owner will survey occupants to see if we are still comfortable with our workspace. Wow!
By the way did we also mention our clean housekeeping program? Audi Pacific will be cleaned by Contract Service Group, which has earned the CIMS-Green Building certification (authorized by US Green Building Council), and uses green cleaning products and practices. We can’t stop…we designed the building to be friendly to the environment AND the people that use it…and it’s all part of LAcarGUY’s long term vision for occupant satisfaction.
One more thing… We are going to have some really useful and informative information in the showroom. An interactive kiosk will explain multiple aspects of our LEED Gold-certified green building, and we hope you come in and check it out. It’s quite in-depth and fun! Additionally, we are finishing up a “Green Living Guide” for the area that will be a great takeaway for anyone. It includes information on green spaces (parks, wetlands) to visit nearby, ideas on reuse, City recycling info, green buildings to check out, transportation options, farmer’s markets, and organizations to get involved in that support sustainability.
As we said…we just can’t (and don’t want to) stop. And we hope you feel the same about wanting to find out more!
Theoretically the Audi S6 and S7 are more or less the same car. Both ride on the same chassis, both use the same twin-turbo 4.0-liter V8 engine with 420-horsepower, and both route this power to all four wheels through a 7-speed dual clutch automatic transmission.
Besides exterior style differences, it would seem not much differs between these two cars. Not true, say our friends at Autoblog.
Autoblog lists a variety of differences between the two cars, starting with the S7’s additional 110-pound weight penalty. Since most of this weight stems from additional structural enhancements as a result of the S7’s hatchback body style, Autoblog surmises that the S7 may have a slightly better distribution of weight compared to the more traditional S6 sedan. The S7 is also slightly wider and longer than the S6.
Answering the big question of which to purchase, Autoblog feels the slightly less expensive S6 is the mid-size Audi performance sedan to purchase – unless of course you need the practicality of the S7’s hatchback. To see the other ways that the S6 and S7 differ come into Audi Pacific and try them for yourself.
So as you know by now, LAcarGUY and Audi Pacific chose to create a LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certified green building, and great news is …we expect to hit the Gold level!
Now you may be asking yourself if the State of California has any such green building code, or is building green only elective through the U.S. Green Building Council’s point-based LEED system? And you’d be right to ask! With California wasting water through water leaks( 12%) , flushing (28%), and landscape (50%)…the State knew it address this and many other building issues! In our last post, we explained similarities and differences between the LEED certification (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) vs. the State’s CALGreen building code, the nation’s 1st green building code.
In 2010, the State did, in fact, create the 2010 California Green Building Standards Code, otherwise known as the CALGreen Code – the nation’s 1st green building code (we ARE California, so of course we are first!). To get a little technical and if you want to find it, it is Part 11 of the California Building Standards Code in Title 24 of the California Code of Regulations.
The independent commission that created this at the Governor’s directive consulted with agencies from the Energy Commission and Dept. of Water Resources, to organizations like Green Globes, CHPS (Collaborative for High Performance Schools) and the USGBC. This code is for all of California and became mandatory for all new building design and construction as of Jan. 1, 2011.
So how to select which plan to go with? There are obviously some similarities and differences, and yes, they can both deal with residential and commercial buildings…so check up on it for your goals!
In Audi Pacific’s situation (new commercial building), there are two specific similarities between LEED and CALGreen:
- Both require 20% mandatory reduction in water fixtures over a specified baseline.
- Both require at least 50% of non-hazardous construction and demo debris to be recycled and/or salvaged, which Audi Pacific blew away with 95%!!!
- Both require an independent 3rd party to oversee systems design and installation (called Building Fundamental Commissioning).
As for notable differences (again, for our kind of building):
- LEED has multiple rating systems for specific building types and use; CALGreen hopes to capture all types and uses with one overall code.
- CALGreen is California law, but jurisdictions have wide discretion on how to enforce it; LEED (for the most part) is more strict, less discretion.
- A prerequisite to participate for LEED certification is 10% savings over baseline annual energy cost; zero improvement over baseline for basic CALGreen.
- LEED requires preferred parking for low-emission/fuel efficient vehicles CALGreen does not.
- LEED is a voluntary point-based system to earn a certification, and CALGreen has one level of mandatory measures, then there are extra voluntary levels.
In general, CALGreen used the most basic level of LEED certification as a model, and then added in some elements of another system that is an option, or guide, for green building, called Build It Green (or GreenPoint Rated). California is truly lucky to have the nation’s first mandatory green building code, and it will continue to get stronger. The LEED certification has been around much longer, and so, has a lot more options for higher levels of “greenness” and different kinds of buildings.
Our friends at Automobile Magazine took the time to compile the most fuel-efficient performance cars available, and the Audi RS5 was deemed fuel efficient enough to be included. The list’s criterion for inclusion was simple: be equipped with an engine that makes at least 400 horsepower.
Audi’s 4.2-liter V8 engine exceeds the minimum horsepower requirement by 50. With 450 horsepower and 320 lb-ft of torque being routed to all four wheels through a 7-speed DSG transmission, the RS5 rips to 100 km/h in less than 5 seconds. The very same quick-shifting transmission that helps the RS5 achieve such quick acceleration figures also helps the car achieve decidedly respectable fuel economy on the highway. A tall seventh-gear allows the RS5 to travel 100 kilometers on approximately 10.2 liters of fuel.
Yet the transmission doesn’t deserve all of the credit, as the race-inspired V8 engine works to provide surprisingly good fuel economy in the city as well, burning approximately 14.7 liters of fuel over the course of 100 kilometers.
Automobile Magazine admits the list is a bit of an oxymoron, as buyers looking for performance often don’t mix with those looking for fuel economy. Still, if this list does anything it provides hope to performance-minded enthusiasts entering fuel-economy obsessed future.
There are more powerful and fuel-efficient cars on Automobile’s list, but buyers will be hard-pressed to find another car with the combination of beauty, speed, luxury and raw performance the Audi RS5 offers. To view the rest of the list go to automobilemag.com, and visit us to learn more about the 2013 Audi RS5