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« October 2012 | Main | December 2012 »

15 posts from November 2012

November 30, 2012

AskPatty.com Holiday Gift Garage: Week Two - Deck the Dash

PattyOrnamentHappy Friday, AskPatty Nation!  This week in the Askpatty Holiday Gift Garage we bring you the essentials for decking out your car for Christmas, and a few items you can enjoy at home, too.

Reindeercar1. Mystic Industries Reindeer Vehicle Costume - Yeah, we went there.  If you're going to dress the car up for the Holidays, let's go all out.  These Vehicle Costumes are available in Reindeer, Elf, Jolly Elf, Christmas Tree, Candy Cane, Snowman, and of course, Santa.

Lights2. Reflective Christmas Light Bulb-shaped Magnets - No tree is complete without lights, right?  While there are plenty of lighting options available at your local custom shop, these reflective magnets were innovative enough that we wanted to feature them here.  They're shaped like classic, big, outdoor holiday lights, and their reflective nature will ensure they shine brightly for others on the road.  Too cute!

 

Underdash3.  4pc. Multi-Color 7 Color LED Interior Underdash Lighting Kit - Of course we can't ignore the interior!  This underdash lighting kit will give you super-cool multi-color floor lighting inside your car. 

Ornament4.  Kurt Adler Glass Corvette, Christmas Ornament - For those of you who prefer to decorate indoors, this sleek little glass Corvette will look great on a tree - or on a rear-view mirror.

 

25_under_120._V189994067_5. Automotive Holiday Gifts - And of course no holiday would be complete without a special something for a special someone.  Amazon's Automotive Gifts page makes your shopping easy with convenient breakdowns by price and category.

Stay tuned to the AskPatty Blog as the Gift Garage Cavalcade continues next week - with gifts for Him - and yet to come, Gifts for the Pets, and of course, Holiday Gifts for Her.

 

November 28, 2012

The 2013 Nissan Sentra Gets Style, Content and Performance Makeover

2013 Nissan Sentra: With a sleeker profile, lighter footprint and a more upscale interior, the 2013 Nissan Sentra has been completely redesigned for this model year – and it could give dominant players in this category a run for their money. Boasting up to 40 mpg on the highway, this compact sedan also answers the continued demand for fuel efficiency in an era of continually-rising gas prices. On sale now, starting at $15,990, this is Nissan’s seventh generation of this popular, value-priced model.

SENTRA-2833A gleaming chrome-framed grille defines the front end, which is capped by arrow-point headlamps accented with LED bulbs lined up dot-to-dot under the larger lights. A lowered beltline and more aerodynamically shaped roofline cut a sophisticated profile; the rear end is a bit chunky and low-slung, with wraparound taillamps and a liftgate with an integrated spoiler (on some trims). Chrome also accents the door handles and windows. Compared to the previous version, the 2013 Sentra has a longer wheelbase but shorter front overhang (and longer rear overhang), for a modern sports sedan look; it is five percent lighter and its drag coefficient is 0.29, down from 0.34 last year. Sixteen-inch wheels and tires are standard; 17-inch wheels are available, as are a few other exterior premium features, such as integrated rearview mirror turn signals.

Continue reading "The 2013 Nissan Sentra Gets Style, Content and Performance Makeover" »

November 26, 2012

Chicks and Cars Carnival of the Automotive Aftermarket SEMA 2012

SEMA_PINK_BUS_2012Each year I attend the SEMA Show in Las Vegas, which I fondly refer to as the Automotive Olympics! This is the most action packed and exciting automotive industry event of the year for me. The SEMA Show is the premier automotive specialty products trade event in the world. It draws the industry’s brightest minds and hottest products to one place, the Las Vegas Convention Center. The SEMA Show is not open to the public so I wanted to share a taste of the show and some cool products women 'Auto-Know-About' from an insiders view.

Of course I walked my feet clear out of my shoes each day and night attending a slew of award events, meetings and appearances, here are some highlights:

Tire Industry Industry Awards - Congratulations to Chapel Hill Tire Car Care Center, a second-generation family-owned and operated independent tire dealer with four retail locations in North Carolina’s Research Triangle, has been named the Winner of the 2012 Tire Review Top Shop Award.

Spent time with many associations and automotive industry publications we support, Automobile Oil Change Association, SBN, Car Care Council Women's Board, Tire Industry Association, ASA, VehicleMD Magazine, Tire Review Magazine and two new AskPatty.com partners, Mike Gibbons VP of of mobile marketing master-minds Kukui and Ken Halle CEO of ASA Automotive Systems.

CooperTireGot a Sneak Look at Cooper Tire's Fuel Saving Touring Tire

The CS3, which replaces the Cooper Tire Lifeliner GLS is going to be one of the lightest tires in its class, which means more fuel efficiency,(coming in April 2013). Cooper’s innovation continues, in part, through two recently-awarded grants. The first, $1.5 million from the U.S. Department of Energy, will aid in the development of a lightweight, fuel-efficient tire with a 20% reduction in weight and a 30% reduction in rolling resistance compared to today’s passenger tires. The second grant, $6.9 million from the U.S. Department of Agriculture,will aid in Cooper’s development of a domestic source of natural rubber through the guayule plant. 

Fram_FreshBreeze_FilterLearned About theFRAM Fresh Breeze® Cabin Air Filter

Did you know that the air inside your vehicle may be dirtier than the air outside? YUKKK. The FRAM Fresh Breeze® Cabin air filter is the only cabin air filter that uses the natural deodorizing qualities of ARM & HAMMER® baking soda. These two powerhouse brands have joined forces to help absorb odors and freshen the air. Filters 98% of road dust and road pollen. Arm & Hammer® baking soda combined with carbon embedded into the filter assist in cleaning outside air flowing through the vehicle's ventilation system.

Love AutoTexPink Wiper Blades - Great Holiday Gift Idea!

AutoTexPink_Charities_LearnMore1AutoTex PINK was founded by Wexco’s President, Paula Lombard. Paula wanted to create a product and a brand that was made by and for women. That is why with each sale of AutoTex PINK products, a donation will be made to the National Breast Cancer Foundation (US) or the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation (CN). Through these partnerships, AutoTex PINK hopes to support those affected by breast cancer by helping to increase awareness and contribute to the fight to “Wipe Out Breast Cancer!” AutoTex PINK is giving your car a voice; with either a classy pink ribbon on our traditional black wiper blades or with our AutoTex PINK Plus model, an all pink windshield wiper blade that proudly shows your support with each passing mile.Visit one of our AskPatty.com Certified Female Friendly® locations to purchase AutoTexPink Wiper Blades.

MOMMOM was there!

Motor Oil Matters (MOM) is the American Petroleum Institute’s (API) new program for licensing motor oil distributors and oil change locations.

MOM has one main goal: to make sure that consumers receive high-quality oil. This is accomplished by maintaining a secure chain-of-custody for motor oil from the marketer all the way to the vehicle. The MOM mark will help identify distributors and oil change locations committed to providing motor oil meeting the performance standard recommended by most vehicle and engine manufacturers.

MOM will help:

  • Educate consumers and the motor oil industry
  • Establish credibility within the motor oil industry
  • Identify quality products

Visit MOM for more info: http://www.motoroilmatters.org/

Cool Informative Sylvania Headlight “Truth Sleuths”

To mark the beginning of darker days and to shed some light on automotive lighting myths, SYLVANIA Automotive Lighting debuted the first video in its SYLVANIA “Truth Sleuths” series at the Automotive Aftermarket Products Expo 2012 (AAPEX). These webisodes take automotive lighting myths into the lab and out to the real world to find out what’s fact and what’s fiction.

The first video in the series explores what happens to a vehicle’s headlights over time – whether they dim with use or just burn out. Viewers are given a first-hand look at the differences between new headlights and worn headlights, both in the lab and on the road.

Watch The Sylvania Headlight “Truth Sleuths” Video


Keep Your Vehicle Looking Young with Simple Enhancements from 3M

3M Auto Essentials familyThere’s nothing like the look, and smell, of a shiny new car! Keep these essentials handy to keep your vehicle sparkling like new both inside and out. From products that clean and protect to those that improve paint imperfections, any car owner can give their vehicle a simple face-lift and keep it looking like a million bucks.

  • 3M Auto Essentials (Restore, Tire, Scrub, Glass, & Wax) – new do-it-yourself line of car care products makes upkeep easier than ever. Includes All-Purpose Scrub, Tire Shine, Spray Wax, Leather & Vinyl Restore and Glass Cleaner to help owners keep their car in top condition for less.
  • 3M Scratch Remover – improve simple damage such as light-to-medium scratches, swirl marks or paint imperfections. Contains no wax, and removes the scratches, doesn’t just fill them in.  May be used by hand or with a machine.
  • 3M Rubbing Compound -- if paint is in need of more care use Rubbing Compound first to safely removes fine scratches, water spots,oxidation and swirl marks.  And then follow it up with 3M Scratch Remover to improve the look of your paint.
  • 3M Synthetic Wax Protectant  -- finally, protect paint with 3M Synthetic Wax Protectant to give your car the ultimate deep gloss finish and help guard the paint’s appearance. Use it with a white foam pad and an orbital sander or polisher to protect your car from the elements.
  • 3M Microfiber Detail Cloth – for routine cleaning or repairing imperfections in paint, the Microfiber Detail Cloth is the perfect cloth to safely use on your vehicle’s surface. 

The 3M Auto product line, and there is so much more for DIYers on 3M Auto products and how-to videos, visit www.3MAuto.com.

Eco Innovation from Universal Lubricants Oil FlexPak

Universal_Eco_Ultra_FlexpakOfficials with the 2012 Automotive Aftermarket Products Expo (AAPEX) this week awarded Universal Lubricants®, the manufacturer and distributor of one the world’s most advanced motor oils, the 2012 New Packaging Award for Innovation for its ECO ULTRA® FlexPak™. The award was presented to Universal Lubricants during an AAPEX awards ceremony on
Monday, October 29 in Las Vegas where the ECO ULTRA 1-quart FlexPak made its debut. Universal Lubricants®, the manufacturer and distributor of ECO ULTRA®, one the world’s most advanced motor oils, introduced the nation’s first retail motor oil packaged in a sustainable, flexible stand-up pouch.  Compared to conventional hard plastic bottles, the new durable FlexPak™ offers consumers a faster, easier and cleaner way to change their oil, giving retailers a unique opportunity to bring customers an exciting, high-performance product in an environmentally responsible package.

One of only five manufacturers in the U.S. to collect and re-refine used oil, Universal Lubricants’ ECO ULTRA® Synthetic Blend Motor Oil is made from high-quality re-refined base stocks and blended with premium performance additives.

To purchase ECO ULTRA® oil in FlexPaks Visit: http://www.ecoultraoil.com/

Clean Up with Craftsman® Remote Control Wet Dry Vac with Wall Mounting Kit

Wet-Dry Vac w RemoteThe Craftsman Remote Control Wet Dry Vac with Wall Mounting Kit features a convenient remote control on-off switch plus a wall mounting kit that makes it ideal for garage and workshop use.

The remote control on/off switch is located on the contour wand.  This eliminates the need to walk back and forth between the cleaning task location and the vacuum tank in order to turn the vac on or off.

The wall mounting kit makes this vac ideally suited for dedicated use in the garage or workshop, where frequent project clean-up is required.  Yet, this compact 5 gallon vac can also be detached from the wall mounting kit to allow for portable hand-carry cleaning around the home or jobsite when required.

This vac offers all the accessories you need for wet dry vac projects including a cartridge filter, foam sleeve for wet pick-up, dust collection bag, two extension wands, floor/squeegee nozzle, car nozzle, dust brush and air/noise diffuser.

To Purchase visit Craftsman.com and at Sears stores nationwide.

GNO_Aufra Fordin

Last but not least I even squeezed in an A-GNO (Automotive -Girls Night Out) with some of my wonderful women automotive expert friends and partners, Paula Lombard and Aimee (AutoTexPink), Shelia Beam (VehicleMD), Bogi Lateiner (180 Auto), Andra Fordin (Great Bear Auto), Jeanne Silver (CarStar & Collision Industry Foundation) and race car driver Erin Evernham!


By Jody DeVere who is a internationally recognized speaker, trainer, often quoted industry pundit and spokesperson for the automotive industry on the women's market. She has been featured by the New York Times, NPR, Wall Street Journal, CNN, Fox Business, Forbes Women, Oprah Magazine and Parenting Magazine to name a few. As CEO of AskPatty.com, she provides automotive education to women consumers and an interactive online Certified Female Friendly® certification training program for automotive retailers on how to attract, sell, retain and market to women.

November 22, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving!

At this time of Thanksgiving, we pause to recognize our freedoms, families, and friends, the influence of which touches every aspect of our lives and for which we are deeply thankful.  The entire AskPatty.com team wishes you and yours a Happy Thanksgiving.

November 21, 2012

AskPatty.com Holiday Gift Garage: Week One - Our Favorite Things

61841The dreaded week is upon us!  Thanksgiving is tomorrow, and that means Black Friday chaos is right around the corner.  Whether you're a deal-hunter waiting in line at midnight Thursday, or one who waits for Cyber Monday deals for cozier shopping, this year our goal is to provide you with the ultimate in holiday shopping inspiration with five weeks of gift garage posts.  Each week we'll focus on a different theme of automotive gifts, and this week, to kick things off, we're showing you some of our favorite things on the web.  Let's get shopping!

 

Autotex2Autotex PINK Wiper Blades

No gift guide would be complete without these.  These high-end wiper blades support breast cancer research, and are available in black and pink.  True story:  I just ordered my second set, and I'll never use another wiper blade again.  The perfect gift for anyone who loves their car, and is devoted to the cause of breast cancer awareness.

http://autotexpink.com/purchase/online-store/


Seatbelt-BagsHarveys Seat Belt Bags

We love recycling, and we love handbags!  These bags are gorgeous, made of recycled seat belts, and are sure to be a hit anywhere you carry them.  If you want a gift that really makes a splash, go Harveys.

http://www.seatbeltbags.com/

DecorFlat Tire Décor

Once again, we love recycling!  Flat Tire Décor designs, develops, and markets unique and innovative products from tires that have reached the end of the road. But as you can see, these re-inspired tires still have plenty of mileage left in them. With a little creativity and concern for the environment, these tires are getting a shot at a repeat performance.  Beautiful, and eco-friendly!

http://www.flattiredecor.com/


Carmd1CarMD® Vehicle Health System™

If you've ever been mystified by a Check Engine light or hesitant to take your car to the shop due to fear of "sticker shock," The CarMD® Vehicle Health System™ is for you!  It's a consumer product designed to provide the average driver with the tools and information to monitor your vehicle’s health, catch hidden problems and diagnose dashboard warning lights. While it uses professional quality tools and information, it’s simple enough for anyone to use to find out what’s wrong with your vehicle - and it even estimates what repairs will cost in your geographic area.

http://www.carmd.com/


GpsBlack Friday GPS Deals

Amazon.com has a whole slew of Black Friday deals running all week long, so keep your eyes peeled there, but I wanted to point out one category in particular:  their GPS sales.  Find great deals on GPS units by Garmin, Magellan, TomTom, and more on their Black Friday deals page.

Get the deals here

November 20, 2012

Easy Do-It-Yourself Car Maintenance to Save Money

Woman-checking-oill-400x333Maintaining your car is an essential part of ownership. Failure to maintain it properly will result in some serious problems – high costs for repairs or even the need to replace major components (like your engine or transmission), for instance. While you can certainly benefit from letting a mechanic or dealership take care of your maintenance steps, there are plenty of things you can do on your own to save time, money and hassle. What should you know about these steps?

Wiper Blade Replacement

Good wipers are essential to staying safe on the road while it’s raining. Of course they’re often overlooked – it’s easy to forget that your wipers are worn out when you don’t actually need to use them. You don’t need to head to a shop to have these replaced. Buy a set of replacement blades at the auto parts store, undo the clip, pull off the old blade (assembly, not just the rubber) and slide the new one in place. As a note, it’s easier to replace the entire wiper than just the rubber blade.

Air Filter

Your air filter is an integral part of the engine and ensures the engine gets the air necessary for combustion while preventing dust and other contaminants from getting in. Replacing your air filters is pretty simple – just undo the housing, remove the old one and install the new filter. Opening the housing will be the trickiest part of the entire process (will vary based on model, but usually requires no more than undoing a handful of clips).

Engine Oil

If you’ve got a spare few minutes and don’t mind getting under your car, you can change your oil and oil filter on your own. Make sure you have the right type and quantity of oil and the right filter for the engine, then take off the oil filler cap. Slide under your car with a wrench that will fit the drain plug. Remove the plug (after putting a catch pan in place), and let the old oil drain out. Remove the filter and replace it with a new one (lube the new gasket first). Put the drain plug back in the pan and refill the oil.

Continue reading "Easy Do-It-Yourself Car Maintenance to Save Money" »

November 19, 2012

Smooth, Sexy, Sporty and Smart:The 2013 Lexus LS

The 2013 Lexus LS: Lexus has given its flagship sedan a complete redesign and added a new sport version to the lineup. The all-new 2013 Lexus LS 460 is unapologetically big, smooth and sumptuous-both inside and out. Plus, there’s an updated version of its LS 600 hybrid that brings increased fuel efficiency and added plushness. Since it came to the market in 1989, its designers and engineers have set the tone for the Lexus brand by endowing its top-of-the-line model with a high level of craftsmanship, technology and refinement. The newest LS has a more bold exterior; an interior that has been updated with a higher level of quality and technology; there is improved safety and upgraded driving dynamics—along with more than 3,000 new parts! The base LS 460 rear wheel drive version starts at $71, 990 and the LS600 hybrid starts at $119,910.

Lexus-1We came to Tucson, known as “The Real Southwest” and parked overnight at the sumptuous Ritz Carlton Hotel, with accommodations befitting this updated opulent auto. Lexus isn’t shy about its achievements and wants its success to be recognized, so has tailored its ride and drives and media campaign to heighten the prestige of the LS. For its first introduction this summer, Lexus revealed the new model as the centerpiece to an international photo exhibit in San Francisco called the “Lexus Laws of Attraction”, at an L.A. Food and Wine event and at the legendary Pebble Beach Concours d’ Elegance, in Monterrey, California. The new LS F Sport model was unveiled by renowned designers Jonathan Adler and Simon Doonan to a global audience during a live webcast on Lexas.com and Facebook. Looking at the exterior of the new iconic LS, you’ll notice it has an aerodynamic sweep of a profile, with short overhangs front and rear and a relatively long midsection.

Continue reading "Smooth, Sexy, Sporty and Smart:The 2013 Lexus LS" »

November 16, 2012

10 Ways the 2013 smart fortwo Electric Drive has Gotten Smarter

 

SmartLaunchPM-201. The smart fortwo has stayed the same size and same shape with some updated editions. The smart electric drive stands five feet tall and wide and is a smidgen under nine feet long.  It may be small but the view is big! The coupe has an expansive panoramic see-through panel of high-strength polycarbonate; the cabriolet has an automatic soft top that can be opened to any position and at any speed. Plus, the cabriolet has a heated glass rear window.

2. There’s an offering of over 6,000 combos for customizing the smart with everything from personalized wraps and brilliant paint choices to AMG cladding or bespoke tailored interiors.

3. Mercedes-Benz took over smart in July of 2011 and has added new muscle to the marketing campaigns. Expect to see more quirky ads on everything from twitter to TV. More importantly, it’s working. Tracey Matura, smart General Manager, explained, “The company has been riding high since last year.  Sales have increased 120% month over month, and 95% year to date.”
SmartLaunchPM-21
4. No guessing on how and when to charge your smart. The smart electric drive can communicate with the smart vehicle homepage whenever the car is being charged. Real-time data provides information to owners about usage patterns, power draw and vehicle performance. There is also a smart phone app that gives the user charging information, charge time remaining and expected completion time. When you are driving, the app’s map also highlights nearby charging connections with estimated distance.

5. The electric smart can be charged from any 110-volt household wall socket with the provided standard cable or a 240-volt socket (like the ones used for electric clothes dryers and kitchen ranges).  Charging time can run as little as 3 ½ hours to charge from 20 to 80 percent and six hours to reach full charge from a depleted battery.

6. Now in its third generation, the smart electric drive’s 55-kilowatt electric motor provides 35 kilowatts of continuous power (130 Nm of torque). Essentially, it boils down to this: the power provides acceleration from zero to 60 mph in less than 12 seconds, and a top speed of more than 78 mph. Estimated distance on a full charge is about 90 miles!

 7. The smart is environmentally friendly. Designed to be 85% recyclable and over 95% reclaimable, it is produced in the environmentally oriented “smartville” factory in Hambach, France.
SmartLaunchPM-46
8. Interior space is not compromised. “The styling was always meant to incorporate a power train thus there’s no compromise in space in the interior,” said Haiko Schmidt, Product Manager.
Because of its impressive headroom, sloping windshield, floating dash and open roof, even people well over six feet don’t feel cramped. Yes, it’s true! I drove with a tall Texan a few years back and he wasn’t stooping.

9. The price is competitive. The new generation smart electric drive will retail at $25,000. A companion cabriolet model will retail at $28,000 when both vehicles hit the U.S. market in the spring of 2013. Customers may also be eligible for federal tax credits (which run up to $7,500) or state/local tax credits, further reducing the cost. Plus, some states offer a 50% parking discount.

10. Those rumors of a smartforfour? As Matura quipped, “Stay tuned!”


Holly Reich
Contributor




November 14, 2012

Chevy Feels the Love at the 2012 Country Music Association Awards

 

It’s been more than four decades since Don Mclean drove his Chevy to the levee and drove “American Pie” straight into the heartland of America. The iconic hit imprinted the hearts of music lovers young and old. Still a standout today, it is by no means a rare reference to the brand that has collected close to 1,000 country songs referencing Chevrolet or a Chevy vehicle. Talk about free advertising!

If you were one of the 12,000 in attendance at the 46th annual CMAs, in Nashville-or in the record-setting global audience of millions that watched “Country Music’s Biggest Night”- you also heard Jason Aldean croon about a Chevy truck in “Take a Little Ride”, with its refrain: ride this Chevy, ride this Chevy down a back road. Aldean was nominated for Entertainer of the Year, Male Vocalist of the Year and his “Dirt Road Anthem” was nominated as Single of the Year.

"Chevrolet has been an everyday part of American life for more than 95 years, so it's no surprise that Chevy and its cars and trucks are mentioned in so many popular songs," said Tom Wilkinson, communications manager for Chevrolet. "It is always exciting to hear an artist include a passion for a Chevrolet in his or her art."

Continue reading "Chevy Feels the Love at the 2012 Country Music Association Awards" »

November 12, 2012

AskPatty.com Inaugural Launch of Women's Speakers Bureau to Automotive Industry

WASBtext_webAskPatty.com, Inc. announced today the inaugural launch of the Women's Automotive Speakers Bureau. The Bureau is a strategic resource to decision-makers in the automotive industry on how to effectively market and sell to the growing and influential base of women automotive buyers, as well as how to attract and retain more women as employees within their organizations. AskPatty.com has a unique understanding of the automotive industry from a woman's point of view and aims to utilize the vast business experience and market knowledge of the women selected for the Bureau.

The Women's Automotive Speakers Bureau represents a cross section of outstanding, professional and dynamic speakers who specialize in a wide range of topics and services, including keynote presentations, brand spokespersons, workshops, coaching, video training, live and recorded webinars, facilitated panel session speakers and more.

"We're a company that thrives on educating and empowering women as consumers, business owners and employees in the automotive industry," says Jody DeVere, CEO of AskPatty.com, Inc. "Our women's speakers bureau is just another step in our journey to help the automotive industry grow market-share and get better results with women on all fronts."

States Miriam Muléy, CEO and Author of The 85% Niche and former Executive Director of Marketing and Sales for General Motors Corporation Diversity Growth Markets, “Finally, we have a top-notch venue to help leaders in the automotive industry stay ahead of trends, insights and strategies that will demonstrably move the needle in increasing market share with all women—White, Black, Latina, Asian and more—through the expertise of the Automotive Women’s Speaker’s Bureau.”

Continue reading "AskPatty.com Inaugural Launch of Women's Speakers Bureau to Automotive Industry" »