Todays modern SUVs were originally based on trucks and with good reasons. Trucks are versatile machines, transporting soil from Home Depot; towing the yacht to the lake; to hauling family members, their belongings, and even a mid-sized car to use for jaunts to the local restaurant after parking the truck at ones favorite camping spot. So its surprising that truck owners have not embraced hybrid technology. Who wouldnt want phenomenally better gas mileage? But in some ways the reaction is understandable. The most well-known hybrid vehicle, the Toyota Prius, is not known for its power to go up mountains or tow even a small cart much less two tons of rocks. Trucks, to fulfill their duties, need power first.But hybrid means merger and in this case, a gasoline engine and battery pack with the latter either supplementing or replacing the former depending on driving conditions. This combination can be tuned to emphasize power or fuel economy, many times providing both. The six-cylinder hybrid Honda Accord, for example, gets an additional fifteen ponies compared to its non-hybrid version while providing gas mileage like its four-cylinder Civic siblings. GMs first full-sized hybrid trucks, the Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra, are estimated to get an additional ten percent increase in their mileage. While this may not sound like much, it adds high mileage to the pairs already impressive list of features. But most importantly, neither truck suffers lost of torque for speed, hauling or pulling power with the hybrid powertrain.The batteries provide other advantages as well. The Silverado and Sierra can use their hybrid batteries to power equipment when on site, for example. Reviewers of the trucks for Automobile magazine found the feature heaven-sent when their computer equipment ran out of juice out in the middle of nowhere. Why haul miniature power plants or extra batteries when you drive one?Finally, some of the most powerful and popular trucks have diesel option which is not allowed in many states due to environmental concerns. Hybrids were developed to be environmentally friendly and hybrid pickups could be used in lieu of their diesel brethren in such states.Hybrids offer far more than just being friendly to ones environment or better gas mileage. Truck owners, already driving one of the most versatile vehicles around, would have all those advantages magnified by a hybrid powertrain.
The majority of people are interested in car rentals when they're on vacation. But what many travels may not realize is that "car rental" in the United States, or North America in general, is different than car rentals in other countries like Europe.Car rental in the United States is usually very simple to do. The better known, and perhaps safest, car rental agencies can easily be found in a phone book like your local White or Yellow Pages. It's even possible to find car rental agencies on the Internet. If you're looking for a car rental in the United States, all you need to do is take the phone numbers you find in the phone book or online, and call each car rental agency. Ask for the agency's location, car availability and partnerships with any airlines or hotels. Don't forget to ask about any special deals or rates, like group rates.Most American car rental agencies offer pick-up at no extra cost, even if only a few advertise this feature. If a car rental agency doesn't offer pick-up, then ask if the agency will reimburse the cost of cab fare.And don't feel like you have to buy extra car insurance from an American rent a car agency. Most reps will give you a hard sell on this, but most times it's not necessary. Your "rent a car" will usually be covered under your own car insurance. But if you don't have car insurance under your name, it's a good idea to accept the offer of rent a car insurance from the agency.In the United States, you'll need to be at least 25-years-old to be able to get a car from a rent a car agency. Some will give you a rent a car if you're younger, but you'll need to pay a much higher cost.The procedure for rent a cars in other countries like Europe is usually a little bit different than in the United States. Naturally, for European rent a cars you won't be able to look in your local Yellow Pages phone book. But you should be able to gather all the information you need for arranging a foreign rent a car on the Internet.European or other foreign rent a cars are usually much smaller than American [*_*]s. So cut the amount of baggage you take along. Plus most foreign [*_*]s are stick-shift. The minimum age for [*_*]s in European countries is also 25, but this age varies between [*_*] agencies and countries.Always be sure to buy extra car insurance on a foreign [*_*]. Also be aware that foreign [*_*]s can be very expensive. So can the gas.Wherever you choose to get a [*_*], be sure that the vehicle is in good shape. Before leaving the [*_*] agency's lot, examine the car for dents, scratches, tears in the upholstery or balding tires. If you find any, immediately report them to the [*_*] representative. If you don't, you might be responsible for the costs of those repairs.Car rental is usually an easy and convenient process, regardless of what area you're in. Just be practical, and above all, drive your [*_*] as safely (or more safely) than you would drive a vehicle you owned.
SKODA'S latest Fabia is proof, if it were needed, that you really can have your cake and eat it! And their recipe for success is in building a car that's one of the best value for money machines in the supermini class. Although some might question whether the Fabia is really a supermini, because there's not a lot miniscule about its dimensions. It offers you a healthy sized slice of metal which will carry a family of four in adequate comfort and with room to spare. Probably why the original car, launched seven years ago, has been such a hit in the UK. Buyers here have snapped up over 130,000 of them and more than 1.5 million have been built in that time. And it's won a shelf full of awards.The latest model, launched earlier this year, majors on the benefits of the previous Fabia as it takes on the likes of the Ford Fiesta, Vauxhall Corsa and Renault Clio in the battle for sales, and starts at a competitive 7,990 for the entry level 1.2 HTP 1. It has a decent amount of standard equipment in a CD player, ABS, power steering, immobiliser and dual front airbags, but obviously sacrifices have to be made to keep the price down, so you won't find remote centre locking and electric door mirrors on the Fabia 1, the lowest trim level. And I was briefly left wondering if they'd forgotten the brakes as well on first acquaintance, as they proved to be a bit softer than I'm used to.But rest assured that though the pedal travel may be long there's plenty bite at the end to stop you safely. There's plenty engine choice in the range seven in fact the least swift being the 1.2 litre three cylinder 60bhp unit in our test car, an engine used in other VW Group products. There's a thrummy quality to the engine note, and it has to be said that in town it's perfectly adequate. It's just left lacking a bit when the road opens out a bit and the traffic thins out, which is where its breathing thins out and it gets a bit like the wheezy fat boy trying to keep up with the rest on the school cross country run. Using the cake analogy it doesn't exactly put the zip in the marzipan but then there are plenty others to choose from if you feel the need for a bit more speed.People opt for a Skoda for a variety of reasons value for money, reliability and overall user friendliness. The latest Fabia ticks all those boxes and this one in particular, while only the entry level model, proved a comfortable enough method of transport, and an economical one too. Its extra urban figure is a shade under 59mpg which means that as well as not costing a lot to buy it won't cost a fortune to run either. Oh, and it's insurance group 1 into the bargain. So, a neatly styled five door hatch that's a definite improvement over its predecessor. Piece of cake really.
These days, when you get a flat tire, you'll probably just flip out your cell phone and make a service call. Still, the time may come when that won't be possible. There may come a day when you actually have to do that dreaded deed: get out of your car and change the tire yourself.When that day comes, you'll want to be ready; youll want to get the job done quickly, efficiently, and with as little stress and risk to yourself as possible. Read on, and prepare yourself.Know the ropes.When you're actually faced with changing a tire on a dark roadside, you won't want to be reading an instruction manual. One of the best ways to prepare yourself is to make a dry-run at changing a tire in a place and at a time that is convenient for you, such as in your driveway or a parking lot. This allows you to familiarize yourself with the process in optimum conditions. Once you can manage it in daylight, try it a few times at night.Keep necessary equipment in your vehicle."Necessary equipment" includes a spare tire (preferably inflated), a car jack, a brick (to wedge against a front tire, if you're changing a rear one), a cross wrench, an air-pressure gauge, a flashlight, a clip-mounted light, and road flares. To be especially well-prepared, extra lug nuts in the appropriate size, a can of WD-40, and work gloves are also a good idea. For the sake of convenience, store these items in a single bag or carrying case in the trunk of your car.Move the car to a safe location.When you're driving and feel the tire blow out, make a conscious effort to get the car off the road and away from traffic. If you're on a bend when it happens, try to get the vehicle to where the road straightens out; that way, you won't be in a blind spot for oncoming cars.Stay visible.Leave your headlights and hazard blinkers on. Distribute the flares, making sure that they're far enough away from your car to give approaching drivers enough response time to steer clear of your vehicle.Prepare your worksite.Gather all the rest of you tire-changing equipment and put it next to the flattened tire so that you have all your gear close to hand. If you've compiled your "emergency kit" into a single container or bag as noted before, these items will be efficient and easy to carry; you won't have to worry about dropping items and losing them in the dark, or having to make extra trips.Get down to business.Go ahead and change the tire, just as you practiced. Just in case, always remain aware of oncoming traffic as you work. Be ready to get out of the way quickly if necessary.Wrap up loose ends.Once the tire is changed, you can be on your way...but you're not done quite yet. Most "spare tire" s are called "50-milers" for good reason. They're not made for long-term or high-speed travel, so keep your speed under 50 miles per hour and stop at the nearest establishment where you can have your original tire fixed, or purchase a new tire as a replacement.In the context of our busy lives, it may seem silly or pointless to devote precious time to preparing for a "what if" situation. We tend to think that our time could be better spent on other, more productive endeavors. When that fateful day comes, thoughthat day, or that night, when you find yourself stranded on a deserted highway with your cell phone on the blinkthose few hours of preparation will pay off, and you'll be glad you spent them as you did.
Many drivers have shown great interest in hybrid cars and some are still waiting to see the true results before they venture into buying this new form of automobile. There have been many statements made about the fuel savings that are possible with the hybrid engines but some people still need some reassurance that the fuel efficiency concept really works.Some automobile driver's worry that they will have to spend more for hybrid cars and those worries are justified. Hybrid cars are very popular and this popularity has caused the price of the hybrid to be more expensive than any other gasoline powered engine in any model of automobile throughout America. Some people have a misconception about hybrid cars and think that they are electrically powered.Some aspects of the hybrid cars engines are powered by electricity but they are not solely dependent on electricity. In fact, the hybrid cars generate enough electricity to recharge the car battery and the battery power is stored until extra power is necessary and the use of the gasoline engine is not necessary. One unnecessary use would be when a car comes to a complete stop at a red light. The hybrid engine will shut off, which saves fuel and the engine will be powered by the battery.Many drivers worry that they will not be able to gauge when the engine is needed. Those worries are unfounded because the hybrid cars engine automatically engages at the right time and for the correct length of time. The driver's involvement in the process involves the use of the automobile brake and the hybrid car operates on cue when the brake is released and the accelerator is used.Finding a hybrid car might be the only worry that an automobile driver has. There has been a shortage of hybrid cars all over the United States because hybrid car manufacturers did not expect such an overwhelming response to these fuel saving models of automobile. Automobile driver's can still purchase hybrid cars but they might have to pre-order the model of their choice.The reduced emissions from a hybrid car are one of the main reasons that people are interested in them. People also like the idea that they will have to stop at gas stations less often and they like the idea that the Federal government is willing to give tax credits on various models of the hybrid cars. There are some rules about this that might worry some driver's but overall, the hybrid car quells those worries by performing better on the average than other automobiles offered on the market.