Current Richmond Auto News
Top 5
Top 5 Rock Songs To Jam In Your Ride
If you love rock music then have we got a list for you. Go ahead crack these tunes in your car and see if you can stop yourself from singing along, we dare you.

Stairway to Heaven - Led Zeppelin: This classic is the ultimate jam from quite possibly the greatest rock and rock band in history. Stairway is an epic that builds momentum all the way through. The lyrics are mystical and it's fun to sing along with Robert Plant. By the time the song picks up to full speed Jimmy Page is ripping a monstrous solo that he managed in one take while John Paul Jones and John Bonham are making thunder together in the rhythm section. This song has it all and that is why it has stood the test of time.

Bohemian Rhapsody - Queen For obvious reasons this song had to make the list. If stair way was epic then what's the next level after that...Ultra-epic? We're talking layer upon layer of Freddie Mercury vocals and guitars from Brian May like he's conducting an orchestra. Put this one on and re-enact the scene from Wayne's World with your buddies. By the end everyone is rocking out and screaming at the top of their lungs. Truly, a good time...if you got the right friends!

Dream On - Aerosmith Before Steven Tyler was hosting television shows in his spare time, the guy was a rock god. This tune particularly features the incredible vocal range he possessed in his early years. The song builds into a great crescendo by the end as well. If you like guitar playing this song has excellent riffs in the beginning that all players should know. Or just pluck them on air guitar, from the passenger seat mind you.

Enter Sandman - Metallica When Metallica released the Black album it instantly became a hit. This tune might be played out for some but this songs riff and rock rating always deliver. The twin guitar assault of Kirk Hammett and James Hetfield is unstoppable. Mix in the Lars Ulrich's tom work during the intro and you have got the ingredients that lead up to the cathartic slam when the main riff takes over.

Under the Bridge - Red Hot Chili Peppers The last song is ballad, in a sense. This song introduced many listeners to the Chilis and the incredible guitar playing of John Frusciante. The song is a little somber and moodier but it totally rocks. Tell me you don't sing along with the chorus at the end? Yeah right... You might not have selected the same songs we have. So what tunes would you put on your list? Did any of ours make your cut?

- Editorial Staff
The Smart Car Buyer
What to Bring With You When Car Shopping
If you are getting ready to buy your first car or to replace your current car, you have a lot of things to consider, including the make, model and color, and how much money you are willing to part with. Before you head on over the dealership, there are some items that you should bring with you to ensure that the transaction goes smoothly.

It almost goes without saying, but you need to remember to bring your valid driver’s license. This is something people forget sometimes, especially if they have been relying on other people to take them places. If you don’t have your license, you won’t be able to take any cars for a test drive or drive your new car home. You should also bring proof of insurance.

DO YOUR RESEARCH Unless you are fabulously wealthy and don’t care about losing money, you will need to do some research before going out car shopping. Looking up information online about the types of cars you are interested in will help you narrow your focus when you are out looking at available vehicles.

If you have a particular car in mind, research and print out the dealer’s invoice price and take it with you. This is invaluable information to have when you are negotiating with the salesperson. Put your printouts in a folder, along with the details of any incentives or rebates that you have discovered.

REVIEW THE REVIEWS Another useful thing to bring is a printout of trustworthy reviews of the cars you are most interested in. You can consult these pages while looking at particular cars, to refresh your memory about why you were interested in buying them.

If you don’t feel confident in your ability to properly evaluate a car, you should consider bringing a friend or family member who knows something about cars. If the dealer senses that you have no idea what you are looking at, there is a temptation to take advantage of you.

It’s also a good idea to bring the phone number of a trusted mechanic, in case you want to make an appointment to get a used car checked out. Your mechanic may even be willing to meet you at the location to do an inspection. This is particularly useful when you are considering buying a used car from a dealership you’ve never been to before or when you are evaluating a car being sold by a private party.

- Editorial Staff
Driving in Richmond, VA 101!
Richmond is one of America's historic cities, nestled along the James River in Virginia and easy to drive to. It is very car friendly to navigate with a number of major roadways and plentiful roadside parking places (but watch for signs). The many diverse neighborhoods are fascinating to drive through and the grid street system is easy to figure out. The older parts of Richmond do have the narrow streets and one-way restrictions common in towns of this age.

Interstate 95 goes north-south right through it, and Interstate 64 runs east-west through the city. When you look at a map, you see that there are several highways and parkways looping around the area and it really makes driving easy. That's good, because there are a lot of places you'll want to drive!

Outside the city, the suburbs are rural and rolling. There's a lot of green space and many campgrounds even though it isn't a wilderness area. It's pretty, with the Blue Ridge and Allegheny Mountains to the west and the Chesapeake Bay and Atlantic Ocean to the east: easy day trips and lots to explore.

There's a lot to explore within Richmond, too. The James River Park System is a string of parks along the river (check their website about parking spaces) and you can see whitewater rafters quite often. The city was the capitol of the Confederacy during the Civil War and suffered a lot of damage but came back from the ashes with vigor. Drive through the Richmond National Battlefield Park and visit the Museum of the Confederacy. Visit Maymont, a 100-acre Victorian estate that is still the way it was planned to be.

Every neighborhood in Richmond has a distinct identity and you might feel like they are separate towns. Driving through the streets, you will see a lot of forged ironwork and unique homes. Be sure to visit Hollywood Cemetery, where over 18,000 Confederate soldiers are buried. There's a Civil War prison site on Belle Isle, the original Confederate White House, and St. John's Church, built in 1739 and the site of the Second Constitutional Convention in 1775. If it is summer, you can hear a re-enactment of Patrick Henry's "Give me liberty or give me death!" speech.

The variety of offerings in Richmond mean you can find what you are looking for, and the logical road system means it is going to be a good experience driving there. This is a good destination for a road trip!

- Editorial Staff
Advances in Car Apps
As vehicles add new technological and safety features, it is not surprising that the apps available for a vehicle are also improving. The advances in car apps are designed to improve the driving experience, increase safety or provide useful tools to stay connected while away from home.

Collision Intervention

The collision intervention app has improved the safety standards of many vehicles. Although the app requires a back-up camera, it is a useful way to cut back on the number of accidents a vehicle is likely to face. When the app is used, it will automatically use the vehicle’s brakes when a car is getting too close to another vehicle or object. It reduces the number of accidents, particularly when the vehicle is backing out a driveway or parking space.

Navigation Apps

Navigation apps are a great addition to any vehicle. The newer applications for navigation include the latest maps, options for different directions and visuals that make it easier to recognize the upcoming roads.

The navigation apps are included in many new vehicles, but it is necessary to regularly update the app to ensure the maps are still current. Since roads often change or have construction, it is useful to have updated apps to keep up with the changes.

Texting Apps

As the dangers of driving while texting become apparent, it is not surprising that many vehicle owners are finding the new apps for texting a useful addition to the vehicle. Although the exact apps that are best for a vehicle will vary, some cars are including an assistant app to make it easier to keep in touch with loved ones, friends and others through text message without the distractions that are commonly the cause of accidents.

The way the app works is simple. The phone is connected to the vehicle’s system through Blue Tooth technology. When a text message comes in on the phone, the app will read the message. The driver simply speaks the response out loud and the assistant app will send the response. It makes the process of sending a message while driving a possibility without making it dangerous.

Web-Based Connections

The apps in vehicles are no longer limited to the simple radio applications and useful navigational tools. Newer vehicles are able to connect to the Internet and provide apps that make web-browsing, online media and other options a possibility during travel. Staying connected through the vehicle provides the opportunity to keep up with social media or emails while on the road.

Advances in vehicle applications are constantly changing as new technology becomes available. Although the advances are continually changing, it is not surprising that it provides the opportunity to stay connected while also focusing on driving safety.

- Editorial Staff
Car Interior Cleaning Tips
There is nothing better than the feeling of a clean car, especially if it has been a while since you gave a good detailing to your interior. These simple tips and tricks will leave your interior sparkling and you will be riding in style in no time.

Do your research. Before you start rubbing down the interior surfaces with Windex or household cleaner, check the product you are using and your owner's manual for what type of substances are safe for your interior. You can even test out different cleansers on a small area. Once you find a good cleanser, use a soft towel or old kitchen dishcloth to wipe down the interior surfaces. Do this before you vacuum so that any leftover crumbs or dust will be picked up when you vacuum.

Don't skip the detail. If you are taking the time to truly clean the interior, don't forget the small cracks and crevices that accumulate crumbs and dust. Using an old (but clean) toothbrush, you get in to the hard to reach places in the cup holders, dashboard and storage compartments. Also, don't forget to clean the dirty seat belts that you touch everyday. You can use a mild laundry detergent and dilute it with water so that the fabric won't fray or disintegrate.

Get down and dirty. When cleaning stained floor mats, vinegar can be used to remove smells and carpet cleaners can remove stains. Before vacuuming, remove mats and brush out excess dust and crumbs or hit them a few times outdoors. Windows should be cleaned both inside and out with your household glass cleaner, like Windex, using a soft paper towel or cloth. Spend the majority of your time vacuuming diligently to remove all crumbs and leftover snacks that have fallen in hard to reach places. If you can't get to a spot in your car, try blowing the particles to an easy to reach place and then vacuum them up or move the seats all the way forward and back to expose those hard-to-reach places. It may save you time and back pain from trying to wiggle the hose into a small space.

No matter how much time you decide to spend on the interior of your car, do it with care and patience. If you rush and use the wrong products, you may cause yourself even more of a headache. Remember to do your research, don't skip the detail and don't be afraid to get down and dirty.

- Editorial Staff
Solid Car Service Center Options in Richmond, VA
Richmond, Virginia is a large metropolitan complex of cities and towns surrounding the city of Richmond itself. Like everywhere else, residents of the Richmond area want to keep their cars running a little longer, but they don't want to break the bank doing so. If you live in or near Richmond, you can take your car to a dealership and will normally have excellent repair work done, but you'll pay a premium for that "factory service" you'll receive. You can also obtain the same level of excellent auto care by taking your car to an independent neighborhood auto car center.

Axselle Auto Service is one of those independent shops that will give you fair prices and couple it with helpful and friendly service. They are a full-service auto repair facility that services most makes and models. They provide most auto repair and maintenance services such as brakes, suspension repairs and alignments, and tire sales, service, and repair, including tire inflation using nitrogen where called for by the manufacturer. Axselle Auto service has been in business since 1951, so you know they treat their customers well and give great prices.

Halls Tire & Auto Service is another local independent auto repair shop that has generated a great deal of customer loyalty over the years. Located at 2111 Dickens Road, they're pretty easy to find and you'll be glad you took the time. Customer reviews found on the Internet range from the simple "These guys are great!" to "These guys treated me like mine was the only car there."

Looking to upgrade the quality of the beats in your ride but not looking to spend an arm and a leg? Take your car to Car Toys, at 11525 Midlothian Trunpike and you'll get the best stereo system your budget can buy, without paying for extra bells and whistles you really don't need. Car Toys also does window tinting at great prices, great service and quality and a turnaround that will amaze you.

It's a traumatic and trying experience for many when they need to have body repair or paint work done to their car. There is no need to add to that trauma by having insensitive and uncaring people work on your car. This isn't going to happen when you take your car to family-owned Connor Brothers Collision Centers, located at 1008 North Sheppard Street. You'll get fast friendly service from very knowledgeable and skilled technicians. Many customers also get a nice little thank you note in the mail a couple weeks after picking their car up.

- Editorial Staff


2014 Cadillac XTS Review
The 2014 Cadillac XTS can be purchased for anywhere from $44,600 - $69,095. There are over a dozen trim options to pick from, enabling you to choose the model that best suits your needs and budget. The vehicle can seat up to five passengers and gets 17 miles per gallon in the city and 28 miles per gallon on the highway.

Despite the fact that this vehicle does not have good gas mileage, there is a lot going for it. It is spacious and comfortable, making it an ideal option for those who need a vehicle for long distance driving. The direct injected, 3.6 liter, 304 horsepower engine is a force to be reckoned with and the six speed automatic transmission ensures that this vehicle is responsive and very easy to drive. The 2014 XTS also has a brand new, top quality suspension system and Magnetic Ride Control.

Other features and amenities that can be had in this new model include tap up/tap down steering wheel shift controls, a new information and media data control system and optional extras such as extra airbags, an eight speaker audio system, 12.3 inch color screen, heated front and/or rear seats and a power rear sunshade. The upholstery is made using high quality materials and this model also comes with some unique safety features which ensure a safe driving experience for you and your passengers.

There is not much that can be said against this luxury vehicle, expect for the fact that the acceleration speed is disappointing for a vehicle with such a powerful engine. Some reviewers have also noted that potential buyers who are not accustomed to driving a vehicle with a large number of dashboard amenities and features may prefer a simpler car that only provides basic features. However, these two small disadvantages are relatively minor compared to all that the new XTS has to offer.

If you are looking for a brand new, top quality luxury vehicle that is comfortable, easy to drive and rich in special features and amenities, then the 2014 Cadillac XTS may be the right option for you. This cutting edge vehicle has a high quality engine, transmission and suspension system, is durable and reliable and comes with all the electronic features and amenities that you would expect from one of the best luxury vehicles on the market. Given all that it has to offer, it is no wonder that the 2014 XTS has earned nine out of ten star review ratings from car experts.

- Editorial Staff
2014 Scion FR-S Review
Information about the 2014 Scion FR-S is beginning to pour in and the scoop is that the new FR-S will be available as a convertible. If you are wondering about seating capacity, don't fear, the word is that it will have back seats.

This is a budget friendly identical triplet to the Subaru BRZ and the Toyota GT 86. It is light, with rear wheel drive and seems to be just what driving enthusiasts have been asking the automakers to build. The roadster styled FR-S will provide the backseat that the Mazda Miata does not and it will compete with the Ford Mustang and the VW Beetle for a place in the hearts of young people seeking the style and cool of a convertible under $30,000.

As a larger rear-wheel drive coupe, the Scion will more than likely be compared with autos such as the Hyundai Genesis coupe, the Chevy Camaro, the Ford Mustang or maybe even the BMW 1 series. In the event that the people at Toyota have a hit on their hands you might expect a larger coupe with the larger engine (that so many crave on a car with this type of sweet design) delivering more power and refinement to the customer base in this segment in the not-so-distant future.

The 2014 will have the same 200 hp powertrain engine, a choice between manual or automatic transmissions without the turbocharger. With a sticker price beginning at around MSRP $24,930, for the Base, it is believed that the FR-S convertible will be several thousands more.

Seems there is still some legwork to be done by Toyota and Subaru before the Scion FR-S hits the marketplace. Look for them to launch their ad campaigns and get up to speed on production of the 2014 soon. We probably won't see the debut of this beauty in late 2013 or early 2014.

- Editorial Staff

Richmond Car Dealers

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