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What You Should Know About Honda Insight


What is the Honda Insight? In fact it’s not the most common car on Britain’s roads.

Well, it’s another one of those eco friendly motors and it’s existed a few years now.

There’s always the question of who can buy this sort of car though.

After all, we’re not all vegetarian sandal-wearers who care passionately about global warming.

But, interestingly, Honda have their finger in the pulse here.

A more affordable family hybrid

The Japanese automaker’s aim in producing the model is usually to make petrol-electric technology open to more people by developing this more affordable family hybrid car.

The 5-door hatchback includes Honda’s IMA hybrid system and offers excellent value for money.

IMA stands for Integrated Motor Assist, which means that an electric powered motor sits alongside the petrol engine it supports and before the transmission.

Throughout the years the system has has and evolved become smaller, more lightweight and cheaper to generate.

And the latest version within the new Insight is the most advanced IMA technology introduced by Honda to date.

Uninspiring looks but a well-kitted out interior

The engine is new, but is based heavily on the 1.3-litre petrol unit from your Civic Hybrid.

While the car has decidedly uninspiring looks, the Insight has a generously kitted out interior.

The 1.3 i-VTEC IMA Hybrid CVT HS model I test drove costs £20,925 on the road.

It provides 16-inch alloy wheels, auto lights and wipers, cruise control, front fog lights, heated front seats, leather steering gear and wheel knob, paddle shift, privacy glass and a USB port.

Well-stocked cabin aside, you can tell Honda has concentrated on making a car that gives decent actual fuel efficiency when you get traveling.

Honda Insight delivers 65.7mpg

The figures speak for themselves: fuel economy (combined) is up to 65.7mpg, while CO2 emissions are only 99 g/km.

Behind the wheel, the electric motor and engine together produce performance perfect for urban environments.

Good throttle response and acceleration times rival many conventional 1.6-litre petrol cars with automatic gearboxes.

Don’t expect any thrills away from town though.

The Insight reaches 62mph from a standing start in a dawdling 12.5 seconds, and has a top-notch speed of 113mph.

Key parts of the hybrid system

During driving, there are two main elements to maintain you on your “green” toes.

These include an Eco drive bar indicator within the white and black Multi Info Display, and an ambient meter behind the digital speedometer display.

Both instruments are synchronised, to present real-time information on the consumption of fuel and provide help with how you should alter your driving style.

Honda’s been building production hybrids for over decade.

In that time, the company’s learnt a lot about the making of electric motors and other key elements of the hybrid system.

Lower price point

This understanding has led to improved production techniques, which undoubtedly reduce production costs.

Consequently, the Insight’s lower price point means it ought to appear on the lists of more companies for user choosers and also be entitled to the lowest Benefit In Kind (BIK) tax bracket.

For the companies themselves, not only will the balance sheets cash in on all the savings that retail customers enjoy.

Santa Paula Chevrolet

Carpool like a king

Say what you want about carpooling a bunch of elementary kids to school or practice or to an event, but it’s an art form. If you haven’t done it and you’re only imagining it, then you have no idea what we parents go through when it involves putting more than one kid in the car. I wouldn’t say it’s a nightmare, but if you’re not prepared and you don’t have a plan, it is. Carpooling should be fun. It has that nice community feel to it that harkens to the olden days of togetherness and singing. If carpooling were a political party, it would be far left, but magically appreciated by the entire spectrum of beliefs. Some things just speak to all of us. However, carpooling isn’t doesn’t always live up to this peaceful utopian commute that we might fantasize about. There are multiple children, most of whom aren’t your own. There is gear. Kids come with baggage. They arrive with book bags and soccer balls, crayons, notebooks, stuffed animals. Their toys talk and their music is intolerable. So how can you carpool like a kind or queen when the deck seems so heavily stacked against you?

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It all starts with the right vehicle. It has to be big enough for every kid to have his or her own space. It has to be comfortable with places for the kids to put their stuff, including sticky sugary drinks that would all love to get married to your leather upholstery. Forever. The right vehicle has to be not just safe, but a tank. If it’s not safe, you’ll hear about it from every other parent twice, and with good reason. In this day and age, there’s no reason to carpool your most precious cargo in anything less than the safest, and that’s why I recommend getting a hybrid Nissan Pathfinder. This revolutionary vehicle is all of this and much, much more.

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One of the reasons that I like this SUV so much for the purpose of carpooling is that I can adjust the volume for the kids in the back while maintaining my sanity in the front. You mix that with the fact that the SUV is hybrid with excellent gas mileage that saves you money and you’ve got a winner. Any parent you pull up to in a new Pathfinder will welcome you with open arms and jealousy that you have the perfect carpooling car and they don’t. Even after they copy you and get one, you’ll always be the person who did it first and set the trend. While I’m sort of joking about that part, it’s true, the Pathfinder guarantees safety for the kids in your car and security for the parents who have entrusted you with taking their kids to the field. If you’re interested in setting the next trend, go online to either or and get ready to have some followers!

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Why You Should Get A Toyota Highlander


We’ve just completed our test of the 2014 Toyota Highlander, and also this redesigned midsized SUV is constantly perform well and stands on top of the category. Consider whether a used model may be a more sensible choice, but before you rush towards the dealer to purchase one.

For its third-generation, there were a number of improvements made to the Highlander. Making the SUV more pleasurable to drive than before, handling is now more responsive. Anybody can now configure the Highlander to accommodate eight passengers, because of the wider three-passenger third row, but that aft bench is still only best for children. Fuel economy averaged 20 mpg overall within our tests-two mpg better than the previous-generation. Plus, the Highlander scored an Acceptable in the new Insurance Institute for Highway Safety’s small offset crash test, which is fairly unique with this class. (The Honda Pilot, Kia Sorento, and Mazda CX-9 scored Poor, costing them their Consumer Reports recommendation.)

Negatives are few: Blind-spot monitoring and forward-collision warning technologies are limited to the pricey, top-level Limited trim, adding $1,400 to the cost. Plus, the best trim can only seat seven people. Exceed the surface level and some interior trim looks a bit low rent, and it’s not as quiet or plush riding as the previous generation Highlander.

The last-generation Highlander scored high for its refinement, quiet interior, ridepower and comfort, fuel economy, and flexible and roomy second-row seat. There is no question that those traits remain appealing for buyers, especially because the new Highlander represents a subtle evolutionary advance.

Sure, buying used sacrifices infotainment upgrades, bumper-to-bumper warranty, improved crashworthiness, and minimize new-car finance rates, however it can amount to significant savings on a reliable model when you purchase carefully. Take into account the budget you’d need for a whole new small SUV, which actually gets you behind the wheel of any used midsized SUV.

As our pricing chart illustrates, the savings on a three-year-old Highlander may be easily more than $10,000 dependant upon the trim level. Using the new Highlander at dealerships, there may be a reasonable number of trade-ins from current owners trying to upgrade, aiding prices and choices. It’s best to compare the trim levels for that used and new models to determine what features are available. We selected the favorite, well-equipped Limited line for your used comparison.

New model MSRP Invoice Price Average price paid

2014 Toyota Highlander 4WD LE $31,980 $29,199 $31,926

2014 Toyota Highlander 4WD XLE $37,500 $34,238 $37,157

2014 Toyota Highlander Limited 4WD $41,100 $37,524 $40,641

Used model Mileage Average retail price

2013 Toyota Highlander Limited

15,000 $34,775

2012 Toyota Highlander Limited 28,000 $32,250

2011 Toyota Highlander Limited 51,000 $30,300

2010 Toyota Highlander Limited 66,000 $26,225

Buying new is usually alluring, but you can save a lot of money on a second hand car.

Check Out This Best Safety Performance


A vehicle with good braking and emergency handling can help you avoid a crash. Typically smaller, sportier vehicles perform well during these tests and larger trucks are slower to maneuver.

Consumer Reports crucial emergency driving tests include an avoidance maneuver and a series of at-the-limit cornering assessments around a handling course-a snaking track loop. The avoidance maneuver is a path-following test where the driver pilots the car down a lane marked off by traffic cones having a quick left-right-left sequence. That simulates swerving to avoid an obstacle in the road, then returning to the original lane to avoid oncoming traffic. The vehicle threads through the course, without throttle or brakes, at ever-higher speeds until it can’t survive through without hitting any cones. When testing on-limit handling, drivers push the car to and beyond its limits of cornering capabilities to simulate entering a corner too quickly. Test engineers evaluate how controllable, secure, and forgiving-or not-the car is.

Our automotive engineers also perform a series of brake tests from 60 mph to zero on wet and dry pavement to measure performance. The test car is rigged with a pavement-scanning optical device that records precise stopping times and distances. To evaluate antilock brakes, we use a wet roadway where pavement beneath the left wheels is much slicker than the pavement under the right wheels. We also judge brake-pedal modulation.

Listed below are the highs and lows within our dry braking test (from 60 mph) and avoidance maneuver, the greater its speed, the better.

Dry braking

Best models ft.

Porsche Boxster (base)


Mercedes-Benz SLK250 115

Porsche Panamera S 116

Chevrolet Camaro 2SS convertible


Ford Fiesta ST


BMW 135i


Worst models ft.

Ford F-250 Lariat


Avoidance maneuver

Best models mph

BMW 135i


Mazda MX-5 Miata Grand Touring


Nissan 370Z Touring


Porsche Boxster (base)


Cadillac ATS Luxury 57.5

Chevrolet Spark 1LT


Mini Cooper S 57.5

Ford Fiesta ST 57.

Mini Cooper S convertible


Worst models mph

Ford F-250 Lariat 41.5

Mercedes-Benz GL350 BlueTec 44.5

Toyota Tundra SR5


Jeep Wrangler Unlimited Sahara


Between the Lines


Sometimes you have to look a little closer, or read between the lines, to see the potential in something. When you go to start looking for a new car, you might be tempted to start with Ford, Chevrolet, or another big name car brand. While you might have heard of Nissan, or even know someone who drives a Nissan, you might not be as familiar with them or what they offer. But it pays off to do your research.


When you start looking into the pros of buying from Nissan, you realize that they’re a reputable manufacturer with a great safety rating history. They also have a very god reputation among consumers. Nissans are known to have extended lifetimes, and frequently last drivers well beyond the 100,000 mile mark. They’re also considered to an enemy of mechanics because they last so long and need so few repairs. They’re reliable, safe, cars. You can start to get an idea of the different makes that Nissan offers by visiting a dealership website, like Here, you’ll be able to get information about all the current Nissans available on the car lot. You can read specifications for each car, like gas mileage and safety ratings.
Another great way to learn the real story of Nissan cars is to research and read reviews by consumers like you online. A quick web search will bring up lots of sites where people write honest reviews about their car buying experiences. You can find reviews of individual Nissan cars, with information about how they drive and if customers have been satisfied with them after having them for a while. You can also find reviews of dealerships like Metro Nissan Redlands and their website, These reviews will let you know what types of experiences customers had with each dealership.

BMW M235i comes back with exciting features


If “BMW 4 Series” doesn’t ring a bell, it’s because that’s the latest name for the coupe version of the BMW 3 Series, @@@@@””. For years, BMW has earned a reputation as the benchmark for everything a sports sedan should be, no matter how many doors it provides. This coupe is a little lower and wider than the sedan, and to most eyes at our track, it looks sleeker and sportier.

If this feels one better than the earlier 3 coupe, we recently rented a new 2014 435i from BMW to preview and to see.

Under the hood is a 300-hp, 3.-liter turbocharged inline six-cylinder engine. An eight-speed automatic is standard; a six-speed manual is actually a no-cost option. Considering the evolved demeanor if this car, one could believe that the automatic is pretty apt, although ours had the manual.

I quickly noticed that the potent six-cylinder is considerably punchier than the standard 240-hp, 2.-liter turbo four cylinder in our last-tested 328i sedan.

The 435i is a pleasure to drive-capable, refined and quick and high-tech-but it’s not quite the exhilarating sports car that this long-time 3 Series fans, me one of them, had grown to love.

Our car, equipped with the M Sport and Dynamic Handling packages and the practically mandatory Premium package totaled $57,225. With all of-wheel drive, cold-weather package and navigation it will easily crest over $60,000-a pretty steep price to pay for the cachet of the 3 Series-I am talking about 4 Series. A convertible version just gone discounted.

On the road, the 435i moves with gracious athleticism. Every nudge of your throttle draws an immediate and creamy-smooth response regardless of the gear you’re in. Whenever you hit the gas, you’re greeted with a forward thrust as addictive like a morphine pump, and even sixth gear delivers plenty of punch. All the while, the engine hums with a subdued baritone. There is nothing in your face. This is surely a car for grownups.

While easy to row, the six-speed shifter doesn’t feel as crisp as some of Honda’s and Mazda’s manuals. Clutch effort is well judged, though, and gear ratios seem perfect. Even just in stop and go traffic, the 435i proved easy to manage, for my wife in high heels.

Handling is capable and responsive, and the body stays well tied down. But if you’re looking for instant gratification and continuous tactile feedback, you’ll have to keep looking. Besides, the electric power steering feels rather artificial, possessing none of some older 3 Series’ awesome feedback. Body control is exemplary and the 435i gobbles up bumpy side roads completely unfazed, staying settled and securely planted.

Toggle the mode move to “Sport” and responses tighten up a lttle bit. Neither mode brings any dramatic metamorphosis, though one notch further, “Sport Plus,” forgoes the traction services.

Consider the 4 a gentleman’s coupe. The ride is steady and extremely absorbent, and also the cabin stays blessedly hushed. That unflappable atmosphere, combined with the aforementioned immediate throttle response, makes it all too easy to foray well into triple-digit speeds without really noticing.

Like the 3 Series, the dashboard and the interior present a high-quality, understated, and businesslike ambience. It is a sophisticated cabin befitting the car’s price and demeanor. One nice detail will be the seat-belt presenter: It brings the belt closer to you as soon as you close the door. In back, you’ll find that rear-seat room is definitely pretty decent for a coupe.

So, who is the four Series intended for? Younger individuals our driving staff were rather unimpressed with it, while they missed the edginess of some previous BMWs. Would rather not drive a 5 Series sedan, while the more, shall we say, mature team members considered this car an ideal concoction-quick, capable and stylish and refined-and just suited to someone who’s been on the scene long enough to completely have $60,000 on hand.

Anyone who aspired to, or actually owned, a 3 Series Coupe from the 1990s and 1980s has probably matured a lot, and will easily discover out their BMW has evolved right as well as them.

Baby Safety Products You’ll Most Often Use


A very important factor I learned in retrospect about transforming into a parent is that most products designed for babies (and their parents) are just not necessary or worth sinking your money into, like many breastfeeding supplies. Some, however, are worth spending more on, specially the stuff that keeps your baby safe.

That includes cribs, car seats, and strollers. Financial blog MoneyNing points out the way to prioritize:

One of my pet peeves is how baby safety gear is marketed (more expensive doesn’t always mean safer). A $400 Britax car seat isn’t safer than the $60 Target brand seat; it’s simply easier to use. You can rest assured your son or daughter is just as safe in a cheaper car seat if you’re on a limited budget.

However, if you possess the extra money to invest, and you know that you’ll be shuttling Junior or Sis in the car each day, then it makes sense to get the car seat that will be easiest to install, strap the kid into, and clean.

If, on the other hand, you’re a city dweller, it probably makes more sense to pay the big money on an easy-to-use stroller or bike trailer, since it’s what you’ll be utilizing day-to-day.

I’d add that a more comfortable car seat is additionally good for your sanity, unless you like driving while your kid is screaming bloody murder.

MoneyNing delivers a few other baby products to spend more on if you have the dough, such as a quality diaper bag, that you simply may or may not go along with.

Things You Can Do to Accurately Display Your Great Wealth

What’s the point of being vastly wealthy if others don’t know it? This is why Facebook has blossomed into such a force – people want to be able to brag and show off. No one does anything for the intrinsic sense of satisfaction one could have anymore. No, there’s no point in going on a vacation unless you can post pictures for the suckers back home; there’s no point being rich if no one knows you’re rich. So in lieu of just posting on Facebook “”I’m rich,”” you need to be able to demonstrate to those around you, your neighbors and those at the Whole Foods who think that just going to the Whole Foods itself is status-showing enough. Here are things you need to do now.

Rolex Watch


Don’t just go to the streets of New York and buy a fake Rolex – you need to get an actual Rolex, one that costs several thousand dollars. There’s really nothing that shows wealth more than spending so much money on something so useless as a watch. It’ll be a perfect addition to your attire. Because not only does it show your wealth, but it’s an understated way of doing it so people will actually think you’re being humble about it. Clearly you aren’t if you have a Rolex, but you will fool enough people that it’ll be pretty funny to you and your loved ones at the end of the day.

Fancier-than-Needed Car


Another thing you can do to really show those around you who you really are is to get a car that is over the top and totally not needed. Think about what a fancy car shows people: here’s something that everyone needs but you’re not just getting what you need, you’re getting some sort of luxury vehicle that speaks to your wealth because why would you need something so fancy? You could go in the typical fashion with a BMW or something, but we suggest getting something American, like a Dodge. Look at You’ll be surprised by the luxury available these days by the Dodge company. See for yourself at

Nice Shoes


Here’s another subtle thing you can that shows people what kind of man or woman you are. If you buy a nice pair of black shoes, that says you probably have a nice job, certainly something that warrants wearing footwear more fancy than sneakers or cowboy boots. But if you get a really, really expensive pair of shoes, something like a $5,000 pair of shoes, that shows that you have so much extra money, that an expensive pair of shoes is really no big deal to you. That’s a great way to demonstrate your wealth in a way that again looks very subtle even though it isn’t. Since most people don’t always look down at your shoes, it might be important to mention it in casual conversation a little so folks know. No point demonstrating your wealth and having your demonstrations go unnoticed.

Why You Should Get Tesla


Right after the Volt, another most likely name you’ll have often heard of for the EV is Tesla Motors. These guys were the first manufacturers to build a pure EV that wasn’t some joyless science experiment. Instead they took some novel design approaches to the motor, transmission and batteries and shoehorned the lot into a Lotus Elise body, creating a 2-seat roadster that folks were already familiar with and making it fun to drive. It’s important to note here that Tesla did not require a Lotus Elise and convert it to be an EV, but built their own personal chassis and EV system and put an Elise body on top.

If you drove it having a light foot, a 250 mile range, the Roadster was, by all accounts, an amazing car to drive with sports-car handling and. The Roadster had been a boutique car though – not created in large numbers and the cost was prohibitive for the average buyer. To combat that, Tesla next vehicle was/is definitely the the Model S – a 4 seat family sedan which they hope will probably be what the Chevy Volt must have been – a fully electric family car for the masses. Prices are steep but not intergalactic (base price in 2013 is around $57,000).

Why You Should Get Trucks


Trucks are not only bigger versions of cars. For many great distance drivers, these vehicles are a home out of the house. For movers, a reliable truck is the mainstay of their business.

Investing in the best truck could be the most important decision many many small business owners face.

Nowadays, pickup trucks have lost their reputation as rural cars. The truck bed comes in handy for hauling — whether you own a ranch or possibly a condo around the beach. The added stability in rough weather and the ease of hauling groceries is making the pickup truck also a sensible choice for a good amount of urban folk, although trucks are as popular as ever outside the city limits.

Prior to got out to kick the tires, there are actually pros and cons to consider before buying a new or used truck. Although most trucks manufactured today are reaching to make them on par with cars in fuel economy, trucks just won’t obtain the same mileage as a regular car.

Truck safety is another important issue, with research showing trucks lacking the same stability as cars in crash tests. Properly securing heavy loads, as well as never ever letting anyone ride inside the flatbed (tempting as it may be) are added responsibilities of truck owners.

Just up ahead, look at expert ratings and reviews, together with hard-earned advice from actual owners who function as expert guides for buying that new, used, compact or full-sized truck…