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Kia Optima most affordable midsize car, says Cars.com
The 2013 Kia Optima has been named the “most affordable” midsize sedan by Cars.com, an online resource for buying and selling new and used cars. "The Optima topped the list because of its combination of great features, low price and impressive estimated five-year fuel cost," said Patrick Olsen, Cars.com's editor-in-chief. "With an estimated $9,750 in fuel cost over five years, the Optima topped out at just $32,975, which is more than $3,000 lower than the average midsize sedan for the same period of time." The Kia Optima LX finished fifth on the… Read More

Hyperloop: Elon Musk’s transportation revolution?
How would you like to go from Los Angeles to San Francisco in less than 30 minutes, paying less than what you would pay for a plane ticket? If the “Hyperloop” concept is adopted as a fifth mode of transportation – alongside cars, trains, planes and boats – it could revolutionize travel, especially for distances separated by 900 miles or less. Elon Musk, the visionary behind the electric car-firm Tesla and spaceflight company SpaceX, has described his Hyperloop concept as “a cross between a Concorde (supersonic plane), a rail gun and an air hockey table.” “I originally started thinking about… Read More

Buying a used car – a good idea – starts with online research
Google the phrase “buying a used car” and you’ll get some 230 million results. Seems like overkill – especially if you find, as we did, that only about a dozen near the top of the listings provided useful information in a really useful way. Those returns comprised familiar names in the automotive world, such as Edmunds.com, Cars.com, Autotrader.com, KBB.com (Kelley Blue Book), ConsumerReports.org and bankrate.com. And several that may be less familiar, including wikihow.com, cracked.com and dmv.org. But a common theme emerges: buying a used car is a good idea for a lot of reasons. In fact, most cars sold… Read More

Authenticated James Bond “submarine” car – Lotus Esprit – going to auction
James Bond "submarine" car If you ever fantasized about driving a “James Bond” car, your chance is now.   The Lotus Esprit Series 1 “submarine” car from the 1977 film “The Spy Who Loved Me,” will go up for auction in Battersea, London, on Sept. 9 by RM Auctions Europe. Built for an estimated $100,000 – approximately a half-million dollars today – the car is expected to sell for at least $1 million, perhaps several million dollars, according to auction estimates. “The car, the only functional submersible Lotus ever built, was designed by Perry Oceanographic in Florida to propel itself… Read More

Road Trip: San Antonio and back in three days
When it comes to road trips, for me it’s about “firsts.” There are so many amazing sights to see while traveling, I like to make a mental note of the things I discover for the first time. Silly, but it adds value and fun when getting from Point A to Point B. My family recently drove the 249 miles from Fort Worth to San Antonio. It was to be a journey full of firsts, especially for my daughter, who was taking her first road trip. Day 1 Heading south down I-35, we made our… Read More

J.D. Power names most appealing vehicles of 2013 – Part 2
Which crossovers, trucks or vans are most appealing to Americans? We have the answers for you – at least according to the J.D. Power APEAL study for 2013, which seeks to identify the industry’s most appealing vehicles based on purchaser and lessee feedback. Yesterday, we told you about the 12 most appealing cars; today is for every other vehicle category. The APEAL study looks at which brands have the most appealing vehicles based on sales figures, dealer inventory, brand loyalty, transaction and trade-in prices, and incorporates results from participants who gauged their vehicles on… Read More

J.D. Power names most appealing vehicles of 2013 – Part 1
A dozen cars and 11 other vehicles (CUV/SUVs, trucks and vans) have been named named awardees of the J.D. Power APEAL study for 2013, which seeks to identify the industry’s most appealing vehicles based on purchaser and lessee feedback. The Volkswagen Group had the greatest success of any corporation, topping the APEAL rankings with five awardees, the Audi Allroad, Porsche Boxster, Porsche Cayenne, VW GTI and Passat, according to the J.D. Power results. Chevrolet had the highest number of awards for a single brand, though, with the Avalanche, Sonic and Volt each taking home… Read More

Car loans: Make sure to follow these seven important steps – infographic
  With tens of millions of us buying used or new cars, trucks, crossovers or SUVs each year, of course, car loans also are in great demand. “Almost three out of four cars purchased today require financing to complete the transaction,” according to CarQuotes.com. “There are steps you can take to help yourself.” “It's easy to spend $25,000 or more on an automobile, making it the second largest purchase for many folks, second only to the house with the garage where you'll be parking… Read More

What are the top-selling new cars, trucks and SUVs of 2013?
The 2013 new car model year is nearing its end.   You can tell by the increasing number of TV advertisements for sales on current models, pending the arrival of most 2014 models through the beginning of the year. (See our previous survey of “The Hottest” 2014 models here.) For those consumers seeking a new car (2013 version), we found lists of the most popular vehicles – cars, trucks, SUVs – based on unit sales during the first half of the year. Whether you swim with or against the current, these compilations can… Read More

Car refinance a smart move for many with high interest rates, payments
Refinance is an idea we’re accustomed to hearing in connection with a home mortgage – especially in recent months with interest rates at historic lows. But consumers may not be as familiar with refinancing in connection with a car loans. Still, refinancing a car can be a smart move for the same reason someone would refinance a house – reducing the monthly payments and freeing up income for other uses. “Say you bought a new car two years ago and there were a few dings on your credit. You might have been charged 9 percent on a five-year loan for… Read More

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