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THE AUTO SCANNER: Kia keeps pushing his buttons

Your car care questions answered by repair expert Larry Rubenstein.

Q: I have a 2011 Kia Sedona with a very strange problem. I have been to my local shop a few times, and I think they are baffled. I waited two weeks to get into the dealership, and after waiting all that time, they also could not duplicate the problem. So the following problem has been going on for three months and no one seems to be able to find it. I am hoping you can shed some light on the problem.

My Kia has a push-button starter, which is nice, but I have never had one before, so this is all new to me. When I come to a stop and turn off the engine, I put it in park and push the button one time like you are supposed to. Everything should turn off just like when you turn the key. The problem is the dashboard is telling me to put it in park even though it is in park, and the radio continues to play.

Further, it won’t let me use my remote control to lock the doors because the accessory power is still on. So now I can’t leave my car. It happens three out of five times, but the dealer says he never had the problem. I know I am doing it right. I would appreciate and thoughts or ideas you have about this problem. — N in Saugus

A: I am glad you came to me with this problem, because it gives me the opportunity to tell other Sedona owners exactly how to fix this. We had one of these roll into the shop a few weeks ago and it did require a bit of diagnostics, but research showed there are a lot of 2011 Kias having this same issue.

The repair is to replace the shifter assembly located in the console. There are micro-switches in the assembly that are not completing the circuit when you move it into the park position. If the computer does not see park, it will not shut off completely and you will have the problems you describe, including the radio staying on and warning message on instrument panel. And worst of all, not being able to lock your doors.

This is not a recall, but there is a technical service bulletin on this problem. The actual replacement job is less than an hour, and the part is surprisingly low in price. You should be able to get out for under $400. I hope this helps, and shame on the dealer for not knowing about this problem.

Q: I am driving a 2005 Chevy Malibu, and lately on hot days when I get in the car and turn on the air conditioner, the chemical smell is terrible, along with vapors coming off the dashboard. I don’t remember seeing this on other cars. Other than that, the car runs just fine, and when the air conditioner has been on for a few minutes, it starts getting nice and cold. Are those vapors harmful? How can I make the vapor smell stop happening?

A: When your car is parked in the hot sun, your plastic dashboard will start to perform a chemical change called off-gassing. The vapors are harmful and I always recommend this procedure for getting into a car that is super-heated on the inside due to sitting in the sun — roll down your window or windows before you close the door on your car. After starting the engine, turn on the air conditioning. After about two minutes, the off-gassing will have ceased and you will be safe to close your windows and enjoy the cool air.

Car Care Tip: Think of your pet as a family member, and think of the in-car temperature before leaving your dog in the car on a warm day.

Submit car questions to For more tips and seasonal articles, visit Rte. 1 Auto Service’s Facebook page at, or the shop’s website at You can hear Larry and his son Scott on WBZ’s NightSide.

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US July auto sales seen down 5 percent: JD Power and LMC

DETROIT (Reuters) – U.S. auto sales in July likely fell a little more than 5 percent from the same month in 2016, a fifth consecutive month of declining sales and the largest monthly drop so far this year despite persistently large consumer discounts, industry consultants J.D. Power and LMC Automotive said on Thursday.

LMC cut its full-year 2017 forecast for new vehicle sales for the fourth consecutive month, to 17.0 million units from its previous forecast of 17.1 million.

July U.S. new vehicle sales will be about 1.44 million units, a drop of more than 5 percent from 1.52 million units a year earlier, the consultancies said.

The forecast was based on the first 18 selling days of July. Automakers will release U.S. sales results for the month on August 1.

The seasonally adjusted annualized rate for the month will be 17.2 million vehicles, down nearly 4 percent from 17.9 million units in the same month in 2016.

Retail sales to consumers, which do not include multiple fleet sales to rental agencies, businesses and government, were also set to decline more than 5 percent in June.

U.S. sales of new cars and trucks hit a record high of 17.55 million units in 2016. But a saturated market, thanks partly to a glut of nearly-new used vehicles, has forced automakers to hike discounts to entice consumers to buy.

Consumer discounts hit a monthly record of $3,876, above the previous record of $3,597 set in July 2016.

Auto loans of 84 months and longer accounted for more than 6 percent of retail sales for the first time ever, the consultancies said. In order to sell cars in a tougher market, automakers or lenders can resort to longer loan terms in order to bring the monthly payment down for consumers.

Despite the high level of consumer discounts, the average new vehicle sold in July had spent 72 days in inventory. This was the highest level since 2009 during the height of the Great Recession.

“The second half of the year will continue to present challenges to manufacturers as they navigate a hyper competitive and dynamic marketplace, while working to find the optimal mix of production cuts and discounting necessary to align supply, demand and inventory levels,” Thomas King, J.D. Power’s vice president of PIN OEM operations, media and marketing, said in a release accompanying the sales estimate.

Reporting By Nick Carey; Editing by Andrew Hay

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Navigation app Waze is integrating with Android Auto

Google’s Waze navigation app is integrating with Android Auto, Google’s hands free smart car operating system. That should make the car operating system more attractive for potential users who are in the market for new cars.

Android Auto has more than 5 million users according to the Google Play store. Its users already have access to Google’s more basic navigation app, Google Maps.

Waze for Android Auto will have basically all the same capabilities on the car dashboard screen as it does on mobile. Drivers will be able to ask the app to help navigate to a selected destination, and Waze will return routes optimized with crowdsourced information on traffic congestion, closures and accidents.

Waze has a bit of a cult following among its users, so connecting it to dashboard screens running Android Auto could make the operating system more attractive to drivers who already use Waze, which could also benefit Android phone sales.

Waze is not yet integrating with Apple CarPlay, though the mobile app works on iPhones.

The new Android Auto version of Waze won’t show ads, the way the mobile app does, but adapting the app to a car operating system means there’s one more type of screen where ads could be shown down the road.

But the car version won’t do everything Waze tools can do on mobile. For example, the Waze carpooling app is not part of the integration. Voice commands will also be limited to telling the car app your destination. Users won’t be able to verbally tell the app about accidents on the road or congestion. That information has to be input manually.

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‘Grand Theft Auto V’ Update Brings New 4v4 Mode, Vehicles and …

New multiplayer modes, classic cars and premium races are coming in the next wave of updates to Rockstar Games’ long-running Grand Theft Online game.

First up, the developer unveiled a new 4v4 adversary mode called Power Mad. In it, two teams of four square off for possession of the Juggernaut power-up, which creates a “heavily armored menace” out of whoever picks it up. The goal of Power Mad is to stay alive long enough as the Juggernaut to collect a set number of points. Should the Juggernaut die, the power-up will drop and become available for pick up by either the same or opposing team. Players also receive double money and reputation points in Power Mad now until July 31, the developer added.

Rockstar announced a new car for GTA Online: the Pegassi Torero, which looks something like a 1985 Lamborghini Countach.

“One for the collectors, the Torero is a sleek, scissor-doored classic that reflects Pegassi’s time-honored tradition of balls-to-the-wall design twinned with bone-splintering performance,” the developer said about the car on a post on its blog.

The Pegassi Torero is available now in the game’s Legendary Motorsports store. Players can get 25% off all engine upgrades now until July 31.

Additionally, the developer unveiled that Bunker Research Technician research speeds would be boosted by 25 percent, making weapon attachments and weaponized vehicle upgrades accessible quicker, and that all handguns, machine guns, assault rifles and sniper rifles would be 25% off at the game’s Ammu-Nation gun store until July 31.

Lastly, now until July 31, the premium race “Trench III” and the time trial “Cypress Flats” will offer extra money and reputation points.

Grand Theft Auto V was originally released on September 17, 2013 for the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360. Since then it’s also been released on the PC and re-released for the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One. It’s proved a massive success for developer-publisher Rockstar, selling over 80 million copies as of this May. It’s online component, GTA Online, has proved to arguably be the most lucrative product in Rockstar’s line-up, as it’s consistently supported it now for more than three years across multiple platforms. 

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Nonprofit transforms vacant auto-repair garage into an incubator for podcasts

Photo from PRX.

Reverend Jeffrey Brown is used to the pulpit. But these days, he’s trading it for a microphone in a cozy recording studio in Allston, Massachusetts. For the last few months, the Boston-based minister has been producing his own podcast, The Courage to Listen.

“When you’re preaching, you have an audience of people,” Brown says. There’s a call-and-response pattern in his work as a preacher. With the podcast, there’s only one person in front of him. “There may be an audience, but the audience won’t be talking back to you.”

For someone who’s spent most of his career writing sermons, not scripts, adjusting to the new medium presented certain challenges. One was becoming aware of both the tone and loudness of his voice. “When I first heard it [my voice], I thought, Oh my gosh, is that me? As I kept listening to my voice, there were ways in which I could speak that could be appealing. It was helpful to hear it in order to figure out how to speak in podcast,” he says. Brown’s producer, Geoff Nesnow, still reminds him to maintain the same distance from the mic throughout the interview: “I can’t help that I like to move.”

It’s taken eight months, but Brown feels more confident about his podcast skills these days. That’s because he and his producer aren’t working in isolation. Since last September, they’ve relied on a community of emerging and experienced audiomakers at the Podcast Garage. The duo has gotten feedback, technical support, and skill-building as they’ve created, produced, and launched their show out of the space, which is nearing its one-year anniversary.

Reverend Jeffrey Brown records in the Podcast Garage studio. Photo by Geoff Nesnow.

The brick-and-mortar enterprise is the brainchild of Public Radio Exchange (PRX). At its core, the Podcast Garage is one part community recording studio, one part educational hub for audio storytelling. Kerri Hoffman, CEO of PRX, calls Podcast Garage the network’s skunkworks, “a laboratory where diverse voices can hone their stories and talent.”

It’s the latest in a series of experiments by PRX. In the 14 years since its founding, the nonprofit has evolved from humble origins as a distributor of radio programs into an award-winning digital media company. It still pushes out content from independent producers, but PRX also launched the podcast network Radiotopia, developed the curation app RadioPublic, and co-founded the media-focused accelerator program, Matter Ventures.

RELATED: 10 podcasts to help you keep up with the news cycle

The Podcast Garage was originally conceived as a pop-up program of Zone 3, a Harvard-led initiative to activate Western Avenue in Allston and Brighton, two up-and-coming neighborhoods in Boston. Last summer, PRX was approached by Zone 3 to create a pop-up “listening lounge” for people to partake in podcasts in a communal setting. Hoffman didn’t think the idea was “sticky enough,” so she counter-proposed, pitching a permanent audio production facility and community center. “There’s a real hunger to learn how to do audio storytelling,” she says, “both from journalists in public radio stations and also individuals.”

The Garage sits in a nondescript parking lot a few blocks south of the Charles River. Imagine an old Jiffy Lube, but with a colorful, hi-tech facelift. Outside, a mosaic of blue and yellow hexagons cover the walls, juxtaposed against a simple logo containing the words “Podcast Garage PRX.” The Garage’s three glass doors, spaced evenly across the front, are a throwback to the space’s original purpose.

“It was literally a garage, and we thought that was the right aesthetic,” Hoffman says. “Garages are places where things get fixed and tinkered with.”

Today, the building provides a different kind of tune-up. Inside, air compressors and frame machines have been replaced by bean bag chairs and soundboards. There’s a community room on one side of the space, a recording studio on the other. The community room is multimodal; it adapts to the programming as needed. On a Monday afternoon, work tables and chairs transform it into a coworking setup. Later that night, the scene could be cleared out for a lecture or cocktail party. So far, the Podcast Garage has adapted to the needs of 80 different classes and workshops.

For the past year, audio storytellers have gathered for production and narrative skill-building workshops; veteran radio producers have trained and mentored aspiring journalists; and podcast fans have eagerly listened as producers of their favorite Radiotopia shows unpacked their latest episode.

“We think of the space as engendering a love of audio and contributing to the growth of the field,” Hoffman says.

The studios are outfitted with high-end recording and sound equipment. Photo from PRX.

The studio space has attracted seasoned shows, like America’s Test Kitchen, and novice podcasters alike. The larger studio fits up to four people around the table, and a smaller vocal tracking booth accommodates an additional two. Both are outfitted with high-end recording and sound equipment from companies like Shure, Sonos, and Sennheiser. Members can operate the sound-isolated studios on their own or bring an engineer. At the garage, podcasters can record, edit, and publish their shows with audio-editing programs like Pro Tools and Hindenberg. It was important to build the studio with the digital environment in mind, Hoffman says, while also keeping the costs low for the community.

The membership model is constantly evolving; Hoffman and her team have tweaked it based on feedback from the community. Right now, members pay $25 per month for perks like discounts on studio time, access to the coworking space, and free feedback sessions at the end of every month. “We’ve made it so that it’s accessible to people at any income level,” Hoffman says. So far, there are 20 members who record shows spanning topics from social justice to comedy.

ICYMI: ‘Thank God the brain cancer waited for the Pulitzer’

Reverend Brown is one of those members. For his show, The Courage to Listen, Brown invites one or two guests to the Podcast Garage, where they share their stories, insights, and solutions on reducing violence in Boston and other cities around the country. He’s spoken to activists pushing for body cameras in Boston, academics studying Black Lives Matter, and organizers advocating for nonviolence in Chicago.

Brown was one of the architects behind “The Boston Miracle, a collaborative effort between black ministers, the Boston police department, and social scientists to reduce youth violence in the city. In a now-popular TED Talk, Brown explains how listening, and not preaching, to those kids helped them reduce violence in their own neighborhoods. His podcast, and soon-to-be-published book of the same name, follows that guiding principle. It’s an outgrowth of the work he’s been doing for the past 20-plus years.

“I like the form [of podcasting] and getting people’s voices on there,” he says. “You get into the interiors of someone’s actions and give them space to mold and shape as they see it.”

There’s a certain freedom with podcasting that other mediums don’t allow, Brown says. With each episode, he can delve into someone’s life in a way he can’t do with his Sunday sermons. He’s not preaching; he’s in conversation. It feels one-to-one, even though it’s one-to-many. “When you’re preaching to someone, you don’t get a chance to talk to each and every person,” he says.

Brown started working on his podcast with Nesnow, his producer, during the fall of 2016. Before then, his knowledge of podcasts, let alone how to make a podcast, was limited. “I knew my children listened to podcasts a lot,” he jokes. “When Geoff first introduced the idea of making a podcast to me, I needed to call my kids.” He listened to shows like This American Life and Serial, and was immediately hooked. “I’ve listened to some other podcasts, and they didn’t seem professionally done,” he says. “With the Garage, you have the opportunity to produce a quality project.”

That’s a big reason Brown and Nesnow became members. The quality sounds professional, and their guests are always impressed by the setting. It’s much than better meeting these guests at someone’s home or in a noisy café, especially given the subject matter. The studio has also forced Brown to improve his hosting skills. “There’s a certain way to preach, but this isn’t about preaching into the microphone,” he says. It’s about having a conversation. Brown approaches each interview as though it’s happening in his living room. “You have to be aware of moments when you need to go off script and go where the spirit takes you,” he says.

Outside the studio, Brown and Nesnow have turned to their Podcast Garage peers for other tips and tricks. They’ve participated in forums and workshops, plus more informal listening nights for shows like Ear Hustle. Brown’s biggest takeaway from his fellow podcasters? Be yourself. “Listening to some of the other podcasters, the ones I like and admire are relaxed and break away from journalism,” he says. “They let their personalities come out.”

Peer-to-peer support is part of the Garage’s DNA. Just like blogging in the early 2000s, podcasting can be done anywhere. It’s a medium unconstrained by geography and physical space. And it’s often a remote and solitary endeavor. There’s a common (albeit relatively accurate) narrative that podcasters sit in their closets, blankets over their heads and microphones in hand. The overwhelming majority aren’t This American Life or Radiolab or WTF with Marc Maron. With approximately 400,000 podcasts listed in the Apple Podcast store, only 1 percent have 50,000 or more downloads per episode. “It can feel lonely,” Hoffman says. The real power of podcasting comes when people leave the (dis)comfort of their closets.

The Podcast Garage hosts events like workshops and storytelling nights. Photo from PRX.

A few years ago, a space like the Podcast Garage wouldn’t have been possible. The so-called “podcast boom” following the success of Serial catapulted the medium into the zeitgeist. Everyone has a podcast now, maybe even your dentist. Podcasting is a growing field, but it’s suffering a talent gap, Hoffman says. Right now, PRX’s goal is to move content from good to better, from better to great. You can do that through four-week training programs on narrative structure, or workshops on design thinking, she says. In the case of Brown’s podcast, they needed the technical tools to create a quality product. The Courage to Listen is one of 17 podcasts that have launched out of the Podcast Garage. Think of the space as an open invitation to the next generation of makers.

“We’ve taken a two-pronged approach: Provide access to high-quality equipment for current podcasters, who are working from home or coffee shops, and open the community to create more opportunities for people entering the field,” Hoffman says.

In Boston, there are more opportunities for fledgling audiomakers than exist in other cities. It has its own audio ecosystem, the Podcast Garage being just the latest addition. The city has two longstanding public radio powerhouses, WBUR and WGBH, which were born out of the city’s sprawling university scene. There’s the Sonic Soiree, a meetup for audiophiles started by independent audio producer Daniel Gross. Boston’s also home to the Association of Independents in Radio (AIR), a global network of audio producers; multimedia journalists; and public media programs, networks, and stations. And, of course, there’s PRX.

“As the intellectual hub of the country, if not the world, Boston breeds an intellectually large and curious audience,” says Anne Donohue, an associate professor of journalism at Boston University. She’s an award-winning public radio producer and editor who has contributed to Monitor Radio, NPR, the BBC, WBUR, and WGBH. Boston is an academically driven city, and public radio was an offshoot from that intellectual fervor, she says. A place like the Garage seamlessly fits into this community. The Podcast Garage is just the beginning, a “prototype,” according to Hoffman. PRX wants to expand the concept to other cities, but investing in permanent facilities carries risk. So they’re experimenting with ways to scale the model. One such experiment includes a pop-up storytelling weekend in Kansas City, Missouri, this fall, which will be half training and half technical, like a hackathon for audio. They’re also flirting with the idea of launching an online curricula and Web tools based on their current programming.

Tonight, the Podcast Garage celebrates its first birthday. The one-time auto body shop has come a long way from its days of oil changes and brake alignments, but to some degree, the space still serves a similar purpose. “We’re not knocking things down,” says Hoffman. “We’re building things up.”

Meg Dalton is a CJR Delacorte Fellow. Find her on Twitter @megdalts.

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Waze arrives on Android Auto

For some time now, you’ve been able to click the main “Maps” button on Android Auto and get a screen that lets you select an alternate navigation app. Before today, the only real option there was Google Maps. Now, Waze has launched for Android Auto, so if you prefer it to Google Maps, you can get it on your larger dashboard screen.

Waze on Android Auto is a slightly simplified subset of what you can do on the phone. Jens Baron, who does product development for the maps app, says that his company worked closely with the Android Auto UX team and went through months of “driver disruption” testing to tune the app to your car’s screen. The result is an interface that feels very much like Waze, but still feels native to Android Auto. Waze is a little cartoony and fun, but still usable.

I tried it out in a Chevy Cruze for a day or so, and found that it’s better at alerting me to traffic tie-ups and their causes than Google Maps. The backup to the toll on the Bay Bridge was worse than usual, and partway through, Waze popped up a small box that asked me to verify that there was a police cruiser up ahead. Sure enough, a few minutes later it was there, tying up traffic something fierce.

It’s also easy to report traffic conditions in Waze on Android Auto. There’s a big button on the lower right. Hit it, and then you can hit another single button to report traffic, police presence, a problem with the map, a crash, or a road hazard.

While Waze is better at the community mapping stuff, it’s not quite as powerful as Google Maps. On the beta I tried, it was a little more finicky on poor data connections, and voice commands weren’t as consistent. Baron says those issues will be resolved in time for launch.

To fully utilize Waze, you will still need to do some stuff on your phone before you plug it in to Android Auto — setting your home address and the like. There are a bunch of features that are still phone-only and should probably stay that way — like “map chat” — but Baron says that some oft-requested features like speed limit indicators will come in a future update.

Waze has no plans to bring its app to Apple CarPlay. That’s probably because Apple doesn’t seem to have any plans to allow third-party map apps to be blessed up as the default navigation applications. Android users, however, can download Waze for Android Auto right now.

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Auto insurance: Which Georgia companies hiked your bill the most?

Georgia led the nation in 2016 for increases in auto insurance rates.

But which insurers hit their customers the hardest?

The AJC scoured the rate filings at the Georgia insurance commissioner’s office to study how rates have changed and to find out which companies were imposing the biggest — and smallest — increases.

AllState took the cake with an average 25 percent increase imposed on many of its customers last year. AllState — and most other insurers for that matter — sell policies through more than one company.

So, it’s important to know which AllState, State Farm or GEICO company you have because that can make a big difference in how much you are paying for coverage and how large your rate hikes will be. Also keep in mind when looking at average increases that hikes to individual drivers can vary greatly.

The industry blames big increases in traffic, crashes and the cost to repair autos in Georgia for the rate hikes. But the increases are also coming at a time when Georgia no longer requires preapproval for most rate hikes from Georgia Department of Insurance. The AJC’s Sunday story took at in-depth look at this regulatory change and the recent trend of increasing premiums. Read the full story at

Here’s a look at the most recent rate increases imposed by Georgia’s largest companies, based on information the AJC pulled from documents filed at the Georgia Department of Insurance.


State Farm Mutual — Georgia’s largest insurer with about 1.5 million policy holders, which represents 20 percent of the state’s market.

April 21, 2015 — 2.6 percent

April 21, 2016 — 4.0 percent

October 21, 2016 — 11.1 percent

State Farm Fire and Casualty — State Farm’s smaller company, it covers about 120,000 policy holders and has about 2.5 percent of the Georgia market.

April 2015 — 6.6 percent

April 2016 — 9.0 percent

October 2016 — 19.8 percent


GEICO General Insurance Co. — GEICO operates numerous companies in Georgia. GEICO General is the largest with more than 260,000 policy holders. It is also the second-largest auto insurance company in Georgia, with a 5.6 percent market share.

August 2015 — 7.5 percent

May 2016 — 4.0 percent

November 2016 — 6.9 percent

June 2017 — 14.5 percent

GEICO Indemnity Co. — GEICO’s second largest company, it has about 100,000 policy holders statewide.

August 2015 — 7.5 percent

May 2016  — 4.0 percent

November 2016 — 6.9 percent

June 2017 — 8.2 percent


Progressive Mountain — Progressive also has several companies operating in Georgia and this is the largest with a 5.3 percent market share.

July 2015 — 3.5 percent

October 2016 — 4.8 percent

January 2017 — 5.0 percent

Progressive Premier — Georgia’s second largest Progressive company, Premier has a 4.2 percent market share.

October 2016 — 3.1 percent

January 2017 — 5.1 percent


Allstate Fire and Casualty — The largest Allstate company in Georgia, it has a 3.6 percent market share. It is the fifth-largest company statewide for auto coverage.

April 2015 — 6.3 percent

October 2015 — 11.9 percent

May 2016 — 3.4 percent

May 2017 — 5.5 percent

Allstate Property and Casualty — This Allstate company has nearly the same market share as Fire and Casualty and is the state’s sixth-largest company for auto coverage.

April 2015 — 4.9 percent

October 2015 — 9.9 percent

May 2016 — 25 percent

May 2017 — 4.9 percent


View Comments





USAA is th Best !!!!

Jack M

Jack M


Oh if only we could buy insurance across state lines the premiums would drop so low they might be non existent or maybe the insurance companies would pay us to use their policies. I mean, after all isn’t everyone saving huge amounts on health insurance because it is sold across state lines? Auto insurance is run by the same scam artists and same companies who run health insurance aided and abetted every step of the way by the fine upstanding politicians they have bought and paid for in state houses and the US congress with their campaign “donations.” 




These increases must not be state wide because I have State Farm on my wife’s car, my boat, my WaveRunner and my Polaris Ranger and the only time the policies went up over the last year was $26/yr when my wife bought a new car Sept 2016.  My truck has a corporate policy and that company isn’t mentioned above nor has it increased since the Corp bought it in February 2016.  




Crooks one and all, working with State Elected crooks one and all.  At every turn fees up for anything to do with cars, yet every thing is now against the law, and ya wonder why they is no public transportation.   We pay the highest insurance in the U.S. , and the idiot insurance commissionaire says he is glad he signed the bill to let them rape us. 

Auto insurance bills skyrocket in Georgia but regulator powerless

Georgia led the nation with the highest increase in personal auto insurance rates in 2016, according to a new analysis, but rising rates is nothing new for the state’s drivers.

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2018 Jeep Wrangler readies for Los Angeles Auto Show debut

Jeep CEO Mike Manley has confirmed that we’ll be seeing a new Wrangler later this year at the 2017 Los Angeles Auto Show.

In an interview with UK-based Auto Express, Manley also revealed a few additional details about the 2018 Wrangler’s drivetrains, increased capability and refinement levels, as well as design. The new Wrangler’s “future-proofed” platform is said to be capable of accepting electrified powertrains. Whether that means full EV or hybrid power remains to be seen, but Manley says more information regarding their electrification plans will come towards the end of year.

Being a Wrangler, not only will capability see an uptick, but also fuel economy, ride comfort and cabin noise levels for those times when people aren’t tackling challenging off-road trails in Moab, Utah.

jeep-switchback-3.jpgEnlarge Image

Which Switchback elements will make it to the 2018 Wrangler?

Emme Hall/Roadshow

Speaking of Moab, the Wrangler-based concepts shown earlier this year at the Easter Safari offer hints to what we’ll be seeing on the show stand in LA, according to Manley. While hot-rod looks from the Quicksand concept and the Switchback concept’s half doors may be a stretch, lighting treatments and some of the heavier-duty hardware wouldn’t be shocking to see on the new production vehicle.

Distinctive Wrangler design elements such as the grille, raised hood and big wheel arches will almost surely remain.

Following the arrival of the new Wrangler, Manley confirmed that a Jeep pickup is in the pipeline for 2019, followed by a Grand Wagoneer in 2020. The company is also studying a small entry-level model to slot below the Renegade

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Auto Industry Benefits For Now From Subprime Loans

A factor in the auto industry’s record sales the past 2 years has been the return of loans to borrowers with less than perfect credit. This has led some to worry about a bubble in subprime auto loans.

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