Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Hatchback Heaven at LeSueur's

Hatchback [hach-bak]
a style of automobile in which the rear deck lid and window lift open as a unit.

Hatchbacks have been all the craze in Asia, South America, and especially Europe. The Europeans have single handedly created the Hot Hatch segment, turning hatchback compact cars into monster drivers, often touting lots of horsepower and all wheel drive.

In the United States, however, hatchbacks have always had a negative stigma. But lately, things have been changing. Volkswagen has been known for making some of the world's best hatchbacks. Other carmakers have seen VW's success, and have introduced hatchbacks of their own.
Presently, I can't think of a car company that doesn't have a hatchback vehicle. They provide versatility of a crossover SUV while maintaining the fuel economy of a compact car. Just the other day my wife went to pick up a large filing cabinet she found on craigslist, but it just wouldn't shimmy into her Honda Civic sedan. I came to the rescue with my Volkswagen Golf GTI, and it simply swallowed that filing cabinet with room still for dessert.

At LeSueur's, we're firm believers in hatchbacks. We have Mini Coopers, Volkswagen Rabbits and GTI's, Toyota Matrix's, Honda Fit's, Toyota Prius's, Scion xB's, and many more! Remember the benefit: great fuel economy with the room of a small SUV. Come by and check out our selection, and join the hatchback trend before you go out of style!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

The Future of Cars

The automotive industry is a changin'! Just about every automaker has hybrid models either in production or lined up for the near future. Electric vehicles are all the buzz at autoshows, and even hybrid sports cars are becoming the new craze.

What do you think cars will look like in the future? Will they fly or float, or run completely on self-sustaining energy sources? Will they connect us to the world via internet wi-fi connectivity? Or will we find simplified one or two seaters that are ultra-efficient commuter vehicles cruising the roads like schools of fish?

Take a look at the pictures, or if you get a chance, Google "future cars" and check out the images. Pretty interesting stuff out there. Let us know what you think the future automotive industry will look like. Post comments below. Thanks!

Friday, February 26, 2010

Hyundai is Taking Over!

If you asked someone ten years ago if they'd buy a Hyundai, they'd likely say "Thanks, but no thanks."

With roughly 5% sales dominance in the US market, Hyundai isn't the biggest name out there, but they're probably the fastest growing. More and more consumers are turning to the brand, which is known for it's excellent warranty, comfortable and quality cars, and some 20% savings when compared to certain Japanese car companies. Hyundai (rhymes with Sunday) is a growing name, and their cars are getting better and better.
One of my favorites, at least within the realm of crossovers and SUVs, is the Hyundai Santa Fe. My wife loves it, and my mother even bought one from us last summer. You'll probably be surprised and just how much car you get for the money. Just take a look at the pictures.

In the coming months, we're likely to see some of the new Hyundai Tucsons coming to our lot. They feature Hyundai's new fluid design, giving it a sporting edge and more refinement ever thought possible from a Korean brand. On an even higher scale are the Hyundai Genesis and Genesis Coupe, adding luxury as well as performance to the growing automaker.

At LeSueur's, we like good cars, and the Santa Fe is one of our favorites. We currently have 9 Santa Fe's, most of them being 2009 models, and some even have all-wheel drive. Come check them out in person. You won't find more bang for your buck than with these.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Clean Diesel, Oxymoron?

Diesel is no longer a dirty word. It's hardly even noisy anymore. Diesel has changed, and it's time for America to hop onboard.

Leave it to the Europeans to develop, refine, and produce some of the best engines on the planet. Diesel engines were developed by a man from Germany (last name Diesel) to run entirely off the bi-product of gasoline, which is now known as Diesel fuel.

In the past, Diesel engines have been smelly and loud. These days, unless you have American-made trucks like the Ram, F-350, or Silverado, there is nothing to fear from the clean diesel movement sweeping the globe.

Volkswagen has produced a number of small diesel vehicles over the years, and with that experience comes better efficiency and a whole new degree of clean. Audi produced their "Green Police" ad during the Superbowl, showing that even sporty and luxury cars can be diesels. In fact, a good friend of mine recently purchased a BMW 335d, a premier diesel sport sedan. It boasts good horsepower and incredible torque, making it just as fast as the 335i (gasoline version) while acheiving 36 mpg instead of 25. Why would anyone go without the diesel after seeing that?

In many cases, today's diesel engines are cleaner than gasoline engines, in terms of smog and pollutants. It's time for us to realize the potential that these engines have. Hybrids are great cars, but if I can get the same fuel economy and actually hear the engine purring, I'll pick the diesel any day.

But the demand for diesel in America is practically non-existant, and for those seeking a diesel, the search could prolong itself for months.

My advice?

Give diesel a chance. Hit up your nearest Volkswagen dealership and try their Golf TDI (turbo diesel) or diesel Touareg SUV. Audi also has their A3 TDI, and BMW and Mercedes have a few diesel models as well. The more familiar we are with the technology, the more likely we are to support it, use it, and promote it.

With more diesels in America, we lessen our need for foreign oil. Statistics show that if only 1/3 of Americans drove diesel cars, we could be entirely independent from foreign oil, allowing us to preserve the limited petroleum for things that can use nothing but petroleum, like airplanes or rockets for propelling mankind into space.

I hope that we take time to seek something better than we currently have, that we look for solutions and compromises more than excuses and blame. Clean diesels, and diesel hybrids in the near future, can change the world as we know it. All we have to do is embrace it.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Valentine's Day Heartbreak for Toyota

Toyota, it seems, has been dumped. Dumped by lots of customers who are being taken advantage of by scheming GM and Ford dealerships.

With over 8 million cars being recalled within the past few weeks, and controversies arising due to "coverups" by top Toyota execs, it's no wonder people are beginning to lose faith.

However, it's all a bit unprecendented. For one, every single carmaker has recalls, and every single car has probably experienced a recall of some sort. No car is perfect, and some problems are simply unforseen throughout the production stage. It's just unfortunate that Toyota has had so many in such a short period of time. And in regards to the "coverups," it's obviously a bit overwhelming for Toyota to issue so many recalls. They didn't want to speak out too quickly and possibly harm their image further.

It also doesn't help that the media seems to be kicking Toyota when they're down. It's no surprise that the government supported media is lashing at Toyota, especially since the federal government owns a large stake of General Motors, one of Toyota's biggest competitors. I'm not saying the government is anti-Toyota, but they surely aren't disappointed that Toyota is having hard times.

In any case, Toyota still remains once of the most quality carmakers out there. Their reliability is second to none, and although their styling is a bit bland, it's still one of the best brands on the road. In spite of mass criticism and halted car sales, Toyota was quick to release the updates and improvements for the cars affected by recalls. We've got 100 Toyota's on our lot, and all of the necessary recalls have already been taken care of by Toyota dealers.

Don't skip out on Toyota to buy a GM or Ford, just because the media says so. The age-old addage says that you shouldn't believe everything that the media spills to the masses, and in the case of Toyota, that's especially true.

Monday, February 8, 2010

VW and Audi SuperBowl Commercials

Alright, it's no secret that everyone's favorite part of the Superbowl actually occurs during the 30 second or 2 minute breaks from the game. The television commercials likely bring more joy to viewers than a 40 yard touchdown pass, and it's the commercials, not the game, that people are talking about after the final whistle blows.

Advertisers spend millions of dollars for these primetime spots, hoping to catch the attention (and credit card number) of everyone in America's biggest television audience of the year.

Doritos and Budweiser had a large majority of the television commercials, along with Coca Cola, E*Trade, and Hyundai, among others. But some of my favorites came from Volkswagen and Audi, which technically are the same company.

Here is the Volkswagen Commercial, bringing back the original all-time classic game of "Slug Bug." Why they punched each other when they saw models besides the Beetle is beyond me, but it was a clever and funny commercial nonetheless.

Audi also produced a unique and witty TV ad for their TDI (diesel) Audi A3 hatcback. Check out the Audi Commercial (picture inset above) on Youtube.
What were your favorites? What did you think of these car commercials?
Thanks for reading!

Friday, January 29, 2010

Toyota Recalls

Some of you might already be aware, but Toyota is recalling a number of their newer vehicles for faulty accelerator pedals. Toyota is advising their dealerships today on how to address the problem. In the meantime, Toyota has halted sales and production on 8 of it's top models until further notice.

Toyota is taking big steps to reassure customers that Toyota is a safe and reliable brand, despite mishaps with sticky pedals and slippery floormats.

In any case, we can be sure that the world's largest car company will pull through. In the meantime, I wouldn't be too worried about driving your current Toyota. If you're really paranoid, you can always take out your floormats until Toyota gives you some new ones.