automotive technology & car buying tips

Download Automotive Technology & Car Buying Tips

Post on 07-Apr-2016




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Automobile manufacturers are placing the newest and best tech toys in all manners of vehicles today, from the most expensive luxury car to your average family sedan. Everyone has the option to enjoy the latest in safety features, entertainment options, and time-saving technology add-ons in almost any new car available today. And tips for buying your next new car.


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    Table of contents Automotive Technology Gizmos & Gadgets: Adaptive Cruise


    This isnt your Fathers Side-view


    Vehicle Safety Goes High


    Buying a Car

    Purchase Negotiation & Your Trade In Part


    Purchase Negotiation & Your Trade In Part


    Auto Title Loans Let the Borrower Beware


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    Technology Gizmos & Gadgets: Adaptive Cruise Control With the increase in standard safety features being installed in new vehicles

    over the last six to seven years, the one feature that will be the center of

    making it all work is

    a system called

    adaptive cruise

    control. In some

    new models, this

    radar-based system

    has evolved to

    reacting to driving

    conditions without

    driver intervention.

    At this rate, it can

    be reasonably

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    assumed that this technology will be at the core of what is becoming known as

    the autonomous or driverless car.

    Cruise Control History

    Modern cruise control, (also known as a speedostat) has been around for over

    60 years. Invented in 1948 by inventor and mechanical engineer Ralph

    Teetor, his idea was born out of the frustration of riding in a car driven by his

    lawyer, who kept speeding up and slowing down as he talked. The first car

    with Teetors system was the 1958 Chrysler Imperial (called Auto-pilot). This

    system calculated ground speed based on driveshaft rotations driveshaft

    rotations off the rotating speedometer-cable, and used a bi-directional screw-

    drive electric motor to vary throttle position as needed.

    Mechanical cruise control was replaced by electronic cruise control in later

    years. Daniel Aaron Wisner invented Automotive Electronic Cruise Control in

    1968 as an engineer for RCAs Industrial and Automation Systems Division in

    Plymouth, Michigan. His invention described in two patents filed that year

    (&3570622 & &3511329), with the second modifying his original design by

    debuting digital memory, was the first electronic gadgetry to play a role in

    controlling a car and ushered in the computer-controlled era in the automobile


    Two decades passed before an integrated circuit for his design was

    developed by Motorola Inc. as the MC14460 Auto Speed Control Processor in

    CMOS. As a result, cruise control was eventually adopted by automobile

    manufacturers as standard equipment and nearly every car built and many

    trucks are fitted with a configuration of the circuitry and hardware nearly

    identical to his prototype.

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    Adaptive Cruise Control History

    Mitsubishi was the first automaker to offer a laser-based ACC system in 1995

    on the Japanese Mitsubishi Diamante. Marketed as Preview Distance

    Control, this early system did not apply the brakes and only controlled speed

    through throttle control and downshifting. In August 1997 Toyota began to

    offer a radar cruise control system in Japan on the Celsior. Toyota further

    refined their system by adding brake control in 2000 and low-speed tracking

    mode in 2004. The low-speed speed tracking mode was a second mode that

    would warn the driver if the car ahead stopped and provide braking; it could

    stop the car but then deactivated.

    Toyotas Lexus division was the first to bring adaptive cruise control to the US

    market in 2000 with the LS 430s Dynamic Laser Cruise Control system. The

    German automaker Mercedes-Benz introduced Distronic in late 1998 on its

    large S-class sedan. In 2006, Mercedes-Benz refined the Distronic system to

    completely halt the car if necessary (now called Distronic Plus and offered

    on their E-Class and S-Class luxury sedans). This feature is now also offered

    by Bosch as ACC plus and available in the Audi Q7, the Audi Q5, 2009 Audi

    A6 and the 2010 Audi A8.

    Vehicles with full speed range adaptive cruise control are able to bring the car

    to a full stop, and resume from standstill. Partial cruise control cuts off below a

    set minimum speed, requiring driver intervention. Most of the automakers

    offering vehicles for sale during the 2015 model year in the American

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    marketplace offer at least one model that features full speed range adaptive

    cruise control.

    This isnt your Fathers Side-view Mirror! I was recently driving a new 2015 vehicle when I was hit by a deer. The adult

    buck took out the

    left side view mirror

    and damaged the

    left front fender

    before rolling onto

    the hood, up over

    the windshield and

    down the back of

    the vehicle

    kicking out one of

    the rear sensors on

    the bumper in the

    process. While myself and the Mrs. were OK, and the damage was mostly

    cosmetic the left side view mirror was a mess of broken plastic and tangled


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    Looking at the internal complexity of what used to a very sophisticated safety

    tool, made me wonder and research. May I introduce you to the automotive

    side-view mirror!

    Also known as a wing, fender, or door mirror, it is a mirror found on the

    exterior of motor vehicles for the purposes of helping the driver see areas

    behind and to the sides of the vehicle, outside of the drivers peripheral vision

    (in the blind spot). Currently regulated by Federal Motor Vehicle Safety

    Standard #101 (FMVSS101), the traditional side mirror is equipped for manual

    or remote vertical and horizontal adjustment so as to provide adequate

    coverage to drivers of differing height and seated position. Todays cars

    mount their side mirrors on the doors, normally at the A pillar, rather than the

    wings (fenders portion of body above the wheel well.

    In the early days of motoring, vehicles were just equipped with a drivers side-

    view mirror passenger side view mirrors at the time were considered a

    luxury and were available as optional equipment. By the late 1960s

    FMVSS101 required the automakers to have the passenger side-view mirror

    as standard equipment.

    Remote adjustment may be mechanical by means of bowden cables, or may

    be electric by means of geared motors. The mirror glass may also be

    electrically heated and may include electrochromic dimming to reduce glare to

    the driver from the headlamps of following vehicles.

    The side-view mirror of today does even more in the way of safety than just

    merely giving the driver a view of what is behind the vehicle. The falling price

    of electronics has given rise to the incorporation of the vehicles turn signal

    repeaters. There is evidence to suggest mirror-mounted repeaters may be

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    more effective than repeaters mounted in the previously predominant fender

    side location.

    Blind side warning systems use the side-view mirrors sensors to warn the

    driver of other vehicles in the blind spot. The mirrors are also being used to

    incorporate sensors for the lane departure warning system and even small

    cameras for the growing use of 360 degree viewing of the outside the vehicle

    from the drivers seat.

    As a result of these enhancements and those yet to come, its a sure thing

    that the automotive side-view mirror will be more and more an integral part of

    vehicle safety in the years to come.

    1931 Ford Model A wing side-view mirror mounted at the top drivers side door hinge.

    1950 Pontiac Chief Deluxe Silver Streak 8 sedan fender mounted side-view mirror, manually operated.

    1989 Lincoln Mark VII coupe drivers door mounted heated power operated side-view mirror.

    2015 Lincoln MKC dual heated power door mounted side-view mirrors equipped with turn signal repeaters and blind-side warning indicators.

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    Vehicle Safety Goes High Tech Welcome to Gizmos & Gadgets! In this series of installments, I am discussing

    the evolution of the standard safety features that are found in your average

    new passenger car. If you caught my initial article, you were probably amazed

    at the level of government-mandated safety features that have been

    incorporated into

    vehicles over the last 40

    plus years. Yet starting

    with the 2006 model

    year, automakers took

    vehicle safety to the

    next level.

    Drivers were introduced

    to a wider variety of

    newly optional and standard safety features across a broad spectrum of

    vehicles. Those features that were only available for the top of the model

    range began to become available at much lower price points. Here are a few

    of the features that started to work their way into affordable cars as standard


    More airbags Up from the driver and front passenger airbags of the 1990s, todays vehicles may have upto 10 airbags as standard equipment. In addition

    to the dual front airbags, the vehicle will have front seat mounted side-impact

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    airbags, and dual head curtain side-impact (front/rear) airbags. Recent models

    will also include driver/front passenger knee airbags and even outboard rear

    seat side-impact airbags.

    Four-wheel disc brakes with anti-lock Four wheel hydraulic or drum brakes where a brake sho