What does the Memorial Day holiday mean to you?
Seriously, what does Memorial Day signify for you? For the kids, it is the official day to kick off the opening of public swimming pools and water parks. For most adults, this holiday is a time to spend soaking up the weather with family and friends, and of course to enjoy their 3-day weekend. Some also take some time out of the holiday to honor and remember those brave men and women of the United States Armed Forces who made the ultimate sacrifice while fighting for their country. For me, Memorial Day means all of the above. However, one thing I rarely get to do is travel for the holiday. Rather flying or road tripping, I love to travel, especially to reconnect with family.
Memorial Day weekend is a notorious traveling time for road trips. No matter what the reason you may be hitting the road this holiday, it is essential to be the best driver you can, as you may be sharing the road with a few more cars than usual. Also, you want to make your trip as simple as it can be. Here are a few tips:
- Make sure the condition of your vehicle is suitable for driving long distances. It’s great that “Betsy” is still hanging in there, but if she’s been giving your any trouble lately, it may not be wise to take her on the road.
- Prior to getting on the road, check the route that you’re traveling to check for traffic jams and accidents. If there are and time is an issue, see if there are any alternate routes.
- For more time sensitive traveling, make sure that all packing is done as far in advance as possible. Waiting until the last-minute is usually a cause for being behind on time.
- As always, drive safely and cautiously at all times and limit your amount of distractions. As stated above, you will be driving with a few more cars and the road should be shared and not dominated.
- Last, HAVE FUN! Make this time as enjoyable as you can! However, if your fun includes alcohol, make sure that you are responsible and have a designated driver. Also, revisit our previous post for more pointers on drinking and driving.
These are just a few nuggets of advice for road travel this weekend. We would love to hear some of your feedback and tips also.
Rather you are traveling or not, I hope you enjoy your Memorial Day holiday.
Today is Feel Good Friday (because I said so) and I’m going a different route with this post.
Recently, I have found myself semi-obsessed with the hilarious and often nostalgic randomness of social media site Buzzfeed. So, I decided to have my own version of their fun. Today, I’m examining certain car situations that present a cause for concern for the safety of the drivers and passengers. This is just a witty observation, however if you are dealing with any of these problems:
You Just May Need a New Car…
1. As ingenious as this quick fix is, I think another car door would probably be the best choice.
2. This is NOT what is meant by the phrase “A smokin’ hot ride”.
3. Now, I’m not saying that this solution won’t work. I’m sure that it keeps the car quite cool. But…no. Just no.
4. Rumor has it that all they did was put the car in drive…and THIS is what happened.
5. The ONE day they forget the “Escalator Out of Order” sign.
6. Whenever a door closes….well, you know the rest.
7. For that deep down dirt that a car wash just can’t get out.
And you thought you had car trouble!
Hopefully none of our readers have ever been in any of these situations. If so, this would be an ideal time to contact one of your local Lou Fusz dealerships and discuss a little bit of business.
Do you have any of your own horror stories or pictures of your old car dilemmas? We’d love to hear or see them!
The weather is finally starting to break and the sun is being a little bit more friendly. It is safe to say that the spring season we have been longing for has finally arrived. In preparation for the season, some of us have already began spring cleaning and swapping out some spring/summer clothing items (but keep those hoodies handy) However, don’t forget that now is a great time to get spring maintenance done on your car.
Back in December, we posted winter safety tips about winter-proofing your car in the occasion of inclement weather. Now that old man winter is fading away, it is ideal that a routine check-up be done on your car to ensure the harsh winter did no harm.
Here’s what to check:
As mentioned in the previous post, winter can be very harsh on both your car battery and tires. Make it a priority to check the battery and tires to ensure they haven’t taken too much of a beating. Next, you want to check the condition of your brakes. Snow and ice of the winter must be driven in cautiously, which puts some additional wear and tear on your brakes. Inspecting the back and rear brakes is advised. Third, pay attention to your belts and hoses. These consist of the serpentine and timing belts and the radiator hoses. Any cracking, peeling or splitting of the belts or hardening and bulging of the hoses may be causes for replacement. While you have the hood up, check that the coolant/anti-freeze being used complied with car specifications and is at proper levels. Last, make sure all of your fluids are topped off. These include windshield washing fluid, motor oil, power steering fluid, brake fluid and/or transmission fluid.
As the season progresses and the weather begins to warm up, make sure your A/C unit is functioning with a clean air filter. It is wise to check this ahead of time so you’re not unpleasantly surprised in the midst of the amazing blazing St. Louis summer weather!
Keep in mind that a lot of these can be DIY tasks with little to no assistance. However, if you’d prefer the help of a trained eye, you can contact you local Lou Fusz dealership or auto care facility.
So, there you are on the road…cruising along…window down….good music on the radio…not a care in the world…and then it happens. Someone comes through and interrupts your feel good mood with the driving skills of a toddler. Oblivious to their careless and sometimes dangerous actions, you have now been summoned into a slight fit of road rage. Everyone’s tolerance is different, but we all have little quirks while driving that really get under our skin.
Here are my top 5 pet peeves on the road:
5. Mr./Ms. Show Off
This is the wonderful individual who decides that they are the superstar of the road and wants everyone to know about it. Typically this person has some fancy car with a loud motor, limo tents and can be seen weaving in and out of traffic at ridiculous speeds. Their mission is to let you know that they have somewhere to be and you are obviously in their way! On the street, this is the person that decides they are now in the Indy 500 and peels off when the light turns green. Ironically, after hustling to be first, you usually see them sitting at the next red light. Better luck next time.
4. Brake-r, Brake-r
Not only is this irritating, it is a TOTAL distraction. This person may not really be driving at turtle speeds, but for some reason, they find it necessary to brake-check every 10 seconds and the constant flashing of their brake light is so annoying. But it gets worse. This is also the person slowing down or coming to a COMPLETE stop at a green light for no reason. No one in front of them. No car trouble. Just a blatant disregard for traffic awareness.
3. The Speed Demon
This one is pretty self-explanatory. Have you ever been on the highway and someone is driving past you so fast, YOU slow down? Yeah, THAT’S the Speed Demon. Times like this, I wish I were a cop.
2. Car in the Back Seat
Initially, this driver claimed the number one spot, but got bumped down to 2. However, my fury with them is still unparalleled. So, what exactly is the car in the back seat? It is the car that is driving so close behind you, when you look in your rearview mirror, you would swear that you brought them along for the ride. Here’s the issue, driving that close behind someone is dangerous and in the event of a quick brake, an accident will occur. Also, this violates the law and could result in a citation. As a rule of thumb, you should always allow about 3 seconds of space between you and the car in front of you, NOT a millisecond. It’s just plain RUDE!
1. The Phantom Blinker
It was really a coin toss to see who would get the number one spot, but this tops my list because it grinds my gears to no end. In the past few weeks, it is uncanny how many incidents I’ve had with the phantom blinker. This is the driver that refuses to use a blinker and expects you to know their next move. You usually find this person when traffic is horrendous and they decide to switch lanes at the same time that you do. While you made sure to signal to move around the congestion, they just pull out very swiftly and sometimes totally unaware of the oncoming traffic, putting others at risk of a collision. This may also be the person that is preparing to make a left or right turn, but decides that no one else needs to know that. As they approach their turn slow to a near stop and turn, all without so much as a tap on the signal indicator. SO ANNOYING! Let the road rage begin!
At some point, we have all been victims (and culprits) of these behaviors and I know that there are a lot more that didn’t make the list. Which ones top your list?
What word could be used to describe this week for Buick? Only one comes to mind. MAJOR!
This week, the affordable-luxury brand was the center of attention of several websites and blogs with the unveiling of the 2014 Buick LaCrosse and Regal cars. Both cars saw subtle yet stylish tweaks in exterior design as well as fresh updates in interior technology and features. Both the LaCrosse and Regal where introduced at the 2013 New York International Auto Show and instantly generated buzz on their redesigns as Buick continues to target a more youthful consumer base.
The interior of the 2014 Buick LaCrosse was the recipient of the most noticeable change in design and functionality. The color display of the instrument panel has bumped up to eight inches and is enhanced by an update in the IntelliLink system, which allows for easier customization and better voice command recognition. A new Ultra Luxury Interior Package option offers a classy touch up with revised consoles, door panels and accents of ash wood trim and suede.
Without compromising its sophisticated exterior appearance, the LaCrosse’s front end has undergone a slight face lift This distinguishable update is seen in the update with the addition of LED trimmed headlamps is complimented by the bold signature chrome accented grille. The LED addition continues on the back with restyled rear lighting and also a touch of chrome accenting. While there weren’t many major changes to the exterior or under the hood this year, there will be an option to bump up to 20″ wheels.
The 2014 Regal, which has been proclaimed as the “athlete” of the Buick family, will be available with an All-Wheel Drive option. The Regal Turbo gains a bit of muscle with the addition of 39 horsepower and 35 pound-feet of torque from its 2.0-liter engine. The exterior receives the same LED light updates and chrome accenting seen in the LaCrosse.
On the inside of the Turbo addition, the instrument gauge cluster and infotainment system provides a new 4.2-inch color display for drivers to see information for the vehicle, navigation and audio systems while the Regal GS sees an eight-inch configurable gauge display. Also, the overall reduction of buttons on the center console offers a more user-friendly and clean platform.
The LaCrosse is set to start rolling out in US dealerships this summer, while the Regal shows up in the fall. More information about the LaCrosse can be seen in the videos below. Information for the Regal will be uploaded as it becomes available from the official Buick YouTube channel. Make sure you check back as more 2014 vehicles are unveiled.
Knowing that a small gesture of appreciation can go a long way possibly change a life. Isn’t it a great feeling to know that your efforts have made a difference?
Yep, we think so, too.
Today, in honor of Red Cross Month, Lou Fusz Buick GMC is holding its 4th annual blood donation drive within the dealership. The drive is open to all employees and also to customers who want to make a contribution to the American Red Cross. The drive was announced as being open to the public in hopes of getting as many people to donate as possible.
Our office manager Beth Meister and body shop receptionist Stephanie Watson are responsible for heading up the event and both explained why the drive is so important to the dealership. “We’re always looking for ways to do our part and give back to our community.” Stephanie says. This is our fourth year having this blood drive and It’s just part of our conscious effort to be support people in need of blood,” says Beth.
Also, General Manager Randy Fusz expresses that this is just the tip of the iceberg. “I plan on having at least four events this year. I want to have blood drives every quarter and get us participating in other events as the year progresses.”
The Red Cross website gives tons of insight to all of the different options that are available for people and/or businesses interested in contributing. It also provides some very interesting facts about blood needs, supplies, donors and the donation process. According to the website:
- Every TWO SECONDS, someone in the United States is in need of blood.
- One donation can help save the lives of up to three people
- The blood type most often requested in hospitals is Type O. This is because Type O red blood cells can be transfused to patients of all blood types. Considered the “universal donor”, only 7% of people in the United States have this blood type.
I understand that everyone is not able to donate for various different reasons. However, I would really suggest that anyone who is willing and able to give blood to do so. It’s very inspirational to think of the fact that a mere 30 minutes of your time dedicated to this process could potentially save THREE LIVES. What fuels you to donate? Leave us a comment and let us know why.
For more information about Red Cross and donating, please visit www.redcrossblood.org.
Let’s play a game of “Way Back When”
It’s always baffled me how something so simple can really trigger memories of the “good ‘ol days”. There are so many sounds and sights that are quick to turn on the nostalgia switch and send you right on a cruise down memory lane.
While thinking about a post for this week’s blog, it hit me. Why not pick 5 vehicles that excited you or captured your attention when you were a kid? So, I did! And here are the one’s I remember the most (in no particular order):
5. The Bookmobile – YES! Who didn’t love to see this mini library on wheels parked outside of the school when you arrived or went out for recess? There was nothing like it. Shelf upon shelf of cool books browse and check out. And if you were REALLY lucky, there would sometimes be a storyteller aboard ready to read you a tale or two.
4. The Ice Cream Truck – Ah yes, a staple of the summertime. That all too familiar DING! DING! that you hear from a distance meant one thing. You only had a few minutes to run and get some money from mom because the frozen treat mobile was ON THE WAY!
3. The Field Trip Bus – Remember waiting anxiously for this? No sooner that you step off of your school bus, you were ready to climb aboard the field trip bus, which was likely headed to the local museum or zoo. What was better than the field trip bus arriving? Teasing the other kids that have to stay at school!
2. Cool TV/Movie Cars – Oh yea…I went there. These silver screen beauties where always guaranteed to get your attention. The DeLorean of the Back To The Future movies and the Batmobile of the Batman comics and movies where definitely toy collectors items, but seeing one in person…amazing!
1. The Classic Car – As happy as sighting one of the above cars would make you feel, there was nothing like being in the presence of a classic car. They just have a certain “something” that commands respect and attention. Shown is a 1971 GMC Spirit.
If at least one of these didn’t bring back a good memory, I don’t know WHAT to tell ya! Understand, these are just a few that crossed my mind, but there are SO many more. Can you think of any? Leave us a comment below or Facebook or @FuszBuickGMC.
At some point in life, you will be faced with this task of buying a new car. It can be a very exciting experience browsing through all of the options and trims available at your favorite dealership. However, the researching, number crunching, and lot rummaging can be tiring and slightly discouraging at times. Regardless of the experience that you have, the feeling of leaving the lot with a new toy is one that is incomparable. There is one step in the car buying process that is critical to make sure that you are making the best vehicle purchase. This step, my friends, is the TEST DRIVE!
In recent years, dealerships have noticed a decline of customers test driving vehicles. These customers believe their extensive internet researching and dealership visits are enough and test drives are a waste of time. This is NOT TRUE AT ALL! Actually, that is exactly why the test drive is VERY important. It will lay to rest all of your reservations on how your favorite set of wheels performs on the road and helps to solidify your decision of purchasing the vehicle or not.
Now, before you go jumping into the car of your choice for a test drive. There are a few basic tips that will make the process run much smoother and eliminate confusion and miscommunication.
- Have all of your registration information with you (license and proof of insurance). Besides the fact that it should always be with you while operating a vehicle, dealerships will require a license before they turn you loose with their merchandise.
- ALWAYS examine the vehicle before the test drive. Inspect the exterior and interior for any damage or marks and alert your salesperson. No need to get accused of something you didn’t do and change the air of an otherwise delightful visit.
- Wherever you go, it goes. If you drive a lot on the highway and street, make sure that you test drive on the highway and street. Give ‘er some gas and test the acceleration. Get comfortable from the most accurate ride.
- Finally, PAY ATTENTION! Know what is important to you in a new vehicle and make sure that this car meets and/or exceeds those requirements. Also, test the functionality of interior features (A/C, radio, seat adjustments). This could possibly be the car you buy, you should KNOW that you’ll enjoy it.
Depending on the dealership, their test driving protocol can vary. Some may be required to ride with you or leave items other than your ID for “collateral”. Whatever the case, you should never deprive yourself of this essential process when considering a new car purchase. This is a huge responsibility and investment, make sure that you are thoroughly satisfied with it.
The 2013 Buick Encore has arrived!
Despite mentioning a hiatus in our last post, the “What’s In a Buick” campaign returns!
This week, a brand new crop of Encores rolled into our dealership and have been the topic of discussion and has taken center stage on our showroom!
So, what is all the hoopla about the Encore? As mentioned in the WIAB: Enclave post, the 2013 Encore is the first compact-sized SUV/crossover vehicle to be introduced into the Buick family. In comparison to the mid-sized Enclave, the Encore packs just as much luxury and quality into its smaller frame and has a significantly lower price tag. Other stand out features are:
- ECOTEC® Turbo 1.4L 4-cyclinder engine offering a average fuel economy of 28 MPG. All-wheel drive options are also available.
- Impressive technology options including front and rear parking assist, Bluetooth connectivity and Buick’s Intellilink system.
- Stylish contemporary exterior design with chrome accents and standard 18”aluminum wheels (with chrome options available).
Take a 6-second tour of the 2013 Buick Enore below:
Well…I can say that for now, this is the last post for the “What’s In a Buick” mini-campaign. But never fret, we will still be here to give your weekly update on Buick and GMC as well as other automotive news and tips.
Ready to find out What’s in A Buick this week?
Let’s get right to it. This week, we will be looking at the 2013 Buick LaCrosse. The LaCrosse is Buick’s answer to the customer seeking a mid-sized family vehicle without the bulkiness of an SUV or cross-over. Introduced in 2008 to replace the Buick Lucerne, the LaCrosse has become Buick’s main flagship sedan. Our salesman Steve Vansickle was chosen this week to express what about the LaCrosse makes it one of his favorite go-t0 cars at the dealership.
“The Buick LaCrosse offers the best ride that I’ve ever experienced in a car,” he states. “It handles very smoothly and easily and is really a pleasure to drive.” This smooth ride could be contributed to a host of different things. Most likely, it is due to LaCrosse’s StabiliTrak features. StabiliTrak technology is a control system which monitors the road and steering input to help achieve a ride that is both safe and relaxed. These are definitely features that compliments it’s sleek and appealing exterior. The LaCrosse also features e-Assist technology in the engine, which generously boosts fuel economy upwards of 36 MPG on the highway.
Taking a step inside the car, Steve talks about the interior room. “The size inside is great. It’s very roomy; very comfortable to ride in.” He goes on to say “The room in the backseat of the car is really nice. There’s tons of legroom.” After taking a seat in the backseat, I was VERY impressed with the comfort. As with all Buick cars, the LaCrosse delivers this comfort without compromising the luxury that is sought out in Buick products.
The Buick LaCrosse is a vehicle that is the epitome of great quality and performance. There is a lot packed into its mid-sized frame that puts it up against the likes of the Toyota Camry Hybrid and Acura TL. If you’re craving more information on the Buick LaCrosse or other Buick products, please visit the Lou Fusz Buick GMC website. For comments and suggestions, follow us on Twitter @FuszBuickGMC.
Until the release of the Buick Encore, the “What’s In a Buick” spotlight series will go on a hiatus. I know…I’m sad, too. However, make sure you come back every week for the latest in Buick GMC information and tips!