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Current Chicago Auto News
01
Top 5
Stylish Compact Cars for Driving in Chicago, IL
Nestled on the bank of Lake Michigan, Chicago is both the third largest city by population and the third most-visited city in the U.S. While the city has earned its place as a world-class city in which to live and visit with its exquisite lake views, impressive architecture, and interesting, sometimes brutal history, its popularity also makes it a busy city in which to drive. Going compact in Chicago makes merging in the heavy traffic easier, those high city gas prices less painful, and parking far easier to find.

Honda Fit

Sporty, sleek and coming in at a respectable 33 highway/27 city mpg, the Honda Fit offers multiple seating and cargo configurations ideal for going crazy on Chicago’s famous shopping street, The Magnificent Mile. Paddle shifters put control of the transmission back in your hands and make the Fit fun to drive, and some bright color options help you find your small ride in a sea of parked cars.

Scion tC

Though it doesn’t offer the sweetest gas mileage for a compact, if you want to make a splash on the Chicago club scene, the Scion tC will help you do it. One of the best cars for resale value in 2013, according to Kelley Blue Book, the tC comes standard with some very high-end features, including sport front bucket seats, leather trim and a moon roof.

Kia Soul

Billed as an urban hatchback, the Kia Soul has a boxy presence like no other. A bigger grill on the 2014 model with slightly more cargo space makes this car even more pleasing to look at and provides more room for hauling luggage. If you’re driving in for Lollapalooza, the Soul’s quieter ride will let your music be heard over the street noise.

Volkswagen Golf

Not the most sporting compact, the Volkswagen Golf has a lot to offer by way of space. When you haul the kids in to see the Cubs play at Wrigley Field, the Golf provides more legroom than its counterparts, and split seat configurations give you additional space if you need to add cargo to the mix. Coming in at only 23 city/30 highway mpg with the base engine, the Golf is not the best compact option when it comes to fuel efficiency. An upgrade to the TDI clean diesel engine makes a major difference, bringing the Golf’s fuel consumption in at a much better 30 city/42 highway mpg.

Mini Cooper

Though Chicago lacks some of the pretension of cities like New York, Los Angeles and Miami, a little eye candy won’t hurt when choosing your ride. Despite its more prominent presence on the American car scene, the Mini Cooper is still a bit of a novelty that will get you the right kind of attention when pulling up at the Chicago International Film Festival or one of the city’s trendiest eateries, like Restaurant Beatrix or the CH Distillery.

- Auto.com Editorial Staff
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The Smart Car Buyer
What to Bring With You When Car Shopping
If you are getting ready to buy your first car or to replace your current car, you have a lot of things to consider, including the make, model and color, and how much money you are willing to part with. Before you head on over the dealership, there are some items that you should bring with you to ensure that the transaction goes smoothly.

It almost goes without saying, but you need to remember to bring your valid driver’s license. This is something people forget sometimes, especially if they have been relying on other people to take them places. If you don’t have your license, you won’t be able to take any cars for a test drive or drive your new car home. You should also bring proof of insurance.

DO YOUR RESEARCH Unless you are fabulously wealthy and don’t care about losing money, you will need to do some research before going out car shopping. Looking up information online about the types of cars you are interested in will help you narrow your focus when you are out looking at available vehicles.

If you have a particular car in mind, research and print out the dealer’s invoice price and take it with you. This is invaluable information to have when you are negotiating with the salesperson. Put your printouts in a folder, along with the details of any incentives or rebates that you have discovered.

REVIEW THE REVIEWS Another useful thing to bring is a printout of trustworthy reviews of the cars you are most interested in. You can consult these pages while looking at particular cars, to refresh your memory about why you were interested in buying them.

If you don’t feel confident in your ability to properly evaluate a car, you should consider bringing a friend or family member who knows something about cars. If the dealer senses that you have no idea what you are looking at, there is a temptation to take advantage of you.

It’s also a good idea to bring the phone number of a trusted mechanic, in case you want to make an appointment to get a used car checked out. Your mechanic may even be willing to meet you at the location to do an inspection. This is particularly useful when you are considering buying a used car from a dealership you’ve never been to before or when you are evaluating a car being sold by a private party.

- Auto.com Editorial Staff
Chicago
For the Love of Driving: Chicago
Chicago, also commonly known as "The Windy City," is the third most populous city in the country, with a current estimated population of around 2.7 million residents in the city alone and an additional 9.5 in the surrounding "Chicagoland" suburbs. Because of its large size, huge skyscrapers, and robust shopping district, Chicago is a very popular stop among tourists. Whether you're planning a short visit in the near future or are even a nearby resident, there's plenty for you to see and do in this busy city without necessarily even having to leave your car.

Landmarks

Michigan Avenue is a must-see stretch of shops and restaurants if you plan on visiting The Windy City. Famous for its "Magnificent Mile," here you can peruse a wide range of shops, boutiques, department stores, restaurants, and more. This is a great place if you love to shop, as there's truly something for everybody here. Enjoy an afternoon of window shopping with your family from the comfort of your Dodge Caravan as you cruise down Michigan Avenue. Stop at any of the city's ample public parking spots to explore some select shops on foot.

If you cruise down to the area of Grant Park, you'll find another attraction that you can enjoy from the comfort of your car: the Buckingham Fountain. The Beaux-Arts style design of this fountain is an eye-catching centerpiece and a great place to take photos with family and friends as well. On some nights, there are even special water and light shows for passersby to enjoy.

Natural Attractions

Since Chicago is located right off the shores of Lake Michigan, this is a great place to visit and just a short drive from downtown in your Jeep Patriot. Cruise down to Lake Michigan for a great view of the water. On nicer days, you can get out and enjoy beaches such as Oak Street Beach and Montrose Beach. Pack up your Patriot with plenty of beach towels, sunscreen, buckets and shovels for a fun day with family and friends by the water.

More To See

Another must-see attraction located in downtown Chicago is that of famous Navy Pier. Just a short ride in your Hyundai Accent down East Grand Avenue, this beautiful pier is a great place for shopping, dining, and all-around fun. Depending on the time of year you visit, you can even enjoy a scenic ride on the pier's famous Ferris wheel. During the summer, you can catch a fireworks show off the pier at the end of the night. On rainy days, you can find a full IMAX movie theater and plenty of shops inside the adjacent mall. Navy Pier is an absolute must-see for both tourists and full-time residents alike.

As you can see, there's plenty to do and see in the large city of Chicago. Explore the city and check out the attractions listed above for yourself; you'll be glad you did!

- Auto.com Editorial Staff
01
As Sexy As Can Be: The Evolution of the Porsche
There was one in “Risky Business” starring with Tom Cruise, as well as featured with Diane Keaton and Woody Allen in “Annie Hall”. It starred in the opening scene of “Gone in Sixty Seconds”. Will Smith mentioned it in his early hit "Parents Just Don't Understand” and it debuted in the Museum of Modern Art in 1953. We are talking about the stunning, sexy, to-die-for - Porsche.

COMING TO AMERICA Car enthusiasts everywhere fell passionately in love with the Porsche the minute it purred its way to America in 1950. So much so, that Porsche apportioned over half of its total worldwide production to the U.S. a couple of years after its introduction. Recently Kelly Blue Book dubbed it “The Coolest Brand in America”. The Porsche is the motivation behind the devout zeal of generations of drivers and is an icon in the American culture.

Did you know that the name Porsche is actually pronounced PORSH-uh. Many people say it by dropping the e and just saying Porsh. In 1900, Ferdinand Porsche developed a hybrid gas/electric vehicle – a world first. In 1906, he became Technical Director at Austro-Daimler at ripe old age of 31. Four years later the touring car that Ferdinand Porsche designed wins a triple victory in the Prince Henry trials. Ferdinand Porsche himself was the winning driver.

A SNAPPY ROADSTER There are many firsts with Porsche; first to make passenger air bags available, first car in the world with brakes on all four wheels (The 1898 Lohner-Porsche Elektromobil), the first U.S. Porsches displayed in a New York City showroom by U.S. importer Max Hoffman. The first Porsche to emerge at the New York Auto Show was called "a snappy Porsche roadster” in 1954. In 1956, piloted by Hans Herrmann was the first appearance of a Porsche at the historic 12 Hours of Sebring endurance race.

Even though singer Janis Joplin wailed about her friends driving Porsches’ while she was stuck with a Mercedes- Benz, she actually owned a Cabriolet painted in the psychedelic style of the 60’s. You can still spot the car at many auto museums and art museums as well.

You do not need fame to own a Porsche, just a deep love of driving a well-oiled beast that looks like Cinderella dressed for the ball. New York, NY-based Luxury Institute ranked Porsche the most prestigious brand in its segment, and pulled a nice overall rating of 78. Yes sir-ree my friend beating Mercedes Benz’ overall score of 76.

- Auto.com Editorial Staff
Dummy
Advances in Air Bag Technology
Vehicle safety has been a topic of concern for the automobile industry for many years. In an effort to make their vehicles safer, car manufacturers have altered vehicle design and added a number of safety features to benefit both passengers and drivers. Today consumers can benefit from such safety features as collapsible steering, padded dashboards, seat and shoulder belts and air bags on most all contemporary vehicle models. Recent advances in air bag technology continue to increase vehicle safety on the road.

THE STANDARD Most all modern vehicles today contain airbags as standard safety features. These gas inflated cushions are designed to function instantly upon vehicle impact, protecting drivers and passengers from crashing into the windshield and sustaining bodily harm. Airbags can be installed in various areas of a vehicle to include steering column, dashboard, doors, interior roof, etc. Since their full scale implementation in 1998, airbags have been instrumental in saving countless lives; combined with the use of seat belts, they have reduced the risk of accident fatality by over 60%.

SAFETY FROM ALL SIDES As airbag technology increased, side impact airbags and curtain airbags were introduced to the market in the mid 1990’s. These safety features were designed to protect passengers from chest and head injuries during side impact accidents and added extra passenger protection in the event the vehicle rolled over.

QUICK ACTION The dual depth passenger side airbag originally introduced by General Motors was yet another advancement that improved passenger safety. These airbags were designed with special sensors that controlled the speed at which the bags were inflated in conjunction with the severity of the impact. For severe crashes, the bags were programmed to inflate quickly, providing instant protection. For mild crashes or “fender benders,” the bags inflated at a slower rate. The introduction of knee airbags provided a means to protect legs and knees during a crash.

FURTHER ADVANCES Advances in airbag technology for 2013 include the introduction of GM’s front center airbag and flexible venting driver airbag. The front center airbag provides a protective cushion between the driver and front passenger of the vehicle in a side impact crash. The flexible venting driver airbag was designed to decrease airbag injuries due to sudden, rapid inflation in a crash. As the driver impacts the airbag, gas is pushed out of the bag to allow for more flexible cushioning in an accident, enabling the bag to provide just the right amount of protection for low and high speed accidents.

As car manufacturers continue to improve airbag technology, consumers will benefit from greater vehicle safety for years to come. Consumers should research these and other safety features in the vehicles they buy in order to benefit from all that they have to offer.

- Auto.com Editorial Staff
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Tip Top Car Service Options in Chicago
Chicago, AKA The Windy City, is a Midwest mecca and one of the most populous and famous cities in the U.S. Learn when the locals go when their cars need some love in this roundup of top Chicago car service centers.

Albany Auto Inc., located at 4030 N. Rockwell Street in Chicago's North Center neighborhood, has been a family-owned and operated business for more than 30 years. This shop offers auto repair, body work, and maintenance. Customers are fans of Albany Auto's quality work at fair prices, and praise the shop's honesty and great customer service.

Down the road, at 3044 W. Montrose Avenue in the Albany Park neighborhood of Chicago, is ABM Auto Repair. This shop prides itself on being reputable, honest, and professional, and customers agree. Customers cite Adeel's friendly manner and knowledge of cars, and mention how reasonable this shop's prices are. The technicians at ABM are all ASE certified.

Another option for auto repair is Joe's Expert Auto Service, located at 2740 N. Elston. Avenue in Bucktown. Joe's specializes in imports but will also happily service all domestic cars. Services offered include preventative maintenance, oil changes, differential repair, factory-recommended inspections, and parts and repair. This shop is noted for its honesty, professionalism, fair prices, and excellent work.

Norm's Automotive Clinic is another well-known Chicago gem, located at 5943 N. Lincoln Avenue near West Rogers Park. This auto repair shop is hailed for its fairness, honesty, and quality.

Auto Detail Chicago, located at 1628 S. Prairie Avenue near Southside, was voted Best of Chicago in 2012 by the Chicago Award Program. Owners Jay Phillips and Jesse Arellano have been in business since 2010 and offer both interior and exterior detailing, washing, and waxing. Customers are pleased with the professional detailing results Auto Detail Chicago offers.

Another option for auto detailing, just to the north, is West Loop Auto Spa, located at 850 W. Washington Boulevard, near the West Side and the West Loop. This detailer offers hand washing, interior detailing, buff and wax, and window tinting and dent removal. West Loop is known for excellent-quality service at a great price, along with friendly, quick, and professional service.

Nearby, you'll find Euro Collision, located at 2232 S. Wabash Avenue near Southside. This shop offers auto body work, auto repair, and detailing. Many customers note that Euro Collision called them daily while their cars were in the shop for progress updates. This shop also is known to clean and detail your car, even if it's in for body work

- Auto.com Editorial Staff

Reviews

01
2013 Ford Expedition Review
Ford has done it again. The 2013 Ford Expedition is the best heavy duty SUV in its class. It is capable of towing more than 9,000 pounds and it is loaded with lots of amenities. Safety is also an important feature that Ford endorses whole heartedly. The Expedition anti lock braking system is designed to enforce better braking control.

The six speed automatic transmission is custom made to shift gears on demand. There are more than 10 levels of high performance Expedition and Expedition XL models available to meet every customers needs. At 18 miles per gallon on the highway the Expedition can travel for miles without running out of fuel.

Sightseeing around town burns an average of 13 miles per gallon in the city for the 4 wheel drive and 14 miles per gallon with the 2 wheel drive. That is a lot of driving for the money. The 5.4 liter V8 engine is designed for slow fuel consumption. Entertainment is another luxury that Ford offers with their 2013 Expedition.

Watching DVD’s on the road and listening to the latest events on the radio is pure enjoyment. The new Ford Expedition also has a new exterior; blue jeans, Kodak brown and ruby red metallic gives customers a variety of choices to choose from. The 20 inch chrome aluminum wheels and roof rack with side mirrors are just a few options customers can choose from.

Texting and driving is a serious health and safety hazard but the new 2013 Ford Expedition has everything under control. Get to the next destination in record time with Ford’s new voice activated navigation system. Drivers will appreciate the text to voice capability and Bluetooth technology. Take the lap top along and check the email or keep up with the bills.

If kids are a concern it should not be. Dual airbags in the front, rear and sides protects everyone in the vehicle. Tire monitoring systems and anti theft features are other security measures that Ford takes pride in delivering. For even more security and theft prevention the keypad entry is powered and furnished by SecuriCode.

Check out the Ford Expeditions available in some of our top cities!

Cincinnati Ford Expeditions

Indianapolis Ford Expeditions

Fort Worth Ford Expeditions

Louisville Ford Expeditions

Orlando Ford Expeditions

01
2013 Chevrolet Tahoe Review
Follow your road to adventure with the 2013 Chevrolet Tahoe that lets you explore and discover the highways and the byways in style as well as providing a cool and comfortable ride.

Make a statement when you are out and about with the sleek lines and uptown look of the Tahoe designed with comfort, efficiency, and affordability in mind. When it comes to price, the Tahoe is competitive with MSRP starting at $38,755. With solid construction, fuel efficiency, and numerous interior and exterior options to fine-tune your ride, the affordable Chevrolet Tahoe provides what you need, when you need it.

Be prepared to ride in confidence with the power of the Tahoe’s Vortec™ 5.3L V8 engine under your feet that gets an impressive gas mileage estimated at 21 MPG on the open highway and 15 MPG in the city. Whenever you need the extra punch or city street or highway power, the 2013 Chevrolet Tahoe won't let you down.

When it comes to a comfortable ride, the Tahoe has everything you need, hands-down. With ample cargo space equaling 108.9 cu.ft., Z71 Off-Road Suspension Package, and seating for nine, you have the room and the power to make any day excursion, weekend sightseeing trip, or extended road trip a complete pleasure. Add the cable portable music player and the DVD system for passengers seated in the back and the Tahoe becomes a rolling entertainment center.

Accessorize the exterior with a wide selection of options from roof-mounted and hitch-mounted carriers to fog lamps and fender flares. Inside, for those cold winter days include the heated seat kit and for kids include the assist steps for easy, and safe entry and exit. For an even dressier look, enhance the standard five-spoke 20” wheels to 22” chrome wheels with six or 12 spokes for a super sporty look.

Cons for the Tahoe LS include a smaller engine and less horsepower than the GMC Yukon and Cadillac Escalade. Pros include very competitive prices and equal or better gas mileage compared to the GMC Yukon XL 1500 SLE, GMC Yukon, and Cadillac Escalade.


Check out the Chevrolet Tahoes available in some of our top cities!

Birmingham Chevrolet Tahoes

San Diego Chevrolet Tahoes

Denver Chevrolet Tahoes

Memphis Chevrolet Tahoes

Seattle Chevrolet Tahoes

Chicago Car Dealers

Top 5 01 Stylish Compact Cars for Driving in Chicago, IL The Smart Car Buyer File000530964878 What to Bring With You When Car Shopping Local Chicago For the Love of Driving: Chicago National 01 As Sexy As Can Be: The Evolution of the Porsche Tip Dummy Advances in Air Bag Technology