Archives For Cars

We’ve reached the point of fall where we can safely say we won’t get another 80 degree day till next year (or next week), which means one thing: winter is coming!

Yes, the snowy wonderland will soon be upon us, and that means icy roads just begging to whip your car back and forth like Willow Smith’s hair. One remedy for this traction-less malaise? Winter Tires!

As advantageous as it is to swap out your all-season tires for their wintery counterparts, there are many who try to sell them short. Many winter tire myths are created to justify keeping your old tires on, which are complete and total bullsnot.

Tires

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When you think October in Michigan, you probably think about the fall colors, decorating pumpkins, and a Detroit Lions season that’s over before it really started. But if you’re in the automotive biz, you also think about the upcoming North American International Auto Show and the North American Car and Truck/Utility of the Year Awards.

You see, October is when the independent journalists who ultimately select the North American Car and Truck of the Year release their short list of vehicles that are under consideration for these awards.

2016 North American Car Truck of the YearSo without further ado, here are the vehicles that made the list:

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As you may have heard by now, Volkswagen recently admitted that a ‘defeat device’ designed to cheat emission testing systems was installed on over 11 million VW cars equipped with the EA 189 engine worldwide.

Volkswagen EA 189 TDI Diesel Engine

The software that is installed on the EA 189 engine can detect when a car is undergoing EPA emissions testing and turn on the vehicle’s full emissions controls to ensure the vehicle passes the test. When the vehicle is operating under normal driving conditions, the software is turned off resulting in the emission of nitrous oxide at levels 10 to 40 times greater than what is permitted by law.

LaFontaine Volkswagen in Dearborn has been getting quite a few calls and emails from concerned customers regarding this issue, and we wanted to make sure we let you know what to do if you own or lease one of these vehicles.

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If you haven’t heard Nissan just released the all-new, totally redesigned 2016 Maxima. With a bold exterior and premium interior, the new Maxima is certainly a thing of beauty.

We received our first batch of the Maxima’s last week, and I was as giddy as a kid on Christmas. But after spending ample time getting to know the new Maxima inside and out, I got to thinking…

2016 Nissan Maxima at LaFontaine Nissan

The 2016 Nissan Maxima has arrived at LaFontaine Nissan

Infiniti is the luxury brand for Nissan, so for the longest time whenever people have been looking for high-end, top-quality vehicles, Infiniti has been one of the names that gets brought up; and rightly so! From the Q40 to the QX80, there is nothing but luxury and style pulsing from these cars.

But let me ask you a question.

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Not too long ago I suggested a few Quirky But Beautiful Road Trip Destinations that you and your family might enjoy now that summer vacation season is officially underway.

Before you get too excited about mapping out your next road trip destination, let’s bring you back to reality for a few minutes.

The Zen of Road Trips: 5 Ways to Survive the Drive

Road Trips can either be amazing journeys that you remember forever or they can be the thing of nightmares that you’ll never forget (as much as you may want to).

Personally I’ve experienced both ends of the spectrum, and I can tell you if you want to have a Zen-like vacation that’s free of stress it all comes down to preparing ahead of time.

So whether you’re hitting the road to visit your family or you’re diving off to experience something new – follow along with these 5 Ways to Survive the Drive and the odds of you having an anxiety free vacation are in your favor.

1. Prepare Your Vehicle Before You Hit The Road

OK, first things first. Your mind and body won’t be in a peaceful state if your vehicle isn’t prepared to handle the rigors of a long road trip.

Before you set out on your journey, make sure your vehicle is in good shape. Check your oil, tire pressure and all the vital fluids. If anything needs to be tuned up or fixed, schedule a service appointment before you head out.

And remember (and I speak from experience on this one), if the check engine light comes on during your trek, stop immediately and get it checked out (R.I.P. ’86 Chrysler Lebaron).

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On May 1, 1980 Mike LaFontaine Sr. purchased his very first car dealership. Exactly 35 years later I’m excited to introduce you to our newest family member, LaFontaine Ford of Frankenmuth.

On a beautiful spring morning in Frankenmuth, the LaFontaine and Galsterer families completed the sale of Galsterer Ford to the LaFontaine Automotive Group.

Introducing LaFontaine Ford of Frankenmuth

For nearly 100 years, the Galsterer Ford dealership has been a very large part of the Frankenmuth community. Taking care of their customers, employees and being good stewards in town was always important to the three-generation family.

As they began to ponder retirement and with none of their next generation interested in the car business, brothers Mike and Robert Galsterer searched for the proper partners as they prepared to turn over the family car dealership to new owners.

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Today I am pleased to announce that the Dwyer and LaFontaine families recently came together to officially transfer ownership of Dwyer and Sons Volvo to the LaFontaine Automotive Group.

Because of our desire to provide our guests with the intimate Volvo experience they deserve, we’re relocating our Volvo dealership from it’s current location in Commerce to Farmington Hills – just a few miles down the road.

Volvo Cars of Farmington Hills

Officially the dealership will be known as Volvo Cars of Farmington Hills (located at 24730 Haggerty Road) and will be open for sales and service on April 1, 2015.

Frank Dwyer will be personally involved in the daily operations of Volvo Cars of Farmington Hills, and I know he’s looking forward to carrying on the Dwyer tradition of customer service at our new location.

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The news it out, the jig is up, we finally found it. The Renegade, they had it made, and now you can buy it!

That’s right ladies and gentleman (and Styx fans all over the world), the 2015 Jeep Renegade has arrived at LaFontaine Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram in Saline, Michigan.

2015 Jeep Renegade at LaFontaine Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram

We caught our first real life glimpse of the new Renegade at the North American International Auto Show and it certainly made a lasting impression.

With best in class 4×4, 9 speed automatic transmission, UConnect technology and over 30 miles per gallon – the Renegade is shaping up to be one of the best compact SUV’s available on the market today.

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Even though my vintage magazine collection is practically worthless in terms of monetary value, it is rich in content to post here on FamilyDealBlog.com (silver lining anyone?).

The past two months I’ve truly enjoyed flipping through these magazines and finding little nuggets of automotive advertising to share with you.

1983-Honda-Prelude-Ad-Medium

If you’ve liked what you’ve seen so far, you’re going to love knowing that I have stockpiled enough vintage ads to publish a new piece each week for the next 12 years.

Yea, twelve years!

Because the weather is starting to warm up here in Michigan, it truly feels like a prelude to spring. In the morning you can hear the birds chirp, the snow is starting to melt, and ever since we’ve sprung forward it’s staying light out later.

It’s because of this prelude that in only makes sense to share with you this vintage advertisement for the 1983 Honda Prelude.

Let’s check it out…

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When flipping though my vintage magazine collection looking for an interesting piece of automotive advertising to share with you, I stumbled across this gem of an ad for the 1978 Dodge Magnum XE.

It’s not the look of the ad that caught my attention, it’s the totally outrageous story that’s being told.

1978 Doge Magnum XE Vintage Magazine Ad

A well dressed man in a tuxedo approaches a beautiful woman at a roulette table (in what I can only assume is a swanky casino) and opens with “Ever been….car-napped my dear?”

Say what!? Seriously, Dodge?

If you were to play out this opening scene today, this guy would probably get maced, punched and promptly escorted off the casino’s premises with him asking himself aloud, “was it something I said?”.

But apparently in 1978, the appropriate way for this young lady to react is to say “Car-napped? How intriguing!” /facepalm

So now that I’ve set the scene, see how the story ends in this riveting piece of advertising, straight out of Mad Men, for the ’78 Dodge Magnum XE.

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