Facebook – A Driver and Car Seller’s Guide

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Some people believe the relationship between internet technology and the car is simply that the internet has reduced the need for personal car ownership. However, this doesn’t take into account how the internet and social media can be used to sell cars, or to help car enthusiasts to connect with each other.

Selling on the Internet

Many traditional local car magazines have gone online also, which is cheaper than print but increases the pool of competitors greatly. Take for example autotrader.com which was a series of local papers is now competing with the likes of auto.com or even generalized online shopping sites like craigslist.org. eBay actually bridged the gap between it’s general site and the specific needs of the auto industry 10 years ago with it’s eBay Motors.

Many dealerships are putting their entire inventory online and then using social media simply as a tool to draw shoppers there. Social media excels at building and reinforcing brand identity and loyalty so it’s a good chance for dealerships to try to overcome the bad reputation often associated with that class of business.

Selling on Social Media

Selling on Facebook is not the first port of call for something as important as a car. As with selling any product or service on Facebook it helps to grow your potential market, it also makes answering potential questions from your clients a breeze. As a bonus, your communication will automatically be cell phone friendly.

Advertising on Facebook is easy and so far very affordable compared to other forms of marketing. Facebook even has a special person who can list your cars for you, although this is probably not available to the non-dealership seller. Although Facebook is connected in a business sense to Instagram there is as yet no specific way to use Instagram for your dealership. Maybe this will change in future years?

There are many warnings about scams on Facebook, not unlike most marketplaces these days. The general advice is to pay cash for every transaction and never go to a place alone, especially if you believe yourself to be particularly vulnerable. Tell someone where you’re going in any case. Never pay for a car you have not seen.

 

Facebook and Cars (not selling)

Other people may use Facebook just to post blogs rather than sell cars, such as Auto.com. There are pages for specific types of car where you might choose to chat about what is good and what is bad about your specific vehicle. The most popular in terms of likes is both Mercedes Benz and BMW with 20 million likes.

This savvy use of Facebook builds goodwill with potential customers and creates that community effect. Essentially, they leverage Facebook for what it’s good at and keep their sales to themselves.

For those who aren’t car sellers, we can still use Facebook to look at other car related items. A search for “satnav” for example will bring up satnavs being sold in Facebook Marketplace, threads about satnavs from your history and articles posted about satnavs on Facebook.

If you go the Facebook Groups category you can find hundreds of satnav related groups you might like to join up to. As with anything, the more you put into Facebook the more it is possible to get out of it. Alternatively, you might like to look up Facebook Videos to see satnavs in use, though it seems rather similar to YouTube.

Looking for something like kit cars might be more troublesome, as you obtain details for how to make toy cars from kits, emergency car kits, Bluetooth kits for cars and so on. “Kit car” works better and make works better still, say something like “Lomax kit car.” As with anything you need to experiment in order to get the best result.

This has just been a short introduction; there should be a number of features you can take advantage of on Facebook for your car buying and car selling needs. It’s an active market and there is plenty of useful stuff out there.

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The Squeeze – How to Get The Most of Car Space

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You may not be aware of the term “cargo space,” though it’s just a more complicated way of saying trunk space. A similar term used in the motor trade is “cargo capacity” which means the same thing.

Looking at the objects that people put it trunks in the pictures it tends to be suitcases, cooler boxes, items like that. Everything you might need for a week or a fortnight away, though the items will need to place in our trunks could be yard trash, a table, chairs… Well, you get the idea.

A way to increase the space is to have storage in the front of the vehicle, as Tesla does. This wouldn’t be possible in a conventional vehicle but because the Tesla is electric the engine doesn’t take up that much space. They nickname this new space as the “frunk,” a portmanteau of “front trunk”.

trunk-1478832_1920As well as the front space, you might look at the under-trunk space, although in most cars this is where the spare tire is stored. Minivans, however, often only use part of the underfloor to store the tire leaving part for additional storage.

Minivans aren’t alone in touting their ample surplus of space. The makers of the Pontiac boast that you could fit a whole mattress in the trunk of their car. This might be too much space for most people, how often do you wish to transport a mattress? But if you require space this is probably the ideal car to get.

When you have space you might like to utilize it in bizarre new ways.

Are you unhappy with the car’s current speakers? No problem, get yourself a huge pair of subwoofers and stick them in your trunk. Okay, you no longer have half your trunk space, but it does improve your listening pleasure.

Got a couple bikes to transport? You have two basic choices—inside or out. You can install a bike rack on the roof or the trunk, depending on your car’s body type. For those who have yet to purchase a bike rack or wish to carry more than one the bicycle can be a tricky thing to transport. One idea is to use a foldaway bike which not only allows you to store the bike but also, depending on the size of the vehicle, allows room for rucksacks and other items needed for your travels.

If you are someone who needs to look immaculate all the time as you travel around the country you might like to transform your trunk into a walk-in closet complete with space for jackets to be hung up, shoes and ties.

If you are worried about items being broken in the trunk, obtaining a trunk shelf might be the answer, allowing items like eggs and so on to remain in one place and not get crushed by other items. For minivans, a cargo net can be a lifesaver.

A number of the items above may seem like late April Fools but they are available on the internet. Anywhere there is empty space, someone’s going to have an idea of how to fill it.

Sorry, But We’re Looking At The Slow Lane

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But first, let’s take a fast look at the basics because I know most of us never see a freeway that’s not a packed with slow-moving traffic in every lane.

The Right Lane

According to the Uniform Vehicle Code, the right-most lane, a.k.a. slow lane is primarily for vehicles that have just entered the freeway or intend to leave it at the next exit. It has a second purpose, however, and that is to house vehicles that aren’t traveling with the flow of other vehicles. We’ll return to that in a second.

The slow lane in hilly terrain is also known as the climbing lane. The layout is such that two lanes head upwards on a freeway and one head downward. Heavy vehicles are more likely to use the climbing lane.

The Left Lane

The U.V.C also defines the use of the left-most lane, a.k.a. fast lane. The right lane is also known as the passing lane, because vehicles in this lane are, in theory, overtaking slower traffic in lanes to the right.

It’s worth noting that Colorado Police are particularly well known for handing out tickets for going slow in the fast lane. The high altitude and pitch of the climb on certain roads make it more likely for cars to travel slowly in the fast lane, which is truly a hazard.

The Middle Lane

The middle lane, or lanes, is for “through traffic.” These vehicles should be traveling at or near the speed limit. Since you’re supposed to be using the left lane for passing, it’s illegal in most states to travel in the left with the flow of traffic and not yield if someone is overtaking you.

Legitimate Reason to Drive Slow in the Slow Lane

Many states have a lower posted speed limit for Tractor Trailers or other vehicles with more than two axles. Also, most states have special speed restrictions for oversized loads. Some vehicles may be overloaded or awkwardly loaded which causes them to drive slower for safety. Also, temporary car trouble could be a legitimate reason to drive slower until a good exit can be found.

Being too old, too impaired or too blind to safely drive at freeway speeds is not a legitimate reason to camp out in the slow lane. If you don’t feel able to safely operate your vehicle at freeway speed, please avoid using freeways.

Differential Rate of Speed

The issue isn’t really about top speed. In theory, we’re all traveling the speed limit (wink) and if we’re not the police take care of it.

No, the issue is the difference in speed between one vehicle and another. It’s the rate at which you overtake the other vehicles on the road, which means acceleration and deceleration. If someone enters your lane going 20 MPH slower than you, you’d better have good brakes. The opposite issue is the source of most frustration.

When you finally break free of that slow car in the fast lane you want to get back to your cruising speed which is all about engine acceleration. It may seem like a little thing but it might just save your life. Cars which fail to accelerate at intersections or up hills or ramps can cause accidents. You need to be able to pick up speed when necessary.

Car acceleration performance is measured by the time it takes to go from 0 to 60 mph. It is not always possible to tell this just by looking at a car. The Chevrolet Camaro Iron Duke may have been marketed as a sports car but it still has an embarrassingly low acceleration rate of 0 to 60 in 20 seconds.

Did you Know the term ‘Slow’ travel is actually a thing?

But let’s move on from slow lanes to another kind of slowness; slow travel.

Sure we’ve all been on road trips where someone took too many rest breaks. For some people, due to their age, health or some other condition must slow travel–it’s the best they can do. (Though it is not an area the Kicker spends much time on.) For most car enthusiasts the slow traveler is the enemy.

The term, ‘Slow Travel’ was inspired by the term ‘Slow Food’ which came about in the 1980s. Slow food was a counter-movement against the sudden domination of unhealthy & over processed ‘Fast Food.’ It was based in the notion that it’s okay to have a different priority for your food than mere speed–things like taste and atmosphere. If some people preferred a ‘Slow Food’ experience maybe it some folks would also enjoy a slower pace of travel.

If freeways make you feel stressed, you might be one of the folks who understand that life is a journey, not a destination.

For the traveler who wishes to take the slow routes across America, possible suggestions include the Lincoln Highway from New York to San Francisco or Route 6 from Provincetown, Mass. to Bishop, California.

Likely as not, it will go up the mountains and through the valleys. Ironically, traveling slowly is what the car commercials are all about. These routes are slower, which means more stops. More stops mean more meals and more nights in a hotel. It’s not cheaper, but it is more picturesque and you may actually get to meet some nice people you’d normally zoom past.

The Car Interior

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Sometimes we buy a car for speed, sometimes for convenience, sometimes it’s a project to do up and sell. But there are many who buy a car because they look of the interior. Well, you only see the outside of the car now and then but the majority of the day will be spent seeing the interior, especially if you use it to commute. But interiors do not stay the same.

Some Changes Come in the form of Updates on the Same Theme

In the 1980s, for instance, the in thing was Mercedes with wood trim, leather upholstery and a superfluity of buttons. Having more buttons seemed a common selling point back then. They needed to be the right type of button though, the Audi V8, to give one example, had buttons which were too small to press.

Some exotic hardwoods, like mahogany, are banned, so current models from BMW or Aston Martin use color patterns which suggest a wood finish.

porsche-1583750_1920The selling point of the BMWi3’s interior is the car seats made of “active wool” which consists of various recycled materials such as plastic bottles. They are not exactly unique though, as other big names like Honda and Toyota use recycled materials in their seats as well as glove compartments. Whatever its origin it remains a good pitch for BMW.

Buttons have also gone out of fashion a bit, perhaps not for the better. The modern sleek look has inspired companies like Tesla to put as many things on sticks affixed to the steering column its hard to tell if you’re engaging the autopilot of adjusting the wheel tilt.

Other Changes are more Innovative:

Until recently you’ve been pretty much stuck with a couple seats and a dashboard, but there are ways around this too. Instead of the normal looking Sat Nav the Lincoln Navigator and the Bentley Continental has a center console located between the driver and the passenger. The Audi A8L operates by means of the two touchscreens and a gauge cluster.

It’s hard to create the truly original design but Carlex a car interior design company focuses on sleek images and the noticeable stitching in the car seats, which may lead the passengers to think of high-grade black denim jeans? There may be a problem here with sliding off the seats but presumably, they took that into consideration.

Some things don’t Change Regarding Interiors:

Other than adding or subtracting buttons or various control sticks, the basic design of the steering wheel hasn’t changed much since the first vehicles were built. So far technology has altered the dashboard mostly, but that may soon be changing.

With the introduction of Lidar systems (which use lasers to guide driving) and other connected vehicle technology, the way we drive may be altered forever, getting rid of the steering wheel entirely.

Can you Refurbish Your Car Interior?

Generally speaking, cars depreciate faster than say houses, so we don’t see a big market in people trying to restore of improving car interiors.

mercedes-benz-2498264_1920.jpgIt is not, however, unheard of. Some wealthier car owners have had their vehicle reupholstered because they liked everything else about the car except the feel of the seats. Vintage and classic car owners may restore the seat material as well, as part of the whole car makeover.

If you’re pondering doing it to improve resale value, check out the numbers first. It is hit and miss finding a buyer willing to pay that much more for a vehicle with a slightly improved interior. A car interior upholsterer is quite a niche market so an upholstery kit costs $800 and the professional to install it costs $750. If the total value of your car would go up more than $2,000 it could be an option. There’s probably a reason used car dealers just swap in new factor seats to handle such issues.

 

 

Lego mustang

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Lego seems hesitant to nail down an exact model year its 1,471-piece replica is based on (although the license plate says 1967) but there’s little doubt the company’s model makers took at least some inspiration from the iconic 1968 Ford Mustang Fastback that Steve McQueen drove through San Francisco in Bullitt. Lego’s chosen a blue paint job for its Mustang instead of green, finished with a pair of white racing stripes, but builders can further customize their tiny ride to match their muscle car tastes.

Original Story Link

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Available starting on March 1 for $150, Lego’s Creator Expert series models have become a great alternative for collectors who don’t necessarily want to spend hours on a traditional model kit that requires lots of intricate glue and paint work.

The Rise and Fall of the Motor Town

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When you think of motors and motor manufacture you think of Detroit. Nowadays though it is like a ghost town with many abandoned factories. The Big Three factories were all based here, namely General Motors, Ford and Chrysler, but the place is full of so many remains of old car factories that it is hard to chronicle properly. But let’s start at the beginning.

The very earliest factory in Detroit was in 1899 and was called the Detroit Automobile Company. It only lasted two years and the cars and trucks weren’t that impressive, especially as the cars manufactured looked like they were made with baby-buggy wheels. At that point, cars weren’t thought to replace the horse and carriage and no one was looking at them as economically viable.

Only slightly later the Packard Automotive Plant was built in Detroit; 1903. Based on the East Grand Boulevard it still stands as a huge urban sprawl of concrete. Although it closed in 1953 businesses were still using the space up to the 1990s.

Although everyone associates the Ford Motor Company with the Model T Ford these were built in Highland Park, Michigan in 1908. Having said that he did have a factory in Detroit also in 1903 in Mack Avenue but it took some time to be as large as the Packard factory. Ford had put money into the Detroit Automobile Company too but the Model T would be a real turning point for him.

The biggest Ford factory in Detroit was the Rouge Factory or Rouge Complex built between 1917 and 1928. To date, this is the largest factory in the world and went on to inspire car factories all around the globe. It is currently a museum to the history of car manufacture and innovation in general. It is not unremarkable that Detroit still holds their automobile heritage in high esteem.

The Chrysler factory was also known as the Dodge Main Plant. To be technical, the Dodge brothers owned the factory before Chrysler but that’s just the story of car manufacturers, takeovers and more takeovers. The Dodge brand was originally about working cars, vans and trucks such as the Texaco tanker. In about 1939 it became a more luxurious brand (although all cars from this point look rather stylish).

The factory closed in 1979 and became the site of a General Motors factory building cars like the Cadillac, though it looks like even the GM factory will be demolished this year. Chrysler had been merged with Daimler in 1998. In 2014 Fiat went into partnership with Chrysler to create further Dodges, such as the Dodge Dart. It’s sad that they are no longer associated with Detroit.

There are plans for a new car factory in Detroit building the Grand Cherokee and the Jeep, ironically on the site of Ford’s Mack Avenue car factory. Of course, the SUVs won’t be ready until next year, but the investment in Detroit is the main thing. So maybe Detroit’s love affair with the car will remain.

 

5 Times You Need a Truck Rental

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A “truck rental” can mean many things from needing an extended cab to pick up a couch you scored on Craigslist to a massive moving truck to get into your dream home across state lines. If you’ve ever been a truck owner yourself, you know to steer clear of calls from friends when you’ve caught wind that they’re moving—when space and power on wheels are necessary, everyone wants access to a truck.

Unfortunately for many, truck ownership just isn’t feasible. They don’t offer the best gas mileage for a daily commuter, they can take up way too much space for an urban dweller, and they’re not going to fit into those compact spots for those who are regulars at the mall.

However, when you need a truck, you need one that’s up for the job.

  1. When You’re Moving

Whether you want to move your entire one-bedroom condo in a big moving truck or simply take the big pieces of furniture in a king cab, a truck is a must when moving. Renting a truck and loading it as well as driving it yourself can save you a lot of money. However, also keep these moving tips in mind:

  • Pack room by room as early as possible
  • Load an emergency bin last complete with favorite tools, checkbooks, and other daily necessities
  • Consider hiring professionals to at least load the truck, then drive it yourself
  • Make sure your property is insured while en route
  1. When You Bought Furniture

Consider this: The delivery fee for a single couch could be up to $100. If you buy more furniture, you might get charged per piece. It can easily cost 25 percent of that to rent a spacious truck for the entire day. The benefits of truck rental over delivery include:

  • No being stuck at home to make the “delivery window”
  • You don’t have to add tipping into the mix
  • You can take care of a number of other tasks that require a truck the same day
  • Your furniture shopping isn’t dictated by delivery fees
  1. When You’re Going on a Weekend Warrior Adventure

You have the jet skis, the inflated tubes or the snowmobiles—but now what? It doesn’t make sense to buy a truck if you only head into the great outdoors with all your gear a few times per year. Renting a truck for the weekend gives you all the space you need for great outdoor activities like:

  • Hunting and fishing
  • ATVing or snowmobiling
  • Skiing and snowboarding
  • Camping and overnight hiking

Plus, trucks can access dirt roads and rough terrain better than any commuter car. You’ll simply be in better hands behind the wheel of a truck.

  1. When You’re Headed to a Roundup

If you’ve never been to a “roundup” before—a rodeo that’s reached festival level—you’re missing out. They happen around the country and feature rodeo finals, BBQ competitions and a raucous good time. Everyone embraces their inner cowboy or cowgirl, and it’s the perfect opportunity to slip into your Wranglers, boots and a ten-gallon hat.

However, everything comes crashing down if you pull up in a Prius. Renting a truck completes the adventure, and you can finally decide which side of the fence you fall on—Ford or Chevy.

  1. When Garage Saleing or Antiquing

These are true treasure hunts and you’re never sure what you might discover—which is exactly why you need a truck. What happens if you stumble across the perfect antique secretary you’ve always wanted, but didn’t know until you saw it?

To make the most of a Saturday hitting the sales, get a truck rental just in case. It frees you up to score the deal of a lifetime.

 

Chauffeur Driven Limos

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What could be more stylish than a chauffeur-driven limousine greeting you from the airport? The business is all about creating a positive experience which needs to operate 365 days a year, even Christmas Day. But what is the life of a chauffeur all about?

Becoming a Chauffeur:

I addition to passing a background check many chauffeurs have to take a comprehensive test as well. Then they need to gain the knowledge of the streets they will work on and usually have to know them backward. In fact, training is ongoing as construction and driving patterns change with time, and different customers require different services en route.

Types of Gigs:

In some cities, a Limo is nearly as affordable as a taxi and many Limos serve the airport commuter, but we also think of the party limo which is rented by teens going to prom or bachelors/bachelorettes for their last big bacchanal before they settle down for good (or 7 years whichever comes first).

stretch-limousine-2714963_1920These days Limo companies typically diversify into specialty party limos for these gigs. You might see a stretch hummer with a built-in hot tub on the streets of Los Vegas, but smaller towns will still push their basic black stretch into double duty from Friday nights black tie to Saturday nights stag party.

The key to a party/airport driver might simply be patience. If you can drive and you are longsuffering this could be your calling, and the tips aren’t bad either.

The upscale driver will also do Corporate Services, and some chauffeurs work in the diplomatic services. These Limos are now outfitted with access to TV news and radio while you are driving along – well access to radio isn’t that new, but you get the gist. Onboard wifi for internet access isn’t unheard of.

These drivers still need to know where the best places to relax in the city are, but will also know how to find the opera hall and the bank tower buildings. So again training is vital.

Communications:

In the old days communications were down by CB radio, which we probably think of more with taxis, but no, they were also a mainstay in Limos as the company needed to know the whereabouts of their car at all times and provide updates about traffic and road conditions. If this seems counter-intuitive, just think about how often a business person has a change of schedule or a gang of drunks decides to switch clubs. The company needs to receive updates. Also, they need to give them, because speed bumps and potholes that are an inconvenience in a taxis, present a bad limo ride experience and cause costly damage. Of course, now the mobile phone fills in for the CB radio.

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History of Limos and Chauffeurs:

The limousine has a longer history than you might think of being named after the town of Limousin, found in Central France. The most noticeable feature is the partition between the driver and the chauffeur. In Germany, a limousine is referred to a Sedan, though in other countries, sedans refer to a more generalized type of car.

The stretch limo has surprisingly workaday origins, created as it was by a  coach company in Fort Smith, Arkansas and was used by Big Band Leaders. It seems to show that it always had been about style rather than substance, a fun way to travel rather than something more presidential.

Early types of the limousine were the berline and the brougham. The berline takes its name from a type of horseless carriage and began with the driver in the open air and the passenger in the roofed area.  The Brougham was similar but had the driver in the center of the vehicle using a steering wheel which was on a pivot which seems a hell of a job to maneuver. The evolution was to improve life not only for the passenger but also for the chauffeur.

Personality Types for a Chauffeur:

Unlike taxi drivers, chauffeurs know where they are going before the day and can plan for it. So you don’t require quite as much desire for an unscripted workplace. Limo drivers’ personality tends to be available but not too sociable as they need to know when to keep quiet. The other three primary character needs are knowledgeable, professional and prompt.

prom-264219_1920We have this mental picture of chauffeurs as crisply professionals though that is not always the complete picture. Whole books have been written talking about unreliable drivers who are not given adequate rest breaks, so accidents are waiting to happen, such as a 1908 book called Motor Age. As with anything, you get what you pay for.

Another interesting character trait often found in chauffeurs is natural networkers, One reason is that chauffeurs be the last profession to rely on word of mouth to get new clients? Lately, though, everything seems to need to surrender to social media, and limo drivers remain avid networkers. So it’s likely that the profession draws people who like to be near people of influence.

Wherever you want to go, be it a concert, the airport or just round in a circle it is reassuring to know that there is someone to drive you.

What’s in a Driver’s License?

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Sixteen is the minimum age for issuing driver’s license in most states, but there are states in which you can be younger and states where you need to be older. It wasn’t always the case.

Brief History

The first licensed vehicle was in 1901 in New York and it took another seventeen years before all states issued license plates. Licensed drivers, however, were harder to come by, in 1935 for example only 39 states issued licenses and barely any needed a test.

There were no driving schools at this time, incidentally. People were taught by the YMCA, high schools and similar organizations. Even now, some schools still teach their students to drive. Even if your school does not, you may still be entitled to reduced insurance rates so it is worth starting early.

Types of Licenses

The license that most people own is called “unrestricted” which allows you to drive most vehicles, provided that you don’t ply for hire. The various types include restricted, chauffeur, motorcycle and so on, which some states call endorsements since they’re added to a basic driver’s license.

Hardship licenses are especially interesting in that they are for teenagers between 14 and 18 who have to drive themselves back and forth to school or work. They are issued if their family has medical or financial needs which prevent them from driving. There’s a different type of hardship license issued for those which would be otherwise a suspended or revoked unrestricted license.

The provisional license is another form of beginner’s license, issued to the newly qualified, usually between 14-17 years old. This type of license doesn’t let you drive at night or and restricts the number of passengers.

Professional Licenses

A chauffeur’s license is slightly misnamed as most states require them for other forms of passenger transport like a taxi or a tuk-tuk. Usually, you do have to be over 25 to be awarded this type of license.school-buses-2801134_1920

You may also need CDL endorsement to drive specific vehicles, such as a tractor with a trailer or a bus. There are other types of endorsements needed for hazardous materials, vehicles carrying bulk liquids and so on. It’s very complex. For example, a liquid such as diesel is flammable & combustible which is an upgrade from mere flammable. It’s also an upgrade from a liquid endorsement, which requires extra stopping distance when transported in large quantities.

Testing

The test is both written and driving (or practical). There is an additional visual test required. It is recommended that if have glasses or contact lenses normally that you wear them for the test, as it is to give an idea of your usual driving state.

As well as these three parts there may be additional courses, for instance, drugs awareness, traffic awareness and so on.

It is also a good idea to know the validity of your driver’s permit and to get another one should you need it. They are conditional and they expire. (In other words, if something is stopping you getting a full driver’s license). Making a mistake while driving with a permit could result in a severe delay in getting your full license.

As Identification

The advantage of owning an enhanced license doesn’t involve driving. It means that your license can be used as a document for establishing US nationality. Many states that border Canada have begun issuing this type of license to reduce the need for a passport when traveling to such a friendly neighboring nation.

You also need to show proof of identity in order to prove who you are and where you live. If you’re taking the test while under age 18 many states need proof that you are attending school.

The license is all about the freedom of the road, as long as you remember everyone else too!

Why You Might Or Might Not Drive A Passenger Car.

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By Paul Wimsett from our UK desk

The term “passenger cars” might seem a bit dubious, after all, most people agree that all cars are passenger cars and even AVs (self-drive) cars are ultimately designed for passengers (though there may be self-driving lorries which will do away with passengers altogether).

Ironically, what it means is a car designed for less than 10 people, for example, an SUV. So ultimately it refers to a lack of passengers! Go figure. It is a confusing term though it can refer to all cars as opposed to trucks. It includes taxis and Ubers. It may even include pick-ups.

One reason for the distinction is tax and license designation. If you don’t use a car on the road, say you use it as an off-road vehicle or store it in a carport, a garage or some other long term storage it doesn’t count as a passenger car. If you keep a car outside your house whether you move it or not it still counts as a passenger car and needs to be treated as such, that is all the tax and insurance needs to be kept up to date.

If you build a car from a kit or convert it from a tractor or similar vehicle it does count as a passenger car.

So to reiterate SUVs and pickups may not meet the description of passenger car. But what does this mean in practice?

Well, when collecting data for example. Since SUVs are the most popular type of vehicle eliminating them from the figures might not seem a good move. After all, if the figures say that sales of passenger cars are falling and it fails to take into account that SUV figures are rising, it gives a false idea about what the car market is doing.

mercedes-benz-3395531_1920Though Mercedes believe items like the G-class and GLE are passenger cars. A G-class is a jeep like a vehicle while a GLE is more SUV like. Possibly different firms have different descriptions? It all becomes complicated but it must ultimately come down to figures. So be wary of what a car-related statistic is saying and research the figures thoroughly.

It’s not exactly clear why buyers are rejecting a traditional car shape and prefer something like the SUV or jeep isn’t clear. This may just be a blip as crossover vehicles (those which aren’t quite SUVs so are more likely to qualify as passenger cars) build up in popularity, such as the Honda R-V. The fact all these cars have an all-wheel drive may suggest a liking for survival type vehicles, rather than something more A to B?

It seems that baby boomers are the ones who have moved away from the sedan, it is possible that they see them as a Dad car (remember the male market is strongest for this age group). So a full overhaul might be needed to save the sedan. Except it’s hard for a car to change its form without changing its name.