Category: Automobile

Introduction to Motorsport Fuels

Published / by Tim Wagner / Leave a Comment

“Soot-free” is likely to become an increasingly adopted standard for vehicles in cities across the world. A soot-free engine is one that meets the Euro VI standard, in Europe, or EPA 2010 in the US. And now China has joined in, with a China VI standard for carbon-free vehicles.

China’s battle against pollution

China has been battling pollution for some time and trying to reduce the adverse effects on its population’s health, from poor air quality. Its new VI standard is a major step forward in this struggle, and given China’s size and importance in world trade it will have a major impact on the market for carbon-free vehicles, and on the development of new fuels. This will eventually affect even seemingly unrelated areas such as motorsport fuels, as the carbon-free trend affects all cars, including those used in sport.

The new standard for emissions is very far-reaching. Vehicles accounting for about 90% of particulate emissions and almost 70% of N0X emissions will be affected by the VI standard. These are the pollutants that affect particulate matter in the air, and produce ozone. They’re responsible for the haze that we’ve frequently seen in pictures coming from China. In fact, there are now some “blue days” over cities like Beijing, as environmental controls take effect.

China intends the new standard to cut emissions by between 82% to 86% by the year 2030. The Chinese estimate that this will prevent 29,000 deaths a year, currently caused by the health effects of air pollution.

Black carbon reductions

Black carbon produced by diesel engines has a near-term warming impact up to 3,200 times higher than CO2. However, black carbon particles don’t live very long, only staying in the atmosphere for a matter of a few weeks. Reducing the amount of black carbon in the atmosphere could have a very quick effect in helping slow the rate of climate change. The International Council On Clean Transportation (ICCT) has estimated that the China VI standard will bring about a black carbon reduction of 993,000 metric tons in the period 2020 – 2050.

Many major vehicle manufacturers are now making it easier for urban authorities to buy vehicles that are pollution free. Volvo Buses, Scania, Cummins and BYD are working with cities to provide buses that have the latest clean power technology. In China, several cities have converted to zero emission vehicles. For instance, the Chinese city of Shenzhen has electrified its whole fleet of buses, resulting in zero emissions. This must be a development that cities such as London, with its own pollution problems, will be looking at with interest.


China is such a global giant that its drive to cut pollutants from engines will have a substantial effect on global warming chemicals. Its size means that “soot-free” engines may soon become the norm, affecting even high-performance vehicles, and fuels. Motorsport fuels with lower pollution profiles are already being researched and designed, and we can expect this trend to grow strongly.

Aptitude for Automobiles: 4 Savvy Shopping Tips for First-Time Car Buyers

Published / by Tim Wagner

Your first time shopping for a new car can be exciting, but it can also be a bit nerve-wracking. You want to find the right car and get the best deal along the way, but that can be tricky when you’ve never negotiated with a car salesperson before. Try these four savvy shopping tips to improve your car-buying experience.


Email Multiple Dealerships for Quotes

When you know the car you want, see which dealerships in your area have it, and then email them asking for a price quote instead of going in. This way, you avoid any of those high-pressure sales tactics and can instead see which dealer is willing to offer you the best deal. You can also go back and forth with dealers, mentioning better offers to see if they will match or beat them.

Also read our Reasons Why Brakes Are Squealing & 4 Rules of the Road guide on our blog.

Negotiate the Price First

The first thing you want to figure out is the purchase price of the car. Don’t let a salesperson convince you to negotiate your financing, warranty or the price of a trade-in before you’ve set a price. What will end up happening is you’ll pay a higher purchase price. Decide the purchase price, and then move on to talking about financing (if you’re getting that through the dealer), warranties, how much your trade-in is worth and other details.

Don’t Be Afraid to Lowball

Before you go in to the dealership, look up the invoice price of the car you’re interested in. This is how much the dealer needs to pay for it. When you start your negotiations, go low – you can even suggest a price barely above that invoice price. This is a technique called anchoring. By initially offering a very low price, you can then offer a reasonable amount and it will look much better in comparison. You’re essentially working your up from that low price instead of down from the retail price.

Work with the Dealership during Negotiations

Working with a dealership like Audi Brooklyn or someone similar can be a great way to get a great car, but it can take tact. Although you want to get the best deal, that’s not going to happen if you’re too stubborn and approach negotiations as a life-or-death struggle. Know when to give a little bit so that you and the salesperson can come to an agreement.

Be patient as you look for your new car and never feel like you need to make a deal. Your strongest negotiating tactic is being able to walk away at any time. Use that and the above tips to score a bargain on your next ride.

4 Reasons Why Brakes Are Squealing – Automobile Answers

Published / by Tim Wagner

When you’re driving your car, you don’t want to hear a squealing sound coming from your brakes. It’s possibly the harshest noise that you could hear, like nails on a chalkboard. If you ever hear this noise while you’re stopping or even depressing the brake pad so that you can slow down, you need to find a mechanic who can make the necessary repairs as there are a few reasons for the sound that you hear.

Pause to Look at the Pads

A common reason why your brakes are squealing is that your pads are worn. Once the brake pads reach a certain point, they don’t offer the same support that you need to stop. The metal of the brake pads will begin to grind against the metal of the rotors and the rest of the brake system. Pay attention to how long it takes for the car to slow down once you begin to brake. Once the pads begin to wear down, it will take longer for the car to react to your braking.

Visit our Automobile category & also read our Rules to Remember When Driving on Highway on our blog.

Clean the Dust

When you get new brake pads put on your car, there will be dust that accumulates when you brake the first few times with them. This dust can get between the pads and the rotors, which can cause a squealing sound. There’s nothing wrong with the brakes at this point if you know that you just had the brakes repaired, and the squealing will usually go away once you wash the tires or brake a few times. If you’re worried, you can visit a brake specialist who can make sure the pads were put on the right way.

Listen to the Rain

If you hear it raining outside or see that it’s raining, then you might hear your brakes squealing. Moisture can easily get to the brake pads and rotors and cause high-pitched noises until they are dry. If you have a garage, then consider putting your car inside until it’s not raining.

Check the Cheap Brakes

Sometimes, it’s best to spend more money on your brake pads. Cheaper pads often have higher levels of metal in them. This means that the brake pads will usually squeal longer than pads that are of a higher quality.

Your brakes are an important component of the vehicle. When you hear any abnormal sounds from the brakes, you need to get them checked. If you let the noise linger, then it could mean a more expensive repair or no brakes at all.