Car finance companies using ‘kill switches’ to immobilise vehicles

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Car finance companies now have the power to immobilise cars using a ‘kill switch’ if the customer does not make their monthly payments. The controversial immobilisers are a GPS device in the form of a small black box that is installed behind the dashboard of the car. They are said to be generally offered to customers with poor credit ratings.

Each month when a driver makes their monthly payment to the car finance company, a code is given to them to enter into the device. This will enable the car to keep on running. If they don’t pay, they don’t receive a code and the car will not start.

Many have pointed out that this is irresponsible and also potentially dangerous, as it could leave drivers stranded and vunerable. Graham Hill from the National Association of Commercial Finance Brokers has also raised the issue of the legality of the devices. The Financial Conduct Authority is yet to confirm whether the immobilisers are under their investigation.

However, the Car Finance Company who fits the immobilisers claimed that the devices actually helped customers by reminding them when their payments were due. The company also said that they could provide an emergency code so that the driver was able to move their vehicle to a safe and secure location before being disabled.

What do you think? Are these immobilisers a good idea or are they ruthless and exploitative?

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Car Servicing – Is Your Location On The List?

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Car servicing and MOT prices can greatly fluctuate depending on whereabouts you live in the country, sometimes up to a massive 42%.

According to comparison site MyCarNeedsA.com, the most expensive geographical locations and their average service costs are:

South West London Р£195
Leicester Р£187
Portsmouth – 186
Bristol Р£180
Nottingham Р£176
Dartford Р£170
Wigan Р£170
Bradford Р£170
Preston Р£170
Crewe Р£170

The cheapest geographical locations and their average service pricings are:

Stoke-On-Trent Р£113
Walsall Р£117
Doncaster Р£127
Coventry Р£127
Swansea Р£129
Derby Р£129
Birmingham Р£129
Manchester Р£129
Stockport Р£129
Oldham Р£129

We’d advise getting several quotes for a car service and MOT no matter where you live in the country, as obviously prices can also fluctuate between dealers and garages in a particular area.

 

 

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Leo Traits – Sound Familiar?

It’s the first day of the Leo star sign. So what are the most common traits of a Leo? Do you recognise any of the below in any of your Leo family or friends? Which one is most familiar? Tag someone who comes to mind!

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Positive traits

#1   Warm and kind

#2   Energetic

#3   Optimistic

#4   Loyal

#5   Straightforward

Negative traits

#1   Opinionated

#2   Stubborn

#3   Egoistic

#4   Arrogant

#5   Impatient

 

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A Guide To Hiring A Car On Holiday

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We’ve put together some tips to consider before hiring a car on holiday. Failure to prepare could mean a lot of stress and extra cost, so read on to ensure you get the best deal on your holiday car hire this year.

  • If you want to avoid unnecessary stress and additional cost, the most important point is to plan ahead and book early. Instead of leaving the car hire until the last minute, leave yourself plenty of time to shop around and to research the best deals.
  • Compare prices and deals using comparison sites such as www.travelsupermarket.com. Check what is included in the price, and be careful as the lowest price doesn’t always necessarily mean the best deal. Take the time to read thoroughly through the extras and small print as some companies will have certain requirements such as returning the car full of petrol.
  • Before you leave home, remember to take the driving licences of anyone who will be driving the hire car. The more drivers that you add to your policy, the higher the cost will be. As the green paper section of the driving licence was axed in 2015, be sure to obtain a code from the DVLA that will enable the car hire company to check your details online before you leave home. You will also need a credit card for an initial deposit upfront.
  • Be vigilant about insurance as you won’t necessarily need the most expensive excess cover that the car hire company offers you – you may well be able to get the same amount of cover much cheaper elsewhere, so make sure you shop around.
  • Before you take the car, check the car carefully for any damage and make sure that it matches the inspection sheet. If it doesn’t, get the discrepancy marked and signed on the sheet by an employee of the car hire company, preferably in front of a witness. It’s also a good idea to take some photos on your phone of the car before you take it, and check that the time and date of the photos have also been recorded.
  • After you’ve returned the car, keep hold of the paperwork. It has been known for car hire companies to charge you more at a later date. Keep an eye on your credit card statements, and if there are any issues contact the company immediately, asking for proof of any issues or damage that they are claiming.

Follow these guidelines above and you’re sure to have a relaxing and stress-free holiday. Hopefully you’ll also have saved a bit of cash to enjoy spending while you are away!

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It’s Bastille Day!

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Bastille Day is celebrated on July 14th each year and commemorates the Storming of the Bastille in 1789, which was a turning point of the French Revolution. To help commemorate the occasion we’ve put together 3 interesting facts about 3 top car brands to come from France.

Peugeot-Logo

FACT #1  Peugeot was founded in 1882 by Armand Peugeot.

FACT #2  The company produces almost 1 million vehicles each year.

FACT #3  The company hires around 83000 people.

peugeot

 Popular model: Peugeot 106

citroen-logo

FACT #1  Citroen was founded in 1919 by Andre-Gustave Citroen.

FACT #2  The company built armaments for the French Army during World War 1.

FACT #3  The Eiffel Tower served as a billboard for Citroen from 1925 to 1934.

citroenPopular model: Citroen Saxo

renault-logo (1)

FACT #1  Renault was founded in 1899 by Louis Renault and his brothers Marcel and Fernand.

FACT #2  The Renault headquarters are in Boulogne-Billancourt near Paris.

FACT #3  The company produces a range of cars and vans, and in the past has also manufactured buses and tractors.

renault

Popular model: Renault Clio

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Online car window tint training course currently massively reduced!

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Our exclusive online car window tint training course is aimed at anyone who is thinking of starting their own window tinting business.

Our high definition step-by-step video guides include vital information from  finding tinting suppliers to keeping  customers happy. The course contains everything you need to know to build a successful window tinting business.  Continue reading

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Happy Independence Day!

america

Independence Day is a holiday that takes place in the United States on 4th July each year to celebrate the Declaration of Independence on 4th July 1776. To help commemorate the occasion, we’ve complied our top 5 favourite cars to come from the U S of A. In no particular order they are as follows:

1) Ford Mustang

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This iconic coupe-style car has a long bonnet and cut off rear, with the 1965 original version still the most popular.

2) Tesla Model S

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One of the best electric cars of today both in America and the world, this large saloon car can reach up to 340 miles on a single charge.

3) Chevrolet Corvette

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This aesthetically pleasing sports car is both extravagant and flamboyant – buy this car to be noticed!

4) Cadillac CTS

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Extremely sporty, this mid-sized luxury sedan with an equally luxurious interior is particularly renowned for its precise handling.

5) Ford GT40

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This was originally developed with the sole purpose to beat Ferrari in sports car races. Only 30 GT40 road cars were actually built, though later many replicas were made including the Ford DT tribute that we see today.

 

 

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A Simple Guide To Getting Your Car Serviced

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Types of Car Service

The cheapest and most basic type of service you can get for your car is an Oil and Filter Change, for which you can expect to pay between £50 and £150 depending on where you are in the country. This includes getting the oil and oil filter changed, plus a general visual inspection of the car. It is worth noting that during this service, no safety checks such as checking the brakes are made.

The next service up is the Basic/ Interim Service which includes the oil and filter being changed, plus some additional safety checks such as the lights, horn, wipers, brakes, steering and exhaust. This service should cost you somewhere around £70 and £250, depending on the cost of parts and your geographical location.

A Full Service includes everything in the basic service with the addition of pollen filter and air conditioning checks, a top up of brake fluid and antifreeze, and other more thorough checks on areas such as the brakes and engine. For this, the cost can entirely depend on the individual car and the cost of its parts, but generally speaking you can expect to pay from £150 upwards.

How Often Should You Get Your Car Serviced?

To keep a car in its best condition, it is recommended that it should be serviced every year. Each car has a servicing schedule set by the manufacturer which shows which part of the cars need attention and how often. It is important to follow the guidance in the servicing schedule properly to prevent invalidation of the vehicle’s warranty. Most cars also have dashboard messages which cover issues such as brakes, engine, oil and tyre pressure. A list of what each warning message means will be listed in the car owner’s manual.

Although it can be tempting to skip a service in order to save money, this is likely to cause more expense later due to having to replace damaged parts due to poor maintenance.

Where Should You Get Your Car Serviced?

Car services at dealerships tend to be more expensive due to higher overheads and staff commission. You could well be better finding a good local garage, preferably one that has been recommended by family or friends.

 

 

 

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Looking for something to do this summer? Check out these cool car shows!

We’ve put together a list of our top 5 shows in Britain for 2017. With something for everyone, we think you should try to make it down to at least one of these this summer!

#1   Goodwood Festival Of Speed

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Where? Goodwood House, West Sussex

When? 29th June – 2nd July 2017

With a changing theme every year, 2017’s will be “Peaks of Performance – Motorsport Game Changers”. The organisers say that the event will celebrate “racing machines that were so fast, powerful, expensive or complicated that the rules had to be changed to rein them in”.

This year will be the 25th running of the event and will show off some of the world’s rarest and most glamorous cars, as well as having the usual features such as the rally stage and aviation displays.

#2   Silverstone Classic

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Where? Towcester  Northamptonshire

When? 28th – 30th July 2017

This is a massive classic motor racing festival, featuring over 10,000 high performance classic cars as well as around 100 classic car clubs. As usual, it will be a family friendly event with a host of other attractions such as live music concerts, air displays, a vintage fun fair and a shopping village. For those who enjoy a thrill, there will also be a variety of interactive driving activities and demonstrations to take part in.

#3   CarFest North & South

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North: Where? Bolesworth Estate, Cheshire

When? 28th-30th July 2017

South: Where? Laverstoke Park Farm, Hampshire

When? 25th-27th August 2017

This event, held at two different locations, was thought up by Chris Evans and is a fundraiser for BBC Children In Need. With a big emphasis on live music, this year’s bands will include the impressive Manic Street Preachers and The Killers. Other attractions include a collection of rare and unique vehicles from around the world, and those who want to can experience a ride in a range of supercars.

#4   Goodwood Revival

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Where? Goodwood House, West Sussex

When? 8th-10th September 2017

Staged entirely in period dress, this event is completely unique as it celebrates the track’s golden era between 1948 and 1966. It will feature the racing of many unique and priceless cars from the Revival Era on then Motor Circuit, and has been called a “theatrical and sporting drama”.

#5   Big Welsh Car Show

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Where? Chepstow Racecourse, Monmouthshire

When? 17th September 2017

With a brand new venue for this year, as always all proceeds will go to the blood cancer charity Bloodwise who organise the event. The show consists primarily of classic cars, although more recent and rare models have also been known to appear. Other family friendly activities inlcude live music, funfair, food, crafts and various children’s activities.

 

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Buying your next car? Check out our tips for securing the best deal.

Do your homework

Knowledge-is-Power

The most important thing to do when buying your next car is to do your homework. Looking at similar cars for sale online and in other local dealers will give you an idea of what you should be paying for the car you want. Also, if possible try to find out the manufacturer’s suggested retail price (MSRP) which is the price the dealer has paid the manufacturer for the car before any more is added on for profit. If the dealer is aware that you know your stuff, you are more likely to come away with a better deal.

Be self-disciplined

Promise yourself not to buy anything on your first visit to a dealer. Instead, take the time to have a good look at the car, to gather relevant information and to take the car for a test drive. And whatever you do, don’t tell the salespeople what your budget is as they are likely to use this to their advantage.

Timing is crucial

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As dealers usually run on a month to month basis, you may be more likely to get a better deal at the end of the month so that the dealer can reach their set targets. December is often a slow time for car sales so if you could time your purchase for this time of year you could well be on to something. Weekday mornings also tend to be pretty slow for car sales people, so visiting at these times rather than on a busy weekend might mean they are more willing to compromise on price, resulting in a better deal for you.

Gather several quotes

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Getting different quotes from different dealers whilst making them aware that this is what you are doing will encourage them to be as competitive in order to achieve the sale. If cutting the price of a carmeans they are able to undercut their business rival up the road, it is something they might well do.

Beware of “too good to be true” offers

Car deals that are too good to be true are usually just that. Of course there are bargains out there, but if your instincts are telling you that a car is way too cheap, the most likely explanation is that there is something wrong with it that the dealer isn’t telling you about.

Following these 5 points should put you on the right track to buying the right car for you at the right price. Good luck with your search!

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