Last updateWed, 29 Jun 2016 8am

Driving England's rural countryside from the left side of the road

We have always enjoyed our visits to England, but this year we did something different. Rather than visit the standard tourist destinations – London, the Cotswolds, Stratford-upon-Avon and so forth – we decided to explore new areas by car.

Looking for one problem and finding something else

A month ago, a customer came to the shop and told me that her 2003 BMW 745i was starting and idling rough in the mornings. She mentioned that the problem began two months ago and did not happen every time but was becoming more frequent.

As I have stated in previous columns, intermittent problems are the most difficult to diagnose. If we are unable to confirm the problem, there is not much we can do right away. Fortunately, this customer was going on vacation and could leave her car with us for a week.

How much Audi do you need?

courtesy of Audi
The Audi Q7 offers a comfortable ride.

Over the past two months, Genie and I have driven the 2016 Audi Q3 2.0T and the redesigned-for-2017 Q7 3.0T. Aside from the vastly different sizes and proportional off-the-lot prices of these SUVs, there was little to differentiate them in quality, handling or safety.

Racing around Monterey

Gary Anderson/Special to the Town Crier
The easy handling of the VW Golf R, above, makes for an ideal ride along the Big Sur coast.


When automotive journalists are asked to list their favorite places in the world to drive, Monterey always ranks in the top 10. The scenery is magnificent, especially along the coast, the weather is reliable from early spring through late fall and the attractions are beyond compare.

Diagnosing a Subaru misfire

Two months ago I wrote an article about a 2008 Subaru Outback. The car had been hesitating on acceleration as if it were being hit or pushed from behind while driving.

Sizing up two sedans: Nissan Maxima vs. Volkswagen CC

Courtesy of Volkswagen
The stylish, understated Volkswagen CC four-door coupe, above, boasts responsive handling.


After a week with a car, we usually have similar impressions of it – but not the last two we reviewed.

If my registered car doesn't run, do I need to report it?

Q: My vehicle is currently registered, but I blew the engine and it’s not being driven, so I canceled my car insurance. Do I need to report that to the DMV?

A: Yes. If your registration fees are due within 60 days of the vehicle registration expiration date, you may place your vehicle on a Planned Non-Operation status and pay the $19 fee. If your vehicle is currently registered and it is not within 75 days of renewal, you may place your vehicle on an Affidavit of Non-Use (REG 5090). This process can be completed online at dmv.ca.gov/portal/dmv/detail/online/vrir/vr_sb1500anu, or download the form and mail it to the DMV.

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