Last updateThu, 21 Jul 2016 12pm

Advice for taking pets on road trips

Summer’s here, and that means road trips. Vacationers who want to take their pets along for the ride should plan ahead, according to the experts at TravelWithPets.com, who offer the following advice.

• Don’t allow heads out the window. Although many pets find that sticking their heads out the window is the best part of the trip, it’s not safe. Flying debris can easily injure your pet. Also, never travel with a pet in the back of a pickup truck. Some states have laws restricting such transport – and it is always dangerous.

2016 Fiat 500L Trekking offers best of both worlds

Courtesy of Fiat-Chrysler
The new Fiat 500L Trekking sells for just under $30,000.

On a quick trip to New Jersey recently for a car club event, our friends at Fiat-Chrysler Automobiles arranged for us to have a 2016 Fiat 500L Trekking model to drive.

Car maintenance is a must before that summer trip

With summer upon us, I thought it would be a great idea to revisit a few good driving and maintenance tips. I am driving to Tahoe this weekend, and I think the only time my car gets looked at is right before a trip.

Tips for road trips

• The No. 1 rule is not to put car maintenance off until the last minute (and yes, I personally violate this rule). We have new customers call all the time on a Friday afternoon before a big holiday weekend requesting maintenance because they are traveling the next morning. Most of the time people plan the trip, reserve a hotel and make an itinerary – yet forgo car repair. We all lead busy lives, but please take the time to plan ahead in all aspects, including transportation.

A different kind of driving school

Gary Anderson/Special to the Town Crier
The Andersons observe Bixby Bridge – located on Highway 1 near Big Sur – from a dirt road during their recent Land Rover Experience Driving School lesson.

It is always exciting to do something you’ve never done before and go someplace you’ve never been. With the Land Rover Experience Driving School at Quail Lodge & Golf Club in Carmel Valley, you can have an adventure like that in less than a two-hour drive from Los Altos.

In one of the newest Land Rover or Range Rover models from Jaguar Land Rover Ltd. – and with a trained instructor sitting by your side – you can drive one of these amazing and luxurious vehicles on off-road trails over obstacles that look impassible when you first encounter them.

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.

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