Latest BMW X2 might be right for you

Mike Hagerty/Special to the Town Crier
The 2019 BMW X2 M35i features a twin-turbo 2-liter four-cylinder engine with 302 horsepower.

Small crossover SUVs are a thing right now – and most of them lean to the “utility” part of “sport utility vehicle.” There’s a cure for that, and it’s the 2019 BMW X2 M35i.

Letting off some steam

A few weeks before giving a presentation on transportation to my son’s first-grade class, I asked him if he had any questions about cars.

The 7-year-old said he wanted to know “what the gas was in the rear pipe.” I asked him to clarify his question: “Do you mean the liquid gas fill-up pipe or the exhaust gas pipe?” He responded, “The pipe in the back that steam comes out of.”

How do kids learn to ride safely on the street?

I think that if you ask most adult cyclists how they learned to ride a bike as a kid, they would answer as I do: “I don’t know.” My only related memory before fifth grade is my younger brother crashing on a steep hill, and I had to somehow get both his bike and mine home two blocks away.

We wouldn’t allow our kids to drive a car without some instruction, and because nearly every adult in this area knows how to drive, it is natural to teach your kids about safety as they ride along with you. Even if they have professional instruction before getting a license, it’s a safe bet that you and the instructor agree on most of the basics.

Highlander reaches new heights

Photos by Mike Hagerty/Special to the Town Crier
The 2019 Toyota Highlander Hybrid Limited Platinum, above, comes with a 3.5-liter V6 gasoline engine. Standard equipment includes navigation and multiple USB ports, below.

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again – you don’t really know if you love a car until you’ve lived with a car for a bit.

Hours and miles are the best way to know just how good the machine to which you entrust your life and your family’s lives really is. Five minutes in a test-drive around the block with a salesperson at your side doesn’t cut it. And even the typical car reviewer week around town isn’t the same as getting out on the open road for an extended period of time.

Stabilizing trouble with traction control

Dynamic stability traction control (DSTC) and other traction control systems may be the most important features on your car to have working properly in the winter months.

Last month we had a new customer bring in her 2012 Volvo XC60 3.2L because she said her DSTC warning light went on and her electric emergency brake was not working correctly. She said that ever since the DSTC light came on, she wasn’t able to release or operate the emergency brake properly while the car was running. If she turned the car off, the emergency brake worked.

More real-life experiences when sharing the road

Last month I wrote about some of my worst encounters with motor vehicles and other cyclists on the road.

My intent was to remind drivers and riders that they may not always be right, and even if they are, they should think twice about using a car or bike as a means of intimidation. Intentionally scaring a cyclist or a pedestrian might provide a moment’s satisfaction, but it also can cause a serious accident you will have to live with.

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