The Future Looks Bright, But Expensive

Hey Cool Car Fans,

I was recently reading one of the car magazines that I subscribe to and came across an article about new technologies.  These included things like thin-film solar panels on the roof and new windshield displays, along with five other new whiz bang features

I grew up in the Star Wars and Star Trek era where I hoped as a kid to be driving a land speeder by now. However, I also spend a small fortune each year repairing and fixing used cars.  If you haven’t had to pay to put in a windshield into a Mercedes Benz S550 with rain sensing wipers then you might get excited about solar panels on the roof of a car.  If you have had to fork over $1,500 or more for a windshield than you get where I am going with this article.

THE COST OF NEW TECHNOLOGY

New and improved technology is fantastic, until it is out of warranty and it breaks down.  The labor costs alone on many vehicle repairs are getting obscene.  There are franchise dealers in Denver charging $165 to $200 an hour just for labor and these are not to repair your Ferrari, but your daily driver.  When you add in the cost of expensive parts, suddenly the cost of ownership outside of the manufacturer’s warranty can be crazy high.

One of the new technologies that were mentioned in the article were putting batteries in the body panels.  This sounds like a great idea conceptually and it will probably even work.  Do you want to be the sucker though that buys that vehicle and pay the bill to insure the vehicle?  Think about the added cost when someone runs a red light and plows into the side of the car.  The body shop wouldn’t just be replacing a door or a few panels, but battery packs inside a door and panels. If sellers think they are getting screwed by a bad CARFAX now after an accident is reported, just wait until this new technology hits the market.

How about shock absorbers that turn energy created from a pothole into more miles per gallon?  Let’s be honest because most of the cars on the road today ride like crap because nobody wants to spend the money to replace their vehicle’s existing shocks or struts.  It’s already an expensive repair unless you are a gear head or mechanic and you can do it yourself.  Now add the additional complexity that the engineers want to add for better fuel economy and most used vehicles will need new shocks like they need new tires.  Only the majority of drivers won’t have the extra money to replace them.

Google, Apple and other Silicon Valley companies are investing heavily into the automotive industry.  The big automotive manufacturers are starting to embrace the “geeks” in California and their highly profitable business models.  Let me forwarn you now that you had better grab your wallet and hold on tight!  You may find in the future that leasing a vehicle is the only option that actually makes financial sense.

If you are enamored with the brilliance of Silicon Valley, you apparently haven’t had your kids break their, made in China, iPhone yet out of warranty and have to replace it for $200 or $300?  Have you seen the upgrade Tesla offers on their batteries for the older roadster at $25,000 for 350 miles of juice?  Who is going to flip the bill if you own an autonomous car from Google when it breaks down?  These companies are run by billionaires who know how to earn a buck off of the masses. I see the word “sucker” when I read about sone of these new whiz bang technologies.

An air suspension ride on a Mercedes Benz or BMW is fantastic until it goes out and you have to buy new air bags.  I see first hand how many people have to get out of their expensive vehicles when repair bills start cleaning out their bank account.  If the cars of the future continue adding more expensive technology that can and will fail it will get far worse.  One of the things that made Luke Skywalker’s Land Speeder such a cool ride was the simplicity of it.  It might be time for the car manufacturers to remember the old marketing saying, “less is more”.

Which is one of the reasons why buying older vehicles or classic cars that someone can fix up is starting to make much more sense for many people.  If you’re not going to lease a new one to share in the risk of repairs with the leasing company or the manufacturer with a lower monthly payment, why not drive an older and much cooler car for a far less overall cost of ownership.

I am getting more requests from people to help them find older classic cars, even like a 1979 Mercedes Benz 450SL that you can pickup for under $15,000 most of the time in pretty good condition.  It’s like getting the movie star look on a Wal-Mart budget and people are starting to realize that these vehicles are not going to depreciate in five years like the newer vehicles are doing in a year.  It’s something to think about isn’t it?

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John Boyd

Auto Consultant – John Boyd: The Cool Car Guy
John is an auto consultant with his license at a car dealership in Denver, Colorado. He can help you save time and money on any make or model, new or used, lease or purchase – nationwide! Call or email John about your next vehicle! jboyd@coolcarguy.com or Twitter @coolcarguy

2006 Chevy Corvette Z06 – Consignment SOLD!

Hey Cool Car Fans,

I recently consigned a really cool yellow 2006 Z06 Corvette for a client and I decided to  feature it here on CoolCarGuy.com, even though it probably won’t last very long. . These are super cool cars that tend to hold their value extremely well based on supply and demand.  One of the great things about the corvette is that it’s an American icon as a motor vehicle.  There is no mistaking the Corvette when you spot one driving down the road and Chevrolet has been producing it for a very long time.

This particular vehicle has the 7.0l V8 that produces 505hp.  My client also had the following modifications done to the vehicle, but nothing that would affect the overall value of the car.  The wheels are the factory ZR1 rims with Nitto tires. Air Raid exhaust. Full cat back. It also has the carbon fiber ground effect parts (side skirts), but my client liked the way the vehicle looks better without them installed.  He’s including them with the vehicle to the new buyer, should they want them.

The miles are great on this one at just under 21,000 for a 2006.  It’s also the hard to find yellow with black stripes and it is in superb condition.

The Specifications

Year: 2006
Make: Chevrolet
Model: Corvette
Trim: Z06
Mileage: 21,000
Stock #: JB102671
VIN #: 1G1YY25E765102671
Trans: 6 Speed
Color: Yellow
Interior: Leather
Vehicle Type: Coupe
State: CO
Drive Train: RWD
Engine: 7.0L V8 OHV 16V
  • Air Conditioning
  • Driver Airbag
  • Power Locks
  • Alloy Wheels
  • Driver Multi-Adjustable Power Seat
  • Power Mirrors
  • AM/FM
  • Extra Keys
  • Power Windows
  • Anti-Lock Brakes
  • Fog Lights
  • Rear Spoiler
  • Automatic Climate Control
  • Front Air Dam
  • Separate Driver/Front Passenger Climate Controls
  • Automatic Headlights
  • Heated Exterior Mirror
  • Side Airbags
  • Bluetooth
  • High Intensity Discharge Headlights
  • Splash Guards
  • Bucket Seats
  • Interval Wipers
  • Tachometer
  • CD
  • Keyless Entry
  • Tilt Wheel
  • CD Changer
  • Leather Steering Wheel
  • Tire Pressure Monitor
  • Cruise Control
  • Limited Slip Differential
  • Traction Control
  • Daytime Running Lights
  • Passenger Airbag
  • Vehicle Stability Control System

This is vehicle has a 6 speed manual transmission and is a blast to drive!  If you’re looking for a really cool and super fast American sports car the Chevy Corvette is probably the best value available for the horsepower and the overall value proposition.

I am expecting that it won’t last long on the market since so many owners keep their corvettes for a long time. Corvettes have been being built by Chevrolet for over 60 years and they have built close to 1.5 million Corvettes over six or seven generations.  The majority of them have been really good cars and a few have been pretty terrible.  The C-6 platform that was from 2004 to 2016 with the LS7 engine in 2006 was definitely a winner!

The Z06 came on the scene as a 2006 model in the third quarter of 2005 and is the lightest of all the Corvettes. The Z06 was equipped with the largest-displacement small-block ever produced, which was a new 7.0 L (427 cu in) engine codenamed the LS7.  The Z06 was the official pace car for both the Daytona 500 and the Indianapolis 500 in 2006.  Car and Driver magazine did a road test of this amazing vehicle and called it a “supercar” that helped fuel the desire for this bad boy…

“But by almost every performance standard, the Z06 is a supercar. A few days after our trip, we took a Z06 to GM’s Milford proving ground and tested it. It ripped to 60 mph in only 3.6 seconds, hit 100 in 7.9, and 150 in 17.5. That’s on par with or better than the performance of the $153,345 Ford GT (and good luck getting that price) and $180,785 Ferrari F430. Likewise, the brakes are terrific, bringing the Vette to a standstill from 70 mph in only 162 feet. And it pulled 0.98 g on the skidpad. Spending double the Z06’s price does not guarantee you’ll have a car that can beat it. ” – Car and Driver

Price: $34,900

Cool Car Guy RatingExtremely Cool

________________________________________________________________________

John Boyd

Auto Consultant – John Boyd: The Cool Car Guy

John is an auto consultant with his license at a car dealership in Denver, Colorado. He can help you save time and money on any make or model, new or used, lease or purchase – nationwide! Call or email John about your next vehicle! jboyd@coolcarguy.com or Twitter @coolcarguy

Beware Of The Accuracy Of Car Websites And Reviews

Hey Cool Car Fans,

I decided to start 2017 off by writing an article about the plethora of car websites online with “information” about getting a deal on vehicles and online reviews.  There is a popular old saying, “there’s a sucker born every minute” and this is really true when it comes to what you read online.  Granted, I have an online blog here, so people could probably say the same thing about me, but the difference is that I am actually licensed to buy, sell, trade and lease vehicles for a living and I’ve been doing it for the past twelve years.

ONLINE REVIEWS

Let me start though by talking about online reviews.  What a joke most of this information has turned out to be.  I know of a dealership that rips people off constantly and they earn a ton of money selling cars.  They “inspect” their cars, advertise their cars as “inspected”, but most of their vehicles are rusted out from the East Coast and they don’t actually fix them.

They just advertise that they have a “90 point inspection” done on the vehicle, which is true, but they don’t pay to repair them.  In some cases, they don’t even do an oil change or they may only do an oil change on the vehicle.  When a person goes back to complain they tell them that they purchased the vehicle “as-is” and to have a nice day.

Some disgruntled people will go and write a bad review about them, but they don’t care.  The salespeople have their friends and family write reviews for them or they write them on their own under an alias.  Their good reviews outweigh their bad reviews, so they look like a great place to buy a car.  How is the online website like Google going to monitor that?  They can’t and do they really care?  Think about it.  The reality is that you could buy a car that is a piece of junk if you buy from that particular dealership based on their reviews.

On the flip side, you see people who are extremely unreasonable write negative reviews about repair shops or car dealerships that are really quality businesses.  I know of a repair shop in Denver that has been around for 40 years and they specialize in doing clutches at a pretty reasonable price.  They will even use upgraded materials like Kevlar that can last longer for only about $100 more than an OEM clutch.

Recently, I read a review online that blew my mind.  Some disgruntled guy wrote…

The quality was excellent–HOWEVER they tried to charge me sales tax on MY components which were brought in for reconditioning, which is labor only. This is NOT legal under Colorado State Law, and they IMMEDIATELY developed an attitude when informed of this fact. Will NOT use them again.

Really? This guy brought in his own parts for “reconditioning” and they charged him sales tax of 7.65%?  I bet his bill was about $200, so he had to pay about $15 in sales tax and he took the time to rate this shop one-star on a popular website.  He even said, “The quality was excellent”.

This guy failed to realize that most shops won’t even let him bring in his own parts.  The repair shops want to use their own parts, so it’s amazing this shop did that for him and then he pounds them online over sales tax?  Wow.  How many people won’t bother reading the actual review to realize that an unreasonable guy gave this long-term shop a one-star rating and they will miss out on using a really good shop for their service.  Once again, I take online reviews with a grain of salt because most of them are B.S.

CAR PRICING ONLINE

Let’s shift gears quickly and talk about one of my favorite things that you will see online today.  There are so many websites now telling people what they should be paying for a vehicle.  And most of the time it’s really comical.  I’m not going to mention the websites directly because I don’t need the heat from their lawyers, but you will know who they are.  The websites that tell you whether you are getting a fair market price or a value price or what the dealer price should be.

I ran an Internet company for three years before becoming The Cool Car Guy twelve years ago.  Guess how we made our money on the Internet?  We sold ads.  And the more visitors we would get to our site the more ads we could serve up and the more ads we served up the more money we made.  Do these sites actually sell cars?  No.  Do they really care if they tell you that you should be paying $25,000 for a $30,000 car?  No.  Why would they?  They have zero risk for giving you poor information.  It’s on the same level as fake news.

These websites often pull data from the dealer auctions for example or previous sales on their website, but that really means nothing.  Does their algorithm that they are using stop to say, “This vehicle had frame damage we need to adjust the price and notify our visitors.”  or “This vehicle was in two accidents and was priced less.” or “This vehicle has $5,000 in hail damage that wasn’t repaired.” or “This same vehicle is missing a front fender and the tires were bald and the sunroof was cracked and leaking water.”? Do their websites take any of this information into consideration?  No.  They can’t!  It’s simply taking an average of all recent sales data and telling the visitor that they should be paying $25,000 for that $30,000 vehicle because they have all the “data”.  It’s ridiculous because the data isn’t completely accurate.

It can’t be because sometimes a dealer will low-ball someone on a trade and the person will take their low-ball offer.  Now, they paid $16,000 for a vehicle that is running through the dealer auction for $22,000 that they can sell for $20,000 and earn $4,000.  Does this now mean that these vehicles that are retailing for $25,000 should be selling for $20,000?  This is the brain damage that these websites are creating in the marketplace because of mis-information and just spitting out “data”.  Ever watch Pawn Stars on television or some of the car shows where someone wants $10,000 for their vehicle and they offer them $5,000 and they take it?  It happens quite a bit nationally, but it’s not reality because some dummy gave away their vehicle.

You get to run around trying to buy a $30,000 for $25,000 and telling the local dealership or a private party, “Website so and so says I should be paying this, so that’s the most I am going to pay.”.  Does website “so and so” own that vehicle you want?  No.  Does website “so and so” actually sell cars or just advertise cars for sale?  How does website “so and so” get paid?  They sell advertisements or you have to pay a fee to list your vehicle on their website.

Are all cars that are the same make, model and year the same?  Ever been in a used car that looked like a family of rats lived in it or was a rust bucket compared to one that is car show worthy?  Are they worth the same?  Do these websites really care if the vehicle sells or if the visitors get the wrong pricing information?  No.  It’s not like you are buying the vehicle from them.  They have absolutely no skin in the game and there are zero regulations to make sure that their information is accurate.

What should you really do to get pricing for a vehicle?  See what the vehicle is really selling for online and if it fits your budget great.  If not,  you probably have to adjust your budget based on the actual condition of the used vehicle.  You are far better off going to NADA.com and KBB.com and pull the data with the options to see what the retail and wholesale value is for the vehicle.  This is what banks use to loan money on vehicles, so it’s much more real data.  If you are under retail and close to wholesale than you’re probably getting a good deal.  You should compare both book values though because sometimes even they miss it.  Some banks use Kelly Blue Book and some use NADA, so if you are financing the vehicle, find out which your lender is using.

In the end, a vehicle is worth what the owner is willing to pay.  A few years ago there was an article about a 1956 Mercedes-Benz 300SL Gullwing that was unrestored and it sold at auction for $400,000 more than a restored one brought.  What’s the website that the buyer could have gone to see if he got a good deal on that vehicle?  You can see details on this vehicle purchase at Gooding & Company’s website.

Obviously, the vehicle was worth what the buyer was willing to pay for it.  This is one of the reasons why I often enjoy selling historical or classic cars more than more modern vehicles to clients.  Most of the time the buyers and owners are much more reasonable about the vehicles they are looking to purchase and sell.

____________

John Boyd

Auto Consultant – John Boyd: The Cool Car Guy
John is an auto consultant with his license at a car dealership in Denver, Colorado. He can help you save time and money on any make or model, new or used, lease or purchase – nationwide! Call or email John about your next vehicle! jboyd@coolcarguy.com or Twitter

 

Why I Am Excited About The Future Of Formula One Racing

Hey Cool Car Fans,

If you’ve ever watched F1 racing you know how cool these cars are and recently a Colorado billionaire, John Malone of Liberty Media purchased the rights to Formula One racing.  If you’ve never seen Formula One racing let me share with you from a cool website called Zeroto60times.com how fast these race cars are and you’ll see why I am excited about the future of this sport.  Especially, if we can get some more Formula One racing here in the United States.

“Formula 1 cars are some of the fastest and radically accelerating vehicles on Earth and are considered by many car enthusiasts to be the pinnacle of motorsports. Today’s F1 0-60 times are exponentially faster than predecessors of even a couple decades ago. Formula One race cars have been recorded to reach 0-60 as fast as 1.6 seconds, however the typical range for modern day F1 cars is between 2.1 to 2.7 seconds. The 2007 Honda RA107 f1 race car goes 0-100 mph in a blistering 4 seconds flat.  The 2015 Infiniti Red Bull RB11 Formula One race car jets 0 to 60 in only 1.7 seconds, and perhaps even more impressive can reach 190 mph in under 10 seconds.  Although top fuel dragsters hold the top spot for fastest accelerating race car class, the F1 race car boasts a range of superior performance stats. F1 0-60 times are extreme, however so are their ability to perform incredibly tight high speed maneuvers, decelerate and reach impressively high top speeds. Under hard braking or cornering a typically F1 car will pull 4g’s, which is over 4 times as much as a 2014 Corvette Stingray Z51 would do which produces a max of 1.03g in hard cornering. The power to weight ratio of F1 race cars would actually allow for better performance, however current traction technology limits the capability to improve these current stats. Most F1 cars weigh around 1,300 pounds with the driver and boast over 750 horsepower. In other words, the power-to-weight ratio of formula one race cars is credited for the spectacular acceleration.” – Zeroto60times.com

These cars are super cool, but the race series is not winning over new fans and that’s a problem for the future of the Formula One racing.  John Malone’s Liberty Media has agreed to buy the racing series in a deal that values it at $4.4 billion, plus debt that will take it up to $8 billion.  That’s big bucks for a racing venue, but this is Formula One racing, which is the Super Bowl of race car driving and a global audience.

Since the announcement was made back in September other news reports have said that they intend to put spending caps on race teams.  This is a great idea because Formula One has been dominated by Red Bull and Mercedes Benz.   This is because they can spend $400 million or more on putting together a racing team and other teams have been spent into ruin trying to compete, which has created an unfair advantage for smaller teams.  It’s not a big win for the fans when two teams can dominate the racing circuit with better technology and loads of cash, so it will be interesting to see how it all shakes out with the new owner.

I don’t expect that Formula One will be huge here in the United States, but we might get some Grand Prix races in some larger cities like New York and Los Angeles out of it.  I’m hopeful that in the coming year we’ll see some changes with the new ownership and that more of the races will be available to watch and follow because it’s a really cool sport.  I’m including a cool video that is under ten minutes that I found on Youtube to check out below.

I want to thank all of my clients for a great 2016 and I am looking forward to 2017 and what it has to bring.

________________________________________________________________________

John Boyd

Auto Consultant – John Boyd: The Cool Car Guy
John is an auto consultant with his license at a car dealership in Denver, Colorado. He can help you save time and money on any make or model, new or used, lease or purchase – nationwide! Call or email John about your next vehicle! jboyd@coolcarguy.com or Twitter @coolcarguy

A Tale Of Two Classic Porsches

Hey Cool Car Fans,

I often get requests from clients to help them find a good deal on a specific classic car and I’ll usually start out by searching through the dealer auctions.   Recently, I was cruising through the auction and I spotted a couple of Porsche 356’s from the early 1960’s that I decided to showcase here and write an article about.

One of the reasons why I selected these two vehicles is because of the incredible disparity in price between the two vehicles.  I wanted to use this article to illustrate the fact that no two vehicles are ever the same, especially when it comes to classic cars.  Much like a piece of a artwork the beauty is in eye of the beholder and what has gone into the creation of the vehicle.  Many factors come into play from vehicle restoration, make, model, year, original miles, overall condition, who did the restoration, color, popularity, scarcity, etc.

First I spotted this 1962 Porsche 356B that was yellow and black with about 100,000 miles on the vehicle.   The description of the vehicle didn’t really say much about it though.  This vehicle was being priced around $72,000 with auction fees and shipping.  Here’s what they had to say about it, but let’s get some more research on this year and model as well.

The Listing: “WOW New 356B Original Rust free pans, new paint excellent interior Super 90 Spec Engine, Sport Exhaust, Carrera Tail panel & much more. Some details still awaiting completion but wanted to get these stunning pictures out there.

Porsche 356 History

“The 356 was created by Ferdinand “Ferry” Porsche (son of Ferdinand Porsche, founder of the German company), who founded the Austrian company with his sister, Louise. Like its cousin, the Volkswagen Beetle (which Ferdinand Porsche Sr. had designed), the 356 is a four-cylinder, air-cooled, rear-engine, rear-wheel drive car with unitized pan and body construction. The chassis was a completely new design as was the 356’s body which was designed by Porsche employee Erwin Komenda, while certain mechanical components including the engine case and some suspension components were based on and initially sourced from Volkswagen.” – Source: Wikipedia

One of the reasons why the 356 is popular is because it was originally created by the son of Ferdinand Porsche and it’s a cool body style.  In addition, it’s an extremely popular Porsche model and is claimed to be the world’s largest classic Porsche club of all the models.  They also are popular for rally and racing car events as well.  What about the 1962 though compared to the 1960?  Actually, there were not huge changes in these vehicles from 1960 to 1962 since the biggest changes to the 356 actually occurred in 1959.

“In late 1959 significant styling and technical refinements gave rise to the 356 B (a T5 body type). The mid-1962 356 B model was changed to the T6 body type (twin engine lid grilles, an external fuel filler in the right front wing/fender and a larger rear window in the coupé). The Porsche factory did not call attention to these quite visible changes with a different model designation.” – Wikipedia

The second vehicle I spotted was a 1960 Porsche 356B convertible, which I’ve put some photos in this article of as well.  This vehicle was a complete restoration with an asking price of around $189,000 with auction fees. The first 1962 Porsche that looked like a pretty sweet ride was being listed at around $72,000 and this one was being listed at around $189,000.  That’s a big spread in price.

Why the massive difference in price for a Porsche convertible compared to a coupe that was originally built within two years of the other one?  Let’s look at how this one was listed and described compared to the other one because this vehicle is a complete restoration and you can see the difference between the two vehicles.

The Listing: “1960 Porsche 356 B Super 90 Convertible Signal Red Tan Leather Interior 1600cc Super 904-Speed Vin/Serial: 87746 Full Restoration in 2014 500 Miles Since Restoration Rust Free Body Rebuilt Drivetrain Solex P114 Carburetors New Clutch New Brakes and Suspension 12-Volt System Leather Trimmed Seats Leather Trimmed Door Panels Leather Trimmed Dash Detailed Undercarriage New Seals and Weather Stripping Constant refinement has always been the watchword at Porsche but the new-for-1960 356B represented a marked leap forward in both mechanical and cosmetic features. Most notably the traditional dropped nose and slanting headlight covers gave way to a raised front bumper and fenders and more upright headlights. The T5 body style also introduced such new details as opening front quarter windows except on the Draus-bodied Roadster so named to appeal to the fast-growing American market. Famed photojournalist Jesse Alexander described the 356Bs new T5-series body as a rather drastic face lift that will come as a shock to Porsche owners all over the world but today it is symbolic of Porsche excellence. This superb Drauz-bodied 1960 Porsche 356B T5 Roadster is presented fresh from a three-year no-expense-spared nut-and-bolt restoration completed in 2014. After being stripped to bare metal the rust-free body was finished to high standards of fit and finish and expertly painted in Porsche Signal Red. In addition to all new seals weather stripping and exterior trim it features excellent glass chrome and canvas top Concours-standard detailing including the undercarriage and a crisp clean Tan interior with leather-trimmed seats door panels and dash pad square weave carpets and fully functioning controls and instrumentation. The restoration included rebuilding a Super 90 1600cc flat-4 engine with Solex P114 carburetors. The transmission was also rebuilt and a new clutch installed; the completed driveline now has approximately 400 miles of use. All steering linkage brake system and suspension components have been restored or replaced and the electrical system upgraded to 12 volts. This marvelous collector-grade 356B Roadster is offered with the Porsche Certificate of Authenticity.”

I think these two vehicles really illustrate why there can be such a difference in price for the same type of classic cars.  In the words of Donald Trump, the next time you contact me about a classic car you can see how the difference between cars can be “huge”.

________________________________________________________________________

John Boyd

Auto Consultant – John Boyd: The Cool Car Guy
John is an auto consultant with his license at a car dealership in Denver, Colorado. He can help you save time and money on any make or model, new or used, lease or purchase – nationwide! Call or email John about your next vehicle! jboyd@coolcarguy.com or Twitter @coolcarguy

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