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Archive for January, 2014

smiledrive

Volkswagen has recently launched a beta version of their app SmileDrive to their ever growing app library. SmileDrive (currently available for free through Android marketplace) syncs with driver’s cars via Bluetooth and compiles travel blogs of every road trip recorded on the app.  These travel blogs, called SmileCasts can be shared with friends and family who are not on the trip through an ever updating URL. Don’t want to link to Bluetooth? Not a problem, SmileDrive can manually be updated. Just click the start button at the beginning of the journey and stop at the end; the app will record the rest.

As the trip progresses locations, weather conditions, and pictures taken along the way are uploaded to the travel cast and are also saved to the drivers (and passengers) Google+ accounts. Every passenger may link their account, and phone, to the trip creating a highly dynamic sharable SimleCast.

The app is very easy to navigate; looking more like a game app then one created by a car company. Upon opening the app asks to sync with your google account. Once access is granted SmileDrive wants to know what car you are driving. Have a Chapman Volkswagen? Find it by model, year, and color on the provided list. By giving this information, SmileDrive can recognize “twin” and “family” cars on the road.  The app will also work with non- Volkswagen vehicles; just follow the instructions to add a different car. All the information given allows drivers to access the Find My Car feature. Find My Car was created for all those drivers who spend hours looking for their car in parking lots and garages. Syncing your car to the app right before you exit will insure a much easier and stress-free return to it later. However, if your phone does not have service in the area, or a strong signal, Find My Car will not be able to tag your location.

Other features of the app include Digital Bumper stickers, and Punches. While driving along, stickers will be granted for different achievements. These achievements include early morning commutes, late night drives, long hauls, passing a twin car, as well as many others. Currently there are 25 stickers to be won, but VW will most likely be adding even more in the future.  Punches, based on the driving game “punch buggy” or “punch dub”, will record a virtual punch for every VW passed on the journey;  all the fun of the original game, minus the black and blue arms and backseat arguments.  Drive through a Volkswagen dealer in Tucson to really get your punch numbers up!

The final feature of the app is a SmileScore. While Volkswagen will not release how they calculate this score, it is known that all factors  including weather, distance, locations, punches, stickers, and pictures are added together to come up with a final score. The score of the drive will be logged and drivers can make a game of scoring higher and higher each time they travel in their car.

How to get affordable car insurance without getting ripped off

2015 Volkswagen Golf

With the economy still in shambles for many, having affordable car insurance is a key financial necessity. Many states require car insurance, and finding affordable insurance can prove difficult. Here are some things you can do to guarantee you get the best possible deal. For more insurance information, check out Chapman VW in Tucson.

The Car

How much you pay for insurance will correspond to the type of car you have. Generally, a newer, more expensive car will carry a higher premium for insurance. A used car with more miles will always be cheaper to insure. In addition, it’s best to remember that if you have to take out a loan to purchase your car, you will be required to carry a certain level of coverage as well. This can be costly.

State Limits

Many states have set minimums for the type of insurance you need. If you are trying to save cash, try looking for a policy that meets those minimum standards. When on a budget, many of the frills insurance companies offer are just not necessary.

Deductibles

Deductibles are what you pay when you make an insurance claim—it’s your part of the cost of the necessary repairs. What’s nice about deductibles is that you can vary from $250 to $1000 or more. If you’re strapped for cash, take the higher deductible. This will translate into lower premiums for you.

Discounts

Many insurance companies offer a multitude of discounts, such as lower rates for drivers with short commutes, retirees, students with good grades, or vehicles with specific safety or security devices. Ask your insurance provider about all possible discounts. You could be spending more than you need.

Shop Around

Always be on the lookout for cheaper insurance companies. Many say you can save a certain amount just by calling, so call. There is nothing lost in asking for a quote. Doing this yearly will help you guarantee that you get the best possible insurance rate available.

Remember there are always options for securing cheap automotive insurance that offers you the perfect coverage for the right price. If you are looking for a new car to insure on a budget, check out the new Volkswagen inventory today.