Archive for July 2013

Explaining Mazda’s i-ELOOP Technology

mazdaeloop

New technology can be exciting and confusing, but it doesn’t have to be. Mazda’s i-ELOOP system is as innovative as they come, and our experts have weighed in to help you understand how it can benefit Chicago Mazda drivers in a real way.

The first thing to know about i-ELOOP is that it doesn’t add a battery pack to the car like a conventional hybrid, and Mazda vehicles equipped with this technology are not hybrids. That doesn’t mean that i-ELOOP doesn’t make a meaningful difference in fuel economy though.

Most cars on the road today have an alternator, which is powered by the engine to produce electricity for things like the radio, climate control and lights. The problem with a conventional alternator is that it’s constantly running, even when you don’t need it or want the power it sucks up, like during acceleration. What Mazda i-ELOOP does is engage and disengage the alternator based on what the car is doing. When accelerating, the alternator freewheels, which means all the power the engine produces goes to making the car move. That means lower fuel consumption.

Meanwhile, when you decelerate the alternator starts producing a massive amount of electricity, turning your kinetic energy into power. That power is then stored in a capacitor, which slowly feeds the normal car battery based on how much electricity you’re using. It’s completely seamless, and the driving experience is no different than a normal car beyond the increased fuel economy.

Want to check out Mazda i-ELOOP for yourself? Well, it’s available on the 2014 Mazda6 sedan right now, allowing the vehicle to return up to 38 mpg on the highway. Stop by our Illinois Mazda6 dealership today and try it out.

Honda Pumps Up the Accord V6 with Performance Package

Honda Accord V6 Performance Package

Honda has always had a performance streak. And now they’ve applied their go-fast know-how to the new Accord Coupe V6. They call it the Honda Factory Performance Package, and the name couldn’t be more accurate. Complete with new suspension and 19-inch wheels shod with sticky summer tires, the Accord Coupe HFP is a capable performer on the boulevards and the race track as well. The model also comes with a range of exterior touches like front, side and rear underbody spoilers and HFP badges. Inside you’ll find red illuminated gauges and HFP floor mats.

So what’s the catch? There will only be 500 models made, which means you’ll have to act fast to get yours! If you’re looking for a high-performance coupe, visit our Illinois Honda Accord dealership and get behind the wheel.

Kia Soul and Sportage Lead in Updated J.D. Power Initial Quality Study

Kia Soul

As drivers have demanded more in-car connectivity in recent years, the parameters for what constitutes vehicle quality have expanded. To reflect that changing landscape, J.D. Power and Associates modernized its Initial Quality Study (IQS) this year to gather more information from car buyers about their experiences with their vehicle’s technology. The tech-packed 2013 Kia Soul and Sportage excelled when judged by that updated criteria, topping the Compact Multi-Purpose Vehicle and Sub-Compact CUV categories, respectively.

Using feedback from more than 83,000 purchasers and lessees of 2013-model-year vehicles, the 2013 J.D. Power IQS was determined by a 233-question survey that covered each car’s performance, exterior, and interior, as well as its features and accessories. Besting the Mazda5, the Kia Soul experienced the fewest problems per 100 vehicles (PP100) in its segment, while the Kia Sportage jumped to the top of its segment over the Nissan JUKE. Overall, Kia finished in the top 10 of all auto brands with a score of 106 PP100, rising above the industry average of 113 PP100.

“Kia’s performance in the 2013 IQS provides more proof that no other brand offers such a high level of quality at such affordable price points,” said Jeff Rosen, general manager of Milwaukee, Wisconsin Kia dealer Rosen Kia Milwaukee. “Kia particularly benefited from J.D. Power’s increased focus on technology this year, because models like the Soul and Sportage come standard with features that can be costly options from other automakers, like Bluetooth connectivity, a USB connection and an auxiliary input.”

Kelley Blue Book’s KBB.com cited those tech features when recently naming the 2013 Kia Soul to its list of the 10 Coolest Cars Under $18,000 for 2013. Editors also praised the urban crossover’s bold style lines, which include a backwards-sloping roofline contrasted by a rising beltline. Even with its modern technology and stylish looks, though, the Soul reminded KBB.com of a compact cargo van, thanks to its 53.4 cubic feet of space behind the front row.

Like J.D. Power, AutoPacific also found that drivers are having many positive experiences with the 2013 Kia Sportage, as the model led the Compact Crossover SUV category in the auto-research firm’s 2013 Vehicle Satisfaction Awards. To identify the most satisfying vehicle in each segment, AutoPacific surveyed more than 52,000 new-vehicle owners on 51 attributes spanning performance, fuel economy, convenience and interior comfort. The 2013 Kia Optima also earned a Vehicle Satisfaction Award in the Mid-Size Car category.

“Any model on the market has the potential to win an industry award every once in a while, but the Kia Soul and Sportage are consistently earning recognition from a variety of sources,” added Rosen. “That means both vehicles are giving buyers the complete package with their cool styling, their impressive technology and their versatile space.”