Holiday Travel Tips For the Season

Family Traveling

Planning instead of procrastinating is key to our holiday travel tips.

Thanksgiving has come and gone which means Christmas is right around the corner. After that is New Year’s Eve. That means many people will be traveling. Traveling during the holidays doesn’t have to be stressful, not if you take these holiday travel tips from us here at Jimmy Michel Motors, anyway!

  1. Don’t Procrastinate. Procrastination will only lead to stress. If you put off booking a flight until the week before you need to leave, you may not get a flight at all. Avoid putting off packing as well or you’re more likely to forget something. Lastly, make housing arrangements before arriving at your destination. Dropping in on your in-laws isn’t the best way to gain their favor.
  2. Travel Early or Late. When booking a flight, schedule for either early in the morning or late at night. Most people tend to fly during the middle of the day so by booking at either of those times, you’ll face less crowds. That means a smoother time going through security and making it to your gate on time.
  3. Plan Ahead. If you’re only bringing clothes in your bags, consider mailing them to your destination. Many airlines charge extra fees for every bag checked. That number can run into the hundreds if you aren’t careful.

Where are you headed for the holidays?

Ford Shelby GT350R Mustang Wins Coveted Performance Car of the Year Award

Road & Track recently put eight of the greatest new sports cars from all over the world to the test to determine which one was the best. The result? The Ford Shelby GT350R Mustang was named the Performance Car of the Year.

Ford Shelby GT350R Mustang

The Shelby GT350R, the Performance Car of the Year according to Road & Track!

The eight powerhouse cars were a lineup car enthusiasts could only dream about. It included the 2015 Bentley Continental GT3-R, 2016 Cadillac ATS-V Coupe, 2016 Chevrolet Corvette Z06, 2016 Dodge Viper ACR, 2016 Ferrari 488 GTB, 2016 Ford Mustang Shelby GT350R, 2016 Mercedes-AMG GT S, and 2016 Porsche Cayman GT4.

To be considered for this award, cars had to be street-legal while at the same time pushing their performance to the max with competitive lap times.

Road & Track writes, “GT350R is the Mustang that all Mustangs have been waiting to become.”

It is also worth noting that the Mustang is also the least expensive car on this list. It walked away with the award after a runaway vote.

The Shelby GT350R is powered by a high-revving, flat-plane crankshaft 5.2-liter V8 engine. This powerhouse is rated at 526 horsepower and 429 lb-ft of torque and is the most track-capable Mustang ever produced.

If you’re interested in a Mustang, take a look at our inventory!

Alternatives to a Thanksgiving Turkey

Thanksgiving is just around the corner! For families all across the country this means there will be a picture-picture roast turkey as the dinner centerpiece. But, what can you do if you don’t like turkey? Here are some great and delicious alternatives to a Thanksgiving turkey.

Thanksgiving meal

The bird doesn’t have to be the word with these alternatives to a Thanksgiving turkey

  • Pork. If your family prefers pork, there are numerous ways to cook it that will not only be delicious and crowd pleasing.
    • Crown Roast of Pork. For a dish that is truly the centerpiece and more than picture-worthy, try a pork crown roast. With just a little bit of preparation, you can enjoy this majestic dish.
    • Slowroasted pork. With this method, you’ll have meat that is so tender it is falling off the bone. Add some fruit, like cranberries or kumquats for a delightful fall feast.
  • Poultry. Even if you don’t like turkey, you can still have other poultry for Thanksgiving.
    • Perfect Roast Chicken. You can still get that traditional look of a roast turkey, but on a smaller scale with a chicken. And, since it’s smaller, it won’t take as long to cook.
    • Cornish Game Hens. These tiny birds have a delicious rich flavor. These would be ideal for a small group Thanksgiving and you could cook one bird for every one to two people.
  • Non-meat. If your family is vegetarian, try these meat-free options for a wonderful Thanksgiving meal.
    • Butternut Squash and Sage Lasagna. This delightful pasta dish uses fall flavors for a wonderful combination.
    • Wild Mushroom and Spinach Lasagna. Another great fall dish that will surely wow your guests is this lasagna packed with flavor.

What is your preferred main dish for Thanksgiving?

Tips for Off-Roading: What to Do Before Hitting the Trails

2016 Ford Expedition

Take your Expedition or other Ford vehicle off-roading with these tips to make the best of the experience.

 

Off-roading can be fun, especially if you know how to do it right. We’ve put together a list of tips for off-roading, ensuring you’re always safe and able to have fun. No one wants to end up stranded, so keeping these in mind could just define your driving experience.

According to Popular Mechanics, the best thing to do is to scope out the area first. Know where there might be unexpected terrain, drop-offs, and pedestrians. Look out for things like deer crossings, hills, and gorges. Remember, you can always stop and walk around if you can’t see what’s ahead.

Next, shift into four-wheel drive or all-wheel drive as soon as you hit the trail. Though you might think it sounds like common sense, many off-roaders forget to shift – before you know it you could end up stuck. Carry a reminder like a sticky-note so you don’t forget.

Always bring recovery gear. A sturdy rug can help you out of a rut and a spade can help you fill in holes. Serious gear should include a two-inch-wide tow strap (with fabric ends, not hooks), a pair of strong clevises, and an electric winch. Most importantly, bring a friend to help out.

New Ford Super Duty Lineup Adds 16 Segment-First Upgrades

Ford Super Duty lineup

Ford is reinventing the Super Duty. Adding some unique capabilities, the Ford Super Duty lineup is increasing capabilities, safety, and even some entertainment options. No matter what you’re looking for, you can find it in a Super Duty pickup.

Some improvements to the 2017 lineup include options like using more military-grade aluminum alloys, cutting weight by more than 350 lbs, according to Ford. The Super Duty is also getting new chassis cab features like a high-strength frame with an open C-channel design to enable easy aftermarket up-fit modifications.

“While Super Duty is America’s best-selling heavy-duty truck, we never take our leadership for granted,” said Raj Nair, Ford group vice president, Global Product Development and chief technical officer. “Our team is using relentless innovation in materials, technology and Built Ford Tough engineering to deliver customers our best Super Duty yet.”

There are 16 segment-first options on the new lineup models, including advanced camera technologies, fifth-wheel capabilities, LED lighting, adaptive cruise control, and more. In-cab trailer tire pressure is also a first for these trucks, just one of many new options that make the Ford Super Duty pickups among the best in their class.

Need your own powerful pickup? Check out our truck inventory!

Four Signs You Are A Bad Driver

The first step to handling a problem is admitting that you have one in the first place. Do you suspect you might be a bad driver? To help you determine if you have a problem, here are a four signs you are a bad driver.

 

Front Bumper Accident

If you’re a bad driver, it’s better to find out from our list than it is to find out on — or veering off — the road.

1. Where do people often pass you?

Everyone knows the rule, keep on the right unless you intend to pass. If people are passing you on the right, that means you are camping out in the left lane. Not only will this not make you any friends, it interrupts the flow of traffic.

2. You get into a lot of accidents.

As Jalopnik says, if your “bumpers have more than three colors on them,” you might be a bad driver.

3. Your tires and brakes are wearing out too quickly.

Wearing out your brakes could indicate that you are a “tailgater.” If your tire specialist tells you that you visit him or her far more often than others, it might mean you are taking corners too quickly.

4. Your friends always make excuses to drive when you go out.

But all of your friends get carsick if they ride shotgun, you say? All of them? Really?

If bad driving has already gotten the best of you, check out our service department to book an appointment.

How many of these sins do you or those dearest to you commit?

Ford Joins Forces With Foreigner To Drum Up Rock 4 UR School Initiative

Foreigner

Foreigner is teaming up with Ford in the Rock 4 UR School promotion.

Time to dig your leather jacket and stonewashed jeans out of the closet! The band who brought you hits like “Cold As Ice,” “Hot-Blooded,” “Waiting For A Girl Like You,” “Juke Box Hero” and “I Want To Know What Love Is” is hitting the road again.

But giving audiences a blast from the past isn’t the only purpose for Foreigner’s Fall tour. The rock band has teamed up with Ford to help the automaker’s Rock 4 UR School initiative.

As a press release from Ford explains, high school choirs in select cities will be able to submit videos of themselves performing “I Want To Know What Love Is.” The winning choir will have the opportunity to join Foreigner to perform what was their biggest hit. The choir will also have the opportunity to host a fundraising event, with the chance to earn up to $6,000 for their choir program.

Tracy Magee, Ford experiential marketing manager, said, “We are delighted to partner with such an iconic and influential band like Foreigner to provide support and visibility for high school choir programs.”

We’re hoping that choirs around the Springfield area put their pipes to good use and raise money for a school near Aurora!

How to Clean Foggy Headlights

Car driving with headlights on

If you’re driving in areas with low light, it’s important to ensure your headlights provide maximum visibility.

If you’ve notice that your headlights have lost their luster, you’re not alone. It’s common for headlights to become foggy, reducing the amount of light that gets through and making your car look aged and worn out. While replacing the plastic lens that protects your headlights is certainly a viable option, we recommend cleaning them first, to see if they actually need to be replaced.

Here is our guide on how to clean foggy headlights.

First, you’ll want to purchase a headlight restoration kit. These kits come with everything you need to polish and clean up your headlight’s plastic lenses. The Turtle Wax Headlight Lens Restorer is one example.

The plastic lens usually becomes yellow on the outer layer from oxidation and scratches from dirt and debris. These kits usually provide an abrasive paste and sandpaper to help remove the damaged outer later, and some also provide a protective “UV-block” clear coat that protects the lens from becoming foggy again.

Follow the directions for whichever kit you choose, taking your time to thoroughly buff and clean the area. If you find that the kit doesn’t quite do the trick, it might be time to have the lenses replaced. Contact us at Jimmy Michel Motors to learn more about how our Service Department can help!

For more headlight-cleaning tips, visit wikihow.com.

Ford Focus RS Found Here in the US Might Not be Street Legal

Finally, the much-anticipated Ford Focus RS is heading stateside for the first time ever early next year. The high-performance Focus has had car enthusiasts drooling for years – and now is the center of controversy right here in the USA.

2015 Ford Focus

A souped-up relative of this 2015 Ford Focus was spotted in an eBay auction. Photo gallery of the Ford Focus RS.

Apparently, in advance of the official arrival of the U.S.-spec Focus RS (which will obviously be street-legal), a (maybe?) not-so-street-legal Focus RS was put up for sale to the highest bidder on eBay. The seller claims that the 2010 Focus RS is the only RS currently for sale in the U.S., but omits any details on how the RS got here in the first place, or whether it can be driven on our roads.

The 2010 RS is listed as having 14,740 miles on the odometer, and boasts Recaro Leather bucket seats, blue-painted calipers, a large rear spoiler, and black alloy wheels shod with BF Goodrich G-Force tires. Additionally, the little powerhouse is powered by a .5-liter inline five-cylinder turbocharged gasoline engine that puts out 301 horsepower.

The starting bid was $35,000, which seems like a good deal (if it’s legal, that is). Unfortunately for the seller, the bidding ended on August 11th, with not a single bid.

Here at Jimmy Michel Motors, we recommend waiting just a few months, and you’ll be able to get your hands on a brand new model that’s sure to be street legal! In the meantime, check out our Focuses currently in stock and all of our new inventory.