Wagon Wednesday – Audi Style

The 450hp Nogaro Blue Audi RS4. 

Drool on America!
Photo cred from the interwebs.

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Going Deutsche

This is what life should look and feel like everyday.  Wake up. Brush your teeth. S, S, S.  Grab a bite to eat. Then pull out of the garage and hit the track in any one of these nicely appointed German suits.  

Audi Q2

Oh the Europeans and their posh customized lifestyle!  

No shade or hate, as I’ve told I have a little British man hiding inside of me.

Video courtesy of VWHome

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I got the car blues

I know that it’s January, but I am so very glad that the month of October is done as this had been the most nerve racking and stressful month to date.  You know when people say “don’t take your car to the dealer for repairs because you always leave with more things wrong when you get it back.”  I used to think that was a bunch of bull until it happened to me.

After wrapping up my media visit to the Orange County International Auto Show I returned to my car what could be described as a crime scene.  There was a pool of fluid running from under my car. When I started the car, it would groan in agony as I attempted to turn the very heavy feeling steering wheel.  Great!  The power steering went out in horrific fashion after enjoying my first automotive media event.  My goal for the day was to leave the show, grab a bite to eat and then go shop for a car for my son.  Now I’m stranded in Orange County and the shop I usually go to is 40+ miles away.

Knowing that there was no way that my car could be repaired this late in the afternoon I decided to give the local Audi dealership a call.  I was going they could take my car in today and provide me a loaner since I still needed to be mobile.  They were willing to allow me to drop off my car and provide me a loaner, I just needed to get towed there.  I called up AAA and they dispatched a very nice tow truck driver to the rescue.  Since my car is lowered and all-wheel-drive, a flatbed truck is always recommended.  The problem this day was that my car was parked between the 1st and 2nd level of a multi-level parking structure.  Adding to the dilemma, the Auto Show just opened to the public and hundreds of cars were arriving. Great!

The AAA driver arrived in one of the smaller trucks that only tows the front 2 wheels. This style of truck was dispatched because it was small enough to fit inside the parking structure.  After assessing my car, the driver was advised by dispatch not to start the car.  He was instructed to roll the car out of the parking structure without starting it so as to not damage the power steering pump.  I would then need to wait for a larger flatbed tow truck that would be better equipped to transport an all-wheel-drive vehicle.

I assisted the tow truck driver with pushing the car safely down the ramp and out into the wide open parking lot of the convention center.  I waited patiently for a flatbed truck to arrive and transport my vehicle to the near by Audi dealership.  The dealership was great in taking in my car and providing me with a loaner.  I had the pleasure of driving a nicely equipped 2016 A6 2.0T for the week as they repaired my car. At the end of the week I received a hefty bill for the replacement of new power steering lines and I was back in the TT.

Over the next few days of driving, a multitude of issues occurred.  First the belly pan that protects the underside of my car drooped down and dragged itself along the freeway for a few miles turning it into Swiss cheese.  I was able to add some zip ties so that it would no longer scrape the ground.  A few days later the AC stopped blowing cold air.  That was a long sweaty drive back home from Fontana…smh!  I contacted the dealer about these issues on Saturday and was advised to bring it in and they would look at it.  That following Monday on my way to the dealership my car starts overheating forcing me to have it towed once again. The dealership diagnosed a faulty wire harness that burned out and could have potentially set fire to the car.  There are reports of this happening and is a known issue with VW/AUDI with their older platform vehicles, namely the Beetle, Audi TT and GTI, all of the same era (2000-2005).  This faulty wire harness is like an artery that connects the alternator, battery and a few other vital vehicle electronics. So as you can see, it’s an important harness.  I had it towed in and I was back in another loaner. This time it’s a 2016 A3 1.8T.

 (Pretty nice interior)

Another week goes by and my car is ready for pick up once again.  I return the loaner A3, which I was not that impressed with, but it was more impressive than the A6 I had a week prior.  The A6 just didn’t feel right…kinda quirky I guess.  I pick up the TT leaving behind another paycheck at the dealership for the repair work and headed home on a Thursday night.  Tuesday morning of the following week as I was headed to catch my commuter bus, the dashboard lights of the TT all start flashing and the car starts losing power.

I was able to safely pull off of the freeway and immediately contacted the dealership.  They refused to send out a tow truck for my vehicle because I did not purchase my vehicle from them, so AAA gets the business for a 3rd time this month.  No offense, but if I have to listen to another tow truck driver tell me his life story, I’ll have to pass on them giving me a ride in and just walk the 40 miles to work, lol.

Now remember when I said how that wire harness was important and connected to basically the heart of the car.  Well the tech at Audi didn’t bother to check the alternator or battery before releasing the car to me last week and they both needed replacing.  I assume that I am not the only person finding all this a little too coincidental.  Loaner #3 was another 2016 A3.  After talking with the dealership about all the money they were siphoning from my bank account, I picked up a very budget friendly alternator which they agreed to install at a discounted rate.  Before picking up the TT after they replaced the alternator they call to tell me I now need a new battery. My words to the service writer “You mean to tell me that you let the battery drain as it was sitting in your bay waiting to get repaired. This is ridiculous.”  After a bit of arguing they installed a new battery for free.

Upon picking up the car I recalled my conversation with the service manager about taking care of my belly pan as that was my initial complaint about their work they performed (tech didn’t secure the pan).  Well guess what, they didn’t take care of it.  I stormed into his office and after giving him a few choice words, he agreed to order me one and I could come back and have them install it on the car.  I’ll be back for the pan, but no touchy!  A month later and more electrical issues have started to surface with this car.  I’ve got the German car blues.

Now I see why you don’t take your car to a stealership or but a German car without a warranty because the dealership will find ways to get paid and shift blame.

I’m sorry for the long post, but I had to share my story.

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What does Audi and laser beams have in common?

Audi is leading the automotive industry not only with it’s “virtual cockpit” dash displays in a number of their vehicles, but also with it’s innovative laser light technology that is currently fitted in the headlights of their Euro-spec cars.  This headlight technology was released a year ago oversees and they are now bringing that same futuristic tech over here in the 2017 Audi R8 Exclusive Edition. 

Check the video just released by Audi USA.


Video courtesy of Audi and YouTube . 

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2016 Orange County International Auto Show…Press Coverage

Well, it finally happened.  I was granted a media pass to cover the #Orangecountyinternationalautoshow.  This opportunity was a great way to get in and take pics and video before the little sticky hand kids were allowed to enter and muck up everything.  Perks Garage is very thankful for the access and looking forward to covering more events in the near future.

During my prep for the event, I have been working on setting up a YouTube channel to host the videos we take here at Perks Garage to provide a full in debt review of features and functionality of vehicles, both new and old.

It felt pretty good to arrive at the auto show and be asked for my confirmation letter as then granted access.  I quickly parked the Audi, grabbed my gear and headed in for an unobstructed point of view of the cars on display, and the layout of the event.  Once inside a greeting table confirmed my name was on the list and provided me with my pass.  I was too late to receive a lanyard but I didn’t care…I have arrived.  There were plenty of other people from various media outlets.  Local News channels, fellow bloggers, YouTubers, and even some foreign independent channels roaming the floor.  Everyone was taking pictures and videos and interviewing people spewing out vehicle specs.  It is like a Hollywood gala for auto enthusiast…the bright lights and cameras minus the boogie attitudes.  I was not quiet ready to interview people, I just wanted to act as the cameraman/ videographer.

I had on hand my Canon, Galaxy Note 5 and a small handheld video recorder.  I took loooootttttsss of pictures and quite a few videos.  I took my time and was able to see every vehicle and even test drive a few that they made available for us.  Mazda, Honda and Toyota to name a few were on hand to do test drive demos soI jumped at the opportunity to get behind the wheel of the all-new 2016 Mazda MX-5.  Disappointment quickly set in when I found out it was an automatic and the streets were pretty congested by that time.  After the test drive and brief survey, I did receive an email invite to attend a Mazda MX-5 track event, so that will make up for the weak test drive.  Insert corny car nut verbiage riiight…here!  “Yay Mazda…Zoom-Zoom!”

All in all the event was great.  Free access, free snacks and drinks, unobstructed views and full access to some very nice vehicles.  Thank you Orange County International Auto Show for the media pass.

Now on to some pics…A LOT OF THEM!  Scroll down to check out some video footage.

#orangecountyinternationalautoshow

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Here are a couple of the videos available on the channel.

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All images and videos property of Perks Garage 2016!

 

All Hail the Avant!

I want to go on record to express my utter disgust in America…for not importing to the states the greatest compromise car in the world.  The Audi RS6 Avant!  

Why are we so against fast wagons here?  
I mean we never truly got the Audi RS4 Avant.

They killed off the Audi S4 Avant.

No more Dodge SRT8 Magnum Wagon.

The dearly missed plushed out CTS-V Wagon. 

What we’re left with is the Mercedes E63 AMG S Wagon…

and the Volvo V60? Well at least we get the Polestar variant!

Where are our other options ‘merica?!
I feel it is my God given right as an American citizen to haul 4 adults and half of the Home Depot store in the back while hauling a$$ down a long stretch of a winding road in a 600hp wagon (avant) wearing a nice fitting suit accented by my favorite heel-toe diving shoes while listening to Kenny G. We need choices and lots of them. 

Not saying I can write a $100k check at this moment,  but I would love to bask in the automotive essence that other countries have where a super car is not just a Lambo or GT3 RS, but something that more than 2 people can ride in. 

Sorry for the rant but watching these two videos struck a nerve with me. 

Courtesy of Auditography

Courtesy of Supercars Of London

Images from the interwebs.

Words by The “European-blooded” Perk.

L.A. Auto Show

Went to the L.A. Auto Show over the weekend and took a few pictures.  Some of these are cellphone pics from my Galaxy Note 5…awesome camera!  There were a lot of the same cars from the O.C. Auto Show I went to over a month ago,  but L.A. had a few more new ones on display.  Fiat previewed it’s new 124 Spyder that is based on the Miata platform and an interesting new entry from Alfa Romero – the Giulia, which promises 510 Italian horsepower.  Lots of spectators and a few celebrities in attendance.  I saw Josh Smith from the Clippers and Eddie Huang – Executive Producer for ABC’s “Fresh Off the Boat” both were signing autographs.  Hilarious show, please check it out when you get a chance.

Now on to the photos.

IMG_1626IMG_1631IMG_1630Alfa Romeo GiuliaIMG_1551

S6image

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RS7image

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S8IMG_1543wp-1448840160472.jpg

NSXimage

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M4 GTSimage

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70 Camaroimage

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2016 GLI…surprisingly one of the few cars my 6′ 3″ son was able to sit comfortably in the back seat with plenty of head and leg room.image

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IMG_1531IMG_1522

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GT350image

Focus RSimage

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2016 Camaro SSIMG_1556IMG_1555

R8IMG_1665IMG_1667IMG_1671Fiat 500IMG_1694IMG_1696Scion iMIMG_1564IMG_1565

RC-FIMG_1537IMG_1539IMG_1534

IS350 IMG_1533Racecar 🙂IMG_1585Ford GTIMG_1643

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BRZ STi ConceptIMG_1527

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2015 StiIMG_1524

22b…MmmmmmIMG_1529SLS GTIMG_1546Scion ConceptIMG_1569ACR ViperIMG_1632

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C63 AMG CoupeIMG_1550Lotus – customized by GASIMG_1600Mustang Rocket Edition by GASIMG_1605IMG_1608IMG_1609IMG_1610IMG_1618IMG_1620IMG_1621

Toyota Concept carsIMG_1578IMG_1582IMG_1583IMG_1580

That’s it.  I hope you enjoyed!