The all-new 2020 Jeep Gladiator, of course. What—was this a private conversation? Sorry for butting in. We just thought you’d like to know that Jeep’s Wrangler-like pickup truck is quite an amazing specimen. An open-air cabin. A five-foot bed. Class-leading towing of 7,650 lbs. Off-road equipment galore. Yep, the Gladiator is a real marvel.
There you are, driving through the neighborhood, minding your own beeswax on Halloween night. Egad! It appears Birmingham has become infested with mutants, ghouls, and the cutest fairytale princesses in all the land! But don’t worry; this is all just make-believe. Gently take your foot off the pedal and let those little goblins trick-or-treat in peace.
Playfulness aside, it’s important to drive super-safe on
Halloween. Second only to Black Friday and the major “traveling” holidays,
October 31 is the most dangerous date for drivers and pedestrians. Children
don’t make a habit of crossing streets properly, and as such, are 200% more at risk
of being struck by a car while trick-or-treating than any other night. Follow
these 11 driving safety tips to ensure you don’t make the news this Halloween.
Ah! Sweet home Alabama. The Heart of Dixie. The house of Longleaf. The Yellowhammer State. Yet with so many gorgeous sights to see, Alabama rarely graces the covers of travel and road-trip magazines. (Perhaps families don’t know about the brilliant beaches, cavernous caverns, and miles-long stretches of hiking trails?)
Let’s aim to fix that. As you start planning your family’s fall break, consider loading up your Jeep Grand Cherokee for a scenic autumn road trip through Alabama. Check out these 11 scene-stealing destinations for inspiration, and get to travelin’!
Did you know that August is National Eye Exam
Month? These unofficial U.S. “holiday observances” are typically too
silly to even mention – we’re looking at you, National
Macadamia Nut Month – but August’s is quite the opposite, particularly
when it comes to drivers and general road safety.
Look, it’s not rocket science: good eyesight is essential
when you’re driving. You rely on those peepers more than any of your other senses.
Over 150 million adults in America wear eyeglasses or contact lenses to correct
their vision. Yet there are some strays – about 13 million, to be exact – who
refuse to wear corrective eyewear or even have their vision tested. To those
people, we hope you never get behind the wheel. To the other 150 million potential
drivers, here are a few tips to ensure your bad vision doesn’t get the best of
All the splash pads in Birmingham have opened, which means one thing: summer is here! But what if you’re allergic to water? (It can happen.) Ditch the swimsuit and head to an Alabama concert or one of these fun Birmingham summer events instead. Some are family-friendly, some are adults-only, but they’ve all got the potential to highlight your summer escapades.
Magic City Con in Birmingham
Date: June 21-23, 2019 Location: Hyatt Regency-Wynfrey Hotel (Birmingham, AL) Price: $37.50+ (buy tix here) Details: This 3-day gaming convention is perfect for all you Birmingham cosplayers, sci-fi aficionados, and pop-culture lovers. The weekend event in Birmingham will feature tabletop games, DnD matches, live acts, panels and workshops, stores, and a special KidsCon area. Don’t miss out! Head to www.magiccitycon.com for more info and to purchase weekend passes.
Families across the country, from Birmingham, AL, to
Fairfield, CA, have come to love their minivans. Summer vacation? Hop in the
van. Big Costco run? Hop in the van. Weekend trip to Grandma’s? Hop in the van.
There’s truly no beating a versatile people-hauler when you need the
versatility to haul people.
If you’re ready to upgrade your family van –or if you’re
ready to bite the bullet and buy your family’s first one – there are two models
to put on your to-test-drive checklist: the Pacifica and Odyssey. Both models
sit at the top of critics’ “best minivan” lists, but which one is right for
you? Read our Honda Odyssey vs. Chrysler Pacifica minivan comparison below.
Following last year’s redesign, the latest 2019 Jeep Wrangler returns with the iconic soft-top style and a handful of new niceties, including the addition of adaptive cruise control and forward-collision warning to the Advanced Safety Group, and a fancy pearl-turquoise Bikini color option. Yet beneath all the decorative and somewhat upmarket additions, this Jeep Wrangler is clearly a callback to its WWII-era, open-air ancestor.
Hey, we’re not complaining, and neither should you – the 2019 Wrangler may sport a more retro look, but it remains one of the most capable off-road SUVs you’ll find anywhere.
Unlike trucks from the ‘90s, modern pickups like the 2019
RAM 1500 are wonderfully convenient, offering towing and trailering power without sacrificing performance or
cabin space. This is perhaps why pickup trucks represent one of the fastest-growing
auto segment in America.
But as the popularity of half-ton pickup trucks skyrockets,
so too does class saturation, as new wannabe “truck of the year” candidates
flood the market to unseat actual “truck of the year” winners. And although
imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, there’s simply no American-made
truck that can compete with the all-new RAM 1500 and its best-in-class features.
(Just look at all the awards it won!)
2019 Truck of Texas
Just 500 miles west of our Birmingham RAM dealership,
you’ll find a small state called “Texas.” Surprisingly, Texans buy about a
quarter of all trucks in the country. So, you could say that Texans know a
little bit about what makes a good truck. That’s why the newest RAM 1500
winning the coveted 2019 Truck
of Texas award is such a big deal.
In awarding the RAM 1500, Michael Marrs, Texas Auto Writers
Association’s president, noted that the winning truck “…performed well even in
challenging weather conditions.” In fact, all RAM trucks excelled in TAWA tests, earning the auto brand
7 total awards:
Best full-size pickup — Ram 1500 Limited
Best heavy-duty pickup — Ram 2500 Power Wagon
Best luxury pickup — Ram 1500 Laramie Longhorn
Best off-road pickup — 2019 Ram 1500 Rebel
Best technology — 2019 Ram 1500 Uconnect controls with 12-inch touch screen
Best powertrain — 2019 Ram 1500 eTorque 48-volt mild hybrid
2019 MotorTrend Tuck
of the Year
“…there isn’t a truck out there that so precisely hits the
diverse needs of the segment better than the 2019 RAM 1500.” –MotorTrend
The latest RAM 1500 unanimously won the MotorTrend Truck of
the Year award largely because it’s just
that good. Of the 100-plus features available in the 1500, critics highlighted the following features that
ultimately secured the RAM 1500 pickup’s seat atop the leaderboard:
A variety of front grille (7), wheel (15) and
headlamp (3) design choices;
Impressive interior upgrades, such as a fully
configurable center console, desk-like console lid, three variations of RAM’s
Uconnect infotainment system, a large 12-inch touchscreen, and larger RamBins
hidden under the rear floor;
A Reclining rear bench seat with heating and
Two-tone leather and wood cabin treatments
across the entire RAM 1500 lineup;
Fluid steering and a high-end coil-spring
Best-in-class towing capacity of 12,750 pounds;
The segment’s best bed extender and cargo
Rearview tow-and-go cameras;
A system that assesses your trailer’s length and
adjusts the blind-spot alert zone to accommodate the load;
Class-best 0.357 Cd;
And best-in-class V8 4×4 fuel economy.
And that’s without mentioning
the RAM 1500’s 5 USB ports, wireless phone charger, and “Do Not Disturb”
infotainment safety feature. Whew!
2019 Consumer Guide®
Automotive Best Buy
Editors at Consumer Guide® also heaped praise on the 2019
RAM 1500, awarding it the Large Pickup Truck Best Buy trophy for the 11th
consecutive year. A major contributor to its win was the truck’s
significant enhancement in fuel efficiency, which was powered by an all-new
eTorque mild-hybrid system. This innovative powerplant, when married to the V8,
returns up to 23 mpg hwy, which is one of the best EPA-estimated numbers in the
half-ton pickup class. Plus, the RAM 1500 has also undergone a truck-bariatric
surgery, shedding over 200 pounds from its frame.
North American Truck
of the Year
Perhaps the biggest accomplishment is the RAM 1500’s North
American Truck of the Year win. After test-driving trucks for hundreds of
hours and across thousands of miles, NACTOY jurors chose the RAM 1500 as the
top dog, so to speak, beating 1500 rivals like the Chevy Silverado and GMC
When asked about the RAM 1500’s NATOY win, John Davis,
Executive Producer at MotorWeek,
said, “RAM continues to lead the way in making a big truck double as a big
family pleaser with as much attention paid to interior conveniences and ride
comfort as cargo hauling and towing.”
You’re Invited to
Test Drive the RAM 1500 in Birmingham
St. Patrick’s Day can bring out the worst in drivers.
Between 2012 and 2016, approximately 69% of all fatal crashes on St. Patty’s
Day were caused by drunk driving, and ¾
of those crashes involved a driver whose blood alcohol level was 2 times the legal limit of 0.08.
Although nothing can eliminate the risk of exposure to drunk
drivers this St. Paddy’s Day, you can avoid dangerous on-road situations by
spotting these 15 common warning signs of someone driving while intoxicated.
1. Weaving Between Lanes
An inability to maintain lane position is the #1 sign that a driver is impaired. According to police, a driver is 50% more likely to be intoxicated if they are zig-zagging between lanes or swerving to stay within the lines.
The 24th annual Total Quality Impact™ (TQI) awards were announced recently, and FCA was the clear winner with Dodge, Jeep, and RAM all earning trophies. What are the TQI awards, you ask? Founded by Strategic Vision, TQI is one of the industry’s most complete measures of both vehicle quality and owner satisfaction, taking into account everything from model recalls to available technology to brand loyalty.
But enough about the what; let’s discuss the why. Ladies and gentlemen, here are the prized Jeep, RAM and Dodge winners.
Dodge Durango: Best Midsize SUV
Thanks to a mix of high-end utility, built-in technology, and class-leading towing capability of 8,700 pounds, the new Durango was rewarded TQI’s Best Mid-Size SUV Award for the fifth time in six years. A competent all-weather SUV, the Durango’s is also a worthy trip-taker with its 26 mpg rating (highway), especially compared to other three-row SUVs in the segment. For that reason and many others, the Durango is not only TQI’s top midsize SUV but also the New England Motor Press Association’s official Winter SUV of the Year.