Keep On Truckin’ – The 2017 Chevrolet Silverado

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The latest generation of Silverado debuted in 2014 and set the automotive world ablaze with praise for GM’s continued devotion to refining their particular brand of style, safety, performance, and technological advancements. Three years later, the Silverado is still topping the sales charts with new additions from fresh colors to technological upgrades and with the 2017 Chevrolet Silverado 1500, your choices are greater than ever before.

As usual, the trim levels range from powerful work truck (WT) to the top-shelf beast-mode of the High Country. The starting line for the Silverado’s powertrain is anything but “basic”. The reliably potent 4.3L engine still impresses with its 285 horse-powered V-6 workhorse. Additional technology and upgraded cosmetics evolve with each trim level increase.

Want 20″ aluminum wheels? The ‘Silverado Custom’ is your baby. Looking for satellite radio, Android Auto, Apple CarPlay, and standards like Teen Driver mode and a rearview camera? May want to give the LT models a spin.

But if you’re looking for more muscle, don’t worry. Chevy’s got you covered with their LZ and High Country models. You’ll be the king of the road with your 5.3L V8 355 horse-powered 1LZ. Toss in a 6-speed automatic transmission and all the modern technological conveniences and your kingdom will be expanding every time you put it in “drive”.

Still not enough? Then you’re ready for the High Country. An 8-speed transmission and rear-wheel drive replaces the 1LZ’s front wheel (and the 2LZ’s 4-wheel) drive type along with adding 20″ chrome aluminum wheels and the best tech on the market today. All the stops have been pulled with standard interior equipment like power-adjustable pedals and a heated leather-wrapped steering wheel, and that’s just for starters.

Even the safety features get the state-of-the-art treatment by adding features like an ultrasonic parking assist system, forward-collision alerts, lane-keeping assistance, automatic high beams, and much more. So, no matter what you’re looking for, the 2017 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 has it in an incredible array of trim levels and in an indescribable kaleidoscope of exterior and interior colors.

The best news of all is you don’t have to wait to test drive Chevrolet’s newest Silverado. It’s waiting for you now at Finnegan Chevrolet Buick GMC at prices you’ll have to see to believe. So, shop us online or stop by our showroom today and experience everything the 2017 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 has to offer. This isn’t a dream. This is a Chevrolet Silverado…

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Crossing Over: Chevy’s New Era of SUVs

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The North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) is almost here and that means we’re finally getting a look at Chevrolet’s final update to their stable of crossovers and SUVs. On January 9th, Chevy will unveil their long-awaited redesign of the 2018 Chevrolet Traverse.

GM has been slowly but surely phasing out their ten-year-old “Lambda” SUV platform and replacing it with their C1XX (pronounced “Chi”) vehicular architecture over the last few years and with the rollout of the 2018 Traverse, that transformation will be complete. This fresh design is guaranteed to put the “full” into Chevrolet’s popular full-sized SUV.

Among the announced specs for the new SUV, GMC has touted a weight loss of around 700 lbs and a horsepower increase from the current 281 hp V-6 to the GMC Acadia’s 310-hp 3.6-liter V-6. So if lighter and more powerful are what you’re looking for in a SUV, the 2018 Traverse needs to be on your short list of test drives.

Of course, as all SUV owners know, weight and power aren’t everything. Three-row SUVs come in many shapes and sizes, but if you’re looking to haul 8 people around, you’re going to want some space. The 2018 Traverse’s reportedly longer wheelbase will definitely stretch out the already spacious interior giving more legroom for everyone, from the front seats to the back row. Filling this spacious interior with the latest premium materials and technology is also on Chevrolet’s to-do list and insider reports indicate that this box has been impressively checked off the list.

With the NAIAS just days away, the wait is almost over. Stay tuned for more details from your friends at Finnegan Chevrolet Buick GMC.

 

Holiday Traveling Safety The Finnegan Way

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As hard as it is to believe, the holiday season is here and for many of us, that means one thing: road trip. While you’re making your plans to visit friends and relatives, Finnegan Chevrolet Buick GMC would like to offer the following suggestions to insure your holidays are truly happy ones.

WINTER IS COMING

Living in Houston has many benefits, not the least of which is the mild winters and the typically non-wintery driving conditions. Unfortunately, the lack of snow or ice on the roads can be a double-edged sword as most Houstonians do not have much experience driving in regions where winter comes with road hazards of every imaginable shape and size. So, before you set out on your journey to grandma’s house, be sure to prepare yourself for wintery driving conditions.

  • Plan ahead by checking weather forecasts and plotting your course wisely
  • In the event of any major wintery conditions, always remember main highways and freeways will always be cleared first so plan to use these as much as possible.
  • Make sure your mobile device is charged up in the event of an emergency
  • Be sure your vehicle has emergency supplies (batteries, first aid kit, road flares, etc) before you set off on your journey.
  • Above all else, be sure you are familiar with the many driving techniques and specialty supplies for driving in wintery conditions.

REST FOR THE WEARY

Yeah, we know. Making time for a nap when you’re getting ready for a family trip is about as realistic as retiring on your privately owned tropical island.  That said, nothing makes a road trip seem more like eternal damnation than driving while worn-out. While planning out your itinerary, it would be a great idea to schedule some downtime or even a 15 minute power nap before you start rolling.

 BRAKE FOR BREAKS

Speaking of ‘power naps’, taking breaks during your road trip, especially when you’re tired, is a foolproof way to cure bobbleheaditis.  We know the temptation of trying to shave off a few minutes from your travel time, but if the choice is saving a few minutes or saving lives, we’re pretty sure we know which side of the ledger you’ll want to be a part of. If your family is anything like ours, we’re sure they’d rather you arrive a little late than not at all. So, factor in some time for breaks or even an overnight stay at a hotel if you find yourself unable to continue on the journey safely. Better to crash at Motel 6 than anywhere else along the road.

NO NEED FOR SPEED

Another safe driving tip, especially in the winter time, is to watch your speed. Giving plenty of time and distance between your fellow drivers is always a good driving policy, especially when you’re driving in unsafe weather conditions. As challenging as it may be to keep it under 80 mph, it’s always a good idea to maintain safe rates of speed. We know your family won’t mind if you didn’t break any land speed records as long as you arrive at your destination safely.

DRINK RESPONSIBLY

If the adult beverages are flowing freely at the family gathering, be sure to plan ahead for the return trip. Set a designated driver or simply plan to stay until you’ve recovered from the revelings. Traffic statistics have shown the average number of alcohol-related traffic fatalities rise over 30% during the holiday traveling season. You can prevent yourself and your family from becoming a part of those statistics by planning ahead and celebrating wisely.

FINAL THOUGHTS

We hope these tips will help you in your holiday planning so you can insure you and your loved ones have many more holiday road trips in the future. Just use your common sense and plan ahead and we can all have a very happy 2016. Your friends at Finnegan Chevrolet Buick GMC want to wish you and yours a wonderful and safe holiday season…

Halloween Safe Driving Tips

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As hard as it is to believe, the end of another year is fast approaching and with it are plenty of driving challenges for motorists to be aware of starting with Halloween night.  State Farm commissioned a study on Halloween pedestrian injuries and fatalities from Bert Sperling of Sperling’s BestPlaces.  What they discovered was an alarming pattern that all parents and drivers need to be aware of before leaving the house on Halloween night.

Researching over four million records from the year 1990 to 2010, Sperling’s BestPlaces concluded there was an average of 5.5 fatalities each year on October 31st.  While that number may sound small, it should be noted that single stat was more than double the 2.6 fatalities for any other day.  According to their research, the deadliest hour on Halloween night occurs between 6:00 and 7 :00 p.m. and over 60% of Halloween accidents happened between 5:00 and 9:oo p.m.

Needless to say, careless driving can transform Halloween night into a very real horror for all the wrong reasons.  With this in mind, your friends at Finnegan Chevrolet, Buick GMC offer the following driving safety tips for Halloween.

PUMP THE BRAKES

Most residential neighborhoods require drivers to keep it under 30 mph in an attempt to keep the number of pedestrian accidents to a minimum.  Of course if you ask anyone who lives in a suburban neighborhood or subdivision you know far too many drivers believe residential speed limits are optional.  It’s important to monitor our speeds through subdivisions at all times and especially on Halloween night.  When trick-or-treaters are out and about, it’s a very good idea to observe School Zone speeds (10 mph lower than the regular posted speeds).  Slow and easy is the only way to roll through the ‘hood on Halloween.

DO YOU SEE WHAT I SEE?

Your speedometer isn’t the only thing to keep your eyes on.  There are plenty of distractions for the modern motorist from cell phones to colorful touch screen instrumentation displays.  While most of us believe we’re the exception to the rules, the truth of the matter is no one is exempt from the laws of physics.  Distracted drivers have a much slower response time than drivers who are paying attention to their surroundings.  It should come as no surprise that many auto/pedestrian accidents are the result of distracted driving.  When you consider how quickly a small costumed child can (and will) dart into traffic in search for their next treat, the importance of keeping your eyes off of your phone and onto the road cannot be overstated.

 LIGHT IT UP

This may sound like a no-brainer, but you would probably be surprised how many drivers either neglect to turn on their lights or intentionally keep them off to “scare the children”.  The obvious problem with this is darkness = zero visibility.  We feel foolish mentioning this “tip” but sometimes the obvious needs to be stated.  Turning off your lights when driving through a neighborhood filled with trick-or-treaters of every age and size is a recipe for disaster.  So, keep those headlights burning, even in the daylight.

Headlights aren’t the only lights you need to use.  Signal lights are a vital part of communicating your intentions.  Assuming everyone around you can read your mind usually doesn’t end well.  When turning into driveways or onto streets, be sure to use your signal lights so everyone around you knows what you’re doing.

These are just a few common sense tips we hope you’ll put to good use when travelling around your neighborhood on Halloween night.  If we all work together, we can make sure everyone has a happy Halloween…

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End The Fear Factor With Teen Driver Technology From Chevrolet

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Over 360,000 teens received their driver’s license in the month of August this year across the United States. Yeah, you read that right. In any given month, our nation’s roads and highways are flooded with brand new, inexperienced drivers. Couple that statistic with the growing number of distracted driving-related traffic accidents thanks to the digital devices that our kids can’t seem to live without and you can understand why the number one worry most parents have about their kids is unsupervised driving, according to a Chevrolet commissioned survey from Harris Poll.

Teen Driving Worries Parents Most According to Latest Poll

The reason Chevrolet asked for this particular survey is because the company is made up of people with kids of their own.  So, Chevrolet took the survey’s findings to heart and created a technology suite designed with your teenaged driver in mind.

Don’t let the name fool you. The Teen Driver package is filled with active and passive safety features designed to promote responsible driving habits for drivers of all ages. That said, these features are custom made for habitual driving issues that are statistically associated with teenaged drivers. Teen Driver supports driving safety habits like:

  • Automatic Audio Mute – No front seat belts fastened? No radio or audio from connected devices.
  • Preset Speed Violation Warnings – Got a teen with a lead foot? Set your child’s max speed and the car will audibly and visibly inform them every time they exceed it
  • Radio Volume Preset – Does your teenager think they’re the neighborhood DJ? Limit the maximum volume of your vehicle’s radio
  • Lane Departure Warning
  • Front and Rear Park Assist
  • Lane Keep Assist
  • Side Blind Zone Alert
  • Rear Cross Traffic Alert
  • Forward Collision Alert
  • Forward Automatic Braking
  • Rear Automatic Braking
  • Front Pedestrian Braking
  • Stability Control
  • Traction Control

Not only does the Teen Driver package have these safety features, but it also has an in-vehicle report card feature that parents are sure to love:

  • Distance Driven
  • Maximum Speed Reached
  • Overspeed Warnings Issued
  • Stability Control Events
  • Anti-lock Braking Events
  • Traction Control Activations
  • Wide-open Throttle Events
  • Forward Collision Alerts, if equipped
  • Forward Collision Braking Events, if equipped
  • Tailgating Alerts, if equipped

Keep in mind, Teen Driver has variable features that will not be available in all vehicles but it will be available in 10 of its vehicles for the 2017 model year. Here is the current list of 2017 models that are eligible for the Teen Driver package:

So, if you’re in the market for a new 2017 Chevrolet AND you have a teenaged driver, the Teen Driver Technology Package is definitely something that will benefit you and your family. For more information on this or any of Chevrolet’s incredible safety features, contact us online or stop by our showroom and trade in your worries and stress for a safer driving experience for everyone in your family courtesy of Finnegan Chevrolet Buick GMC and Chevrolet.

Great Car Games To Play On Road Trips

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School is about to begin which means one last road trip for the summer season for many families. As much as we enjoy the planning and the anticipation of the trip, often the most dreadful leg of the trek is the long drive back home. The return trip can seem even longer if you have kids throwing the classic “are we there yet?” line at you. For those who are driving vehicles that aren’t equipped with DVD players or individual charging stations for digital devices, here are some suggestions for non-digital time-killing fun:

The License Plate Game

This one is another fun one, the longer the road trip, the better, for this game. The rules here are simple again- there are 50 U.S. states, all of which have their own unique license plate. The goal of the game is to spot cars containing 1 of each state license plate. Some are obviously easier than others, depending on which states you’re passing through. I think I’ve only completed this game once in my life. As you can guess, the two hardest to spot are Alaska and Hawaii – but they do exist, I swear!

The Alphabet Game

This one is definitely one of the easier games to complete, usually. The goal of this game is to spot words on billboards, shop signs, or cars for each letter of the alphabet. One person starts with the letter ‘A’ and the responsibility is then passed on letter-by-letter, person-by-person as each letter in the alphabet is crossed off. The most difficult letters for this one are usually toward the end of the alphabet, so you might have to help other players who might get stuck!

The Windmill Game

I might be alone in this, but growing up I’d often visit my grandparents’ house out in rural Texas. Somewhere along the way we started playing what I call the ‘Windmill Game’. The rules are simple- whenever you spot a windmill, you shout out “Windmill!” – earning you 1 point. By the end of the trip, whomever has the most points, wins! Looking back, we made a game out of this so that I’d spend my time looking out the window for windmills (of which there were plenty) instead of worrying about how much longer we were going to be in the car. A great game to play, especially if you’ll be passing by ranches and farms!

No matter where, or how far your road trip is, Finnegan Chevrolet Buick GMC has tons of great vehicles to choose from for all sorts of adventures. Discover your next adventure by test driving any new Chevrolet, Buick or GMC today!

Unleashing the Beast: The 2017 Camaro ZL1

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Anyone who’s ever driven a Corvette knows the one thing lacking in Chevrolet’s incredibly powerful sports car is room for more people to enjoy the ride. Enter the 2017 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1.  Now before you close this blog in disgust, let’s be clear. No one with any knowledge of sports cars is going to mistake a Camaro for a Corvette.  However, when you see what Chevrolet is rolling out for the Camaro’s 50th anniversary, you’ll swear you’re driving a ‘Vette with four seats.

This sixth-generation Camaro is being touted as “the most powerful Camaro ever produced.” One look at the specs will confirm that statement. Taking it’s cue from the Corvette Z06’s supercharged LT4 6.2L V8 engine, the ZL1 is powered by a redesigned-for-the-Camaro version of the ‘Vette’s V8. With an estimated 640 horsepower and 640 lb.-ft of torque coupled with a 10-speed automatic transmission, it should be pretty obvious that the ZL1 has enough road chewing power to take on pretty much anything that crosses its line of sight.

The engine specs aren’t the only thing similar to the Corvette Z06. Toss in the Z06’s magnetorheological shocks, computer controlled limited-slip differential, Bembo brakes, RECARO® performance seats, and Chevrolet’s Performance Data Recorder (just to name a few amenities) and the similarities between Chevrolet’s performance cars are obvious. Simply put, when you put your foot into this beast, the Joneses aren’t going to be the only ones having a hard time keeping up with you:

Once you get a peek at the ZL1’s exterior, the similarities disappear. The Camaro’s iconic design still screams “muscle car”, but this time there’s a few twists that will definitely move it off the drag strip and onto the racetrack. Twenty-inch wheels wrapped in 285-wide front and 305-wide rear Goodyear Eagle F1Supercar tires are typically the first thing to catch the eye, but they won’t stop there for long. From the larger front grille and a newer version of the Z/28’s “flow tie” to the two-mode exhaust and rear racing spoiler, the completely redesigned Camaro ZL1 is a visual feast for power-hungry eyes.

The software is just as impressive as the hardware. Sink into the suede-accented racing seats and feast your eyes on the technical wizardry that awaits you. All of the entertainment bells and whistles are there as well as a few extra features for the racing aficionado. The ZL1 comes standard with Chevrolet’s Performance Traction Management system as well as a Drive Mode Selector which allows the driver as much control over the car’s computer assisted features as they want. Want to adjust the launch rpm needed for different track conditions? Chevrolet’s custom launch control has you covered. Want to record and save your racing data and even capture a video of your lap time? The built-in Performance Data Recorder is just what the doctor ordered. Needless to say, if you’re into racing, the ZL1 is loaded with everything you’d ever want in a racetrack machine.

This is just the tip of the iceberg. With a roll out scheduled sometime in the 4th quarter of 2016, the 2017 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 is poised to bring shock and awe not only to the fortunate few car enthusiasts and automotive reviewers who have seen and driven this incredible machine, but to you as well. Schedule your test drive today and celebrate the 50th anniversary of Chevrolet’s premier performance sports car with Finnegan Chevrolet Buick GMC.

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Money Saving Tips on Car Insurance

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Ugh. Insurance, right? What a pain. What a nuisance. What an expense!

The bad news is, if you drive a car, you have to have insurance. Not having it is very much against the law, and will get you into a great deal of trouble if you get caught without it.

The good news is, insurance doesn’t have to cost an arm and a leg. Here are a few things you can do to reduce your monthly car insurance payment.

Carry Liability Only

It’s surprising how many people don’t seem to know this, but you aren’t required by law to carry coverage on your vehicle itself. You can have “liability” coverage, which essentially covers you, the driver, if you cause a wreck that damages somebody else’s car. The insurance company won’t pay for repairs on your vehicle, but you’ll stay out of hot water with the law and the other driver.

Now, there is a caveat to this. If you still owe money on your car, your lending institution will probably require you to carry comprehensive coverage on it until it is paid off.

Raise Your Deductible

Buying insurance is essentially a matter of making a bet. The higher your deductible, the more confidence you’re showing in your ability to avoid a collision. Well, the insurance company is making the same bet, so the lower your deductible, the higher your premium will be, and the higher your deductible, the lower your premium will be.

There is no way to “win” here, but if monthly expenses are your biggest priority, then it makes sense to opt for a higher deductible/lower payment.

Find the Discounts

Discounts vary depending on your insurance company, but drivers can often find discounts for things like taking the bus, for driving under certain mileage thresholds and taking defensive drivers courses.

Look through your insurance company’s website. There is probably a discount for you.

Watch Your Credit

Your credit score isn’t just used for evaluating your risk as a borrower of money. Some companies — and insurance companies are among them — use your credit score to make a judgment about your general reliability, like, as a person. Your credit score is a factor in your insurance premium, so it is a good idea to make sure it’s correct, at the very least, and to work to improve it. Paying off outstanding balances, paying your bills on time and avoiding carrying large credit balances are all good ways to improve your score.

Of course, if your car is in bad enough shape that you’re not carrying comprehensive coverage on it, this is probably a good time to shop for a new one. Come see our friendly sales staff at Finnegan Chevrolet Buick GMC, and we’ll get you into just the right vehicle for your budget and lifestyle.

Top Six Automotive Maintenance Myths

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Pretty much any complicated machine is going to develop some mythology over time, and the automobile is no exception. Cars have been ubiquitous for more than 100 years, and seemingly with every new innovation comes a new myth that is either created or busted.

Here are the top six auto maintenance myths.

The 3,000-Mile Oil Change

The “three months or 3,000 miles” oil change interval was invented by oil manufacturers, not auto manufacturers. Even 50 years ago, most manufacturers suggested changing the oil at more like 5,000 miles. There is nothing wrong with changing it every 3,000 miles, of course, but if you look at your owner’s manual, you’ll probably see a higher number.

“Tune-Ups”

We put that in quotes because that term, as commonly understood, isn’t relevant to modern engine designs. In the old days, a tune-up involved a whole series of tasks, including changing the plugs and points and tuning the carburetor. Well, modern engines don’t have any of that stuff. Except for spark plugs. So if you as a mechanic to perform a tune-up on a car built within the last 25 years, all he’s going to do is change the spark plugs.

Premium Gas Make More Power

If we’ve said it once we’ve said it 1,000 times: Premium gasoline will do nothing extra for a car that doesn’t require it. This myth persists because the oil companies call high-octane fuel “premium” and low-octane fuel “regular,” implying one is better for the other. There is a bunch of complicated science involved with this, but all you need to know is that if your car doesn’t specifically indicate it is designed to run on premium fuel, premium fuel won’t do a single thing for you that regular won’t. That said, if your car does require premium, you’ll cause it to run worse by running regular.

Filling Your Gas in the Morning

The mythology goes like this: Since temperatures are lower in the morning, the gasoline will be more dense, meaning the parts of it that would be vaporizing during the afternoon are being pumped, as liquid, into your tank. This is nonsense. Gasoline is stored underground, and its temperature isn’t affected enough on the way to your tank for there to be any different.

Dirty Cars Get Better Mileage

This one is out there, but some people actually believe that a car caked in dirt will get better fuel economy than a clean car because of something having to do with dimples on a golf ball or whatever. The opposite is true. the dirt creates more drag. Wash your car.

Wash Your Car with Dish Soap

The thinking goes that since dish soap is great at removing oils, it’s great for cleaning your car. And it’s true: Dish soap will wash the daylights out of your car. It will remove all the dirt, and the grime, and the oils, and the wax, and it will leave your paint and the sun with nothing between them. Use less harsh soaps designed for auto finishes.

If you’ve got work that needs doing on your car, bring it to our expert technicians at Finnegan Chevrolet Buick GMC. Our technicians know the ins and outs of your vehicle, and will repair it perfectly with genuine Chevrolet parts.

Fury Road: Tips For Avoiding Road Rage

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We’ve all been there.  You’re in a hurry to get to point “B” and it seems as if everyone around you graduated last in their class at the Stevie Wonder Driving School.  Your schedule is packed with appointments at all four corners of the city and it feels like someone has covered your car in ”I love driving 25 MPH” bumper stickers.  You’re late to your child’s music recital and 20 million of your fellow drivers are all suffering from a collective case of automotive cerebral flatulence.

There isn’t a person on this planet with any tenure behind the wheel of a vehicle that hasn’t lost their mind in one of our nation’s major metropolitan traffic jams at least once.  For as long as humanity has gathered together in large numbers and then tried to collectively move from point “A” to point “B”, there have been outbursts of frustration.  From horseback to horse powered vehicles, mankind seems intent on finding more ways to move faster while settling in the highest populated areas on the planet where moving faster makes for great fiction.

Because of the growing number of drivers on our nation’s roadways, the number of road rage incidents seem to be climbing with each passing day.  As more and more stressed out drivers take their frustrations out on their fellow man, the automotive industry is stepping up their attempts to educate the driving public to both the dangers of and methods of avoiding becoming a perpetrator or a victim of road rage. With this in mind, Ron Carter Cadillac is happy to offer the following tips to help keep your commuting as stress and incident-free as possible.

SLEEP IT OFF

According to the National Sleep Foundation, our nation is populated by a growing number of sleep deprived motorists. Full schedules and stressful situations are just some of the contributing factors to sleepless nights that most Americans suffer from.  Whatever the stimulus (or lack thereof) for the restless nights, most of us understand that with restlessness and stress comes crankiness, frustration, and even anger.  Now fill our nation’s highways with stressed-out, cranky drivers and you’ve got a recipe for a buffet of road rage.  The solution can oftentimes be as simple as getting a good night’s sleep. As difficult as that may seem, there are plenty of therapies, medications, and even exercises that will help even the most stressed out among us to get the rest they desperately need. Just imagine how different our daily commute would be if we were well rested. Now fill our highways with rested people and what do you see? Hopefully it’s a decline in road rage incidents.

MAKE TIME

One of the leading causes of road rage incidents is the frustrations associated with running late for work, appointments, etc. Obviously there will be times when circumstances prevent us from making a scheduled appointment time. But, if those circumstances are the norm instead of the exception, it may be time to learn some time management skills.  Trying to make up for a late start on the highway is a perfect catalyst for road rage.  There are many ways to improve our time management habits. One of the biggest steps to improving your drive time is planning ahead. Learning to plan for the next day’s schedule with a little bedtime preparation goes a long way towards alleviating the chaos of a typical morning. Laying out clothes or preparing the kids’ lunches before bedtime may sound like something associated with OCD, but you’ll be amazed at how much time you’ll save with just a little bit of preparation for the next day’s events.  Knowing the next day’s weather forecast will also help with planning a departure time that will allow for unexpected delays without all the rage.  In short, learning how to effectively manage time will go a long way toward reducing the stresses inherent in city commuting.

GET OVER YOURSELF

Yeah we know, that’s pretty blunt.  At the risk of crossing over into insulting territory, we acknowledge that when it comes to subjects of behavior modification, some truths are difficult to hear.  But the truth of the matter is many road rage incidents occur because most drivers believe their driving habits are the standards by which all other drivers are to be measured.  As ego-building as that belief may be, the fact of the matter is no one on the road is more important than anyone else.  If more people drove with courtesy and respect for other drivers, the number of road rage incidents would decline rather drastically.  Consider this tip as a challenge for personal growth and development.  Learning not to take things personally will go a long way toward improving much more in our lives than just our commute to and from work.  After all, we’re pretty safe in assuming there aren’t too many people who are proud of their road rage activities once they have calmed down and the ones that brag about their rage-fueled commutes generally aren’t very popular.  If your priority is avoiding road rage, choosing to keep a healthy, non-self-centered perspective on life goes a long way toward achieving that goal.

RECORD YOURSELF

If you really want a perspective-shifting experience, record yourself driving in traffic.  Many corrective classes for aggressive drivers instruct their students to record themselves and teach them how to analyze their habits in order to curb road rage incidents.  Here are just a few of the analytical questions you may want to ask yourself as you listen to your recording:

Do you regularly speed in order to get to your destination on time?

Do you regularly tailgate other drivers, especially in a freeway’s “fast lane”?

Do you regularly use your lights and horn to communicate your frustration with other drivers?

Do you verbally communicate with other drivers despite the fact that they cannot hear you?

Do you regularly weave in and out of traffic in order to save time?

Do you regularly feel the need to set other drivers straight?

These questions are designed to inform, not rebuke or punish aggressive driving behavior. The idea is to pinpoint observable habits that fuel frustrations that can easily lead to road rage. Once armed with this information, the driver is left with some choices to make. Ignore the behavior or take steps to develop driving habits that will result in a much less stressful driving experience. As always, the choice for personal growth and development is up to each of us to make.

BE EXCELLENT TO EACH OTHER

“All the world needs is love” John Lennon said and nowhere on earth is that fact more apparent than on our roadways. Of all of the tips we could give on the subject of reducing road rage incidents, this one seems the most simplistic.  And yet, if we can invoke another Lennon tune, just imagine what our highways would look like if people were just kinder to one another.  We’re not advocating everyone buy a VW bug and fill it with flowers to spread across the land. But, consider just how different the world would be if kindness was the defining characteristic of humanity.  At the very least the jails, hospitals, and cemeteries would be less crowded with the victims and perpetrators of road rage incidents if we could all just learn how to be excellent to each other.

Yeah, we know.  Road rage seems to be here to stay but if we all just put in a little effort to work on our perspectives and attitudes, especially when we’re behind the wheel of our vehicles, we can imagine a world where road rage incidents become the exception rather than the norm on our highways and byways.  In any event, we hope these tips will not only help you get to your destination with your sanity and self esteem intact but maybe, just maybe, help you learn how to enjoy the journey along the way.

(c) 2013 Finnegan Auto Blog