Category Archives: Information

Keep Senior Drivers on the Road Safe: Drive Reliable Cars

Keep Senior Drivers on the Road Safe: Drive Reliable Cars

Dependable cars can help elderly drivers stay safe while on the road. As people age, physical and mental changes occur. Eye sights fail, reaction time diminishes and physical capability wanes. Statistics show that although elderly people are safer drivers because they observe speed limits, wear seatbelts and are not likely to drink and drive compared to other age groups, the probability that they suffer injuries and even die due to crashes is high because of aging vulnerabilities. These include bone fragility and medical conditions that make it difficult for the elderly drivers to recover from injuries after an accident. The stats are grim with 5,700 lives claimed and 236,000 injuries among senior drivers in 2014, according to the CDC and National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (2016).

Preventing Deaths and Injuries Among Elderly Drivers

In 2015, there are over 40 million senior drivers in the US which represents a 50% increase compared to 1999 (US Department of Transportation Highway Statistics, 1999 and 2015). Given the high incidence of deaths and injuries among elderly drivers, there are some steps that can be taken to prevent these from happening. One is to make sure that medical conditions are managed including updating of prescription medications to minimize side effects. Eye sight must be checked at regular intervals and glasses or corrective lenses should be renewed. Other preventive measures that can be taken include planning routes, avoiding distractions and observing good driving practices (no tailgating, talking on the phone or listening to loud radio).

Driving a Safe Car

In addition, keeping vehicles maintained properly and serviced regularly will help in keeping seniors safe while driving. It is also of benefit if elderly people have a car that is technically sound. AAA reports indicate that an ideal car for a senior is something that is easy to get in and out of, while being comfortable. These cars must have safety features that are easy to use and activate. BMW, for instance is a respected brand when it comes to safety. Part of the success of BMW is that it offers several models for the customers to choose from. From active cameras helping drivers park seamlessly and lights that provide enough illumination, there is a make that suits senior drivers. In the future, the BMW brand will put self-driving cars on the road. When that day comes, there is no reason why seniors are not going to stay safe while driving on the road.

New BMW 5-series Review on Road and Track

By Mitchell Weitzman

“They’re doing a 5-series event at an F1 track?” Was my first thought of BMW’s Back to the Track event, starring the new G30 coded 5-series, at, yep, the Circuit of the Americas, a full-blown Formula 1 race circuit. This isn’t for a new M5. It could be out of it’s element I thought, why not have this in Palm Springs or Miami? Nope, COTA will suffice.

Now for the real fun. BMW invited out some talent out to show us a good time, in the form of Adam Andretti, yes, one of those Andretti’s, overall Le Mans winner Davy Jones, former F1, INDYCAR, and CART driver Roberto Guerrero, do-it-all open-wheel and sportscar man Shane Donley, and legendary track day instructor and racer Mark Wolocatiuk. Their mission? Drive as hard as possible and as close as possible.

So there I was, on a plane to Austin, Texas to drive the new 5 series. I want the new 5 to be good, of course. As comfortable as it was, I was always underwhelmed by the prior 5er, favoring older models in its stead, finding it somewhat boring with little engagement.

So what has changed? It’s a new chassis featuring lighter metals like aluminum and magnesium (no Carbon Core present here), and the new engine family migrated over from the 330i and 340i. There are several autonomous features as well. One such is a lane assistant that will keep the car in your lane providing micro steering adjustments as it scans for visible lane markings and hooks up to following the car in front. When coupled with adaptive cruise control, which will brake and slow down to a complete stop if the car in front does, and then speed back up to your set speed; It’s the closest to autonomy this side of a Tesla. There’s even a ‘display’ key that looks like an old small phone with a tiny touchscreen. With the right package, you can tell the car to pull into or out of a parking spot while standing beside the car, mostly for showing off to your friends. Gesture controls have been passed down from big brother 7 as well. I don’t see the practical use of them as it means taking your hands off the wheel, but I’m sure your date and her friends will be impressed. My favorite tech comes in the form of a 360-degree camera with many many viewing angles. Honestly, there is no excuse anymore for curbing a wheel here. And of course, none of this is standard.It has simply become a tech lover’s delight. Continue reading New BMW 5-series Review on Road and Track

Cooper Tire RS3-G1 Update in California’s Monsoon Winter

So as some of you might have heard, California is getting a lot of rain this winter. I thought it was supposed to have been last year, with all the El Nino talk, but El Nino has got nothing on what we’ve had this year. Quite simply, in the last two months, Sacramento has just about accumulated the amount of rain it gets in an entire year. In TWO MONTHS. There was five inches of rain in a four-day span just the other week…

Anyways, enough about the weather. What this meant though was it presented the perfect testing ground for these new Cooper Tire RS3-G1‘s  wrapped around the wheels of my 330i ZHP. These are touted as an ultra high-performance all-season tire, designed to work and excel in the rain. So how are they doing? Quite well. MUCH better than those Sumitomo summer tires I had prior in the wet. In short, when the road is soaked, I don’t find myself tiptoeing around corners. Approaching a right turn merge lane at a signal, I don’t drive any slower than if it were dry, such is the confidence the Coopers give in less than ideal conditions.

My favorite bit is switching off the traction control and adding gratuitous power through a good corner (when the coast is clear of course) to gleefully play with the balance of the E46 chassis. It’s quite addictive, this. Nothing like hanging out the ‘arse of a rear-wheel drive car. And it’s easy too! I can thank the tires for that, as the front does not wash out at all either. So yes, they have good grip in the wet and can be playful upon desire.

Through standing water, a few inches deep, they do aquaplane ever so slightly. Going straight through an asphalt river I do lose the ability to provide steering input momentarily. It doesn’t throw you around however, nor jerk the wheel around. They track straight through it, which is good and causes no alarm. This does only occur when the water is at least a couple inches deep.

Overall so far, I am very satisfied with the new rubber. The dry grip remains outstanding with severely good wet weather performance. Unfortunately, no real snow driving yet, and I don’t really want to. As Jeremy Clarkson once said, “In the snow, as any BMW driver will tell you, front-wheel drive is a lot better.”