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Hitting $2.81, today’s national gas price average has reached the highest price per gallon since November 2014. That year, pump prices averaged $3.34, peaking at $3.70 in April and bottoming out at $2.25 in December. This year’s pump prices will not be reminiscent of 2014, but for motorists, filling-up is packing an unwanted punch to wallets.

“Motorist have been spoiled the past few years with inexpensive gas prices,” said Jeanette Casselano, AAA spokesperson. “We expect prices to continue increasing, potentially another 10 cents, through Memorial Day and then will likely stabilize during the summer, with the understanding that if demand spikes, prices are likely to follow.”

On the week, gasoline demand took a notable drop from its record high the previous week, falling by 774,000 b/d, according to the Energy Information Administration (EIA). At 9.083 million b/d, gasoline demand is now more in line with rates typically seen during the spring driving season.

Today’s national gas price average is 16-cents more expensive than last month and 43-cents more expensive that last year at this time.

Volvo & General Motors are working on a service that will deliver packages right to your vehicle. Find out about other new service ideas partnering up with auto companies, such as self-driving cars being used for delivery and DIDI is doing in Latin America.

ORLANDO, Fla. (April 17, 2018) – As 64 percent of family travelers gear up for a road trip this summer, AAA warns that the majority of U.S. vehicles are at a higher-than-average risk for a breakdown. A new analysis of AAA roadside data shows that vehicles 10 years and older are twice as likely to end up stranded on the side of the road compared to newer vehicles and on top of that, the odds of needing a tow quadruples. With more than half of cars on the road aged 10 years or older, AAA urges drivers to minimize the chance of a breakdown by getting their vehicle road-trip ready to keep their summer travel on track.

“It’s no surprise that older vehicles are more likely to encounter a serious breakdown, but it is surprising just how many people are at risk,” said John Nielsen, AAA’s managing director of Automotive Engineering and Repair. “All vehicles – even the newest ones – are prone to typical roadside headaches like dead batteries, flat tires and misplaced keys, but vehicles 10 years and older are four times more likely to encounter a problem serious enough to require a tow to a repair facility.”

Fortunately, most roadside trouble is avoidable. For vehicles of any age, old and new, AAA advises drivers make a good B-E-T to stay on the road by having a vehicle’s Battery, Engine and Tires checked before embarking on a summer excursion. Long trips coupled with hot weather places additional strain on vehicles and in some cases may accelerate a dormant issue. When these key systems are in good working order, AAA data shows the odds of encountering a serious breakdown are greatly reduced. The top three types of vehicle issues that could derail a road trip are:

AUBURN, Calif., April 19, 2018 -- AmazingE recently launched its 16 Amp Level 2 EVSE, with 3.8kW of goodness. The AmazingE charges electric cars three times faster than the Level 1 cordset that came with the vehicle.

The AmazingE is the first Level 2 charging station with nationally recognized independent safety listing to enter the US market for under $300. The MSRP is $279, but the AmazingE is currently offered at an introductory price of just $219. The AmazingE plugs into a 240V, NEMA 14-30 receptacle (commonly used for clothes dryers).

AmazingE Girl, protector of safe power transfer, said, "At this price point EV drivers have been battling low quality, unreliable, unsafe, and uncertified charging stations for far too long. The AmazingE gives EV drivers a truly safe, reliable, and powerful charging option. Working together, we can protect the safety of our community and destroy all villainous unlisted charging stations!"

NEW YORK, April 12, 2018 -- Mazda Motor Corporation has been awarded Gold at the Edison Awards for its breakthrough SKYACTIV-X compression-ignition engine. SKYACTIV-X, the world's first commercially available compression-ignition engine, took top honors in the Engine Enhancements category, competing against other technologies in automotive, heavy transportation and aerospace industries, among others.

"We are humbled that the Edison Awards steering committee and industry leaders selected Mazda's SKYACTIV-X engine for a gold award," said Masashi Otsuka, VP of R&D and design, Mazda North American Operations. "Mazda's goal is to create a sustainable path forward, introducing cars and technologies that enrich people's lives as well as society. This award means a great deal to the men and women who are building our future throughout Mazda Motor Corporation."

A part of Mazda's forward-looking Sustainable Zoom-Zoom 2030 plan, SKYACTIV-X implements Spark Controlled Compression Ignition (SPCCI) to seamlessly transition between compression ignition and spark ignition. Using a spark plug as a control mechanism, SKYACTIV-X is able to finely balance ignition timing and its air-to-fuel ratio, maximizing fuel-efficiency. The net result combines the efficiency and torque of a diesel with the high-revving drivability and lower CO2 emissions of a gasoline engine.

Gas prices have held at their highest price of the year – $2.66 – for one week. And motorists are seeing fluctuating prices at the pump from state to state with jumps as high as 12-cents in Utah and declines as much as 7-cents in Michigan since last Monday.

“Gas prices are only a penny away from topping the $2.67 high of 2017,” said Jeanette Casselano, AAA spokesperson. “The price is likely to increase as spring brings warmer weather and the switchover to summer blend gasoline, but hopefully we will only see mild jumps in coming weeks.”

Gas prices have edged higher this week following the Energy Information Administration’s (EIA) latest weekly report that showed gasoline inventories dropped by 1.1 million bbl. Additionally, demand for gasoline remains robust at 9.2 million b/d and is more in line with demand levels at the same time in 2017.

Quick Stats

The largest yearly increases are: California ($3.52, +54 cents), Hawaii ($3.52, +47 cents), Idaho ($2.89, +44 cents), Utah ($2.81, +42 cents), Arizona ($2.67, +40 cents), Nevada ($3.07, +40 cents), Oregon ($3.10, +35 cents), Maine ($2.66, +33 cents), Rhode Island ($2.64, +33 cents) and South Carolina ($2.43, +32 cents).

The nation’s top ten most expensive markets are: California ($3.52), Hawaii ($3.52), Washington ($3.19), Alaska ($3.17), Oregon ($3.10), Nevada ($3.07), Idaho ($2.89), Pennsylvania ($2.87), Washington, DC ($2.83) and Utah ($2.81).

4 Minute Friday

This week's topics:

1. Left-lane hoggers
2. Distracted driving - It's dangerous!
3. More potential privacy issues with digital IDs

WASHINGTON, D.C. (Mar. 29, 2018) ― Distracted driving tops drivers’ list of growing dangers on the road, according to a new survey from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety. The annual Traffic Safety Culture Index shows that 88 percent of drivers believe distracted driving is on the rise, topping other risky behaviors like:

Aggressive driving: 68 percent

Drivers using drugs: 55 percent

Drunk driving: 43 percent

The proportion of drivers who report talking on a cell phone regularly or fairly often when behind the wheel jumped 46 percent since 2013. Nearly half (49 percent) of drivers report recently talking on a hand-held phone while driving and nearly 35 percent have sent a text or email. Despite their behavior, nearly 58 percent of drivers say talking on a cellphone behind the wheel is a very serious threat to their personal safety, while 78 percent believe that texting is a significant danger. A recent study from the AAA Foundation shows drivers talking on a cellphone are up to four times as likely to crash while those who text are up to eight times as likely to be involved in a crash.

“With more than 37,000 deaths on U.S. roads in 2016, we need to continue finding ways to limit driving distractions and improve traffic safety,” said Dr. David Yang, executive director of the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety. “The Foundation’s work offers insight on drivers’ attitudes toward traffic safety and their behaviors, so we can better understand the issue and identify potential countermeasures to reduce crashes.”

If you’ve ever gone to Airpark Auto Service, chances are, you’ve met Aaron Nelson who has worked there for 25 years. Most people say that Aaron has been more than a service advisor to them; he has become their friend.

Recently Airpark Auto Service was sold and is under new ownership. Aaron Nelson decided it was time for him to make a change too. So, Aaron Nelson has gone to work at Tri-City Transmission & Auto Repair in Tempe.

“It’s been an awesome experience,” said Nelson “and I will miss all of the friends and customers I have worked with over the last 25 years.”

Nelson has seen a lot of changes in the last 25 years when it comes to the vehicles, but when it comes to customers, their expectations always remain the same. Customers want to work with a business they can trust, who values them as a customer and as people. Nelson is glad that he can continue that kind of service at Tri-City Transmission & Auto Repair.

Nelson is excited for his new adventure at Tri-City. He’s worked with them as a customer for most of his 25 years at Airpark Auto Service and he knows that they too, have the same philosophy when it comes to taking care of customers and their cars.

Nelson says, “If I wouldn’t sell it to my parents, I won’t sell it to my customers,” and the folks at Tri-City Transmission have been treating people the same way for over 45 years.

Tri-City Transmission & Auto Repair has been in business in Tempe for over 45 years. They provide full-service auto repair and are Phoenix’s transmission experts. To contact Nelson at Tri-City, call 480-968-5062.

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