Often the idea of taking our vehicles in for service makes most of us cringe, and we are familiar with myths like dealerships are the most expensive. However, if you do not choose to service your car at the dealership which you purchased, the warranty is void. This isn’t the exact truth, and those who have known a mechanic may already be aware of this. To keep certain parts of the warranty valid, some services do need to be completed at a dealership, but the benefit is that often these services are free.
Another reason individuals shy away from dealership service is that it may seem that it can often take an extended period of time to get a service completed. If you have ever had a vehicle with a significant problem or even taken yours in for service and received an unexpected call – you know any service department usually provides an approximate return time, but there is never a guarantee. Some of the most common myths that arise from dealership service can be debunked with a few facts.
Don’t get stuck waiting…
First- many dealerships offer either a shuttle service or the availability of loaner cars. If you need to drop your vehicle off for the day, let the dealership know in advance – often, they will be able to provide you a ride to work, so you don’t have to sit in the dealership all day. However, keep in mind that most dealerships are now equipped with WiFi and often have work stations and provide an endless supply of coffee. If you are bringing your car in for a service that may require the dealership to be in possession of your vehicle for more than 24 hours, the better option may be requesting a loaner vehicle. This can also be a great option if you are thinking about checking out a new car. Loaner vehicles are often the same brand as the dealership and maybe a few years older, but they may come in a model you’ve never driven.
When you decide to take your car to an independent service shop, you may have the option of unlimited caffeine, however, you may be stuck there for the entire day. Reasons that your service can often take longer than expected at an independent service provider include that they may not have the parts on hand as a dealership would.
Get the one trip fix
A dealership may be able to save you a second trip in or keeping the vehicle overnight because they have the specialty parts needed stocked regularly. At the same time, this can also be one of the reasons it’s thought that dealerships are more expensive. A dealership will carrier the Original Manufacturer’s Equipment, also known as OEM, which was created specifically for your car’s make and model. Many times independent service centers can provide parts that are similar but not identical. Parts may be rebuilt or refurbished, generic, or even used, which can cut costs, too.
Another way that independent service centers can cut costs is by cutting down labor costs by taking what could be considered shortcuts to complete the work that needs to be done. This doesn’t mean they are giving you a poor service. What it means is that at a dealership, the mechanics are required to complete each and every service to the exact specifications of the manufacturer to ensure everyone receives the same quality. Dealership mechanics are often experts in their area and can make suggestions based upon their prior experience with the same vehicle. Often you might hear individuals claim they feel as a dealership “upsold” them on unnecessary services. Your dealership mechanic knows what to anticipate from your car due to extensive brand training. Therefore if you are just coming in for an oil change and they happen to note the particular mileage on your car is close to another service or notice something out of character about your vehicle, they may suggest service.
Independent service centers may not realize items like this or may only be investigating the cause, which leads you to them. Keep in mind just because any service center makes a recommendation, it’s likely because they anticipate you will need this service shortly. If you choose to go to an independent service center and they do not perform a comprehensive vehicle check, as a dealership would have, you could end up spending more in the end. You may have thought your car was only due for one service – however, upon closer inspection and seeing within the next 3-6 months you might need these services does not mean your dealer is trying to take advantage of you, they are trying to help. By offering you the opportunity to handle these particular issues while your car is already in for service, they could be preventing a second – or even third- service trip.
Finally, I cannot stress enough individuals who work in the service area of a dealership are experts in their craft, and again, they know more about your vehicle than anyone. You may trust your mechanic to be honest with you because you have been using him since you were 16. However, he cannot anticipate the common problems or needs for your vehicle. In the end, service will always be a personal preference – some individuals like to see their mechanic face to face, while others don’t mind dealing with a service department in exchange for exceptional quality in their vehicle. Whichever you choose, do keep in mind that we are only seeking to provide you with the best in quality manufacturer’s products and exceptional service here at Three Rivers Volkswagen.
Plus- if you decide to stick around while your vehicle gets serviced, we provide attention from a very loving, playful, energetic pup! Not to mention you can schedule your service with us from the comfort of your home.
It’s finally arrived the year 2020, which has been depicted in many movies – especially in the 80s- to feature technologies like flying cars (think Back to the Future).
However, with the first full week of 2020 behind us and the reveal of many concept cars to come, it seems we have fallen behind our fictional technology goals. Outside of fiction, we have managed to create an autonomous vehicle and continue to evolve in the area of self-driving cars. The evolution of the ease of driving has presented one of the lastest concept vehicles featuring a steering wheel in the center console controlled by the palm of your hand (gamers get ready this is your time!).
At the beginning of 2010, our expectations for a flying car, or even a self-driving car, weren’t quite set. We had just begun to see the evolution of the remote start, which is now pretty standard. A few articles for the early 2010’s highlight features like driver assist but still say it’s unlikely cars will drive themselves. They predicted 2020’s standard features to be most of what we are seeing these days like blindspot monitoring, adaptive cruise control, Bluetooth pairing, wi-fi, and fuel economy. There were a few guesses that missed the mark, such as night vision; however, LED headlights have become a standard feature.
Beyond some of the exterior features, the idea of vehicles being able to ‘talk’ to one another was another prediction for 2020. This has become more of an app feature, think Waze, instead of a standard car feature, that doesn’t mean that this idea isn’t possible. I don’t think we’ll be seeing vehicles take flight in this decade but, we will be seeing plenty of upgrades, and more of these technologies become standard features for safer driving.
For the new decade, Volkswagen has enhanced both standard and optional features, and we’re here to help walk you through what they are and how to use them.
Here at Three Rivers Volkswagen, we know a new car to you doesn’t mean that you are investing in a 2020 many people this year will buy pre-owned vehicles, and we know for many of you this will be your first car equipped with technology. We know some of you are still adjusting to a phone without a home button – even though this is becoming old technology- we still have a walkthrough on how to pair your phone to your car for your convenience. If you are still nervous, we can have one of our expert sales consultants show you how to do this and maybe a few helpful apps for you. However, models with Car-Net feature these on display and depending on your phone searching your apps store for Andriod Auto or Apple CarPlay, and you’ll be met with plenty of suggestions.
If this is your year and you are looking for that upgrade to 2020, or maybe your lease is up (or you’re considering an early lease upgrade), why not stop in and check out what technology awaits you.
Most of the 2020 models for Volkswagen come standard with Car-Net,
the best way to describe what Car-Net offers is when it would be useful. Think about what is essential when you are driving – directions to where you are going, keep yourself entertained for the long haul (music and audiobooks), and of course, emergencies. Car-Net offers app connectivity, Google assistance, and Siri, music streaming services, and more -plus, you never have to take your hands off the wheel. Wi-fi is even available for a more significant portion of 2020 vehicles.
Keyless entry and push-button start come standard on most of our 2020 models,
as well as, memory for up to three driver’s seat settings. Some of the best features that the 2020 Volkswagen’s offer are the standard driver-assist package. This includes features like Forward Collision Warning and Autonomous Emergency Braking with Pedestrian Monitoring (Front Assist), Blind Spot Monitor, and Rear Traffic Alert. For the most part, the names are self-explanatory, but, if you have never actually experienced these features, they will change the way you feel about driving. Especially if your daily commute is a long one, or if you simply just enjoy traveling, you will love these additional features. These features provide extra safety for your friends and family so you can drive in complete comfort, especially great if your family has new drivers. Besides all the tech featured in our 2020 models, there are plenty of sleek and stylish exterior changes to get excited for.
As 2020 models begin to roll off the line and into our dealership, we will likely start to see new and exciting things to get ahead of the game for 2021. Looking ten years into the future autonomous driving seems likely to become even more common, but for those of us who still enjoy the drive – I’m sure we’ll continue to see greater things.
Check out Three Rivers Volkswagen great selection of 2020 vehicles and more. Schedule your test drive today and ask about all the great technology that accompanies your vehicle!
Many of us have made New Year’s Resolutions-
some to improve our personal health, others to improve relationships, and many to improve our financial health. Often times we would like to see a little less debt, more of our paychecks going towards the things we desire or healthy savings account instead of drowning it all into paying the accumulated debt. Other times we can be looking to secure better financial health to work towards big purchase goals, like buying a house or a new car.
When we consider things like a practical mortgage or car payment, we often have a set number in mind – to make sure we are in the range we desire, there are a few steps.
First, start a savings account,
make sure it is within your means. If you only have an extra $100.00 of disposable income after bills, groceries, and gas, consider putting away maybe start with $20.00. Remember to take a look at where your discretionary income is going first. Do you only have an extra $100.00 left at the end of the month because you make a coffee run every morning? Even $3.00 five days a week can lead to $60.00 a month gone, instead of investing half that into a decent thermos and taking coffee to work. Or maybe you treat yourself to lunch a few days a week at work – the average lunch costs $7.00-$8.00; that’s if you keep it simple. Take a fine-tooth comb through your spending and see where it could be cut.
I know we all need groceries, too, but keep in mind, are you purchasing things that you are not eating? For example, do you tell yourself you will take a salad every day for lunch then end up eating out twice a week? Often we enjoy fresh fruits and vegetables, but if you are trying to keep yourself on a restricted budget, you can find excellent substitutes in the frozen foods section that contain less sodium.
Review your bank accounts
Check for things you may have set up on auto-pay that you may not be using. There are plenty of apps and websites that can help with this now. Streaming services, gym memberships, other various memberships, which you may have forgotten over time. PCMAG has a great article featuring applications like TrueBill and Trim to help you decide which program might work best to cancel these unnecessary subscription services.
Know about your credit
Naturally, the best way to help boost some credit is to keep your revolving balance on the lower end because this will help keep your debt to income lower. Applications and websites such as credit karma (which is free) can help you track revolving balances, accounts in collections, and other delinquency marks. It can give you a baseline idea on where your credit ranks – it’s not 100% accurate; however, the other tools provided can be extremely beneficial to get you on the right path.
Paying off collection debts and keeping a lower revolving balance are going to be beneficial to credit score maintenance – and keep in mind if you are shopping for a new car paying off the balance of your old car isn’t quite the priority. Using credit karma in conjunction with tools like Kelly Blue Book can help, so you are rolling negative equity from your trade into a new car.
Know about your car
If you decide to use Kelly Blue Book, do keep in mind this is not an estimate, not an actual quote from a dealer. Also, be honest with yourself when getting a quote; a few cosmetic problems are one thing but, if you are missing hubcaps or have serious issues, don’t like your car in excellent condition.
Shop Around and Get Friendly
Also, if you are considering a vehicle purchase- shop around – get some pricing and talk to a finance manager while you are there. They can help to advise you on a few things – if you have old accounts with no balance, should they be closed out or not? Realistically how long until you will be making this purchase, they may be able to offer some advice. Finally, what kind of down payment you might need to put your payments where you would like them to be and what kind of credit score you may need to achieve that financing. Stopping in and becoming friendly with the dealership you are planning on purchasing will only benefit you because you will learn about – and maybe even receive a heads up – when the best deals for your ideal purchase are. Also, if you have never considered anything like this before, it will help you establish if you need to lease or finance a vehicle. If you have never considered leasing before this might be the ideal time – it offers a lot of benefits long term, such as always being under warranty, often you can receive free or low-cost services on the vehicle.
Most important, set a realistic timeline for yourself – no less than at least 90 days. Often when items are in collections or paid off, it takes up to 30 days for it to reflect on your credit. Also, this will provide more time for you to save so you won’t be putting large chunks of your income aside and sacrificing other things you may want. If you resolved for better financial health in 2020 – start now and take this year by storm.
In an effort to continue keeping Volkswagen some of the safest vehicles on the road Volkswagen Group of America has a new partner.
Last week Volkswagen Group of Americans joined The Automated Vehicle Safety Consortium (AVSC). The group, which includes automakers and technology companies, is focused on jointly developing standards and best practices for testing and deploying highly automated vehicles for the future.
“It’s important that the industry work together in the development of standards and best practices for automated driving,” said Wolfgang Demmelbauer-Ebner, chief engineering officer for Volkswagen’s North American Region. “That process begins with efficient testing criteria and we’re excited to begin working with the AVSC to ensure those are defined and adopted across the board.”
This is part of Volkswagen taking steps in the future of driving mobility and automated driving, the direction in which Volkswagen is looking to head in the next few years. In the past six months Volkswagen Group of America has made significant investments into AI and autonomous driving companies to make this advancement possible.
The AVSC, a program of the SAE Industry Technologies Consortia, launched in April 2019. It includes leading OEM and technology member organizations committed to the development of best practices through which AV technology can be responsibly developed, tested and adopted prior to mass deployment.
VWGoA joins Daimler, Ford, General Motors, Honda, Lyft, Toyota and Uber ATG as members of AVSC.
It’s the most wonderful time of the year! For some of us, it’s the most dreadful time, too. We all have that special someone who is impossible to buy for this holiday season. Here is our gift guide for your family car enthusiast, or if you’re really lucky, your Volkswagen enthusiast.
In 2019 we saw the boom of the subscription box and car lovers were not left out!
Mancrate – offers the essential auto care box; this one is great for anyone in the family or your friend who enjoys keeping their interior and exterior top notch. This is probably the least specific box out there but can come in handy for just about anyone when their car needs some extra shine.
Autobox– Provides 5 monthly products and accessories for your favorite car lover. Anything from luxurious LED light wash and a plush wash mitt, to an emergency hammer for the car! Offering both annual and tri-monthly subscriptions.
Diesel Crate – This one is nice for the auto enthusiast who likes to wear their pride! It comes with items like hats and hoodies and car accessories, or you can pick up a box full of decals! Something else that sets Diesel Crate above the rest? You can choose a specific brand!
RPM Crate– This one will give you tools, swag, and more! If you are looking for something that covers cleaning, cranking, and style, this box is sure to wow your favorite enthusiast!
Turner Crate – Is for the hands-on enthusiast; this pack features a variety of tools and limited edition items. They offer an array of sizes for boxes and a variety of what they call editions, including seasonal and gender-specific.
Glove Box – This one is for those who love to see their beauty shine! This one is known as the detailer’s box and offers a variety of products to help keep your car pristine. They offer a range of subscriptions, too, from one time to monthly and more!
Drop Wipes – For those who can’t keep their car indoors, sometimes drops happen. Keep them prepared with these cleaning wipes.
Legos– Lego has expanded into ever territory, some of your favorite VWs are even Legos now!
CupPhone– Have a traveler who often needs a co-pilot? This device can help them out when they don’t have a second set of hands.
ABC’s for Future Racecar Drivers – Is your favorite car guru a new parent? Help them raise the next generation of driver!
Of course, we can’t think of anything better than getting them some VW gear and more!
Hoodies, gloves, and caps for the VW lovers of the world.
Strollers for the next gen VW driver.
Swag for your furry friends!
And the perfect white elephant gift.
Hurry and get gifting there are only a handful of days left! If you’re short for time, you can stop into Three Rivers Volkswagen and check out our swag next to the service area.
And feel free to browse the showroom too! Brand new cars make the best gifts of all!
Volkwagen Golf GTI plaid interior with golf ball gear shift.
Volkswagen Golf GTI – Not just a car, a sense of style.
Volkswagen’s are often known for their sleek and flashy exteriors, but, more often, the real eye-catching looks can be found in the details. Well known for their interior red stitching of various models, the Golf GTI steps up the game setting it apart from all of the other interiors, even the new all-digital 2020 Passat.
When the Golf redesigned in the early 70s, Volkswagen sought to find something to stand out against the competition. At that time, the automotive industry well known for being a male-dominated industry; however, Volkswagen had Gunhild Liljequist on board since the mid-60s. She was fueled by her desire to design and creating perfection in the Volkswagen brand.
Gunhild’s vision for the Golf GTI
The Volkswagen Golf GTI’s debut in 1976 caused a sensation. Even though only a few details distinguished it visually from the original Golf, Volkswagen—influenced by one of the company’s first female designers—succeeded in transforming the compact car into an affordable sports car for the masses and capturing the mood of the era.
Gunhild Liljequist—a porcelain painter and chocolatier candy-box designer by trade—was hired on to Volkswagen’s Germany-based Department of Fabrics and Colors in Wolfsburg in 1964 when she was just 28. Her work focused on paint hues, trims and interior detailing, so when the first Golf GTI came into production in the 1970s, she was tasked with designing various elements of its interior from a sporting angle. Liljequist’s genius centered on giving the GTI two distinct, but simple, textile elements: a tartan seat pattern and a golf ball-style gear knob.
“Black was sporty, but I also wanted color and quality,” Liljequist said. “I took a lot of inspiration from my travels around Great Britain, and I was always taken by high-quality fabrics with checked patterns … you could say that there is an element of British sportiness in the GTI.”
Gunhild goes on to say how the idea of the golf ball-style gear knob was just a spontaneous idea but, they ran with it. As confident as Volkswagen is with her design now, she did face some resistance at first with the idea that it didn’t fit the image of the typical sporty solid black. Fortunately, since they were willing to take a chance on a young women’s impeccable sense of style, Volkswagen still has their, now, iconic interior four decades later!
Are you loving the idea of setting yourself and your vehicle apart on the road? Three Rivers Volkswagen has a featured White Golf GTI with the plaid interior- come see this icon for yourself.
Often it’s too late when we realize something we should have done, something we know is important but never as important as when it’s too late. If you are anything like me, winterizing your car is one of those things. With the thoughts of the first snow of the season closing in on western Pennsylvania, there is no better time to get this process started. Yes, that is precisely what it is, a process.
It may seem almost archaic with all of the technological advancements that our cars, trucks, and SUVs offer us but, much like humans machines error as well. Sure your vehicle will tell you when your air pressure or washer fluid is low but, sometimes this isn’t exactly the fair warning we need. Not to mention, some of us don’t change windshield wipers every time we get an oil change or twice a year like necessary, even with a calendar in our pocket daily. While you are trying to remember all of these little things, don’t forget to check your battery too! Our list below will provide you will all the crucial steps to make sure your vehicle is ready to face any winter blast that comes your way. Read the rest of this entry »
(Pictured: e-Golf SE – Reflex Silver Metallic)
Volkswagen yesterday (November 26, 2019) delivered the 100,000th e-Golf in the Gläserne Manufaktur Dresden. The model was launched in 2014 as the Volkswagen brand’s second battery electric vehicle (BEV) after the e-up!03 (2013). The e-Golf is one of the most successful electric vehicles in Europe and is also popular with customers in other countries – including the USA. The new ID.3 will be assembled in Dresden from fall 2020. In addition, the location is to be made even more attractive as a destination for visitors and customers.
(Anniversary verhicle: The 100,000 e-Golf was handed over to Maik Jaehde (3rd from right) in the Transparent Factory Dresden at the end of November.)
The anniversary vehicle painted in “Pure White” was handed over to Maik Jaehde from Landolfshausen near Hanover. Once he had collected his vehicle he was given an exclusive tour of production.
The Volkswagen Golf is known for its varying shapes, sizes and engine types, but overseas, there’s even more variety than here in the states. Due to its popularity in Europe, one of the Golf models is making its way over to the US next year. Volkswagen has recently confirmed that it is bringing the Volkswagen Golf SportWagen Alltrack to America. Read the rest of this entry »