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Top 5
Top 5 Compact Cars for Austin
For a fun town like Austin, TX—populated by vibrant locals and guests ready for music, art and film—you need a car that fits into some tight spaces in The Lone Star State's capital city. The nation's 11th largest city that is also one of the fastest-growing cities, Austin is full of activity and vitality.

As the economic, political and social center of the metropolitan five-county Austin-Rock Round, Austin features a population that hovers around 1,834,303, so compound that with out-of-towners in for their first visit to the state capitol, Austin City Limits or the springtime South By Southwest (SXSW) festival of music, art and film, you need a car that is compact and features good city gas mileage.

Take a look at the top 5 compact cars for driving in Austin, TX to see what works best with your busy lifestyle in the city on Lady Bird Lake.

1. Mazda Mazda3. Whether you are heading out for a hike or bike along Lady Bird Hike and Bike Trail or you have some city errands to do, the Mazda3 ranks number one among 41 compact cars in its class. With a hatchback, it is simple to stow your extra running gear, extra water bottles and more into the rear. With excellent gas mileage at 30 miles per gallon and 41 on the highway, you can spend more of your hard-earned cash while out seeing your favorite band.

2. Kia Soul. College students at the University of Texas at Austin, which is the main campus for the University of Texas college school system, can enjoy this fun and practical car that features a style somewhat like a compact SUV. Trips to the library or to the airport to pick up parents for a visit are a breeze with the Soul.

3. Hyundai Elantra. Since most Austinites—73 percent, in fact—drive rather than carpool or take a form of public transportation, wise drivers in Austin look a compact car they can rely on. The Hyundai Elantra fits the bill. With plenty of passenger space, good fuel ratings and a comfortable ride, the Elantra is a solid choice.

4. Toyota Corolla. Drivers who want to keep things simple should explore the Toyota Corolla. Revamped from previous models, this reliable car is short on flash but high on dependability. Whether Austin residents are taking a trip to the Texas Memorial Museum or the Lyndon Baines Johnson Library and Museum to see LBJ's recreation of the Oval Office, the Corolla is safe, reliable, even if it isn't the most flashy.

5. Volkswagen Jetta. For Austinites who want a little more flash and are willing to pay more at the pump, the Volkswagen Jetta might prove as a workable option for you. With plenty of cabin and trunk room, the Jetta is perfect for trips to San Antonio to visit the Alamo or to other major Texas cities before returning to your Austin wonderland.

- Auto.com Editorial Staff
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The Smart Car Buyer
What to Bring With You When Car Shopping
If you are getting ready to buy your first car or to replace your current car, you have a lot of things to consider, including the make, model and color, and how much money you are willing to part with. Before you head on over the dealership, there are some items that you should bring with you to ensure that the transaction goes smoothly.

It almost goes without saying, but you need to remember to bring your valid driver’s license. This is something people forget sometimes, especially if they have been relying on other people to take them places. If you don’t have your license, you won’t be able to take any cars for a test drive or drive your new car home. You should also bring proof of insurance.

DO YOUR RESEARCH Unless you are fabulously wealthy and don’t care about losing money, you will need to do some research before going out car shopping. Looking up information online about the types of cars you are interested in will help you narrow your focus when you are out looking at available vehicles.

If you have a particular car in mind, research and print out the dealer’s invoice price and take it with you. This is invaluable information to have when you are negotiating with the salesperson. Put your printouts in a folder, along with the details of any incentives or rebates that you have discovered.

REVIEW THE REVIEWS Another useful thing to bring is a printout of trustworthy reviews of the cars you are most interested in. You can consult these pages while looking at particular cars, to refresh your memory about why you were interested in buying them.

If you don’t feel confident in your ability to properly evaluate a car, you should consider bringing a friend or family member who knows something about cars. If the dealer senses that you have no idea what you are looking at, there is a temptation to take advantage of you.

It’s also a good idea to bring the phone number of a trusted mechanic, in case you want to make an appointment to get a used car checked out. Your mechanic may even be willing to meet you at the location to do an inspection. This is particularly useful when you are considering buying a used car from a dealership you’ve never been to before or when you are evaluating a car being sold by a private party.

- Auto.com Editorial Staff
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Car Clubs, Auto History and More In Austin, TX
A state the size of Texas could never be explored in just a day. To get a taste of what Texas has to offer, you’ll need to divide your car tour into individual cities and look for points of interest within each. Car buffs will find Austin and surrounding areas of great interest when it comes to antique cars and auto history. A driving tour of this region will take you to a number of car “hotspots” you're sure to enjoy.

See the Classics

Dick’s Classic Garage in San Marcos, TX, is just a short 35 minute drive south from the capital city on I-35. You’ll get a view of Texas plain country and pass by the quaint townships of Buda and Kyle along the way. Dick's Classic Garage is well known for preserving and displaying vintage vehicles dating back to the 1930s through the 1950’s – what most car buffs consider the “Golden Years” of American auto history.

The main museum, Central Texas Museum of Automotive History, is located in the community of Rosanky, TX, about an hour drive from Austin taking 71 East. The rural town of Bastrop is along the way and you may want to meander around town, get a bite to eat or stop off at the Bastrop State Park for some fun activities before continuing to your destination. The Central Texas Museum of Automotive History hosts an impressive collection of American and European vehicles, representative of the 20th century. Included in the mix are Duesenbergs, Stanley Steamers and Jaguars.

Round 'em Up

As far as car shows and events go, Austin hosts a number of automobile happenings throughout the year to include the Lonestar Roundup and Texas Heat Wave. The Lonestar Roundup is an annual outdoor auto show and music festival, all wrapped up into one. People come from across the country to display their custom cars and vintage hot rods as well as to enjoy lively music, hearty food, fun games and races and more. Texas Heat Wave is a custom car and truck show where vehicle owners compete for special awards and prizes.

More More More

Both these events take place at the Travis County Expo Center on Decker Lane. As you drive through the city, take time to enjoy some of the local sites on your way. Austin is an extremely interesting and attractive city with much to see and do. Decker Lane itself meanders along Walter E. Long Lake and Municipal Park, putting some pretty scenic views along your path.

Last, but not least, don't leave the city without checking out the Circuit of Americas car racing facility, located in the southeast part of the city. Home of the U.S. Formula 1 Grand Prix, Circuit of Americas is an amazing world class facility hosting stimulating car racing events your whole family can enjoy.

- Auto.com Editorial Staff
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Car Stereo Options
When you buy a new car, how much of your decision do you base on the brand of stereo that comes with it? Chances are it is important, but not as important as how many mpg it gets or the number of horses under the hood. Now you own it and the stereo needs some life injected into it.

Back In The Day

Back in the day, you would just buy a new stereo, a little woofer, a new amp, and life would be awesome. You wish it were still that easy, what with the new dash patterns and "top-of-the-line" systems including bizarre ball and chain ratings and trademarked connections; you lose the ability to upgrade with your sound system choice. Many manufactures include all-encompassing systems that hold GPS, warning systems, OnStar, and other other gadgets. To change the stereo system means you will lose many of these upgrades.

Adapt!

You are not out of options in this case; there are some resolutions that will enable you to add a subwoofer to installing or adding an upgraded sound processor. There are even adapters that allow you to connect your iPod. There are kits available that let you mount your new stereo system and still keep the upgrades that came with your car.

Any amp worth merit will have "high-level” inputs, allowing a connection to the factory system by mining into the speaker wires. Powered subwoofers vary in size from small additions made to fit beneath the seat, to larger styles that mount in your trunk or cargo space. For numerous vehicles, a molded plastic enclosure complete with speaker or "custom-fit" sub, mounts in the side panel in the rear or beneath a seat. Many versions contain an amplifier for a stunning bass package that takes up very little space.

So Many Options

There are many options when looking for a car stereo. You can choose Pioneer AVIC Z130BT and spend $1400, or the Eclipse AVN726E DVD/GPS receiver, which is a good starter kit. Music has been a part of our history for eons and settling has never been an option for you. Crank up the Beach Boys’ "GTO", or Princes’ "Little Red Corvette", and ease on down the road.

- Auto.com Editorial Staff
Tire
Remember to Rotate Your Tires
If all four tires on your car performed the same function and accumulated wear and tear at the same rate, there’d be no need to rotate your tires. However, different tires are affected by different forces every mile you drive. In order to even out the effects on tread wear and overall service life, tires need to switch places on a regular basis.

Front tires bear the brunt of turns. Every time you turn the steering wheel, resistance and friction are generated between your tires and the road. This causes tread wear and generates heat, which shortens the life of the tire. These effects can be mitigated by switching your front tires with your rear tires on a regular schedule.

Rear tires experience different forces and wear rates. However, they are less intense than front tires. In most vehicles, the rear wheels are the drive wheels and receive the most traction demand, especially when driving is aggressive with lots of quick starts and stops.

Most experts recommend rotating tires every 5,000 miles for even tread wear and maximum service life of the tires.

To rotate your tires, you’ll need four jack stands to support all wheels. Engage the parking brake and pre-loosen the lug nuts on each wheel. Jack up the vehicle one wheel at a time and support each with a jack stand. Remove all four tires, keeping track of each tire’s original location by writing it on the inner sidewall with chalk.

Re-install the tires in this configuration: Move the two rear tires directly forward to their corresponding locations on the front: left rear tire to left front and right rear tire to right front. Move the front tires to the opposite rear locations in an X pattern: left front to right rear and right front to left rear.

Give the lug nuts a preliminary tightening and lower the vehicle, removing the jack stands one at a time. Once all four tires are on the ground, tighten all lug nuts to the manufacturer’s recommended torque found in your owner’s manual.

- Auto.com Editorial Staff
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Austin's Hidden Gem Car Service Superstars
Whether looking to get a new paint job, interior detailing or a new sound system installed, Austin has got you covered with a myriad of locally owned car service options. Our editorial team has taken a dive into the Austin area to bring you a few of the hidden gems that stand out for getting your maintenance needs met.

Car Repair Capital City Automotive is the top choice for car repairs in Austin. Not only are the owners and employees knowledgeable, they also offer fair prices for repairs. Mechanics are trustworthy and explain issues in easy to understand terms. Capital City Automotive, located on Congress Avenue is a great choice for any repair.

Another great choice for repair service is Sam's Auto Care in South Austin. This locally owned shop not only repairs cars but also details and restores car to prepare to sell. They offer full body paint, tune ups and tire service and you can even book an appointment online. While you're there you can also check out their inventory of fairly priced used cars. This is a one-stop-shop for all of your auto needs.

Car Wash One of the best car washes in Austin is Wash & Run Auto Detail in Tarryton. They are only open Monday through Friday, but it worth the trip midweek for their excellent service and spotless washes. The two twin brothers that run this shop are dedicated to quality service and promptly clan any spots that may have been missed. They meticulously clean and detail your car Another great aspect of Wash & Run Auto Detail is that you can make an appointment ahead of time, an excellent option for a busy professional or on-the-go mom.

Above and Beyond Mobile Detailing Service is truly a unique car washing experience. Donavin prides himself in a thorough detailing and car washing along with quality customer service. His customers are loyal and boast about Donavin's honesty and hard work ethic. He will work until the job is done, ensuring that you are satisfied with the wash and detail.

Audio and Alarm Installation Pro Car Audio is a fantastic choice for car stereo installation. The staff here are experts at speaker and amp installation. They are friendly, fast and focused on pleasing their customers. Prices are reasonable and the staff is knowledgeable to guide you to make excellent decisions on upgrading or repairing your current audio system. You won't be disappointed by the quality at Pro Car Audio.

Regardless of what car service you are looking for, Austin has a variety of locally owned businesses with excellent reviews that provide quality and professional services for a fraction of dealer costs.

- Auto.com Editorial Staff

Reviews

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2014 Aston Martin DB9 Review
The 2014 Aston Martin DB9 proves that luxury doesn't have to be boring or slow. This zippy touring coupe can reach a top speed of 189 mph, and it takes only 4.6 seconds to bring the vehicle to 60 mph. That power level is made possible by a 6 L V-12 engine that gets 13 mpg in the city and 19 mpg on the highway.

To provide the car with excellent handling and the ride expected of a grand touring vehicle, Aston Martin has given the DB9 a bonded and riveted body and chassis. The body is made entirely of aluminum.

The standard model, starting at $183,700, is a coupe that has a roomy front row that is great for long drives. A sport seat package eliminates the rear seats entirely, which provides more space for suitcases.

For those who can't imagine a sporty car with a hard top, there is the two-door Volante version. This convertible DB9, starting at $198,700, lets drivers zoom down the road in true sportscar style.

Both styles of the 2014 Aston Martin DB9 are rear-wheel drives that take premium unleaded gasoline. The transmission is a six speed ZF automatic – a somewhat surprising feature for a high-end car of this style. Manual transmission haters will love being able to just jump into this car and go without having to worry about shifting.

Standard features for both the coupe and convertible include automatic headlights, a pop-up navigation screen, a rearview camera, and other such goodies. Ceramic brakes are also standard. These brakes are great for those who intend to take their DB9s out onto the track to experience their top speeds.

Options include a 1000-watt Bang & Olufsen audio system, the sport seat package, and a package that adds carbon fiber trim to both the interior and exterior. A leather headliner is also available, and some may find that this is a better fit for the coupe than the carbon fiber alternative.

Overall, this car is an excellent choice for those who want some real speed for their money. Along with the speed, it offers a quiet and comfortable driving experience. Of course, at peak performance, it gets a bit louder – but most people appreciate the sound of power in a sportscar, so this shouldn't be a problem.

If you're looking for a luxurious, sporty, high-end driving experience, test drive the 2014 Aston Martin DB9 today. You're sure to love it.

- Auto.com Editorial Staff
01
2013 Hyundai Azera Review
The 2013 Hyundai Azera has a V6 engine that gives it plenty of power when driving. The fuel efficiency will please you when driving long distances. You will appreciated the front fog lights when driivng on those rainy days with little visibility. This sporty car is designed to give you a smooth ride on highways and secondary roads.

The specialized LED headlights save on energy. The slide and tilt sunroof gives you plenty of sunlight on nice days and is enviormentally friendly. The car has a powerful navigation system that helps you with directions, traffic updates, and more. The seating for driver and passengers is comfortable and roomy. It has heated front and rear seats for those cold days or winter months. Seats are adjustable so everyone can find a comfortable position. The rear has a powerful sunshade for those sunny hot days and manual side window sunshade you can adjust yourself. Just touch a button and the rear sunshade blocks out those intense ray keeping you cool as you ride. Interior lights kicks in when sun goes down making it easier to see in the dark.

The 2013 Hyundai Azera has a nine airbag safety system that means extra safety in a crash. There are front and rear airbags, side curtain airbags, and a driver's knee airbag. The seats have ability to absorb a crash especially a rear end collusion. The seat design protects the neck from injury. The vechicle stability managment helps you drive safely and keep on course. It has antilock brakes and brake assist to help with stopping on the road.

You will enjoy the advance audio system and Bluetooth connection,. It has an HD Radio, plus IPod and Bluetooth hands free phone system for those time you need to call someone. This car retails for about $35, 250. It is a sporty car designed for couples with two children and singles.

Check out the Hyundai Azeras available in some of our top cities!

Los Angeles Hyundai Azeras

Houston Hyundai Azeras

Fort Worth Hyundai Azeras

New York Hyundai Azeras

Portland Hyundai Azeras

Austin Car Dealers

Top 5 02 Top 5 Compact Cars for Austin The Smart Car Buyer File000530964878 What to Bring With You When Car Shopping Local Car_clubs_new_2 Car Clubs, Auto History and More In Austin, TX National File0001278242130 Car Stereo Options Tip Tire Remember to Rotate Your Tires