Gray-Daniels Toyota presents the Toyota Notebook, an online organizational tool that allows customers to keep all of the information they have gathered in their car search in one convenient place. The Notebook can also help Toyota customers design the Toyota vehicle of their dreams, or maybe two of the vehicles of their dreams, or as many as they can imagine. Customers visit the Toyota Notebook page to start their own personalized notebook, and before they start, they can watch an informational video that explains what Notebook is and how to best use it. They can then use the Configurator to design as many vehicles as they like using Toyota configurations, and then share their Notebook with their local dealership when they’re ready to purchase a new Toyota vehicle.
Have fun building your dream vehicle, and when you’ve exhausted all the possibilities, stop by Gray-Daniels Toyota and show us what you have collected. We will take your dreams and help you to make them a reality by putting you behind the wheel of one of our exciting new vehicles. Call or contact us today so we can get started finding the right Toyota for your family.
If 2013’s green-car sales are any indication, Americans are passionate about environmentally-friendly vehicles. Last year, automakers sold 662,821 green cars in the United States, a 20 percent increase from 2012 sales. While the sales feat was unexpected, we are hardly surprised that Toyota was the leader of the green-car pack.
The Toyota Prius was the biggest-selling green car of 2013, with its most popular model, the Prius liftback, selling a whopping 145,172 units. Sales of the Toyota Avalon also leaped to 16,468 units in 2013 from a mere 747 units sold in 2012. Ultimately, Toyota contributed a 5.3 percent increase to green-car sales with 344,892 units sold altogether.
If you think these figures are impressive, we invite you to stop by our dealership soon to discover the array of remarkable green vehicles available in our current inventory. Whether it’s the newest model of our ever-popular Prius or the Avalon, we guarantee you won’t be disappointed.
The road trip is an American tradition. Whether you’re undertaking a trip of Lewis and Clark-like proportions or prepping for an adventure that’s a little less epic in scope, at Gray-Daniels Toyota, we know the open road can be a dangerous place, even in an age where cell signals and internet connections generally surround us. Here are a few components to check first to ensure you get where you’re going safely and smartly.
- Tires: Check the pressure and the wear. Don't forget to check the spare.
- Fluids: Change the oil and the filter too while you're at it. Make sure your other fluids are all topped off including coolant, brake fluid, power steering fluid and windshield wiper fluid. Now's a good time to change your wiper blades too.
- Air filter: Change the air filter. A nice clean filter will help your car run more efficiently and increase your fuel economy.
- Belts and hoses: Look for frayed edges and spongy hoses.
- Air conditioning: Spring, summer, it doesn’t matter. Make sure that your A/C isn't going conk out in the middle of it.
- Brake check: If it's been a while (over six months), make sure your brakes are in good shape.
- Battery: If it's an older car, give the battery a load test.
Of course, getting your car prepped is just half the battle. You’ll also want to make sure you and your passengers remain as comfortable, safe, and as sane as possible. Keep the following in mind:
- Have a route planned.
- Don’t cram your car with more people than it was made for.
- Take turns driving and don’t drive for more than eight hours at a time.
- Snacks and prepared meals: Eating out can get expensive. Be sure to pack lots of snacks and food to help save money along the way.
- Water (lots of it). You can put some drinks in a small cooler too.
- Aspirin, motion sickness pills and upset stomach medicine.
- Paper towels. There will be spills.
- Toilet paper: Because you never know when ya gotta go!
- Trash bags: Help keep the car cleaner than your old dorm room.
- Travel games
- Playlists: Take turns controlling the music so everyone gets to hear their favorites.
- DVDs: If you have an in-car entertainment system watching a few movies can help pass the time by.
- A few pillows and blankets: A nap or two can do wonders.
- Cell phone: Just in case of an emergency but mostly for Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook.
- Car charger for your phone
- First aid kit
- Basic tools: screwdrivers, pliers, adjustable wrench, rubber mallet, rag and a role of duct tape
- Flash light
- Deodorant: Because it’s going to be a long drive.
Our team at Gray-Daniels Toyota wants you to know that while road trips are fun, they take a lot of planning and consideration. This Spring Break, in addition to our handy tips, let us help you out with a free multi-point inspection. So what are you waiting for? Look for our coupon in this month’s newsletter and be sure to schedule your service appointment today so you can start focusing on what’s really important: having fun!
There are some tasks that only an SUV can tackle. Whether it’s getting to that adventure spot deep in the wilderness, towing the boat for a fun weekend on the water with the family, or safe transport in treacherous weather, there are some things a family sedan just isn’t made for. Crossover SUVs are great for a lot of day-to-day tasks, but if you’re looking for massive capability and comfort for more than five passengers, only a full-sized, truck-based SUV will do. When it comes to this unique type of vehicle, the 2014 Toyota Sequoia is a force to be reckoned with.
In production since the 2001 model year, the Toyota Sequoia has always occupied a unique position in the marketplace. Those that needed something larger, more powerful, and more capable than the compact and mid-sized SUVs on the market flocked to the Sequoia, and the same holds true to this day. Even though fuel prices and the desire for greater on-road comfort have spurred a transition from ‘true’ SUVs to the wildly popular crossovers of today, that has only meant that the Sequoia has become more desirable as its competitors have seemed to disappear.
When you have something great to start with, you’d be best to not radically change anything for fear of destroying the formula. Toyota has done a great job with the 2014 Sequoia, making evolutionary changes to a proven platform instead of revolutionary changes.
The Sequoia’s formula builds off the already capable Tundra pickup, but adds unique capabilities that only an SUV can provide. Being a truck-based SUV with a fully boxed frame, the Sequoia exudes toughness, and proves it with a 7,400 pound towing capacity. No matter if you choose the SR5, Limited, or Platinum trim for your Sequoia, you’ll be happy to know that towing capacity is matched with a standard 5,7-liter V8 packing 381 horsepower. Perhaps equally important, especially for towing, is the abundance of torque, with a substantial peak of 401 pound-feet.
That power gets routed to the wheels via a six-speed automatic transmission, featuring a torque converter lock-up in gears 4-6, meaning greater efficiency and a more direct driving experience. From there, power is sent to the rear wheels as standard, although most buyers will likely opt for the available Multi-Mode four-wheel drive system that utilizes a tough two-speed transfer case and lockable TORSEN® limited-slip differential for extreme grip in all conditions. Adding to capability is the Trailer Sway Control system that utilizes the Vechicle Stability Control (VSC) to keep trailer towing safe and in check.
Capability means nothing if your passengers aren’t happy. After all, who wants to go on an adventure if you don’t enjoy the journey? While many of the Sequoia’s competitors fell by the wayside when buyers demanded more comfort, the Toyota simply improved even more.
Four-wheel independent suspension means that the ride is especially smooth, while Platinum models come equipped with Adaptive Variable Suspension (AVS), which adjusts the suspension according to the driver’s selection of Comfort, Normal, or Sport modes. Also found on the Platinum is the Electronically Modulated Air Suspension, which enhances the Sequoia’s already impressive towing capability by keeping an appropriate ride height and chassis attitude, no matter the weight of the load.
No matter which trim you choose, you’re getting a lot for your money. The base Sequoia is the SR5, starting at $43,595.* It may be the base trim, but it’s far from spartan, featuring seating for eight passengers, automatic three-zone climate control, and Toyota’s mesmerizing Entune Audio Plus system, which includes a 6.1-inch touch-screen display, eight speakers, SiriusXM Radio, Bluetooth® hands-free phone and music streaming, and the Entune App Suite, which even adds choices in Internet radio.
The 2014 Sequoia Limited builds on an already-impressive platform. Adding luxury items such as front and rear sonar parking sensors, a power rear liftgate, moonroof, leather trimmed seats, 20-inch wheels, Entune Premium Audio with 14 speakers, a power folding and reclining 60:40 split third-row seat, and a 10-way power adjustable driver’s seat, the Sequoia Limited is loaded for comfort for all. But those that want the absolute pinnacle of comfort and capability have another choice.
When you’re looking for the absolute best, the 2014 Toyota Sequoia in Platinum trim offers it all. Its voice-activated DVD touch-screen entertainment system with navigation is only the beginning, as the mighty SUV also offers a standard rear-seat BluRay entertainment system with 9-inch LCD screen and wireless headphones. 20-inch, diamond cut-finish alloy wheels complement the added suspension capabilities previously mentioned, and the rear seats get heating elements, in addition to all kinds of other great features, such as Dynamic Laser Cruise Control.
With options abound, everyone can find the Toyota Sequoia that suits them. Simply put, if you’re in the market for a ‘do-everything’ vehicle that has comfort, capability, and luxury in spades, the 2014 Toyota Sequoia seems to be the perfect choice.
*Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price, excludes the Delivery, Processing and Handling Fee of $995 for Large Trucks (Land Cruiser, Tundra and Sequoia). (Historically, vehicle manufacturers and distributors have charged a separate fee for processing, handling and delivering vehicles to dealerships. Toyota's charge for these services is called the "Delivery, Processing and Handling Fee" and is based on the value of the processing, handling and delivery services Toyota provides as well as Toyota's overall pricing structure. Toyota may make a profit on the Delivery, Processing and Handling Fee.) Excludes taxes, license, title and available or regionally required equipment. The Delivery, Processing and Handling Fee in AL, AR, FL, GA, LA, MS, NC, OK, SC and TX will be higher. Actual dealer price will vary.
Q. When and how often am I supposed to have my tires rotated?
A. Most manufacturers recommend that you rotate your tires every 6,000-15,000 miles. That’s a pretty big range, isn’t it? Insert ubiquitous "check your owner’s manual" advice. How you drive and what kind of car you drive can make a difference. For the average driver of the average car, the average (sensing a trend here?) would be about every 10,000 miles.
Tires wear unevenly and this can affect the life of the tire and your car’s handling. Your front tires wear differently and more quickly than your rear tires. Your front wheels do all of the turning and that adds pressure and wear. If your car is front wheel drive, that makes your front tires wear even faster.
The most common rotation pattern is the cross-x where the front right tire is moved to the rear left, etc. But, if you have directional tires (tires manufactured to spin in a certain direction) you can’t use the cross-x. In that case, you’d just move the right front to the right back and the left front to the left back, keeping them on the same side of the car so they can rotate as they’re supposed to.
Some four-wheel drive cars need their tires rotated frequently to keep the wear even. Whatever type of car you drive, rotating your tires regularly can extend their life and save you from dropping dollars to get new ones.
Driving a rental or loaner vehicle can be a fun break from your usual vehicle, even if you have been forced to do it by factors outside your control. If you are driving a car of this sort, however, you should not assume that it is simply a case of taking the keys and cruising away. It’s very important to understand what your obligations and responsibilities are. Here are some tips to remember when driving a rental or loaner vehicle.
It is vital that you check your liabilities for gas. In some cases you will be supplied a vehicle with a full tank of gas, and you must return it on that basis. In other cases, the tank will be close to empty, and you will simply have to put in the gas that you need to use. In the case of the former, make sure that you fill the tank up completely or you may be charged a nasty re-fueling fee. In the case of the latter, ensure that you do not put more fuel in the tank than you need or you may be funding the next user’s driving.
Make sure that you have checked the car over for damage BEFORE you drive it away. In most cases, you will be issued with a damage report. Check this carefully, and do not be frightened to be too picky. In many cases, you can be held liable for all damage to the vehicle and if it is not on the report when you take the car away, you will be unable to prove that you did not cause the damage.
Your rental or loaner vehicle will normally be supplied with inclusive emergency breakdown coverage. Ensure that you have all the details to hand that you may need in the event that you need to call for assistance. Check this before you drive off, but if you forget, give the rental company a call from home to clarify the contact details and level of cover that you have. Make sure that you are aware of any additional responsibilities that you may have. You may be asked to give the rental company a call as well as the assistance number, for example.
You cannot assume that you are able to drive the car for unlimited mileage while it is on loan to you. In some cases, you may be limited to a reasonable mileage limit, after which you will be charged a hefty fee on a mile-by-mile basis. If you are on a mileage-restricted contract, ensure that you confirm the car’s mileage before you leave and that you reset the counter to zero so that you can easily keep tabs on your usage.
Keep all the documentation related to your rental or loan vehicle. Do not leave it in the glove box or on the seat in the car. If the car is stolen, you will not have any paperwork related to the car. Make sure that you do not blindly sign every piece of paper put in front of you either. Like any other type of contract, make sure you know what you are signing before you sign it.
After the chill of winter, nature begins her march toward a colorful spring. Bright green new growth carpets landscapes, and bulbs and plants deliver a riot of color, awakening flower beds and along walkways. Now is the time to welcome the season with dazzling spring flower arrangements. Bulb flowers that deliver vibrant color include tulips, crocus, daffodils, and hyacinths. Place a large bouquet of multi-colored tulips in front of a mirror, and you’ll double the accent to cheer your room.
A gorgeous bouquet for gift-giving or your own pleasure mixes a variety of flowers and colors--blue iris, snapdragons, fragrant Stargazer lilies, and whimsical white daisies. For pure simplicity, though, a few white lilies with mixed greens fills the air with a delightful scent, and the buds open at different times to extend your enjoyment of the bouquet.
For Joy and Cheering Up
Welcome home the spring baby and new mother with baby’s breath (what else?!) and fresh budding red, white, and pink roses. Or deliver a vivid yellow rose bouquet to cheer a friend or loved one. For a different experience, gather a few tulip and hyacinth bulbs in a basket to enjoy their opening over time, each day delivering a new burst of color.
For a natural “country field” feeling, arrange a medley of spring flowers, mixing roses and button spray chrysanthemums, carnations, and asters. For a soft, subdued look, choose a rich blend of purple, pink and mauve gerbera daisies, snapdragons and mini carnations. Gerberas also stand alone quite well with touches of fern or eucalyptus tips.
Don’t Forget the Fillers
Various grasses, ferns, and sprigs from everyday shrubs fill in a cheerful spring bouquet. Arrange with button pompons, roses, pink freesia and carnations and allow the grasses to spill over the side of your vase. Another spring favorite to dress the breakfast table or bedside is a pretty basket filled with white daisies and purple carnations.
Finally, set a sophisticated mood with deep purple lisianthus, white roses, purple and white lilies, lavender freesia and natural greens. Arranged in a simple glass vase, the remarkable contrasts of purple and white make a stunning display.
A Chinese Proverb offers excellent advice: “When you have only two pennies left in the world, buy a loaf of bread with one, and a lily with the other.”
Using your kitchen requires energy. You need to store food, prepare meals, and clean up afterward. This energy use costs you money. You can control the cost of running your kitchen with a few basic tips and cooking techniques.
Energy Saving Appliances
Replace non-functioning appliances with energy efficient appliances. Look for those that are Energy Star rated by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Such appliances are tested for efficiency in energy usage, and in some cases, the purchase may be tax deductible.
Maintaining your refrigerator reduces its energy consumption. Clean the condenser coils twice a year, using a vacuum cleaner to remove dust and debris. Check the door seals to ensure no cold air is escaping and to maintain consistent interior temperatures.
Cold Food Storage
Keep your refrigerator well stocked, but not overstocked. The various foods act as cooling agents within the confines of the fridge, much the same way soda cans cool the air in a Styrofoam cooler. The compressor doesn't have to turn on as often if the contents contribute to the cooling process.
Whenever possible, bring foods to room temperature before cooking. The food then requires less cooking time and reduces energy usage.
When you need to boil water, start with cold water and allow it to come to room temperature. You use less energy running cold water than hot and less energy bringing tepid water to a boil than cold water.
Cover pots when bringing liquids to a boil and set the lid askew when simmering foods. You can then use a lower temperature for simmering. Turn off the heat two to three minutes before the food is fully cooked and allow the heat of the pot to finish the job.
Microwaves and Slow Cookers
Both of these kitchen devices require less energy than a stovetop or oven. When cooking, make extra portions to reheat in the microwave for subsequent meals. Use the slow cooker for soups and stews and for braising tougher cuts of meat.
Reduce energy costs by serving foods that don't require cooking, such as sandwiches with chips, cold soups, and fruit and vegetable platters with dips. Use this energy-saving technique in the summer months to prevent heating up your house and reduce cooling costs.
Maintain your dishwasher with the same consistency as your refrigerator to keep this appliance running efficiently. Use an appropriate cleaning agent to rid the interior of mineral build-up. Check the holes in the sprayer arms for clogs and clean as needed.
Switch from incandescent bulbs to CFL (compact fluorescent lighting) bulbs. CFL bulbs burn longer and use less electricity.
Separate the lighting in your kitchen and dining area. Switch on the task lighting when you're putting away groceries or preparing meals, and use the dining area lighting only when at the table.
Exhaust Fans and Windows
Newer technologies make for quieter exhaust fans over the stove. One way to expend energy needlessly is to forget to turn off the fan. Once the fan has cleared the smoke or cooking odor, turn it off.
You may be tempted to turn the temperature down when your kitchen heats up in the summer, making your air conditioner work harder. Instead, open the kitchen window just two or three inches and place a small table fan nearby, facing outward. The fan acts as an exhaust and vents warm air out of the kitchen. Turn off the fan and close the window when you're done cooking.
2008 Toyota Avalon Sedan
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