Hey Atlanta, do you know the Importance of Proper Tire Balance

By a show of hands, how many Atlanta Cars out there are experiencing their steering wheel shaking, or their seats rumbling during highway speeds. Probably a lot of you out there. I know you feel it, and I know that most of you tend to ignore it. Tire Balance. Everyday driving can affect the balance of your tires. In the video below, Nitto Tire explains how your tires can come out of balance and how routine inspections for tire rotation and balance can extend the life of your tires and increase your driving enjoyment.

Proper tire balance and rotation are instrumental to keeping your tires in the best possible shape for the road. If you think about it, those are the only four points your car is connected to the road, so why have one that is obviously unbalanced? You know it is causing damage to your tire…maybe even your alignment if it is bad enough.

Need a tire balanced and you happen to be in Newnan? See the Southtowne GM Superstore, we can do it in 5 min…and don’t expect us not to give you a lecture on proper tire rotation while you are here…all we want is to keep you out on the road, where you belong.

Hmmm…maybe the next blog will be about the Importance of tire rotation

Southtowne Motors’ Lesson of the Day: The Left Lane

How long has it been since you taken a driving course? Unless you’ve had to take some sort of defensive driving class for a traffic violation, then I’m guessing it’s probably been awhile, unless you are a certain someone at Southtowne GM who will remain nameless. I swear, 98 percent of the population thinks that they are an amazing driver. Then you have the other two percent who will willingly admit they are terrible drivers and even go on shows like America’s Worst Drivers. (Pretty entertaining show by the way – check it out if you haven’t seen it.)
Imagine a world where everyone remembers every single thing they learned from driver’s ed and applied it to their everyday driving. Pretty sure we’d see a significant drop in cases of road rage. I’m a realistic person, though, and I know that will never happen. But in the meantime, I can share some mini refresher courses on the areas I think need the most attention — starting with the rules of the left lane.

Left Lane Rules

When it comes to the left lane, there are two things people seem to forget: how to use the left lane and how to pass someone in the left lane.
  1. Usage of the Left Lane
    Driver’s ed taught us that the left land is for faster-moving traffic and passing.  You probably don’t belong in the left lane if one or all of the following three things occurs: someone is dangerously tailgating you, one or more cars is weaving in and out of traffic in the other lanes just to land themselves directly in front of you or you see the person behind you making hand gestures or yelling at you. 

    Regardless of how fast these other drivers may be going, the proper thing to do is yield to faster moving traffic in the left lane. Failure to do so results in impeding the flow of traffic, which is not only dangerous, it’s also illegal in most jurisdictions.
  2. Left-Lane Passing
    Have you ever been stuck on a four-lane highway or road because two vehicles are driving at the exact same speed? This is one of my biggest pet peeves and is usually a result of the “cruise control pass”.  Here’s how this happens… John Doe      decides that he wants to pass Joe Black so he pulls into the left lane to do so. However, John Doe is attempting to pass Joe Black with his cruise control set at 65 mph. Since Joe Black is only going 62 mph, it takes forever for this pass to be complete which is only two mph faster than the car he is attempting to pass. Remember, when passing someone in the left lane, you must speed up sufficiently enough to get past the other guy quickly.
So there you have it, Newnan cars. The rules of the left lane. Know them, learn them, live them. Stay tuned for more lessons in driving.

Atlanta new cars: What do you do if your new car hydroplanes?




With the changing seasons come changes in weather. How careful are you when driving in the rain? If you don’t give it any thought, you should. The Southtowne car dealership in Newnan has see a lot of body damage due to people not taking the rain seriously.


  • First, be extra careful of driving in the rain after a dry spell. Fumes and oil leaks that build up on dry pavement rise to the surface of the road when it rains, making the road far slicker than it may seem. If it hasn’t rained in a while, this buildup gets extra thick and takes longer to wash away. It’s always a good idea to be extra careful under these conditions.


  • It takes a very, very small amount of standing water to cause your car to hydroplane.  Hydroplaning is a result of the rubber no longer being in contact with the road and usually when your vehicle is going relatively fast . Take it slow. If you do hydroplane simply let your foot off the gas and turn into the skid. DO NOT OVER CORRECT, OR SLAM ON YOUR BRAKES! It should only take a few seconds for your tires to touch pavement. You can quickly cause you to lose control of the vehicle if you are not careful.


  • Don’t rely on your car’s brakes. Similar to driving on snow and ice, hard, fast braking is likely to cause more harm than good when driving in rain. Be sure to use slow, light braking only when necessary, using slow acceleration and steering to control your car. Heavy, sudden braking could induce hydroplaning or a spin.




Now is a good time to make sure that your new car, especially your tires, are in tip-top shape for the new season. If you are unsure you can always ask me, or just stop by the Southtowne General Motors Superstore.


Atlanta Cars: When Do You Think You Need New Shocks?

Okay, Atlanta, how do you know when  you need replacement shocks and why are shocks so important? These are good questions.   This is an often overlooked but vital aspect to your Southtowne GM Vehicle in regards to safety. Make no mistake, recognizing when it is time to replace your shocks is very important.

First, let’s review the shocks and the suspension system:

Checking your shocks is actually a very simple thing to do. In fact, it is something you can do yourself  fairly easily.

The first thing you can do is pay attention when you are driving. For example, after hitting the bump does your new Atlanta car or truck continue to bounce up and down? If the answer is “yes”, then you will almost certainly need new shocks. Start paying attention now, because this may start gradually and then worsen over time until they are really bad. In fact, if you wait too long you can damage other parts and components of you car.

A second way to check your shock’s life  is to physically look under your car or truck. For a truck or van you may not be able to see them. In this case you will need to push on the bumper and follow the steps the same as you are physically looking at them. They will bounce. Two or three bounces they are fine. If they continue to oscillate, then they need replacing.

As stated earlier, the reason it is so important to replace worn out shocks is because they are responsible for keeping your tires in contact with the road. If you are driving down a rough road and the wheels are bouncing up and down, worn shocks will actually allow the wheels to completely lose contact with the roadway. Considering that your tires are the only thing separating you from the road, this can be especially dangerous if you hit a dip or a bump during a high speed corner. Good shocks will also help to minimize body roll, also very important during cornering.

IF you think that your shock may be worn and just can’t figure it out on your own, swing by and we’ll take a look at them. Then the Southtowne General Motors Superstore can recommend the right ones for your Atlanta  Buick, GMC, Cadillac or Chevrolet

Atlanta cars and the Rubbernecking problem…Is there anyway to stop it?


We all know what a “Rubberneck” is, but if you’ve never been in traffic and wondered why you’ve come to a near standstill for no apparent reason, it’s probably because of  all of the “rubberneckers” who slow their speed down to an unsafe level so they can gawk at an accident. Not only that, but incidents for accidents actually increase when you slow down to check out somesones misfortune. Let’s just say that at Southtowne, we’ve see our fair share of fender benders caused by people who are not paying attention to the task at hand.

I, of all people am not perfect and human nature makes us naturally curious. In fact, just being curious can cause you to get a ticket,  or as mentioned above, in a wreck of your own.  Even though rubbernecking is not considered illegal, if you are crawling along the highway a cop can technically give you a ticket for going an unsafe speed, especially if the accident is on the other side of the highway.  Rubbernecking counts for 16% of all distraction-related accidents.  I know you want to stop and stare, because I do, but have a little self-discipline and respect for the people you share the road with and just don’t do it!  It is unsafe for you and is actually pretty annoying to your fellow drivers!

As I said before, Southtowne has seen our fair share of rubbernecking accidents, so keep those Atlanta cars safe and keep your eyes on the road and pass an accident scene without gawking.

Southtowne GMC: Technology That Could Help Avert 81 Percent of Crashes

Keep your eyes and ears open for future GM technology in Atlanta cars, Newnan. At the recent Intelligent Transport Systems World Congress in Orlando, GM showcased their development of a new technology that could help avert 81 percent of all U.S. car crashes according to a study by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Our current safety systems are designed to minimize the damage to our vehicles and passengers after an accident, but GM’s technology will actually help prevent the accident from happening at all.

The Vehicle-to-Vehicle Technology System will be able to communicate with other vehicles, surrounding infrastructure and pedestrians to warn drivers about potholes, construction zones and cyclists. Researchers at GM are putting the technology into small mobile devices and smartphone applications connected to vehicle’s display. There will also be an app for pedestrians and cyclists to download that will alert drivers of their position.

I’m sure you’re wondering how exactly this would work, and the answer is simple. The technology uses basic location information to warn drivers about slowed or stalled vehicles, hard-braking drivers, slippery roads, sharp curves and upcoming stop signs and intersections.

“These safety systems could provide a significant leap in automotive safety, but their effectiveness goes up dramatically as more people use them,” said Don Grimm, senior researcher for GM’s Perception and Vehicle Control Systems group. “By putting the technology into portable devices, we could make this potentially life-saving technology widely available and more affordable.”

This new technology is yet another reason why the Southtowne General Motors Superstore is a proud representative of the GM brand. I’ll be sure to keep you updated on GM’s progress.

Atlanta Car Dealer Recommends “Gap” Insurance

Newnan Car Dealerships

Is Gap Insurance something you really need? I know Southtowne’s answer, but I thought I’d just Google it and see what others thought…I found this post in the very first link I tried. It’s from a random automobile forum: “I had gap on my wife’s car that was totaled and thank God we did. The price on her car dropped like a rock after 9-11 and about 6 months later some jerk totaled it. I have gap on 2 cars right now and it cost me $4.56 a month. Seems like a small price to pay every month but could end up providing a lot of coverage.”

The more I looked around, the more accolades I found on the benefits of Gap Insurance and here’s why. I’ll make it simple. So, you’ve just bought a new car at $40,000. The minute you drove it off the lot it depreciated in value according to your insurance company. So, now it’s worth $30,000.  You wreck that car and the insurance company gives you the $30,000 for it, but now you still owe a remaining $10,000 on a car that you aren’t even driving because it’s been totaled. Unfortunately, this happens all the time to people, but it wouldn’t happen if they had GAP insurance. See, GAP insurance will insure you for the difference between what you would owe on a vehicle and what an insurance company says it’s worth. So in other words, you would be 100% covered if you were in an accident and now you know why it’s imperative to get GAP insurance.

*The one and only reason you might not want GAP insurance on your new car is if you paid for it with cash and don’t owe anything to the bank.

When searching for GAP insurance, research all of your options because there are a few different ways to obtain it. You can get it through the dealership, your insurance company or in some cases, the bank will roll it into your loan.

Let your favorite Atlanta car dealer know if you have any experience with Gap Insurance and if YOU have any advice.