Best of Speed Perks 2016

Take a look back at the all the exciting Speed Perks events we held in 2016. From Daytona Bike Week, to Coca-Cola 600 race day, to NFL Legends meet and greets, it’s been a great year for Members!

Racing

Several lucky members won VIP trips to either the Coca-Cola 600 NASCAR race at Charlotte Motor Speedway or the NASCAR Championships at Homestead-Miami Speedway. They were treated to an all-paid vacation and got to experience the race up close and personal, meeting drivers and touring the pit area.

Coca-Cola 600

Members enjoyed the exhilarating race in Speed Perks style. A highlight was meeting country singer Lee Brice backstage at the opening day concert.

Homestead-Miami

As if being at the NASCAR Championships wasn’t enough, our members got to meet drivers Dale Earnhardt Jr., Alex Bowman (Advance Auto Parts #88 car), and Brandon Jones (Rain-X #33 car) at the track.
88-car

Atlanta Formula Drift

Driver Ryan Tuerck paid a visit to Advance Auto Parts before his Formula Drift race in Atlanta, inviting Speed Perks Members to the race for autographs and a tour of his ride.

Exclusive Events

Outside the track, members got to enjoy great experiences like meeting three NFL legends, riding with “Tig” and “Bobby” from Sons of Anarchy at Daytona Bike Week, and getting free gear from our partners.

NFL Tailgate

NFL Legends Terry Bradshaw, Barry Sanders, and Dan Marino each paid a visit to a local Advance store, signing autographs for our members and posing for photos.
Terry Bradshaw
Terry Bradshaw
Barry Sanders
Barry Sanders
Dan Marino
Dan Marino

Sons of Anarchy Ride

Our biker members were invited to ride alongside “Tig” and “Bobby” from Sons of Anarchy during Daytona Bike Week. Both stars hung around for the after party at the Daytona Advance store!Speed-Perks-Bike-Week

Excitement for 2017

We had a blast last year and 2017 is gearing up to be even better for members. Keep your eyes peeled as tons of great events are coming your way!

Not a Speed Perks Member? Join for free and start getting rewarded with exclusive coupons and experiences!

What do you think of our Speed Perks events? Did you attend one or are planning to in 2017? Comment below and let us know if there are any other events you’d like us to look at.

Never Been to an Auto Auction? Here’s Why You’re Missing Out.

With high-stakes competitiveness and quick action, auto auctions are the most fun you can have outside your vehicle. They can be a unique way to score an incredible deal on a used car, and they’re a lot more local than you might think. Read on as we cover how to find a great ride for an even greater price.

The Local Scene

Depending on your location, there may be towing and government vehicle auctions nearby. Towing impound auctions are where seized vehicles are sold off to recoup costs. Government auto auctions are typically used vehicles that have aged out of their service life after serving your local city or county. They often sell with no reserve, so those who can do a little bit of tune-up work and don’t mind cosmetic imperfections can score a huge discount.

Almost all local auction vehicles are running and able to pass emissions or safety inspections.

The variety of vehicles covers pretty much everything made in the last 30 years, with the average age being roughly 10 to 15 years old. Conditions are all over the place, from the pristine and needs no work to the well-worn vehicle needing attention, and everything in between. Most vehicles have some slight wear and tear from the daily grind, and could stand a tune-up.

Local Auction Tips

  1. To get started, visit your local classifieds online and look in the automotive and auction sections. You should see a few auctions for the coming week, usually with website addresses listed. The websites are useful for getting a look at the vehicles before the auction. Most of them offer one picture per vehicle, but others offer more and go into detail on features and condition. If you find one you’re interested in, check the value to see what it’s worth. You should be getting a deal here, so do the research to make sure you don’t overpay.
  2. On the day of the auction, show up early. Sometimes the early bird gets free doughnuts and coffee.
  3. Oh, and you will want to survey the vehicles. Like buying any used car, carefully examine the vehicle for issues, and ask questions if staff is available. Every auction will start the vehicles before bidding begins so buyers can hear how they sound.
  4. Don’t worry about sneezing and accidentally purchasing a Ferrari. This isn’t a sitcom, and the auctioneers are used to first timers. You’ll need to be obvious with your intent to bid.
  5. Finally, have cash and a plan. Almost every site requires cash or card payment same day and the vehicle removed within 24 hours. Be ready to win.

Large International Auctions

Local car auctions are great if you’re looking for a daily driver but not so great for finding a weekend show car or special project. For a higher-end vehicle, you need to visit a more upscale auction. Barrett-Jackson is internationally known for selling beautiful machines of staggering variety, covering the entire breadth of automotive production. Past events have included a million-dollar Duesenberg, the General Lee, and a sixth-generation COPO Camaro with VIN 001. There’s even wild custom cars, like the Ringbrothers’ 1972 Pantera, and this insane GMC V12-powered roadster.

By now you’ve noticed that looking through sold lots on the Barrett-Jackson website is an amazing way to kill time at work. It’s also great in-person. These auctions operate similar to your local auctions, but on a much larger scale. Tickets are reasonably priced for the hours of eye candy you’ll get to ogle, and if you’re still looking for that cheap daily driver, Barrett-Jackson has you covered there, too.

Upcoming auctions include Arizona, Florida, Connecticut, and Nevada. Check out the event page to see schedules and get tickets. If you want to view the action from your couch, Barrett-Jackson auctions are internationally broadcast on Discovery or Velocity, depending on locale.

Maybe you’ll stumble upon a moment like this:

Have you ever bought an auction vehicle or hit up Barrett-Jackson? Tell us about your experience in the comments below.

Mark your calendars: 46th Swigart Meet August 7-9, 2015

Swigart 2 If you’re looking for a place to display your antique or classic car and spend a weekend with like-minded people, consider adding the annual Swigart Meet in Huntingdon, Pennsylvania to your schedule. Not only will you see plenty of outstanding cars at the meet, but you can then go into the nearby museum to see even more incredible vehicles, including rare – and even unique – cars.

Prior Swigart Meets have featured the following cars:

  • 1925 Packard four-door sedan
  • 1968 Honda Dream motorcycle
  • 1979 Lincoln Continental Mark V Limousine (formerly owned by Conrad Hilton)
  • 1960 Austin Healey Sprite
  • 1976 Pontiac Trans-Am Coupe
  • 1999 Plymouth Prowler

Find photos and more information about the 2014 meet here. And, if you attend in 2015, be sure to visit the museum that co-sponsors the meet.

William E. Swigart, Jr. Automobile Museum

The National Association of Automobile Museums has only given out three Lifetime Achievement Awards: to Henry Ford, William F. Farrah (National Automobile Museum) and W. Emmett Swigart.

  1. Emmett Swigart may have been the first person to recognize the value in collecting old cars, first sharing his collection in 1920, after watching beat up vehicles being dismantled for parts. This was an era when many entrepreneurs tried their hand at car manufacturing, with typically small production runs – most of which haven’t been in production for a long time now.

He passed on his love of unique cars to his son, William E. Swigart, Jr., who opened the William E. Swigart, Jr. Automobile Museum in Huntingdon, Pennsylvania.

Swigart 1While at the museum

Billed as the oldest museum for automobiles, it contains rare cars, including these three one-of-a-kind treasures:

  • 1936 Duesenberg 12-cylinder Gentlemen Speedster with 160 hp; a Lycoming L-head, V-12 engine; 390.8 ci; and 3 speed manual transmission. Two of these cars were built, but one was lost in a fire. The one in the museum was previously owned by actor Jackie Coogan.
  • 1916 Scripps-Booth, a luxury vehicle built in Detroit; this was the year that Scripps-Booth merged with the Sterling Motor Company, with a goal to build 12,000 cars in just one year.
  • 1920 Carroll Six: one of the previous owners, Eric Johnson, used scrap airplane parts from a WWII PT19 Fairchild trainer engine to repair the vehicle; more about the Carroll Six later.

This is the only museum with two Preston Tucker vehicles, located side-by-side, including his hand built 1947 Tin Goose Prototype. Plus, this museum may have the largest license plate and radiator emblem collection in the country.

Overall, there are approximately 200 vehicles in the collection, with 35 to 40 on them on display at any one time. Other rare cars include:

  • 1930 Model J dual-cowl phaeton, a “straight-eight” with dual overhead cams and 265 hp
  • 1903 Curved Dash Oldsmobile, one of 3,924 of this model built in this year, the third year of production for the company
  • 1910 Winton Six Model 17-B, with 48.6 hp and a cost of $3,000 when brand new (more than $73,000 in today’s dollars)

Carroll SixCarroll Car 1

Advance Auto Parts did a bit of digging into the story behind the Carroll Six. Why? Because it was built by one of the 70 to 80 entrepreneurs who manufactured cars in the Cleveland area during the early 20th century – and because there is only one known example left in the world.

To that end, car historian Bob Kayle provided us with the January-March 1991 issue of The Bulb Horn, the publication of The Veteran Motor Car Club of America. Through this resource and a handful of others, we discovered that:

  • Charles F. Carroll, an attorney, successful advertising professional and inventor, announced his new car in Lorain, Ohio’s Times Herald on January 13, 1920.
  • He rented factory space, created blueprints, gathered car parts and persuaded wealthy local stockholders to invest in his dream.
  • “Two bodies will be furnished, one a close coupled five passenger touring car and the other a roadster, and will be finished in either Carroll green or Burgundy red. The wheelbase is 131” and it will have an aluminum body upholstered in leather. The six-cylinder engine develops 48 hp and has enclosed overhead valves. Full equipment includes six disc wheels, Fisk cord tires, permanent type top, and trunk with a built-in rack.”
  • The roadster never came into being and the wheelbase was scaled down to 128”.

Distribution was a big problem for early car manufacturers, but Carroll quickly secured a partner in San Francisco, Fred W. Hauger, who planned to sell this car in 11 states, plus the Hawaiian Islands.

One hundred and six cars were scheduled for 1920, although it’s unlikely that the production goal for this “attractive and even a bit racy” vehicle was reached. The car had a:

  • radiator that was set back seven and a half inches from the front axle
  • body, hood and fenders that were “pleasingly curved”
  • swept-back windshield that gave it a slightly futuristic look

The car was not cheap ($3,895 or more than $45,000 in today’s dollars) but it did come with leather-covered steel top, side curtains, long running boards with dual side-mount spare tires, Bijur starting and lighting, and a K.W. ignition system.

Some Carroll cars were allegedly ruined when they were shipped to California without antifreeze. When the weather turned cold, the engines were ruined, a serious financial blow to the company. By May 1922, the company was out of money and one of the investors was said to help himself to four cars, plus a partially built one, plus some parts as his self-determined repayment. Although there are rumors of four Carroll cars still being in existence, only the one at the Swigart museum is a certainty.

Editor’s note: What other rare or unique cars are out there? Leave a comment below.

 

Advance Auto Parts at the 2012 LA Auto Show!

Los Angeles unofficially kicks off the auto show season each November, and last year we got more than our fair share of compact SUVs, with Mazda’s MX-5, Ford’s Escape, and Honda’s CR-V—all using the LA Convention Center as a supercharged showcase for their global debuts.

This year, things seem to be switching gears a bit. While Toyota presented its all-new RAV4, the serious buzz of the day centered on the Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG Black Series—with a whopping 622hp. (Yep, no joke!)

The new Jaguar XFR-S is no slouch either. This blue beauty is all about sexy curves and speeds up to 60 mph in just 4.4 seconds.

And, those aren’t the only automakers promoting global unveils. Acura’s new model, the RLX, is on the floor, as is Volkswagen’s iconic Beetle Convertible. The public gets its first looks starting Friday…if you’re not in LA, no worries, we’ll have more details coming soon.

Editor’s note: We love Auto Shows—especially this one. And you can bet that we’ll be on the edge of our seats until this thing ends, waiting in eager anticipation for more first glimpses of all the tempting new offerings. I know, we’re nerds. (We can’t help it, we’re just geared that way.) Stay tuned for more candid updates from the LA Auto Show. 

In the meantime, text “HOLIDAY” to 36898 to check out the latest offers from Advance Auto Parts. Up to 5 messages per month; message & data rates may apply. —JK

Drifting Through San Francisco

San Francisco closed down several streets to shoot Gymkhana FIVE: Ultimate Urban Playground – San Francisco, a video from DC Shoes and Ken Block. It’s the ultimate display of drifting cars engaged in a zero-to-60-in-1.8-seconds performance. Cameras follow Block in his 650-horsepower Ford Fiesta HFHV through a seemingly, never-ending off-ramp. Block launches across the Golden Gate Bridge, pirouetting around two moving trolley cars, and uses Potrero Hill as a personal landing strip.

The Fiesta with Ken Block at the helm made for one killer, high-performance event that brought new meaning to the art of drifting. Witnessing the abuse the car suspension withstands may get you thinking about your own car shocks. Automotive experts recommend replacing car shocks every 50,000 miles, but according to an article in Modern Tire Dealer, 86 percent of vehicles arriving at junkyards still have their original shocks and struts. That’s crazy, especially when you consider how car shocks impact braking and cornering ability, as well as tire wear. A study by Monroe found that even if one of four car shocks is degraded by 50 percent, stopping time can increase by 4.3 percent and stopping distance by 5.7 percent. That’s major.

If you want to see some crazy moves, watch Ken Block’s Gymkahna spectacular.  However, if you want the scoop on how he drives it and other background on Ken,driving and motorsports, watch this Shakedown interview with Ken and Leo Parente. And for help with choosing the right shocks for your vehicle, talk to an Advance Auto Parts team member.