Auto Industry News: Pack the Busch – It’s Race Weekend, Off-Road Ready & More

We foresee a lot of smokin’ hot tires the next few days. Formula Drift slides into Long Beach, CA this weekend and while we announced Chelsea DeNofa joining forces with Vaughn Gittin Jr., there’s one itsy bitsy detail we didn’t let out of the bag.

Keystone Automotive Operations, Inc.—the leading and largest wholesales distributor and marketer of automotive specialty parts in North America with a 45 year history in speed and performance—has partnered with GReddy Racing and driver Ken Gushi as an associate sponsor of their beloved Toyota 86 during the 2017 Formula D season.

“We’re passionate about supporting Team GReddy as an associate sponsor and excited to partner in the quest for a Formula Drift Pro Championship. This opportunity further demonstrates our commitment to the sport compact segment and support of our customers doing business in this space,” said Ahad Mirza, Category Manager of Sport Compact at Keystone.

Where’s There’s Smoke & Fire, There’s Action

Auto Industry News - Photo Credit @caitlinshoots
Photo Cred: @caitlinshoots

Speaking of burned rubber, Ken Gushi’s smokin’ the competition already. Quite literally. Did anyone catch the recent Formula D Media Day? “An ethanol tank in the trunk had a small line leak that met the heat from the tires and amazing things happened,” said Mirza. We could venture an explanation, but a picture speaks a thousand words, right?

Additionally, NMRA is prepping for its big showdown at Atlanta Speedway; Denso Spark Plugs NHRA Nationals will hit Las Vegas, NV; and Monster Energy is not only ready for Supercross – The Dome at America’s Center, but also became the third entitlement sponsor in NASCAR premier series history. According to a statement from NASCAR, Monster Energy also will host sponsorship of the NASCAR All-Star Race and be the Official Energy Drink of NASCAR. Monster Energy will continue to sponsor Stewart Haas Racing’s No. 41 car driven by Kurt Busch.

Much like Thule, Yakima, Coleman, YETI and even Jeep, Monster Energy has built its reputation on the concept of a lifestyle. By partnering with NASCAR, they’ve accepted the challenge to ignite renewed interest in the sport and, hopefully, increase fan attendance.

True Adventure Begins Where the Asphalt Ends

As Driving Line says, “The best roads are better without pavement.” Spring has sprung and though many of our juicy off road and overlanding features don’t kick off until June, it’s never too early to chat gear. And four in particular hit our radar this week.

Paxis® Backpacks

Ideal for hunters, fishers and even photographers, Paxis® backpacks give users the flexibility they need while in motion. “When you have a Paxis® pack, you don’t have to stop and take it off to get what’s inside – you can keep your straps on and swing the gear you need to the front in one swift, secure motion using the ARC swing technology.” Add this handy-dandy product to your Father’s Day wish list!

Weego Jump Starters and Battery Packs

There’s no denying we live in a digital era; even the thought of a dead battery is paralyzing. Weego provides a high-quality, long-lasting and affordable power source in the form of jump starters and battery packs. And they’re the ideal solution for everyone, from mom to mechanic. Jump start the car, boat, motorcycle, phone, laptop, tablet or smartwatch. Since Weego products are ultra-compact and lightweight, they can fit in someone’s pocket. Built for longevity and durability, Weego jump starters are powered by lithium-polymer batteries that offer up to 1,000 charging cycles. Everyone should have a Weego stashed in the glove box or purse for emergency use.

Pittman Outdoors AirBedz

Next, we explore a good night’s sleep in the wilderness. As seen on SHARK TANK, Pittman Products International, based in La Mirada, California, offers the only multi-patented air mattress that is specifically designed to fit mid and full-sized trucks in long and short bed layouts; several additional patents are pending.

“Cut-outs on each side allow the mattress to go around and, more importantly, over top of the wheel wells. This creates a sleep area that utilizes the entire bed of the truck,” said Pittman. A built-in rechargeable pump inflates and deflates AirBedz at the flip of a switch. An integrated air coil system evenly distributes weight across a 12” thick mattress; it provides comfy resting quarters for outdoor enthusiasts like motocross riders, hunters, fishers, campers, overlanders and off roaders.

Next-Gen “Tenting It”

Last, but not least, the tents featured in the video below will turn any hipster into a lifelong outdoorsman. Some of these products may come in handy if heading out to Easter Jeep Safari in a couple short weeks! (Word has it, Jeep plans to unveil some crazy concept vehicles at Moab this year…)

Top Industry News

On a more somber note, Autoblog released the top five fastest depreciating cars, according to data from If true, it’s like peeing in the wind when you purchase a brand new Mercedes-Benz C250, Kia Cadenza, Volvo S60, Lincoln MKS or Fiat 500L. Moral of this story? Do your research or pay up, big time.

Sparks flying appears to be the central theme this week. Ford recalled 230,000 vehicles for under-hood fire risk, specifically late-model Escape, Fiesta ST, Fusion and Transit Connect models. “A lack of coolant circulation can cause Ford’s turbocharged 1.6L GTDI engine to overheat and possibly crack the cylinder head. If cracked, pressurized oil can leak from the head and come into contact with a hot engine surface, increasing the risk of a fire in the engine compartment,” said Motor Trend. Consumer choices include purchasing a high-grade fire suit, of which we’re happy to make recommendations, or follow-up on that recall; we suggest the latter.

Much like a junior-high teacher “gently reminding” students about that summer reading list, SEMA urges aftermarket retailers, restylers and installers to get crackin’ on their 2017 reservation. And they’re right; flights and hotels tend to book up early. Visit the SEMA Show website for more details!

Consumer Rebates

In need of some retail therapy? Here are some savings, courtesy of the manufacturers.

Yukon Gear: Claim up to a $150 rebate with a qualifying purchase of drivetrain components between March 6, 2017 – May 19, 2017.

Gibson Performance: Claim up to a $75 rebate with a qualifying purchase between March 1, 2017 – May 31, 2017.

Edelbrock Performance: Receive a FREE air cleaner with the purchase of a new Performer or Thunder Series Carburetor. Offer valid between March 1, 2017 – April 30, 2017.

Corsa: Claim a $25 rebate with a qualifying air intake purchase between March 1, 2017 – May 31, 2017. Claim a $50 rebate with a qualifying Corsa or dB exhaust between March 1, 2017 – April 30, 2017.

Auto Meter: Claim up to a $175 rebate with a qualifying purchase of AutoMeter tachs between March 1, 2017 – April 30, 2017.

* Visit the manufacturer websites for downloadable forms. Remember to #shoplocal and support your area retailer! Until next week’s auto industry news, enjoy the fun that awaits you this weekend.

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