Santa Clara Auto Body Blog

Read the latest auto body and collision repair news from Anderson Behel

New Car Safety Features Perfect for Big Families

on Tuesday, 02 March 2021.

Selecting a new family car is a big decision. Not only is it a significant purchase, but it also significantly impacts your and your kids’ comfort and safety while on the road. Add to that the numerous car options on the market, and it’s enough to make your head spin. This is why all of us at Anderson Behel in Santa Clara, CA helping you navigate this tricky road. Here’s what to look for when shopping around, and which vehicles made our list of the best family cars out there. In our book, safety always comes first—so every car here scored a 5-star safety rating from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the highest-ranking there is.

What to Look for in Family Cars
The best family cars are the ones that best meet your specific needs—so a natural starting place is to pinpoint exactly what you want out of your vehicle. If you’re just starting a family, you’ll want to look at the best cars for babies; if you’re already a rowdy crowd, you might want to look at large family SUVs. Consider how many kids you have, how old they are and what kind of activities they’re into. Will you be hauling sports equipment around? Do you end up driving everybody everywhere along with their best friends? Do you take a lot of road trips, where having kid-friendly entertainment options are must-have sanity-savers?

Here’s a quick checklist of what to keep in mind as you browse the best family cars available:

· Size · Price · Comfort (in both the back seat and front) · Trunk space · Entertainment and connectivity options · Safety ratings · Safety features

Family car safety features
Safety features may appear last on the features list, but they’re one of the most critical criteria to consider. After all, what’s more important than the safety and wellbeing of your children? Good news: Family cars are safer than they’ve ever been before, and they just keep getting better. Here are some of the modern safety features to look into when shopping for family cars:

· Car seat support. Most cars make it fairly easy to get car seats in and out, but if you still multiple young kids at home, you’ll want to know how many car seats can fit in one row. Most cars made after 2002 come with the built-in LATCH system for easy car seat install.

· Back seat reminder. We’re all busy, and we all get distracted. To avoid ever forgetting your kids in the car, look for a vehicle with an audio reminder to check the back seat when you reach your destination.

· Collision warning. These come in various forms, but they’ll alert you when you’re too close to someone in front of you or moving in too quickly. Some will even automatically apply the brakes. They work not just for other cars, but also for pedestrians who are crossing in front of you.

· Blind spot monitoring. This one is literally a lifesaver. We all check our side mirrors before changing lanes or making that turn, but now the mirrors have warning lights that tell you when someone’s in your blind spot.

· Parking sensors. Especially helpful for city drivers, these sensors let you know when you’re getting too close to other vehicles, shopping carts or anything else above a certain height.

· Lane-change assist. When you start to slip out of your lane but your turn signal isn’t on, this will gently turn your steering wheel back and alert you.

· Adaptive cruise control. Thanks to this feature, you can set the maximum speed for cruise control, and your car will speed up or slow down to keep pace with the car in front of you. It’s especially helpful in stop-and-go traffic.

· Rear vision cameras. When you’re in reverse, you get a live image of what’s behind you, with grid lines to help you keep a safe distance from other objects. There are also 360-degree cameras, which provide a virtual 360-degree view around your car, helping you navigate tight spaces.

About Anderson Behel 

With today’s sophisticated cars, it’s more important than ever that your body shop is certified to repair your type of vehicle. At Anderson Behel, Silicon Valley’s leading collision repair company, we’re proud to hold several certifications, which means we’re a Honda Certified Body Shop, Acura Authorized Body Shop, Nissan Authorized Body Shop, Subaru Auto Body Shop a Porsche Collision Center and most recently a Volvo certified shop. What does this mean? At Anderson Behel, we’ve invested in the finest training, equipment and tools to do an O.E. repair on each and every Honda, Porsche, Acura, Volvo, Nissan and Subaru that comes into our shop. Why not work with a body shop that is qualified, experienced and certified by the carmaker itself to work on your car? It just makes good sense and that’s why we proudly tell the world that we’re certified on some of the world's finest vehicles.


Where is the World's Oldest Porsche?

on Tuesday, 16 February 2021.

The oldest Porsche on Earth will have a new home after it goes up for auction later this year.

Expected to fetch about $20million at RM Sotheby’s, the 1939 Porsche Type 64 is believed to be the world’s oldest surviving Porsche.

At Anderson Behel in Santa Clara, CA we are certified to work on Porsches because we possess all of the tools, equipment, training, and skills to work on these beautiful machines! 

Initially dubbed “the people’s car”, Porsche 64 was manufactured to compete in the 1,500km Berlin-Rome race, which was established to promote Germany’s autobahn. However, the September 1939 event was canceled when World War II was declared.

Only three models were produced – boasting lightweight aluminum bodies, wheels fully covered in removable alloy panels, 32HP air-cooled flat-four engines, World War II aircraft technology, and the same drivetrain and suspension as the Type 1 Volkswagen.

Ferdinand ‘Ferry’ Porsche’s vision was to create a lighter, faster version of the car for the masses (the KdF Wagen), showcasing Germany’s technology.

“I’ve seen countless special Porsches in my career, but nothing like this,” marque specialist Andy Prill says. “This is the most historically significant of all Porsche cars and it is simply incredible to find the very first Porsche in this original condition.”

The three long-distance racing cars were commissioned by government-owned Volkswagen and built at Reutter Works in Zuffenhausen, Germany, by the same engineers who would then go on to manufacture the 356s.

“This is Porsche’s origin story, the car that birthed the company’s legend, and it offers collectors what is likely an unrepeatable opportunity to sit in the seat of Ferdinand and Ferry Porsche,” – Marcus Görig

Government interest turned to produce military vehicles when war was declared – but Ferry Porsche created the two additional cars.

Only the third prototype survived the war. Ferry Porsche himself applied the PORSCHE lettering to the nose of the car after registering it in Austria in 1946.

Porsche 64 has only changed hands twice in its history following its initial ownership by Ferdinand ‘Ferry’ Porsche – once by Austrian privateer driver Otto Mathé in 1948 and again with Dr. Thomas Gruber (one of the world’s most respected Porsche specialists).

The historic model inspired the motorsport industry throughout the 1930s.

“Without the Type 64, there would be no Porsche 356, no 550, no 911,” RM Sotheby’s Car Specialist Marcus Görig says. “This is Porsche’s origin story, the car that birthed the company’s legend, and it offers collectors what is likely an unrepeatable opportunity to sit in the seat of Ferdinand and Ferry Porsche.

“With this car, the new owner will not only be invited to the first row of every Porsche event worldwide – they will be the first row.”

Sources: Autobody News and Drive 

Henry Ford's Greatest 5 Inventions

on Thursday, 11 February 2021.

I knew that Ford invented the car, but did you know that he also invented a plane?

Henry Ford is undoubtedly one of the most prominent inventors and innovators in American history and one of the true greatest names in the car industry.

At Anderson Behel in Santa Clara, CA we are indebted to Henry Ford as the creator of the automobile and that’s why we’re giving him much respect in this blog. Every time we work on a Ford, we should give them a moment of respect. 

Ford began his career as a machinist in Michigan and eventually moved on to work with Thomas Edison as an Engineer.

Quadricycle: Ford’s job with Edison had grueling hours as he was on call 24/7, but Ford still found enough time to work on his own projects during those downtimes. He was designing a horseless carriage that was powered by a gasoline engine. Ford wasn't the first person to think of this idea, but utilizing his engineering skills he designed a vehicle and named it the Quadricycle. The vehicle was made out of a light metal frame that rode on 4 bicycle wheels.

Model A: Following the invention of the Quadricycle, Ford wanted to enhance the original design, but he needed money first. He built and sold Quadricycles to make enough cash to work on the development of his other vehicles. Over the course of 7 years, he received backing from a wide range of prominent investors and formed the Detroit Automobile Company back in 1899. Ford’s Detroit Automobile Company later became the Ford Motor Company, and the first car Ford produced was the Model A.

Assembly Line: The demand for the Model A skyrocketed and Ford needed a new set of efficient processes to keep up with production. While Ford didn't invent the concept of an assembly line, he was one of the most very prominent people to implement it in his factories on a wide scale.

Model T: As Ford refined his implementation of the production line in his factories, Ford also designed a new model of vehicle, the Model T. Debuted in 1908, the Model T was an immediate success nationwide. The main goal of the Model T was to be much more accessible to the general public than the pricey Model A was. As Ford developed this car and improved manufacturing methods, each year he lowered the price of the car to make it as cheap as possible for the general public.

$5 Wage:  While Ford had engineering prowess and prominence, he was a notable businessman as well. He was the pioneer of a concept called "welfare capitalism" that was meant to improve the quality of life for his workers. In many cases, he hired 3 times as many people each year as there were jobs simply because turnover in his factories was very bad. By paying workers more, Ford Motor Company also had a trick up his sleeve – it meant his workers could afford the vehicles they were producing.

The Trimotor Plane: In WWI, the Ford Motor Company entered the aviation business as many carmakers did at the time. When the war ended, the company acquired the Stout Metal Airplane Company and started designing and producing even more planes. William Bushnell Stout became an executive at Ford motor company and developed the Ford Trimotor, that Henry Ford helped produce.

Sources: Autobody News and Wikipedia

These High-Tech Car Features will be Standard by 2025

on Sunday, 31 January 2021.

Car technology is exploding at an all-time rate and experts say that it will only gain more momentum for a wide range of reasons. With brilliant people all over the world striving to invent new, innovative technology that can impact personal transportation in a big way, this is something all of us at Anderson Behel in Santa Clara, CA is interested in.

Predicting the next big thing is hard, but here is our list of what we believe will be the most important car technological advances in the next decade. We anticipate that these five innovations will be a part of our lives by the year 2025 at the latest.

1.) Autonomous Vehicles: By taking the human element out of the driving experience, self-driving cars will save lives and enhance our existence. We will be able to be more productive because driving is essentially a waste of time. By 2023, we will see a fair amount of self-drivers out on the roads of the Bay Area we imagine, but I would bet that they won't become commonplace until 2025. The autonomous automotive movement will change everything about transportation, because our roads, car insurance, and things like fuel consumption will evolve while driver's training schools will quickly become extinct.

2.) Biometric Vehicle Access Systems: Keyless entry is now pretty much "been there done that" and currently featured on many cars. But soon we will be able to start our vehicles with our fingerprints or even our eyeballs. By using fingerprint readers and/or retina scanners, your keys will be a thing of the past and your car will answer only to you.

3.) Vehicle Health Monitoring: Now this one is like something out of the Six Million Dollar Man, the old popular TV show starring Lee Majors. With sensors in your car's seatbelts or steering wheel, you will be to track vital statistics, though the brisk development of wearable technology means most cars will just wirelessly pair with these devices (think about cell phones for your body). Combine this with critical autonomous car technology and you’ve got a vehicle that can pull over by itself and call paramedics if the driver has a heart attack or seizure.

4.) Smart/Personalized In-Car Marketing: If you have a fairly new vehicle, you’re already getting Facebook, Twitter, and Gmail ads based on your lifestyle in your car. By 2025, almost every new vehicle will be fully connected to the Internet, which means that your vehicle will provide marketing companies with a potent set of metrics to tailor their messages for you. Hopefully, these will be opt-in features that you don't have to see unless you choose to.

5.) Reconfigurable Body Panels: Rather than adapting to your car, why not do it the other way around? Today's smaller SUVs are growing in popularity in a big way and truck sales are at an all-time high, primarily based on the new aluminum Ford F-150. But, what if you could have both vehicle types morphed into one super truck? Think about it--an SUV with lightweight body panels and high-tech motors that can retract the vehicle's roof and side glass into the lower body panels. It could happen and will!

Sources: Wikipedia, Forbes, and Japolik

True Porsche Fans Attend Porsche Sport Driving School

on Saturday, 23 January 2021.

If you've ever driven a Porsche, you know that these vehicles are the closest things to racing cars available in the consumer world. People started falling in love with this luxury brand when Porsche produced its first vehicle back in 1948. At Anderson Behel, we are a certified Porsche shop, so we love Porsches, and every time we see one racing along the roads here in Santa Clara, CA we also get a thrill.

People who own a Porsche talk about the rush they get every time they jump in behind the wheel, so 18 years ago, the carmaker started creating the Porsche Sport Driving School in Birmingham, Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park, with a sophisticated program that is designed to help Porsche owners to get the full use of these incredible cars.

At the Porsche Sport Driving School, Porsche owners can learn how to drive by getting top instruction and practicing on a track. By working with professional drivers, Porsche owners can hone their driving skills, step-by-step, with a focus on safety and common sense. From vehicle control all the way to apply for their own racing licenses, the Porsche Sport Driving School enables Porsche owners to become world-class drivers if they choose.

At the Porsche Sport Driving School, the carmaker offers a top-notch, state-of-the-art facility, incredible cars, and the most highly-skilled and experienced instructors available anywhere. They can drive their own Porsches or use one of the fleet that is available to every student at the Porsche Sport Driving School.

 The driving programs featured at the Porsche Sport Driving School are comprehensive and ideal for Porsche lovers who are looking for a visceral Porsche driving experience. The track is their classroom and after spending only 60 minutes in the morning discussing theory and strategy, students hit the track for the rest of the day.

The Porsche Sport Driving School gives its students full access on the astonishing Barber Motorsports road course for a bucket list experience.  Featuring both advanced and beginner level classes, most students start off with their choice of a one-day precision driving program or their two-day performance driving program. Both introductory courses provide an in-depth look into the many high-performance capabilities of a Porsche while acutely testing and continually developing each driver's individual skills and abilities.  

So, if you have a few bucks laying around and love Porsches, why not take a class or two at the Sport Driving School in Birmingham, Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park.

Sources: Porsche Sport Driving School PR, Drive and Japolik

The Steel vs. Aluminum Debate

on Friday, 15 January 2021.

For many years now, the old argument about steel vs. aluminum has been a popular topic amongst car people, and especially more recently with Chevy’s latest ad campaign that demonstrates the differences between steel and aluminum by dropping huge loads on Chevy and Ford truck beds.

Here is a comprehensive list of the main differences between steel as opposed to aluminum car bodies, provided by Anderson Behel in Santa Clara, CA As aluminum has become more and more prevalent in cars and we can see it every day in Santa Clara, CA we feel that this blog is both informational and timely.

In Chevrolet's campaign for steel vs. aluminum, the carmaker compares the Silverado’s advanced high-strength steel (AHHS) bed to a Ford’s truck bed. The use of AHHS in Chevrolet models and in a wide range of other brands like Kia and Volkswagen, utilizes a thinner sheet of steel to be used than previously resulting a lightweight model with high safety ratings.

Aluminum cars like Fords and Land Rovers offer drivers the myriad benefits of aluminum bodies and the claim to being the “material of choice” in the automotive design industry of the future.

Benefits of Steel

Easy to shape. With new and innovative processes for forming steel for today's vehicle models, steel has become easier to work with than aluminum.

Simple to repair. By and large, steel is less costly to repair and can often be fixed through spot welding.

Simple to recycle. Both aluminum and steel are equally recyclable, but steel is much easier to handle throughout the entire recycling procedure.

Much stronger than aluminum. Newer vehicles now have sophisticated advanced high-strength steel components, which are considerably stronger than conventional steel and aluminum.

Benefits of Aluminum

More lightweight. Vehicles constructed with aluminum have been traditionally lighter, thereby offering drivers drastically improved fuel economy ratings.

Infinitely recyclable. Aluminum is easy and inexpensive to recycle and that's why carmakers like the green aspect of the substance.

Better for the environment. Aluminum has lower carbon emissions resulting in a less severe impact on the planet, making it greener than high-strength steel across the board.

As car manufacturers further aggressively develop aluminum and high-strength steel (AHHS) and incorporate them into many of their new designs, we will see new and exciting uses that will enhance their strength and durability over time. Either way, either steel or aluminum are here to stay as we enter an age of new, high-tech cars, whether they are EVs, hybrids or even autonomous vehicles.

Sources: Wikipedia, Forbes and eBay Motors


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