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Love of BMWs goes into a Business

LANCASTER – Even at 11 years old, Victor Vega was fascinated by BMWs. Vega watched his older brother race against BMW 1600 and 2002 models on the streets of his home-town in Guadalajara, Mexico. “One time I tagged along with my brother,” Vega said. “I saw this little box on wheels and wanted to know what kind of cars those were. I asked one of the drivers what they were. He told me it was a German car – a BMW” Vega said his curiosity led him to the library to research BMWs. “It just` amazed me that the company started building aircraft engines in the first World War and then motorcycles,” Vega said. “The engineering that goes into building
the car – it’s one of the best handling cars in the world.” Vega’s obsession with the Ger-
man luxury car eventually led him to open his own BMW repair shopVic’s Bimmer Shop Inc.

The road to opening the business was not an easy one, Vega said. Fresh out of high school, Vega moved, to America with his family in 1979. A year later Vega started work as a “lot boy” cleaning cars and chauffeuring customers at Bob Smith BMW in Canoga Park; “I was a lot boy for about six months,” Vega said. “Then I told my manager that I wanted to do more ‘than that. I didn’t want to push the broom anymore – I wanted to be a

mechanic.” About six months later Vega became a BMW-certified technician. For the next few years Vega said he worked for several independent BMW repair shops and he dreamed of something more 4 owning his own repair business. Vega said he turned to his friend, mentor and employer for advice. “My old boss told me that I would never be able to open my own shop,” Vega said. “That was like a challenge to me. I wanted to prove him wrong.” –

Vega continued to work hard to save his money and study English. In 1987 Vega went to visit his brother who lived in Rosamond to discuss his business idea. “On a Sunday morning he drove me to breakfast in Lancaster and I noticed there were quite a few BMW s driving around,” Vega said. “I noticed there was a BMW dealership on Sierra Highway I said it would be a great place to open a BMW repair shop.” Vega said the next day he found a classified advertisement in the newspaper, listing a repair bay for rent on Avenue I and Beech Street.

“It was a sign,” he said. Vega said he sold all of his personal possessions that were not a
necessity and obtained a loan from his brother. With $10,000 Vega started Vic’s Bimmer Shop.
“The first year was very very difficult because I didn’t know anything about business, I just knew how to repair cars. I learned the business aspect as I went along.” Before Vega could afford advertising he would leave his business card on the windshield of every BMW he came across.

Half a year into the business, Vega said he considered shutting down his shop altogether after a slow Friday “My investment ran out and I called the landlord and said I don’t think I’m going to make it,” Vega said. “It was on the brink of closing.” Vega said he attended Mass that Sunday and prayed. “I left everything in His hands. I said, ‘If this is your will (to close the shop), so be it.” On Monday the phone was ringing off the hook, Vega said.

In 1994 Vega moved the shop to a larger location on Avenue L and 10th Street West. Five years later he moved his business again to its current location at 45253 Trevor Avenue. Through the years Vega said he has built up his clientele through hard work, competitive prices and exceptional customer service. “We have a friendly atmosphere at our shop. We treat customers as our friends.”

While most of Vega’s customers are from the Valley drivers have come from as far away as Long Beach, Thousand Oaks and San Diego.Ron Hawkins of Antelope Acres said he has been taking his BMWS to Vic’s Bimmer Shop since 1988 when he asked Vega to inspect a BMW he was looking to purchase.“I told (Vega) I wanted to know what was going to go wrong with the car within the next 20,000 miles and how much it would cost,” Hawkins said. “He spent two hours looking at it and wouldn’t let me pay him.” Hawkins said he has continued bringing his BMWs to Vega for more than 22 years because of his expertise and integrity “I don’t think I would own a BMW in the Antelope Valley if he wasn’t around, honestly,” Hawkins said. .‘He’s a good mechanic and a good man too.”

Vega’s son, Victor Vega Jr., 30, has worked alongside his father since 1997. Vega said, with auto-mobiles becoming far more technical since he opened his garage 23 years ago, he has to constantly stay up to date on the newest technology Vega and his son attend classes

and seminars to remain current. “We have the latest in diagnostic equipment. We can do whatever the BMW dealer can do. We are constantly updating ourselves and our equipment.” Although Vega spent two years repairing vehicles manufactured by Volvo and Mercedes-Benz he eventually decided to stick with BMWS, including Mini Coopers, which’ are
owned by the car manufacturer. “I “love BMWs – they are the love of my life,” Vega said.-“There’s no comparison to when you actually drive it. BMW is still at the top of the technological advance- When BMW talks, every-one listens.”
Vic’s Bimmer Shop is open 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Thursday It is closed Friday through Sunday
For details, call (661) 949-1990
or visit www.avbmwrepair.com.
ahoffman@avpress.com

January 21, 2011 Posted by | AV Bimmer Repair, AV BMW Repair, AV BMW Service, AV Mini Cooper Repair, Lancaster BMW | , , , , | Leave a comment

Antelope Valley Kia Optima’s latest model cuts into competition


Kia Optima’s latest model cuts into competition

 

Published: Friday, January 21, 2011 at 10:43 a.m.
Last Modified: Friday, January 21, 2011 at 10:43 a.m.

 

RALLY AUTO GROUP 866.906.9484

 

Zooming effortlessly through freeway traffic at spurts up to 80 mph, the 2011 Kia Optima responded to pedal pressure like a V6-powered performance car.

 

But the specs confirmed only 4 cylinders, cranking out a lusty 200 horsepower. If you want more performance, you can move up to the 274-horsepower turbocharged version.

Even with all that power flowing from those combustion chambers, the Optima’s new gasoline direct injection (GDI) engine can cover 24 city and 35 highway mpg with a six-speed automatic transmission.

With its sporty new appearance, larger dimensions and outstanding performance, the third-generation Optima represents a bold challenge to some of the most respected names in midsize automation, to wit, the Toyota Camry, Nissan Altima and Honda Accord.

While Optima does not offer a 6-cylinder option, its turbocharged 4-cylinder engine is stronger than the V6 of either the Accord or Camry. The base Optima engine is 10 horses stronger than Accord’s 2.4-liter, 4-cylinder engine and 31 horses better than the Camry’s. base 2.5-liter engine.

But where Optima really blasts past the competition is in standard equipment.

The midlevel EX trim, at the base price of $22,495, provides a trove of features more commonly found at the luxury level, including leather seats.

With a base price of $18,995, the entry-level LX trim is priced comparably to the top-selling Camry but with more power and equipment. A six-speed manual transmission is standard, as are 16-inch wheels and six air bags. You also get air conditioning and power accessories.

EX adds 17-inch alloy wheels, fog lamps, leather-trimmed seats, eight-way power driver’s seat, dual-zone automatic temperature control, push-button start and auto-dimming rear-view mirror with Homelink and compass.

Priced at $24,495, the EX turbo adds larger front disc brakes, a unique front grille, and wood and metal interior accents.

The top of the line is held by the SX version at $25,995. That 18-inch alloy wheels, sport-tuned suspension, distinctive lower body trim, high-intensity headlights, light-emitting diode taillights, black leather and woven seat trim, steering wheel paddle shifters and carbon fiber interior trim.

Based on a new midsize platform, the third-generation Optima is longer, wider and lower than its predecessors.

Designed to shed the dull demeanor of the first two generations, the 2011 model features a windswept roofline that connects with a high shoulder line, sculpted flanks and flared wheel arches.

Upscale jewelry includes chrome exhaust tips and alloy wheels.

Inside, the instrument panel reaches toward the driver for a cockpit ambience. A high console with a short shifter enhances the car’s performance personality.

The seats are snug and secure up front and heated in the EX trim. The driver’s seat has six-way power adjustments with the EX trim, while the front passenger’s seat is manually adjusted. A four-way power adjustable front passenger seat comes with the premium package.

The back seats are a bit snug for adults but accommodate kids with room to spare. The low roofline steals a bit of backseat headroom, and the legroom tightens when the front passengers slide the seats all the way to the back.

An AM/FM/CD/MP3 audio system with Sirius Satellite Radio is standard, as are USB audio input jacks for connecting with MP3 players2 and Bluetooth wireless.

Other standard features include a tilt/telescopic steering column, power door locks, power windows, sun visor extension and a cooling glove box.

EX buyers who pay $2,150 for the Premium Package will get, in addition to the power driver’s seat, a panoramic sunroof with high-gloss B-pillar, heated and cooled front seats, heated rear seats, a heated steering wheel, wood interior trim and center console and metal-finished shifter. The $2,000 Technology Package adds a navigation system with back-up camera and eight-speaker Infinity premium audio system.

In addition to high praise from much of the motoring press, Optima has earned the highest possible crash safety rating in all four tests by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety and has been recognized as a “Top Safety Pick,” the top award handed down by the organization.

Like its South Korean parent Hyundai, Kia trumps all competitors with its warranty covering the Optima bumper-to-bumper for five years or 60,000 miles and for a decade or 100,000 miles on the power train. Roadside assistance is also provided for five years or 60,000 miles.

WHAT’S NEW: All-new third generation, larger, more powerful.

PLUSES: Performance, fuel economy, standard features, warranty.

MINUSES: Snug backseat.

BOTTOM LINE: Powerful threat to midsize front-runners.

RALLY AUTO GROUP 866.906.9484

 

 

 

 

January 21, 2011 Posted by | av best kia, av chevy, av kia, palmdale kia | , , , , | Leave a comment