Preparing for Fall: Car Care Tips for the Changing Seasons


The kids are back in school, football is starting up and the temperature is slowly dropping. Fall is approaching and winter isn’t far behind. With the rapid change in weather, you need to make sure your vehicle can handle it. Check out these car care tips on how to prepare your vehicle for the upcoming seasons:

  •  Check Brakes and Tires

With the return of fall comes weather that demands more stopping power. The temperature is only going to be getting colder which means an increasing chance of roads becoming slick. Make sure to get your tires checked to see if there are any leaks and how much tread they still have. Tires with less tread will only make it harder to stop in slippery conditions. The same goes for worn down brakes. Stronger brakes will help increase your vehicle’s stopping power.

  •  Get an Oil Change

It is important to make sure that your car is running as near perfect as you can get it, especially when the cold weather hits. Driving your vehicle in the cold weather with old oil could cause the oil to sludge up. Getting a fresh oil change close to the start of fall will help decrease the chance of something going wrong mechanically in the bad weather.

  • Replace Your Wiper Blades

If it has been a while since you purchased a newer set of wiper blades for your vehicle and your current blades are starting to wear down, it’s time to upgrade. Windshield wipers are meant to clean off your windshield and with fall and winter approaching they will need to be good shape in order to do their job.

  • Check Your Lights

Make sure your headlights, brake lights, and hazard lights are all working properly. As fall and winter get closer, the days will start to get shorter. Fall and winter are seasons that come with limited visibility and making sure that all of the necessary lights on your vehicle operate correctly is important.

  •  Heater and Defroster

It’s no fun driving to work feeling like you’re trapped in a freezer. Besides the discomfort, it’s not safe to be driving around with a heater that doesn’t work, especially with the unpredictable Michigan weather. It is also important to have your defroster operating correctly because with the colder temperatures comes frost and fog, making it impossible to see through the windows of your vehicle.

  •  Emergency Kit

As a precaution, it would be a good idea to have an emergency kit with “gloves, boots, flares, a small shovel, sand or kitty litter, tire chains, a flashlight, and a cell phone.” An emergency kit is good to have just in case something unexpected happens while you’re out on the road.

For more tips and advice on preparing your vehicle for the upcoming weather changes, visit these websites:

Photo Credit:

Matthew Paulson

Todd Wenzel Automotive Celebrates 10 Years in West Michigan

Wow! Today we are celebrating 10 years as West Michigan’s premier General Motors dealer! When Todd Wenzel set his sights on moving back to Michigan in September of 2001, he purchased Todd Wenzel Pontiac GMC (formerly known as Orson E. Coe) on 28th Street.

This photo takes us back…do you remember when?

Three years later, in June 2004, Todd Wenzel purchased Todd Wenzel Chevrolet, in Hudsonville, from previous owner Serra Chevrolet.

We updated our Pontiac GMC facility in Novermber 2005, building a new customer lounge in the Service Department. And due to tremendous growth, we had the opportunity to add our Buick franchise in December of that year, which changed the store name to Todd Wenzel Buick Pontiac GMC.
In 2007 we expanded our Chevrolet store – adding a new Used Vehicle building and new state-of-the-art body shop. In June 2009, both Todd Wenzel Chevrolet and Todd Wenzel Buick GMC were selected as preferred dealers to represent the New GM. Also, in June 2009, came the announcement of the loss of Pontiac.

Finally, in 2010 we remodeled both of our dealerships to reflect the new GM, and provide you, our valued customers, with a environment that makes the purchase and maintenance of vehicles a more comfortable experience. This is how we look today…
We’ve come a long way in ten years, and are looking forward to the next ten. It has definitely been exciting and rewarding, and we owe it all to our talented staff and our wonderful customers! 

New 2012 Buick LaCrosse V-6 arriving soon!

The 2012 Buick LaCrosse is on its way to Todd Wenzel and is now available with a new, more powerful and fuel-efficient version of its direct-injected 3.6L V-6 engine! And, this engine is a no-additional-cost alternative to the standard 2.4L four-cylinder on select trim levels with eAssist.

The 3.6L V-6 with variable valve timing delivers a SAE-certified 303 horsepower (223 kW) on the front-wheel-drive LaCrosse – an increase of 23 hp (17 kW) – and 264 lb.-ft. (358 Nm) of torque.

The change engineers made were simply refinements to an already amazing vehicle. They used lighter-weight components and made enhancements to improve the luxury sedan’s performance with no loss in fuel efficiency (17 mpg city / 27 highway).

Are you a LaCrosse owner? If so, tell us why you love your LaCrosse. And if you haven’t driven one yet, visit us to experience the performance and luxury enhancements for yourself!

GMC’s Residual Value Performance Outpaces the Competition

Great news out of Detroit! The overall residual value of GMC vehicles – what a vehicle is worth after three years on the road – is outpacing the competition and reducing the total cost of ownership for GMC owners.

According to General Motors’ Residual Value Management’s performance report based on ALG’s 36-month data for July/August, the forecasted depreciation for GMC vehicles is lower than its competitors and lower than the same time a year ago.

The importance of the resale value of our GMC vehicles is crucial, as it can save you thousands of dollars over the life of your vehicle.  Vehicles like the Acadia, Terrain and Yukon offer great residual value.

2012 GMC Acadia SLT

GMC’s 2011 model year residual values beat its competitive set by 0.6 points and improved by 0.5 points over the brand’s 2010 average. The improvement is due in part to a strong performance by GMC’s smaller SUV and crossover models, Terrain and Acadia.

Acadia earned a 3.2-point improvement compared to the average of its competitors, including Toyota Highlander, Honda Pilot and Ford Flex. Terrain earned a 1.2-point lead over the average residuals for its competitive set, including Nissan Murano, Hyundai Santa Fe and Ford Edge.

2012 GMC Terrain SLT

GMC’s improved residual value performance has been acknowledged externally as well. Kelley Blue Book named the Acadia the best resale value in the full-size utility vehicle category for 2011.

In addition, GMC earned the top truck brand honor in Vincentric’s seventh annual “Best Value in America” awards, based on calculations of total cost of ownership relative to price within industry segments. Vincentric also recognized Sierra 2500HD as the top heavy duty three-quarter-ton pickup, beating such models as Ford Super Duty F-250 and Dodge Ram 2500.

In February, Yukon earned IntelliChoice’s “best value” pick among full-size SUVs, based on its analysis of ownership costs, including depreciation, maintenance, repairs, fuel, fees, financing and insurance.

If you’re driving a GMC product, tell us why you love your vehicle!

Storm Chasers Reed Timmer and Chris Chittick partner with Todd Wenzel GMC

We are excited to announce our partnership with Reed Timmer and Chris Chittick, of Discovery Channel’s popular series, Storm Chasers and founders of, as the research team’s official vehicle sponsor.

Todd Wenzel GMC provided the TVN team with a 2011 Yukon XL, which will soon become the “Dominator 2″ tornado-chasing and storm research vehicle. Timmer currently drives a modified 2008 Chevy Tahoe, best known as “The Dominator”.

Reed Timmer, Chris Chittick and the TVN team at Todd Wenzel GMC with their new 2011 Yukon XL

“We felt this partnership was a natural fit,” Todd Wenzel said. “Reed and Chris are from Grand Rapids, and they have had great success chasing extreme storms in a GM product. We are excited to be a local partner and keep them in another solid, dependable vehicle.”

Timmer and Chittick, together with their vehicle modification team, picked up the Yukon XL on February 3 at our Buick GMC facility in Grand Rapids.

Reed Timmer and Chris Chittick

Modifications to the vehicle are already underway, and include a state-of-the art armored shell to protect it, and passengers, from 100+ MPH winds and flying debris. In addition, they will attach various radars and probes to help them collect important data and insight into the destructive twisters they eagerly drive into.

The original "Dominator" is a 2008 Chevy Tahoe

We have special events planned throughout the year with the TVN team, including the unveiling of the new Dominator 2, so check back often for updates!

Networking Event at Todd Wenzel Buick GMC

We are hosting a Local First Networking Event tonight from 5-7 p.m. at Todd Wenzel Buick GMC on 28th Street. Join us for a tour of the beautifully remodeled facility and learn more about one of West Michigan’s most successful, locally owned dealerships. Enjoy complimentary refreshments and appetizers as you network with Local First members.

WHAT: Networking Event at Todd Wenzel Buick GMC

WHEN: Thursday, January 20, 5-7 p.m.

WHERE: Todd Wenzel Buick GMC | 2727 28th St. SE

This event is FREE and open to current and prospective Local First members. To RSVP, please contact Meghan Disselkoen at

Luxury buyers choose Buick Regal over imports

We can’t say enough good things about this vehicle! It is loaded with luxury features, but without the luxury price, (starts around $26,000).

2011 Buick Regal

Modern, aerodynamic lines

It’s definitely catching the eyes of our customers, as it is currently one of our best selling vehicles! Is it any wonder why?

Buick Regal Interior

Available Harman/Kardon premium sound system with standard USB port

The list of standard features goes on and on. From heated leather seating, bluetooth, rear park assist, not to mention all of the performance and safety features. In fact, it’s a top safety pick from Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.

Customers tell us the Regal “drives like a European sports car” and rave about it’s responsive handling. “Wow! I can’t believe this is a Buick!”, is what we hear most often. So we invite you to visit us (our Buick store is at 2727 28th Street) to test drive one and see for yourself! When you do, be sure to ask us about our exclusive Buick Platinum Program…