Futuristic Solar Powered Automobiles Are Here

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Ford’s new solar powered concept car

Solar powered cars are here. Ford recently unveiled a new concept car that runs on solar energy. It’s called the C-MAX Solar Energi Concept and it’s quite possibly the car of the future. The C-MAX combines the best of hybrid technology with the latest innovations in solar energy to produce a vehicle that can run over 600 miles when fully charged.

The C-MAX offers many benefits. They include:

  • It draws energy directly from the sun
  • Never needs to be plugged in
  • Goes over 600 miles on a full charge
  • Uses a renewable power source
  • It gets an EPA estimated 100 MPGe
  • Can reduce the greenhouse gas emissions the average gasoline powered vehicle releases into the atmosphere by four metric tons each year
  • Tracks the sun and amplifies its power
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The C-MAX Solar Energi Concept car can run over 600 miles on a full charge

This innovative new vehicle is being developed by Ford with assistance from San Jose, California-based SunPower Corp. and Atlanta’s Georgia Institute of Technology. High-efficiency solar cells atop the C-MAX track the sun and a solar concentrator magnifies the energy captured from the sun’s rays up to 8 times as powerful. This produces about 4 hours’ worth of battery charge each day. This allows drivers to go miles off the electrical grid without fear of running out of energy. With a day’s worth of sunshine the C-MAX Solar Energi Concept performs just as well as Ford’s plug-in C-MAX Energi hybrid.
This Solar Energi Concept can also be charged at a charging station. This gives drivers another option when it comes to powering the vehicle. Even without that the vehicle can power 75% of trips the average driver of solar hybrid vehicle make.

We at Southwest Engines have to agree this is a great idea for saving energy.  With the C-MAX Solar Energy Concept Ford is leading the auto industry into the future.


2014: A New Attitude For The New Year

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Make 2014 a great year with these simple goals to focus on!

We at Southwest Engines owe a lot of our success to a good attitude. Optimism, trust and perseverance are perspectives rather than short term goals like many New Year’s resolutions. You can may need to practice these ideals more often than you want to admit but you will get more out of having them than you can imagine. Here are some simple ways to start.


Be Nice.

Maybe leave an extra large tip for a server or write a nice comment about a coworker. If a friend needs a loan or something from your toolbox, don’t hesitate to give. The happiest people are the ones who learn to enjoy giving and enjoy seeing happiness in others. It never hurts to have a few favors to call in either.


Be Honest.

Being truthful is a good personal and business philosophy. This does not mean simply not lying. It also means admitting the whole truth. Making excuses for bad choices will prevent you from learning from the experience. It makes life more complicated and stunts trust in others, if you cannot be honest with yourself.


Try Something New.

Find a new hobby or restart an old one. Join a dedicated group to help get more experience and make friends. New interests and new experiences give you many health benefits. These include lower blood pressure, maintaining a healthy weight and may reverse or prevent brain disorders like Alzheimer’s disease.


Keep Things Simple.

A friend wanted to be organized. They bought bins, shelves and every self-help book on organizing. The clutter is still a running joke. No matter your goals or needs try to keep them simple. A good rule of thumb for simplicity: if you cannot explain it or justify it to a six year old, rethink your plans.


Move Forward.

Forgive and forget. Abandon regret, fear, anger, revenge and anything that you do not love about your current perspective. It is not helping you to hold onto these so don’t.


We hope these ideas help you in the next year to become even more happy and successful.  Happy New Year!


Tips To Be More Happy – It’s the Gratitude Approach

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Gratitude Attitude


It’s not just a religious gesture anymore, now science has shown a link to expressing gratitude and feeling happy.  Undoubtedly this is due to the characteristics of gratitude lining up so closely with a sense of well-being, or feeling good.  And not only how they line up, but how feeling and expressing thankfulness can impact our health positively and our ability to handle difficulties.

So feeling truly thankful for not only gifts we’ve been given, but for life itself and all that we have and experience may have awesome long-term effects, but it certainly doesn’t come easy for everyone.  In fact, one study shows that men have a more difficult time getting a handle on gratitude.  Feeling burdened with gifts they may receive instead of accepting them as no-strings attached acts of love, is truly hard for some guys.

Here at Southwest Engines, we’ve found some ways we can all try today to show our gratitude more:


  • Smile.  It’s easy and it’s effective.  Smile at yourself driving in the car.  Smile at everyone you meet.  It’s the simplest gift you give those around you and it makes both of you feel good.


  • Appreciate People and Situations.  When anyone does something for you, say “thank you” and be specific with what they did.  Even little things are great to acknowledge.


  • Opening Praise.  We so easily throw out those sarcastic remarks to people, just to jab or get a laugh.  Try curbing your impulse to jab or critique and give a few words of praise instead.  See what happens in one day when you praise instead of critique!


  • Give Back.  Now that you are expressing thanks more, take the next step and try giving in return.  Give back to society by helping people around you in need, and helping in your community.  Look for those you can help every day.

Genuine gratitude requires a certain amount of vulnerability and emotional openness that can be quite awkward for some folks, and so it takes time to purposefully recognize all the things in life that we should not just take for granted.  Yet the benefits far outweigh the feelings of being uncomfortable at first.  Try increasing your gratitude and your happiness today, and see how it affects those around you.



How To Increase Your Cars Horsepower for Cheap

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Consider installing a high-flow air filter or an after market air intake


If you can afford to buy a Maserati Granturismo or 2014 Porsche Cayman sports car you won’t have too much concern about “horsepower” or that idiot in the next lane that lowers his car window and yells: “Hey sport! You wanna race?” On the other hand those more sensible car owners and drivers may wish to have a chat with the experts here at Southwest Engines for a more affordable and professional opinion about ways to increase horsepower in the vehicle they already own and drive; sounds like good advice, huh!


All that said we would like to present 5 ways for a person wanting to increase their horsepower and get the job done right the first time so they’ll be able to fool the next “clown” at a stop light who challenges you to a race saying: “You think that old clunker can beat this clunker, pal?” One fact about increasing horsepower in older vehicles is knowing whether it’s a V8 or V6; like a Lincoln Towncar. Most V8 engines will get a power boost from a true dual exhaust and an “H” pipe. Also keeping your car running smooth and in good shape can always boost power too. What we’re saying here is that no matter what kind of car you have, you can always add a little or a lot of horsepower increase, but eventually it will come down to time and money.


The folks here at Southwest Engines say that as a rule, you start with the components that are farthest from the engine and work your way inwards. For most cars you’ll start with the air intakes. So the cheapest and easiest ways to increase your cars horsepower boils down to this:


#1 – Clean all the junk out of your car reducing its weight
#2 – Clean out or pay someone to clean out the engine and air intake (may be a DIY job)
#3 – Go up “one” size in your spark plugs
#4 – Get MSD coil packs for your make and model vehicle
#5 – Install the following: A high-flow air filter or an after market air intake.


Install a “high-flow” converter or “turbo muffler” or both. Avoid getting the biggest since it may reduce performance. You might also consider removing the air silencer for more power and sound. Plus keeping your car running cool and well tuned can always boost your horsepower as well.