For Nicholas Newell, it was love at first shift. As a mischievous 4-year-old, he snatched the keys to his mother's car, popped the vehicle into reverse, and started to back out of the driveway. Luckily, Nicholas's mom stopped him before he made it to the street, but his life had already changed—Nicholas had fallen in love with automobiles. As years passed, he spent afternoons washing the family Jeep, until he was finally old enough to purchase his own car: a 1984 Ford Bronco II. He worked tirelessly to maintain the car's clear coat, and along the way, he became an expert auto detailer. It seemed inevitable that he would one day either open his own detailing shop or found a republic where cars have a voice in congress.
At E46 Detailing, Nicholas and his team maintain the interiors and exteriors of most any type of vehicle, from European imports to American muscle cars. They can hand wash paint jobs, treat leather, dress tires, vacuum floors, and perform anything else needed to keep cars looking their best. In addition to these services, the auto enthusiasts also host a monthly European auto club.
Authorized as extended-warranty repair centers, Lloyd's Automotive populates its three full-service, AAA-approved garages with ASE-certified technicians. Mechanics walk cars through full-spectrum maintenance services, from routine oil changes and battery servicing to full engine overhauls and decoding cryptic vanity plates. Ensuring no driver is left stranded, Lloyd's delivers customers to and from work in a convenience shuttle and attends to roadside breakdowns with available rescue towing. The garages’ doors also stay open during convenient Saturday hours.
A 30-year veteran of the auto-care industry, Dave Lee of Specialty Auto and Tire knows cars. Lee is an expert in caring for diesel vehicles and motor homes, and cares for cars with scheduled maintenance, tune-ups, system flushes, and electrical and full diagnostics. His fellow mechanics adjust alignments and care for breaks and transmissions, often with same-day turnaround, allowing customers to return to the Bat Cave before nightfall. The auto shop's technicians meet or beat almost any estimate, and offer a one-year or 12,000-mile parts-and-labor warranty.
The technicians at Custom Truck transform stock trucks and SUVs into roving extensions of drivers' personalities. The team has been in the build-out business since 1971, which not only adds up to a lot of experience, but also means it has developed relationships with a sizable lineup of vendors—more than 125 in all. The extensive product list allows nearly any part of a vehicle to be swapped out for another model, from floor mats and seat covers to grilles and suspension systems.
Clark's Tire & Automotive is run by husband-and-wife team Chris and Erin Clark, along with their crew of ASE-certified mechanics. Not surprisingly, tires are one of the garage's specialties, and techs can install new ones from a selection of brands including Goodyear, Hankook, and Firestone. Additionally, mechanics can tackle all manner of automotive ailment, from oil changes and brake repairs to alignments.