Q: I've been wanting to trade in my Chrysler Sebring for a roomy sedan. I've noticed that the 300 is on sale at unusually reduced prices. I am concerned that Chrysler may be stopping production of the 300. What would that mean for me as a buyer? Same question for the Taurus. Ford just announced that they are stopping production. Should I look elsewhere?
E.K., Downers Grove, Ill.
A: It appears that the motoring public's appetite is shifting away from sedans and over to crossover vehicles. Yes, the Ford Taurus is going away, but the Chrysler 300 is still alive. But don't expect a 707-horsepower Hellcat version. Carmakers will honor their new car warranties and make sure replacement parts are available for about seven years or so.
Q: I own a BMW X4 and need to replace the run-flat tires soon. I have been reading online that they can be replaced with conventional tires but also found some confusing information. What would I lose if I go with conventional? Do I need to be concerned about the place I go to have the conventional tires installed? I do recognize I will not have a spare tire if I go the conventional route.
M.C., Ambler, Pa.
A: You may certainly replace run-flat tires with conventional ones. But, as you noted, many vehicles equipped with run-flat tires from the factory do not come with a spare. Although some people opt for a full-size spare or a space saver spare, the simplest option is to carry a kit containing a tire sealer and compressor similar to what many new cars now have. Before you lay down your money, make sure the shop has the equipment to remove those run-flats.
Q: We have a 2014 Honda Accord Touring. It has approximately 13,500 miles on it, primarily from city driving. Recently we had the car into our dealer for an A1 service code. At that time the service representative told us that we were past the three-year Honda recommended brake fluid flush. I declined the service, wanting to do a little more research. I found that Honda does recommend three-year intervals but other manufacturers are all over the place, from two to five years. We would appreciate your opinion.
A: We have stated it at least a thousand times: Follow the carmakers' maintenance schedules. They have your best interest (and theirs for repeat sales) in mind. Sure, you could extend the brake fluid flush if you have it tested regularly, but should something fail, your warranty may not be honored. If your car does not have a specified brake fluid maintenance schedule, have the fluid tested annually.
Q: In a recent column you suggested replacing both headlamps when one burns out. Years ago I had a headlamp burn out and the replacement bulb package had a suggestion to replace both. I thought it was a marketing tool to double sales. Sure enough, a week later the second bulb burned out.
B.P., Tinley Park, Ill.
A: See? It is a bright idea.
Bob Weber is a writer, mechanic and Master Auto Technician.