The Chicago Auto Show has come and gone, but I didn’t want to let February slip by without opinionating a bit on the show. These are a few of my car-show notes.
First staged in 1901, the Chicago Auto Show is the largest auto show in North America and has been held more times than any other auto exposition on the continent.
At this year’s show, over 1,000 different vehicles were on display. There were domestic and imported passenger cars and trucks, sport utility vehicles, and experimental or concept cars.
One of the best things about the Chicago Auto Show is experiencing the new cars from both the inside and the outside. While a test-drive is out of the question, just sitting in them can tell you a lot about the car. For example, when I sat in the Mitsu EVO, an Asian import, the Recaro sport seats were confining and uncomfortable, and the automated manual transmission felt really awkward and clunky.
Mercedes brought a number of their cars to the show but were only willing to let you sit in there lower priced E-Class cars—a $50,000 car. On the other hand, Maserati invited everyone to sit in their cars, including the priciest—a $126,000 model. I guess the Italians just aren’t as uptight about their cars as the Germans.
Walt’s Chrysler 300 SRT from Breaking Bad was at the show, which was cool. It’s a great car, and I really enjoyed the television series.
A modern take on the ‘67 Stingray was on display. It is a beautiful, fast car. And it would look good in our garage.
A beastly car named the Tanner Foust Will Rockstar Rallycross Beetle made an appearance at the show. How can a Beetle be fearsome, you ask? Because this one has more than 560 horsepower from its turbocharged and direct-injected TSI engine. Trust me, no one will be making flower vase jokes about it.
The 2015 Subaru WRX STI has gotten uglier, heavier, and slower. Of course, that’s just my opinion; most people are just calling it boring.
There was a contest to win $45,000 toward your dream car, which I happily entered. But the woman taking the entries dashed my dreams when she told me that even if I won the $45,000, I still wouldn’t be able to afford my dream car. Thank you for sharing.
One of the perks this year’s Audi show offered was the Audi lounge, where we went to drink coffee, munch cookies, and recline on comfy couches and chairs. The price of admittance was my Audi key. I only hope that when I trade up to my Maserati, they’ll show the same level of hospitality. Lasagna, garlic bread, wine, and a dish of spumoni would be nice. In any case, it sure beats pricey, tasteless concession stand food. All in all, it was a good year at the auto show, and in my opinion, there should be a number of good foreign cars to choose from in 2015.
In other news, I’m closing in on the final preparations for my senior project. One week from Friday, I will take the stage alongside the June Bug and present the story of American car culture.
I’ll be back over the weekend to continue our series on car culture. The next class of cars I will tell you about are the bad boy of automobiles.
Thanks for going along for the ride!
C7 Corvette Stringray
SLS AMG Black
57 Stringray Modern Corvette Hybrid
Boss 302 Mustang
Subaru WRX STI