Chicago Auto Show Notes 2014

Filed in Car Culture by on February 28, 2014 7 Comments

Tanner Foust Rally Bug  Tanner Foust Will Rockstar Rallycross Beetle

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!





CT Corvette Stingray

C7 Corvette Stringray




C63AMG Black

Toyota Supra

Toyota Supra

67 Stingray Modern Corvette Hybrid

57 Stringray Modern Corvette Hybrid

Boss 302 Mustang

Boss 302 Mustang

Subaru WRX STI

Subaru WRX STI

Comments (7)

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  1. Sue says:

    A++ on your Senior Project… thanks so much for sharing . You have worked so hard on this project and you are blessed to have such a supportive family and friends.. Best of luck to you.

  2. Liz says:

    Did you bring anything home with you? Like maybe a Stingray or Maserati? It sounds like you made the most of the show and the food offerings. Good for you. Concession food is so awful.
    It would be much longer before you will be celebrating your success now. Looking forward to the next update.

  3. Debbie says:

    When I sold advertising, I had a bunch of car dealers on my roster, and I LOVED going into the showrooms when the new models were on display! Not as BIG as the Chicago Auto Show, of course, but quite impressive nevertheless.

    Loved your description of the “snacks,” but I’d bet lasagna would satisfy more than cookies. Just sayin’.

    Thanks, too, for the pictures. I didn’t realize Toyota was making the Supra again — I had several Celicas and loved them!
    Debbie recently posted…Hurry up, Spring!My Profile

  4. Cole says:

    Lasagna would be awesome.
    Car showrooms are nice because they are smaller and not as crowded. It’s a great way to really get the feel for a car. The good thing about the auto show is that is all the new cars and the concept cars in one place. It’s really exciting if you love cars. The downside is trying to see them all.

  5. Cole says:

    Unfortunately no. I’ve always thought they should have last year model goodie bags.

  6. Cole says:

    Thanks for the encouragement. I’ve had so much support! Including yours. Today we experience a few set backs but we should be ready to go by Friday.

  7. irene says:

    I’ve always enjoyed the auto show here although I haven’t been in quite a few years. Still, the Audi lounge was a nice respite. I’m hoping the cookies were worth the steep admission! Let us know as you climb the car ladder what other automakers offer in their hideaways!
    Such a traditionalist…..give me a the true 67′ Vette.
    Eager to hear about your presentation. I know you’ll set the bar! Good luck!

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