Saturday, January 26, 2013

The 2013 North American International Auto Show

My old friend Bryan Anderson was in town, so hauled him down to the auto show Friday evening because ... well, the list of entertainment options in Detroit in January is always a bit thin.

Thanks to a bit of snow and some gnarled rush-hour traffic on Friday evening we didn't actually get down to Cobo Hall until much later than we had expected to arrive. So we only had an hour and fifteen minutes before it closed up for the night. The auto show is huge, so really all we did was sprint around trying to check out as many fun cars as possible before we got thrown out. We tried to get a lot of photos of Bryan with race cars because his son likes car racing, so the whole thing sort of devolved into a sprint from race car to race car for a while. There wasn't a lot of sitting in cars, trucks got short shrift in favor of sports cars, and we didn't visit my alternative energy amigos down in the basement at all.  

Still, it was a lot of fun and we got a few cool photos, so here goes...

First, a quick stop with the Honda Indy car. We look really red in these pictures.

The only thing I wanted to look at for sure was the new 2014 Corvette Stingray that Chevrolet unveiled at this show. From the initial photos they released I didn't know if I'd like it much, but it really looked great in person. I liked it a lot more than I expected to, alas for my wallet at some date in the far-flung future.

I pretend to fiddle with the Corvette's aluminum frame. More interestingly, check out the new 2014 Covertte Stingray tacked up on the wall over my head.

2014 Corvette Stingray (with wall-gripping traction!)

Bryan and I plotting to buy new Corvettes.

Uh-oh, Monique caught us plotting.

2014 Corvette Stingray.

 Monique self-portrait in auto-show mirrored ceiling.

Bryan with Toyota race cars.

Bryan laughs as I mock him for buying the minivan so unhip that it occupies the farthest back corner of the entire auto show. (Actually, it looked like a pretty nice ride. But don't tell him I said that.)

So, this was cool. Toyota had a display that would take your picture and display it on this giant vehicle-like display.

Maserati trident.

Ferrari prancing pony.

The sweet Ferrari that comes with that prancing pony emblem.

Monique with a Porsche 911 Cabriolet.

 BMW Z4.

I try to teach Bryan how to be a proper Vanna White for the nifty BMW i8 hybrid sports concept car.

Bryan in a Smart car.

Smart concept car.

Mercedes SLS AMG.

Monique checks out the Mercedes-Benz 250 SLK. She allowed as how it might not look terrible in our driveway.

This Bentley may have a 628 hp engine and a top speed of a bazillion mph, but it doesn't have two little tea trays that fold-down from the back of the front seats. There's just a single tray between the two back-seat passengers. Does this mean I have to share my Grey Poupon with my fellow back-seat passenger? I give it an epic fail. For $328,000 I don't want to have to share my tea tray, damn it.

The new Jaguar F-Type. Not sure why, but I didn't like the look as much as I expected to, sort of the opposite of the new Corvette. I should probably test drive it and the new Corvette a few dozen times apiece to figure out where I really stand on each.

Bryan with the Cadillac race car.

Ford Mustang EcoBoost race car.

I was truly impressed with the retro look of this brand new Ford pickup truck. It really looks like something from the 1950s.

This sort of wreckage is undoubtedly the result of a terrible accident while they were setting up the displays. You'd think they'd tip it back on all four wheels and tow it off, but I reckon they must not have gotten around to it yet.

Monique and Bryan checking out the Red Bull Formula One race car.

Acura NSX concept car.

And let's see ... what else is there to say? Not much, really. Monique noticed that Lincoln had some sort of flower scent working in their display area. Which was nice I guess, but we thought the cars they had to show looked kind of bland.  I didn't get to check out the Jeeps or Dodges, which was too bad, but them's the breaks when you're running around like mad. I regret not getting down to the basement because there are usually truly interesting new technologies kicking around down there. And I wish I'd had a bit more time to look in depth at a few cars that really interested me.

But all-in-all for a 75-minute tour of the auto show we saw a lot more than I expected to see. Definitely a great diversion on a snowy Friday night in Detroit.


  1. Nice summary of our trip, my dear. My favorite parts of this year's visit were the concept cars. I guess they're usually my favorite part.

  2. I feel as if I was there. Smart car looks cool. I am more of a Ferrari. I go fast and am a sweet ride, but as a result I need high performance maintenance to keep the equipment up to speed. PJ

  3. Kudos to the photographer! She captured the enthusiasm of her subjects to the admired objects perfectly. The Smart Car may, however, not be a smart choice for either of her subjects, I believe.