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The Detroit Auto Show Has Run Out of Gas

 
Old 01-12-19, 09:05 AM
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LexsCTJill
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Default The Detroit Auto Show Has Run Out of Gas

In its 30th anniversary, the most exciting debut is a reissue of a Japanese sports car.

The North American International Auto Show in Detroit will be noticeably light on exciting debuts this year as automakers chase customers elsewhere. While Ford, GM, and Toyota will show new vehicles, Audi, BMW, Mercedes, Porsche, and Jaguar Land Rover, along with such higher-end brands as Ferrari, McLaren, and Lamborghini, are skipping it altogether.

“Manufacturers are trying to do launches away from the trade shows so they can control the narrative and the coverage,” says Matt DeLorenzo, the senior managing editor for Kelley Blue Book. “The more futuristic and best stuff will be done at venues like CES or Pebble Beach or the Festival of Speed.”

The lack of competition on the show floor leaves plenty of room for the debuts that are there to shine during the last year the Detroit show will be held in winter. Starting in 2020, it’ll be held in June.

Crowds will likely flock to the Toyota display, where executives will pull the cover off the company’s new Supra, a car petrolheads have been clamoring for since the last model left Japanese assembly lines in 2002. It won’t be autonomous, electric, or worth a damn on a suburban shopping trip. It probably won’t even have all-wheel drive.

But the Supra will be a sports car with a capital S: a coupe with 50-50 weight distribution, a straight-six cylinder engine, an integrated spoiler, and more than 300 horsepower. It’s a risky machine to introduce in today’s market, but Toyota hedged its exposure by splitting the production bill with BMW. The drive will likely be similar to BMW’s Z4. The design, not so much.

A commercial introducing the coupe was leaked Friday in a tweet that was since taken down. The updated version looks remarkably like the previous kind, with a small rounded body, a small lip on the rear hatch, and a low front splitter. It also looks slightly longer than the previous generation, even as lean as the old Toyota 2000GT, which was the forerunner to the car.

Not to be outdone, Ford will debut the new Shelby GT 500, featuring a supercharged V8 the company says will make it the most powerful production car ever. Expect the new engine to produce roughly 700 horsepower; a manual version is not expected.

The North American International Auto Show in Detroit will be noticeably light on exciting debuts this year as automakers chase customers elsewhere. While Ford, GM, and Toyota will show new vehicles, Audi, BMW, Mercedes, Porsche, and Jaguar Land Rover, along with such higher-end brands as Ferrari, McLaren, and Lamborghini, are skipping it altogether.

“Manufacturers are trying to do launches away from the trade shows so they can control the narrative and the coverage,” says Matt DeLorenzo, the senior managing editor for Kelley Blue Book. “The more futuristic and best stuff will be done at venues like CES or Pebble Beach or the Festival of Speed.”

The lack of competition on the show floor leaves plenty of room for the debuts that are there to shine during the last year the Detroit show will be held in winter. Starting in 2020, it’ll be held in June.

Crowds will likely flock to the Toyota display, where executives will pull the cover off the company’s new Supra, a car petrolheads have been clamoring for since the last model left Japanese assembly lines in 2002. It won’t be autonomous, electric, or worth a damn on a suburban shopping trip. It probably won’t even have all-wheel drive.

But the Supra will be a sports car with a capital S: a coupe with 50-50 weight distribution, a straight-six cylinder engine, an integrated spoiler, and more than 300 horsepower. It’s a risky machine to introduce in today’s market, but Toyota hedged its exposure by splitting the production bill with BMW. The drive will likely be similar to BMW’s Z4. The design, not so much.

A commercial introducing the coupe was leaked Friday in a tweet that was since taken down. The updated version looks remarkably like the previous kind, with a small rounded body, a small lip on the rear hatch, and a low front splitter. It also looks slightly longer than the previous generation, even as lean as the old Toyota 2000GT, which was the forerunner to the car.

Not to be outdone, Ford will debut the new Shelby GT 500, featuring a supercharged V8 the company says will make it the most powerful production car ever. Expect the new engine to produce roughly 700 horsepower; a manual version is not expected.

The Lexus RC F 10th Anniversary Edition was revealed last year; its successor will debut at Detroit.
Source: LexusLexus will introduce a high-performance limited edition of its RC F. The 2020 RC F Track Edition will make more power from its V8 than the 467 horsepower produced by the current version, likely making it the most powerful Lexus, other than the brand’s LFA halo car.

Want a proxy on whether driving still matters? Look at the crowds around these stands when the public shows up.

“Certainly there are still vehicles that prioritize fun driving,” says Stephanie Brinley, the principal automotive analyst for the analysis firm IHS Markit. “I don’t think that’s really going away. Driving is still relevant. But it’s also true that customers have shifted, and they prefer utility vehicles.”

Indeed, everyone else, it seems, is going big.

Kia will reveal the Telluride, an all-new rig that will sit atop the brand’s SUV food-chain (three rows of seats, charging ports everywhere one looks). The concept version displayed at the same show in 2016 was a hit. Resplendent in a rich, bronzy green, it found a design sweet spot between boxy and round, on which many SUV manufacturers have only recently been landing. (See: BMW, Volvo).

Unfortunately, in the path from concept to production, Kia ditched the suicide doors and moved the fascia from Jaguar territory to Jeep. The brand already has a supersized utility in its Sorento—which, allegedly, is sticking around—so expect something more rugged, handsome, and expensive in the Telluride.

Ford is also rolling up in its new Explorer, an SUV that’s fast closing in on its 30th birthday. The company couldn't wait to talk about this rig's new tech and terrain chops, and it shared all the details (including photos) this week.

Ram rebooted its everyman pickup a year ago; along with that comes the heavy duty version now on view. The brand’s playbook in the truck wars of late has been simple: lots of towing power under the hood and lots of amenities in the cockpit. Now that the weekend warrior market is starting to wane, the heavy truck segment is more critical than ever. Buyers are mostly commercial outfits and high-end tradesmen looking for a big write-off at tax-time. If Fiat-Chrysler rolls out a competitive machine, it will be towing a tidy pile of profit.

From the luxury side, Cadillac will show the XT6 SUV, a three-row crossover. A first for Cadillac, it’s expected to be bigger than the compact XT4 but smaller than the gargantuan Escalade.

Infiniti will show an electric crossover concept, one of the few electrified vehicles to show its face this year in the Motor City.

“The show—and most shows—reflect the here and now, and the here and now is trucks, to be quite frank,” Delorenzo said. “Show organizers are going to try to put on their best face for all of this, but the main story here is trucks.”

There may be a few surprises, if luck holds: a new Ford Bronco and a new Chevrolet Corvette C8. Reportedly based on the 2019 Ford Ranger truck, the 2020 Bronco would be a modern take on the lines of the original that were popular in the 1970s and ’80s. The C8 would debut a new engine placement set in the middle of the car rather than in front, the common configuration for supercars such as Ferrari and McLaren. Ford has denied the Bronco will be there, and Chevy has declined to comment at all. They may not be ready in time for the event.

But with so few other things happening in Detroit, this could be the perfect place to swoop in and steal the show.

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/artic...elby-dodge-ram
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Old 01-12-19, 09:09 AM
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"Audi, BMW, Mercedes, Porsche, and Jaguar Land Rover, along with such higher-end brands as Ferrari, McLaren, and Lamborghini, are skipping it altogether"

Pretty scary that the above brands were a no show.
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Old 01-12-19, 10:11 AM
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Originally Posted by LexsCTJill View Post
...
Crowds will likely flock to the Toyota display, where executives will pull the cover off the company’s new Supra, a car petrolheads have been clamoring for since the last model left Japanese assembly lines in 2002.

[snip]

Crowds will likely flock to the Toyota display, where executives will pull the cover off the company’s new Supra, a car petrolheads have been clamoring for since the last model left Japanese assembly lines in 2002.
great editing.

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Old 01-12-19, 10:12 AM
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Originally Posted by LexsCTJill View Post
Pretty scary that the above brands were a no show.
why scary, they're just launching products in other ways with much more impact.
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Old 01-12-19, 11:23 AM
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The D.C. Auto Show is also shifting gears on the calendar.....this year, it will be in early April.

IMO, the reason the Detroit Show is no longer the introduction-showcase it once was (we're seeing more intros in L.A., now, a little earlier), is that much of the the industry itself has moved out of Detroit, either to Southern states with cheaper labor or overseas. Mary Barra's decision to close down the Hamtramck plant (among others), not to mention Ford's closings, just takes that much more of the industry out of the Detroit area. In addition, the city itself, though showing some recent signs of improvement, has become a blight-filled economic basket case. The last Mayor went to prison for corruption. If you want to look where the actual new vehicle-sales are (and where the money is made)..the Southern California region has an average of ten times the number of new-vehice-sales each year as Detroit, and the Washington/Baltimore area six times as many.
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Old 01-12-19, 02:07 PM
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I thought it was interesting how much presence carmakers had a CES...
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Old 01-12-19, 04:25 PM
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Originally Posted by SW17LS View Post
I thought it was interesting how much presence carmakers had a CES...
CES? Please Explain.
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Old 01-12-19, 07:54 PM
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Originally Posted by mmarshall View Post
CES? Please Explain.
CES is the Consumer Electronics Show. Its the big annual convention for consumer electronics in Las Vegas. Much bigger automotive participation than ever before.

https://www.ces.tech
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Old 01-16-19, 08:37 AM
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The European luxury brands definitely have chosen CES for the January timeframe, and I think it makes sense. Many of the auto shows are now more regional dealer association driven events, and with Detroit being such a captive market for the Detroit 3, automakers are just spreading money and time to where it might yield better returns. In the day of internet and pictures being blasted to Autoblogs of the world real time, OEMs can use international shows to try and gain favor in big, growing markets (lots of emphasis for brands in the Chinese shows in recent years for example).

Not sure if Detroit's shift to June will bring brands back, as they try to expand beyond just the Auto Show itself to tie in with events like the Belle Isle Grand Prix, etc. to make a whole month of auto/mobility related activities.
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Old 01-16-19, 11:20 AM
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Originally Posted by mmarshall View Post
IMO, the reason the Detroit Show is no longer the introduction-showcase it once was (we're seeing more intros in L.A., now, a little earlier), is that much of the the industry itself has moved out of Detroit, either to Southern states with cheaper labor or overseas. Mary Barra's decision to close down the Hamtramck plant (among others), not to mention Ford's closings, just takes that much more of the industry out of the Detroit area.
I don't know that I buy the idea that in-state manufacturing has anything at all to do with auto show attendance. Illinois has just two plants--a Ford plant in Chicago and Chrysler in Belvidere. A third (Mitsubishi) in Normal closed permanently 4 years ago. Illinois makes up just 3.8% of the total annual auto sales in the US, less than a third of California. And yet we have the largest (1.3 million square feet, 1,000+ vehicles), longest-running (founded in 1901, 111 shows), most heavily-attended (1M+ attendees) auto show in the entire country.
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Old 01-16-19, 11:41 AM
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Originally Posted by bitkahuna View Post
great editing.
Scotty approves!
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Old 01-16-19, 02:45 PM
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Originally Posted by geko29 View Post
I don't know that I buy the idea that in-state manufacturing has anything at all to do with auto show attendance. Illinois has just two plants--a Ford plant in Chicago and Chrysler in Belvidere. A third (Mitsubishi) in Normal closed permanently 4 years ago. Illinois makes up just 3.8% of the total annual auto sales in the US, less than a third of California. And yet we have the largest (1.3 million square feet, 1,000+ vehicles), longest-running (founded in 1901, 111 shows), most heavily-attended (1M+ attendees) auto show in the entire country.
What you say has merit, but it is not just a matter of plant-manufacturing in the Detroit area. Many corporate-HQ in the auto industry are not located there any more, either. Even among American nameplates, before they were discontinued, the old Lincoln-Mercury division had moved away to CA. And Toyota and Nissan actually both moved their American corporate HQ out of CA...Toyota going to Plano, TX, and Nissan to Franklin, TN.

One can argue, for a number of reasons, that the real center of the industry, today, is in California, despite the sky-high costs of doing business there. Los Angeles clearly leads in sales (with several runners-up for second-place, including D.C. and Atlanta), and much of the technology, particularly for hybrids and EVs, is coming out of Silicon Valley.

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Old 01-16-19, 03:15 PM
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Originally Posted by geko29 View Post
I don't know that I buy the idea that in-state manufacturing has anything at all to do with auto show attendance. Illinois has just two plants--a Ford plant in Chicago and Chrysler in Belvidere. A third (Mitsubishi) in Normal closed permanently 4 years ago. Illinois makes up just 3.8% of the total annual auto sales in the US, less than a third of California. And yet we have the largest (1.3 million square feet, 1,000+ vehicles), longest-running (founded in 1901, 111 shows), most heavily-attended (1M+ attendees) auto show in the entire country.
It would be interesting to know what percent of the states total new car sales come from the Chicago metro area. I've never seen those numbers. 40%-50%?

The Chicago Auto Show is a great way to spend a cold February day, but as mentioned in another thread it seems like the days of auto shows as we know them are changing.
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Old 01-16-19, 04:07 PM
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Originally Posted by LexBob2 View Post
It would be interesting to know what percent of the states total new car sales come from the Chicago metro area. I've never seen those numbers. 40%-50%?

The Chicago Auto Show is a great way to spend a cold February day, but as mentioned in another thread it seems like the days of auto shows as we know them are changing.
The idea is probably to get warmer conditions. I can remember, some time back (though I don't remember which exact year) in January, on opening day of the Detroit Show, when it was eighteen degrees below zero, 20 inches of snow on the ground, and a wind blowing. I'm glad I wasn't there. It can get cold enough in D.C. (and our own show is moving to warmer weather, too)....but that day, in Detroit, was sheer nonsense.
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Old 01-19-19, 07:32 AM
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Well, this might be the coolest part of the show:

https://www.cnet.com/roadshow/news/c...oit-auto-show/

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