L.A. Auto Show Features Clean, Green Transportation And Exotic Concept Cars
The L.A. Auto Show features more than 1,000 makes and models of imported and domestic cars, including several World and North American debuts, alternative fuel/electric vehicles, concepts and race cars.
The family-friendly show, held at the Convention Center in downtown Los Angeles, is open to the public now through Dec. 1.
In previous years the L.A. Auto Show was a dazzling display of cars stacked high on the Convention Center floor, Jeeps climbing man-made mountains and soothing waterfalls.
All of that glitz and glamour has given way to a display that offers as its most interesting visual the difference in carpet used throughout the exhibit halls.
This year’s L.A. Auto Show is about being green and clean. On first glance the West and South Halls of the Convention Center look about as exciting as a giant auto mall.
However, for the auto enthusiast there is still plenty to get the pulse racing and the heart pounding.
For those wanting to view the “latest and greatest” there are more than 50 debuts on display, including the Porsche Macan, Nissan Nismo Juke RS and Nismo concept and the 4 Series Coupe, i8, i3, 5 Series Sedan and 5 Series Gran Turismo from BMW, among many, many others.
Here are a few “Don’t Miss This!” moments from the 2013 L.A. Auto Show:
Mercedes: First, check out the Vision Gran Turismo super sports car, with its wild and fluid lines and extreme proportions. It is pure fantasy, designed for the PlayStation racing game Gran Turismo 6. It is a truly striking sports car that features gullwing doors and a front grille modeled on the classic Mercedes-Benz 300SL, the winner of the Carrera Panamericana in 1952. If you love beautiful cars this is the one.
Next look for another beauty in the Mercedes display, the S550. Tricked out with neat little tables and heated and cooled cup holders accessible by rear seat passengers and rear seat foot rests this is elegant luxury at its best. With a MSRP of $95,000, all of this luxury does come at a price.
Honda concept: Honda unveiled a hydrogen fuel-cell futuristic concept car at the L.A. Auto Show with a sweeping, aerodynamic car design that is unlikely to make it to dealer showrooms in its current form. “The Honda FCEV Concept hints at Honda’s future direction for fuel-cell vehicles,” said Tetsuo Iwamura, president and CEO of American Honda Motor Co. “While this car is a concept, it points toward a very real future.”
Porsche 918 Spyder: This car, priced at nearly $1 million is pure sex appeal. It is a super sports car for the next decade with a highly efficient and powerful hybrid drive. By the numbers: 608 hp at 8,600/min (V8 engine); 154 hp (hybrid module on rear axle); 127 hp (electric motor on front axle) and 887 hp (combined). While the car will only travel 18 miles on purely electric power, the combustion engine allows the vehicle to roam much farther afield, and quickly, too. By the numbers: Top speed: 211 mph; purely electric: 93 mph. Acceleration: 0-62 mph 2.8 seconds; 0-60 mph less than 2.8 seconds; 0-62 mph (in electric mode) 7 seconds. It is a car that is truly just lovely to look at.
Aston Martin: Every year, Neiman Marcus teams up with an automaker to offer a limited edition version of a highly desirable car, this year it's Aston Martin’s turn, with a $344,500 Vanquish Volante. The car features a Seychelles Blue paint job, black leather interior with blue accents, matching blue accents throughout the cabin and a four-piece set of custom luggage. It is one gorgeous convertible. However, for my money, I’ll take the Aston Martin Rapide.
SRT Viper GTS Anodized Carbon Special Edition: Oh yes, the 2014 Viper is one sexy sports car. However, the SRT has a unique, metallic matte paint job with the Anodized Carbon Special Edition Package. In addition to the paint the package includes: Black Vapor Chrome wheels, black GTS badge, black exhaust bezel, Anodized Carbon fuel filler door, orange brake calipers, carbon fiber brake ducts and a special rear badge.
Maserati Ghibli: Priced at $65,600 for the base, running to $75,700 for the all-wheel-drive QS4 version, this is a car that competes very nicely with the BMW 5-Series and Mercedes-Benz E-Class. The sedan is equipped with a turbocharged 345-horsepower, 3-liter V-6 twin-turbo gasoline engine that will travel from zero to 60 mph in 5.5 seconds. If you want more power, seek out the Ghibli S, with 404 horsepower. The all-wheel-drive version goes from zero to 60 mph in 4.7 seconds and has a top speed of 175 mph.
Smart: For pure “whimsy” the Smart car wins hands down. From the concept “bicycle” to a flight of car fancy sporting “wings,” don’t miss the Smart cars tucked behind the Mercedes display in the South Hall.
Don’t miss the Barrett-Jackson display alongside Concourse Hall. Barrett-Jackson, “The World’s Greatest Collector Car Auctions,” has on display some of the most unique vehicles you’ll ever see, including the 1963 Asteroid Corvette that was customized by George Barris for use as a drag racer and show car. It will go on sale in January at the Barrett-Jackson auction in Scottsdale.
Also, check out the winners of the Motor Press Guild, the largest automotive media association in North America, 2013 Innovation Vehicle of the Year Award, the 2013 Mazda Mazda3 winning the under $29,000 class and 2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray taking the accolade for the $29,000 and over category.
The Green Car of the Year was awarded to the Honda Accord by the Green Car Journal.
Make sure to stop by the Aftermarket Hall, it’s always fun to see what what’s new on the market to spruce up your old set of “wheels.”
The L.A. Auto Show is open Thanksgiving, Nov. 28: 9 a.m. – 8 p.m.; Friday, Nov. 29: 9 a.m. – 10 p.m.; Saturday, Nov. 30: 9am – 10pm; Sunday, Dec. 1: 9 a.m. – 8 p.m.
Tickets: Weekday admission (Monday-Thursday) ages 13 and up: $10; weekend admission (Friday-Saturday) ages 13 and up: $12. Child admission ages 6-12: $6, children 5 and under are free when accompanied by an adult; seniors ages 65 and up: $8 – available at the cash box office (weekdays only).
Los Angeles Convention Center, 1201 S. Figueroa St., Los Angeles, CA 90015. For more information and to purchase tickets online visit www.lautoshow.com.
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