Its that time of year. I lose my mind and go car crazy all over the web, its time for the L.A Auto Show!
It opens this Friday, November 22 and runs through Sunday December 1st. Its really a big deal show and its been fun watching it morph into one of the big deal shows on the international circuit. I dare say, I think its even nicer than Detroit which was the biggest in the country for decades. “Was” as the past tense simply because they don’t have hall dedicated to aftermarket and tuners like we do here in L.A.
The show this year is being changed up a bit in terms of layout. Bentley moves to the south hall, GM spreads its brands more in the center of the South Hall. For a complete list of the brands and where to find them check this MAP. Conspicuous by their absence is the exotics (Ferrari, Lambo) or high zoot (Rolls and Bugatti). But then again we are billed as the “Green Car” show and do award the “Green Car” of the year here so I guess I can’t complain too much.
As always, I will be there for Press Days. Press Days this year were expanded to include an additional day for the “Connected Car Expo” which unfortunately I can’t attend. I will however be there for the two main days, Wednesday and Thursday. Thursday is always my favorite day…manufacturers have their best foot forward “green cars” available to drive review. I even have been allotted a few minutes by the good folks at BMW, a few minutes with Oliver Walter, project manager for their “i” program after I drive their new all electric i3. Any questions you want me to ask him?
This years show, building on the successes of the last few years, has really gotten the attention of the manufacturers and they now use it as a way to show case their newest concepts and premiere new models. This year there will be 22 World Premieres at the L.A. Auto Show with 4 of them alone coming from Mercedes Benz. All told there will be a 56 model reveals during the 2 days of the Press Days. That’s a lot of very short, fast and furious press conferences for us all to soak in.
Feel like splurging, donating to a good cause and having a very intimate, well feed and boozed version of the L.A Auto Show do check out Sneak Preview. The proceeds go to benefit CASA, Court Appointed Special Advocates, which is an advocacy group for battered and abused children. Your ticket is tax deductible and if you have the money to spare consider this option. My wife and I went a few years ago and had a wonderful time. Great food and booze along with the ability to meet and schmooze with the manufacturers dignitaries in a much more relaxed and festive format.
I’ve found that being there early in the morning weekdays is the best way to take in the Auto Show during public days. Weekends it can get so crowded in the afternoons that you barely move let alone take pictures of anything that catches your attention. Finally, though kids under 5 are free admission, I’d skip bringing them as there is a) little for them to do and b) maneuvering a stroller in a crowd is absolutely no fun. All you could want to know about the L.A. Auto Show can be found on their WEB HERE.
My final bit of advice? Skip the ticket purchase queue, and its a really long one, and purchase your tickets online!
I’ll have a set on flickr dedicated to just this years auto show. You can look at prior L.A. Auto Shows from the previous years I was there for press days in my flickr sets for 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011 and 2012.