Since its inception in 1907, the Los Angeles Auto Show has grown from 99 cars inside a skating rink into a major international event showcasing 1,000 of the newest vehicles from manufacturers. A record 35 vehicles will make their World or North American debut on press days Nov. 29 and 30, the most ever in the 100-year history of the show. And of that number, 21 are World debuts, with seven being concept cars. When the show opens to the public Dec. 1-10 at the Los Angeles Convention Center, it will be the first major show of the North American season.
The show is being held one month earlier than in previous years to avoid perennially conflicting with the Detroit auto show. This enables automakers to stage more debuts and to increase their participation, thereby elevating the importance of the LA show within the automobile industry, particularly to journalists, and provide consumers with a better overall experience.
"This will be the best LA Auto Show ever," states Andy Fuzesi, general manager of the LA Auto Show. "This is a new beginning with our new dates and increased commitment from manufacturers and everyone is anticipating even better things in the future."
Cutting-edge design has been a growing emphasis at the LA Auto Show and with 15 manufacturer design studios, the LA region is a world design center. This year a record seven concept vehicles will make their World debut at the show. Four of them — Acura, Honda , Hyundai and Mazda — were designed by their LA-based advanced design studios. In addition to these four, exciting concepts from Ford, Volkswagen and a second one from Honda, are all expected to be forward-thinking expressions of new design directions for their brands.
The show presents a broad variety of production makes and models from 47 manufacturers. Visitors can view everything from subcompacts to full-size cars, pickups to crossovers and sports cars to minivans. There’s something to suit every need, dream and budget.
Two- and four-door passenger cars come in such a diversity of designs, features and technological advances, that narrowing the choice to just one is difficult. The Lexus 460L is so advanced that it parallel parks itself while the Chrysler Sebring has a multimedia hard drive capable of storing music, movies and photos. Volvo tosses tradition aside and comes to Los Angeles with its nimble new C30 three-door hatchback.
Sporty, edgy and powerful are the mantra of many automakers. And this being LA, there is no shortage of sports cars making their debut, like the new Audi R8 premium performance coupe and the stylish and sophisticated V8 Vantage roadster from Aston Martin. For the truly exotic, there are the powerful Ferrari 599, lightweight Lotus Exige S and the new Murcielago LP640 Roadster from Lamborghini.
Individuals searching for vehicles with more space will discover the range of SUVs, pickups and crossovers to their liking. BMW unveils its redesigned luxurious X5, Buick enters the luxury crossover category with the all-new Enclave and Ford introduces its completely redesigned Escape. From across the pond, Land Rover rolls out its rugged LR2 SUV that strikes a balance between luxury and off-road capability.
Hybrids continue to grow in popularity and the technology is increasingly being adapted into full-size vehicles to help lower emissions while increasing fuel efficiency. For example, General Motors will introduce the GMC Yukon Hybrid and Ford weighs in with a hybrid version of its Escape. Alternative fuels such as hydrogen and ethanol are also gaining momentum. BMW is one such company at the fore of hydrogen technology and will debut its Hydrogen 7 at the show.
The LA Auto Show is an excellent opportunity for consumers to see the newest automotive accessories and customizing trends. Everything from custom wheels, tires and performance products to the latest mobile audio and entertainment systems can be found in Kentia Hall.