Showcasing the movers and shakers in La La Land

As we start to settle into a groove and make our way towards the end of 2016, the annual auto show circus is rolling into North America, starting with the Los Angeles Auto Show. Originally held in 1907, the LAAS is the first big stop for major makes touring across the U.S., followed by the Detroit Auto Show in January. LA is a fantastic venue for an event like this, as the Golden State consumes more than its fair share of automobiles, especially down south, where cities are strung together by a twisted web of freeways and surface streets brimming with four-wheeled machinery. The car rules supreme here, and the LAAS is a traditional showcase of all the latest and greatest.

This year, the event organizers are prefacing the major car model debuts with several days devoted to automotive tech and future talk, so stay tuned for new apps, cutting-edge gadgets, and big ideas before the sheet pulls.

Unfortunately, several top-shelf names will not be in attendance this year, such as Aston Martin, Bentley, Bugatti, Ferrari, Maserati, McLaren, and Rolls-Royce. Thankfully, over 1,000 cars are still expected to be on display, including more than 20 world debuts planned, plus an equal number of North American debuts.

Traditionally, the LAAS has set its focus on green cars (hybrids, electric, and alternative fuels), technology (connected systems, autonomous systems), and crossovers – the right combo for west coast auto culture. We’ve compiled the big reveals you need to know about right here, plus we’ve thrown in a quick reference guide for anyone planning on attending in person, so read on.

Updated 11/11/2016: We’ve added more debuts to our list. Check them out!

Continue reading to learn more about the 2016 L.A. Auto Show.

What, Where, And When

Things To Do

If you consider yourself an automotive enthusiast, you owe it to yourself to attend a major show like this one. The lights, the shiny new body panels, the excited chatter about specs and figures – it’s all pretty intoxicating.

Throughout the venue, you’ll find numerous large booths dedicated to individual manufacturers and their latest offerings. You’ll be able to get right next to the cars, take pictures, sit inside the cabin, and talk to manufacturer representatives.

If you’re thinking about buying a new car, the LA Auto Show is a fantastic place to start your research. Not only does it offer an early preview of what’s headed to dealerships, but you won’t have some salesman breathing down your neck as you browse. And with the number of brands in attendance, it’s easy to bounce between rival models.

Looking for some hands-on experience? Attendees can sign up for test drives with certain participating manufacturers, and even bring along passengers and kids if desired. Registration is on a first-come, first-served basis. Check this page for details.

And while you won’t be able to buy a car at the show, there will be plenty of opportunities to purchase manufacturer merchandise and even aftermarket accessories. Speaking of the aftermarket, make sure to check out the modified cars at “The Garage” and Galpin’s Hall of Customs, where a variety of bespoke rides will show off what can be done to make more flash and more fast.

If small and sustainable is more your thing, head over to the “GO” exhibits, which feature scooters, bikes, and other personal mobility solutions. Find more information here.

There are also tons of other car-related activities on hand for your auto-oriented enjoyment. For example, in years past, Pirelli has offered free stints in a F1 driving simulator, complete with pedals, a seat, and a wheel. Off-road excursions and intentional contact are allowed.

Finally, there will be a variety of places offering food and drinks, both inside the Convention Center and in the surrounding area. Anyone looking for something to do after the show will be happy with the plethora of bars and restaurants within walking distance, while the greater Los Angeles area is jam packed with fun things to do. You can find more visitor information on LA here.

For a full list of attending exhibitors, plus a map of the show floor, click here.

You can also connect through the LAAS social hub here, and gamify your experience through the free official app here.

The Venue And Transportation

As in years past, the 2016 L.A. Auto Show will be held at the Los Angeles Convention Center, which is located in downtown L.A. at 1201 South Figueroa Street, approximately 30 to 45 minutes from the Los Angeles International Airport (LAX).

There are a variety of hotels located within easy walking distance of the Convention Center. However, odds are you’ll want to rent a car to check out the rest that LA has to offer. If that’s the case, be forewarned – I lived in LA for over a decade, and every story you’ve heard about the driving experience in the city is true. But don’t fear – just stay on the defensive, and at the end of your trip, you’ll be able brag about how you survived LA traffic!

If you don’t want to walk, there will be plenty of parking at the Convention Center ($20 to $25 per day). It’s recommended you reserve your spot ahead of time using SpotHero and the promo code “AUTOLA” to save a few bucks. The LAAS is also partnering with Uber – download the app and use promo code “LAAUTO16” for a discounted ride to the show.

And since this is LA, electric vehicle recharging stations will be available. Bicycle parking is also an alternative. If you prefer public transportation, there are options for both rail and busses.

You can find more information on parking and transportation here.

Show Schedule And Tickets

2016 Los Angeles Auto Show – Visitor's Guide
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Public access to the L.A. Auto Show will be between Friday, November 18th, and Sunday, November 27th. Hours of admission vary from day to day, but generally fall between 9 AM and 10 PM (check out the full list of hours here).

Adult single-day admission is $12 Monday through Thursday, and $15 Friday through Sunday. Single-day child tickets are $5, and are good any day for attendees aged 6 to 12 years old. Kids under 6 get in for free with a paying adult. Attendees over the age of 65 can purchase single-day tickets for $10, and are good for any day.

Group rates are available for parties of 20 or more. Contact an LA Auto Show representative for more information.

If you’re an early riser that wants to beat the crowd, you can get early entry (7 AM) for either Friday of the show (November 18th or November 25th). Pricing is the same as a regular single-day admission.

Unfortunately, tickets for VIP tours are currently sold out.

You can purchase tickets and find more information by clicking here.

If you’re still on the fence about whether or not to go, don’t worry – the Convention Center is enormous, and general admission tickets for the show won’t sell out.

Crossovers And SUVs

Star Wars Special Edition Nissan Rogue

Star Wars-Themed Nissan Rogue to Debut at Los Angeles Auto Show
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As a means to promote the latest entry in the Star Wars movie franchise, Nissan has announced it will build a limited run of specially modified Rogue crossovers for the U.S. and Canadian market. Exact details are still forthcoming, but we should get a pretty good look at what’s in store at the LA Auto Show. With just the right tweaks and modifications, it won’t take a Jedi mind trick to get these things sold. But the question is this – how many parsecs will it take to do the Kessel Run?

Read the full story here.

Mazda CX-5

2017 Mazda CX-5
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Fresh off a facelift, Mazda will debut the 2017 model year CX-5 in LA. Details are still under wraps, but we do know the exterior will get a renewed take on the Japanese brand’s Kodo design language. All we’ve got to go on is a shadowy teaser image, so stay tuned for the full reveal on that. Inside, we’re thinking a new steering wheel and a new instrument cluster, while powerplant options will most likely carry over with the same old 2.0-liter and 2.5-liter as before.

Read the full review here.

Volkswagen Atlas

2018 Volkswagen Atlas High Resolution Exterior
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To help bolster its rather meager SUV lineup, Volkswagen has unveiled the Atlas, a seven-seater that slots above the Tiguan and Touareg, bringing VW’s total SUV offerings to three. The Atlas is in fact the largest model VW offers stateside, sporting huge dimensions for the exterior. The styling pulls a lot from the CrossBlue concept, and looks surprisingly similar to the Audi Q7 and Skoda Kodiak. The same is true inside, where we find an upscale interior layout that’s nearly identical to the Koqiaq. Motivation comes from either a four-cylinder or a six-cylinder powerplant, with AWD offered as an available option. Meanwhile, an eight-speed automatic transmission is the only gearbox choice.

Read the full review here.

Nissan Juke Black Pearl Edition

2017 Nissan Juke Black Pearl Edition High Resolution Exterior
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We’ve seen plenty of examples of “dark theme” special edition models lately, and the latest to join the trend is the Nissan Juke. As you can see, the exterior is draped in black paint, which gets offset with Pearl White accents to add a touch of variety. The 17-inch wheels are also finished in Super Black, while the color scheme is continued in the cabin as well. Based on the SV trim level, the Juke Black Pearl Edition uses a four-cylinder for motivation, producing 188 horsepower through either a FWD or AWD drivetrain. Nissan says only 1,250 units are slated for production, with pricing starting at under $25,000.

Read the full review here.

Alfa Romeo Stelvio

2018 Alfa Romeo Stelvio Quadrifoglio Exterior Exclusive Renderings Computer Renderings and Photoshop
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Alfa Romeo has finally returned to U.S. shores, and that means it needs an SUV to take advantage of our national predilections. Thing is, Alfa has never made an SUV before, but that’s about to change with the new Stelvio. Destined to fight the Audi Q5, BMW X3, and Lexus NX, the Stelvio is rumored to use the Giulia sedan for underpinnings. Originally, the Kamal Concept was said to provide inspiration for the exterior, but now we’re not so sure. Inside, we’re thinking the same layout as the Giulia, while powerplants could include a 200-horsepower supercharged 2.0-liter gas engine, and 177-horsepower 2.2-liter diesel. No matter the case, a new SUV should help Alfa bolster its sales.

Read the full review here.

Mercedes-AMG GLE43

2017 Mercedes-AMG GLE43 High Resolution Exterior
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Mercedes is replacing the GLE400 and GLE450 AMG with a single mid-size SUV model. It’s called the AMG GLE43, and it’s joining its svelte cousin the GLE43 coupe in the AMG lineup as a more traditional SUV alternative. Inside is an 8-inch display, AMG shifter paddles, a Harman Kardon sound system, and lots of autonomous technology. The powertrain department is more or less a carryover from the GLE450 AMG, with an all-aluminum 3.0-liter V-6 boosted by two turbochargers for 362 horsepower.

Read the full review here.

Sedans, Hatchbacks, And Luxury Cars

Honda Civic Si

Presumably unintentionally confirmed by a LAAS press release, it turns out the H badge will unveil the latest go-faster Civic in LA, priming U.S. audiences for the go-fastest Civic Type R slated for arrival in the next few years. Details are still up in the air, but we’re expecting the new hot Japanese import to come equipped with a turbo four-cylinder producing around 225 horsepower at the front axle. We also expect more aggressive styling than the pedestrian Civic, but something a bit subtler than the boy-racer Type R.

Read the full story here.

Mercedes-AMG E63 And E63 S

2018 Mercedes-AMG E63 and E63 S Unveiled
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Mercedes and its faithful tuning division AMG have introduced the next hot-to-trot E-Class, and according to AMG head Tobias Moers, the new model is “the biggest step forward” that the brand has ever taken between generations. Outside, you get the traditional AMG styling enhancements, like a new grille, huge wheels, and chromed-out trim. The cabin is decked out with a flat-bottom steering wheel and various AMG logos scattered here and there. But the belle of the ball is under the hood, where a 4.0-liter twin-turbo V-8 makes a very healthy 563 horsepower. Step up to the S, and you’re looking at 603 German ponies.

Read the full review here.

Mini Cooper S E Countryman ALL4

2017 Mini Cooper S E Countryman ALL4 High Resolution Exterior
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Mini just released specs on a new second generation for the ever-popular Countryman, and, surprise surprise, it’s bigger than before. In fact, the new Countryman is the biggest model to ever carry the Mini nameplate. With the increased girth comes a roomier cabin, complete with the funky-yet-familiar dash layout. The exterior also gets a revised look. But the big news is what’s under the hood, where the British icon now boasts a three-cylinder paired with a synchronous electric motor. Mated to a six-speed automatic transmission and AWD system, the new Mini hybrid makes 224 horsepower, which is good enough for a sprint to 60 mph in less than 7 seconds.

Read the full review here.

Nissan Versa Note

2017 Nissan Versa Note High Resolution Exterior
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First introduced in 2004, the Nissan Note MPV entered its second generation in 2012, and now, the compact five-door will receive an update for the 2017 model year. Included is a tweak to the styling, with an updated V-Motion grille up front that ties the model more closely with the rest of the Nissan lineup. There’s also new wheel designs, a new rear fascia for select trim levels, and new colors like Monarch Orange and Deep Blue Pearl. Inside, you’ll find a few updates here and there, while under the hood, an efficient four-cylinder engine and Xtronic transmission provides the go, returning nearly 40 mpg on the highway along the way.

Volkswagen Golf

2018 Volkswagen Golf High Resolution Exterior
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VW ushered in the current-generation Golf in 2012, so the time is right for a refresh. As such, the new Golf will sport a restyled exterior with new headlights and a reworked fascia. The cabin receives new infotainment with a larger screen, plus available gesture control and a suite of semi-autonomous driving features. The goodies continue with new engines, like a 1.5-liter TSI EVO gas unit with 147 horsepower and 189 pound-feet of torque. Meanwhile, the GTI gets an extra 10 ponies for around 240 horsepower. A new seven-speed automatic dual-clutch gearbox is on the table as well.

Read the full review here.

Sports Cars And Supercars

Audi R8 V10 Plus Exclusive Edition

2017 Audi R8 V10 Plus Exclusive Edition High Resolution Exterior
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The Audi R8 is a beastly sports car, capable of inciting envy in gearheads the world over. But some folks crave more exclusivity than the regular production model can offer, and as such, Audi is releasing the limited-run Exclusive Edition. Outside, the body panels are finished in an exclusive Quantum Gray paint job, while 20-inch wheels, laser headlights, Titanium Black trim, and a single Solar Orange stripe down the flanks add extra flair. Inside is new leather and Alcantara, plus special race-inspired seating. Performance wise, things remain as is, but Audi did add carbon ceramic brakes as standard. Only 25 will be built, with pricing starting at $229,200.

Read the full review here.

Porsche Panamera Executive

2017 Porsche Panamera Executive High Resolution Exterior
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Porsche just ushered in the second-generation Panamera earlier this year, and now, Stuttgart is blessing the model with a new extended wheelbase trim level called the Executive. The Executive adds nearly 6 inches to the sport sedan, creating a new top-of-the-line option for each model in the lineup, including the Panamera 4, Panamera 4 E-Hybrid, Panamera 4S, and Panamera Turbo. In addition to more space, the Executive includes more standard features, such as a panoramic roof, heated and electronically adjustable “comfort” seats, adaptive air suspension, and a roll-up sunblind behind the head restraints in back. There’s even an available rear console with 10.1-inch rear displays for on-the-go business activities.

Audi TT Black Edition

2016 Audi TT Black Edition High Resolution Exterior
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And the “dark theme” cars keep on rolling, this time with a blacked-out Audi TT, which just so happens to join a wide range of new Black Editions Audi is adding across its product portfolio. Offered for the TT, TTS Coupe, and Roadster models, the Black Edition gets dark privacy glass windows, a black finish for the Single Frame grille and trim pieces, and 19-inch five-spoke “Blade design” wheels hewn from a lightweight alloy. Inside is a Bang & Olufsen sound system, while an additional wind deflector was added to the Roadster.

Nissan Sentra Nismo

2017 Nissan Sentra NISMO Exterior Computer Renderings and Photoshop
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This one is just a rumor, but what a juicy rumor it is. We’ve been dreaming of a Nismo’d out Sentra for a while now, and we just may get our wish at the LA Auto Show this year. If Nissan does decide to drop something like this, expect supreme sport compact goodness, with a sharp exterior dressed in red and white, a lowered stance, and sporty bucket seats. But the big news would be under the hood, where we’re feeling a turbo 1.8-liter four-cylinder good for 265 horsepower and 260 pound-feet of torque. Routed through a six-speed manual gearbox, acceleration should be around 5.5 seconds to 60 mph, with the quarter mile done in the high 14’s. Oh, and it should have the handling chops to take on Honda, too.

Read the full review here.

North American Debuts

Land Rover Discovery

2017 Land Rover Discovery High Resolution Exterior
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The new fifth-generation Land Rover Discovery first dropped cover not too long ago at the Paris Auto Show, but now it’s headed to LA for it’s big North American debut. The updated model now boasts a revamped look, with less of the boxy appearance of the outgoing model, and more of the Range Rover’s curves. You’ll find LED headlights in front. The Range Rover was also used for inspiration for the updated interior design. Under the skin is a new aluminum unibody, which cuts half a ton from the Disco’s curb weight and ups towing capacity. Making it go is a standard 3.0-liter turbodiesel, or an optional supercharged 3.0-liter V-6.

Read the full review here.

Check back frequently, we’ll be updating this guide with more debuts in the near future!

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