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ASNA - The Auto Show Report
Volume Twelve, Issue One - November 2016

Industry News

LA Auto Show exec joins automotive messaging-based startup

Brendan Flynn
Brendan Flynn, who until May 2016 served as vice president of marketing and communications for the LA Auto Show, is now vice president of communications and strategic partnerships at CarLabs, based in Calabasas, Calif. CarLabs, which began development about two years ago, is expected to sign on its first customer early in 2017, offering a digital platform that OEMs can use to "conversationalize" their interaction with customers. The firm's "artificial intelligent agent" is "Carla," which (or "who") would answer customer questions in a natural language message box. That interface would be found on any number of platforms, including a manufacturer website or platform such as Facebook. Flynn served with the LA Auto Show for nearly nine years before joining CarLabs. Flynn can be reached at Brendan.Flynn@carlabs.com

Federal government drawing up route to help with ‘range anxiety’

The U.S. federal government, through the Department of Transportation, is taking steps to make it easier for drivers who have embraced (or want to) the idea of using alternative power for their vehicles to do so without fear of “running out.” The plan includes having 55 different interstates, covering 25,000 miles of highway in 35 states, according to reports. The use of natural gas, considered less environmentally harmful than traditional gasoline or diesel sources, would have the network encompassing some 85,000 miles of roadway. “Alternative fuels and electric fuels will play an integral part in the future of America’s transportation systems,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx. “We have a duty to help drivers identify routes that will help them and recharge those vehicles and designating these corridors on our highways is a first step.”

Honda plans $53 million investment in Ohio

Honda has announced plans to invest $53 million for the construction of two buildings on its Central Ohio campus, where it will house information technology and market quality operations for the automaker in North America. The first building will be a 38,000-square-foot Ohio Data Center, which will, along with a similar facility in Denver, house key information technologies while increasing secure data storage capabilities. A 98,000-square-foot North American Quality Center building will consolidate operations for several Honda organizations involved in product quality.

Study shows more cars stolen after owners leave their keys

A study by the National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB) is pointing the finger at the one-in-eight people who had their vehicle stolen in 2015—because they left keys to the vehicle inside. It’s a growing problem, according to the NICB, which says the practice has grown by 31 percent in the last three years. The 57,096 thefts in 2015 were a 22 percent increase over the previous year. It could actually be worse, since many people do not want to admit leaving their car unlocked with the keys inside. “Anti-theft technology has had a tremendous impact on reducing thefts over the past 25 years,” said NICB President and CEO Joe Wehrie. “But if you don’t lock it up, it’s not going to help.”

Toyota investing in U.S. car sharing venture

Toyota Motor Corp. has reportedly made an investment in Getaround, a ride-share service that allows those leasing vehicles to defray some of their costs. Under the Getaround model, someone who registers with the service could have others who subscribe “borrow” the vehicle during certain times, using a so-called Smart Key Box that would be installed on a vehicle’s dashboard and activated by an unlock code through their smartphone, technology developed by Connected Company, a Toyota subsidiary. Under the strategic partnership, Toyota’s financial services arm will be allowing lessees to make payments from an earning pool created through Getaround.

BlackBerry’s security software could be in more vehicles

BlackBerry, the maker of a once-ubiquitous handheld device that was effectively displaced by smartphones from Apple and others powered by Google’s Android, continues to make inroads with automakers, most notably Ford. The latest evidence of that comes from an announcement that Ford plans to expand its use of BlackBerry’s QNX platform. John Chen, BlackBerry’s CEO, who was tasked with the Canadian company’s turnaround, has said the firm’s expertise in secure embedded software makes it a preferred technology provider. “Ford is an industry leader and the opportunity to contribute our world-class technology to their products is a privilege,” said Chen. BlackBerry will dedicate a team to work with the automaker on an expanded use of the QNX system and its derivatives.

Show Profiles

Anaheim: New commercial area has promising debut

As the Orange County International Auto Show continues to evolve, ATAE John Sackrison says one of the most significant changes of late involves a focus on the market for commercial vehicles, an idea that came together in record time after a visit to one of the largest truck shows earlier this year.

Sackrison is referring to the National Truck Equipment Association's "Work Truck Show," which he and several dealers attended as a jumping point to this year's "show within a show."

Titled the "SoCal Work Truck and Van Show," the area carved out roughly 50,000 square feet of space at the Anaheim Convention Center.

The addition to the show is in recognition of the area being one of the country's largest markets for commercial vehicles.

Sackrison, with the backing of dealers, went ahead with plans for the space, although to be clear, admission to both the traditional show and the commercial area is included.

Still, there are separate tickets.

"We did that purposefully," said Sackrison. "There's no 'dividing line' per se, but we had barcodes for every ticket and we marketed the commercial show in a very distinct way."

That included renting lists that identified purchasers of every class of commercial vehicle in the three counties from which the show draws its audience—Orange, Los Angeles and Riverside.

That totaled some 113,000 people, each of whom got three complimentary tickets in the mail.

Organizers also went to places where contractors typically head to on a regular basis, including places they go for parts or shops catering to plumbing and electrical contractors.

"We also worked with dealers to encourage their thoughts on how to reach this market," said Sackrison.

As far as the remainder of the Orange County International Auto Show, Sackrison said a combination of great content (including two concept cars at the event) and new and better displays from manufacturers contributed to "the best show we've ever produced."

Profile: Orange County International Auto Show

Oct. 6-9, 2016

Anaheim Convention Center

Exhibit Space:
525,000 square feet

$12 adults, $10 for Seniors, $10 for Military and kids 12 and under are free

Thursday, 4 pm-10 pm; Friday, noon-10 pm; Saturday, 9 am-10 pm; Sunday, 9 am-7 pm.

Produced by:
Motor Trend Auto Shows

Show Contact:
ATAE John Sackrison
Executive Director
Orange County Automobile Dealers Association
949.428.5050, jsackrison@ocada.org

Show Website:

Miami: Zika warnings hit show, but enthusiasm remains strong

Auto shows in the northern half of North America where snow and other forms of inclement weather know all too well how factors beyond their control can affect attendance.

In Miami, where the mid-September show is one of the season's first, a significant challenge came in the form of a government-mandated "quarantine" zone in response to reports of Zika, a mosquito-borne virus that is known to cause certain birth defects and which can be passed from a pregnant woman to her fetus.

It was August 1 when the Centers for Disease Control first issued guidelines for people who travel to or live within a one-square-mile area of the Wynwood neighborhood of Miami. By September 17, that zone had expanded, encompassing the area of the Miami International Auto Show.

Not good news for ATAE Rick Baker, who says attendance at the show was impacted an estimated 14-18 percent.

"Truthfully, we had a good show," said Baker. "It was just unfortunate that we were dealing with this issue at the same time."

At the same time as the Zika cautionary note, the show was dealing with construction issues, which was one reason for a change in the calendar (the show typically occurs in mid-October).

One piece of good news was the worldwide introduction of the Nissan Rogue, likely a by-product of that scheduling change.

"We rarely get intros because of our show being so close on the calendar to Los Angeles," said Baker.

Aside from the Zika issue, it was clear that the popularity of the Ride and Drive experience is just as popular as it ever was, with automakers continuing to see the benefits from what is now a near-ubiquitous show feature.

Looking ahead to next year's show—tentatively scheduled for September 9, 2017—Baker says the second half of a two-year renovation project at the Miami Beach Convention Center will continue.

"We're undergoing a 'refreshing and refurbishment' project, but very much looking forward to that being complete for 2018," said Baker.

Profile: Miami International Auto Show

Sept. 9-18, 2016

Miami Beach Convention Center

Exhibit Space:
600,000 square feet

Adults, $15; Children (6-12), $6; under 6, Free.

Show Hours:
Nov. 6, 5 pm-11 pm (following press preview); Sat-Sun. 11 am-11 pm; Mon.-Tues. 2 pm-11 pm; Wed. 11 am-11 pm; Thurs.-Fri., 2 pm-11 pm; Sat., 11 am-11 pm; Sun.,11 am-9 pm.

Produced by:
South Florida Auto Dealers Association

Show Contact:
Cliff Ray, Show Coordinator
ATAE Richard Baker
President, South Florida Automobile Dealers Association
rbaker@sfada.net, 305.981.1448

Show Website:

Oklahoma City: Heading into Centennial year, State Fair show whets appetite

ATAE Peter Hodges, fresh off the Auto Show at the Oklahoma State Fair, is definitely looking forward to being back indoors, after spending the last two State Fair events patiently waiting for construction of a new building, replacing what used to be a four-building yet highly popular exhibition.

This time it was definitely a scaled back version of a show that Hodges and his team have been running for the last 17 years, an event that the Metropolitan Auto Dealers Association produces on behalf of the Oklahoma State Fair.

Hodges says the event, indoors or not, is a very popular one, with huge crowds making the opportunity a "can't miss" one for exhibitors, dealers included.

Typically, there are seven or eight brands represented at the State Fair show, slightly less this year with it being outdoors.

Some exhibitors had tents, and the spot outdoors was a favorable one, near the entertainment plaza where bands were playing throughout the State Fair.

On the positive side of having the event associated with the State Fair, Hodges and his group need not contend with ticketing or marketing. They also don't have a revenue source from tickets, but that is countered by what drives dealer interest, which is the hundreds of thousands of attendees flowing through, a great many of them specifically there to see what automakers have to showcase.

"The auto show is very important to the State Fair and dealers like it as well," says Hodges. "It's been a little different working outside; we were able to pull it off and automakers were well represented, but our preference is to be back indoors," he added.

Hodges is also looking forward to celebrating the 100th year of the auto show.

"There was lots of opportunity to promote that fact at the State Fair," he added. "We're all looking forward to a celebratory year ahead."

Profile: Auto Show at Oklahoma State Fair

September 15-25, 2016

Oklahoma State Fair Park

Exhibit Space:
30,000 gross sq. ft.

Free with State Fair admission.

Sunday-Thursday 10 am to 9 pm; Friday and Saturday 10 am to 10 pm

Produced by:
Metropolitan Auto Dealers Association

Show Contact:
ATAE Peter Hodges, President
Metropolitan Auto Dealers Association
405.607.0400, madapeter@coxinet.net

Show Website (State Fair):

Sacramento: New look, great crowds and collector vehicles all part of the mix

ATAE Stacey Castle had a big message to deliver at this season’s Sacramento International Auto Show, that being just how important the event continues to be when it comes to helping contribute to community organizations.

“That was really something that we focused on reminding people this year,” said Castle.

It’s an impressive message—especially considering the nearly $400,000 that the Greater Sacramento New Car Dealers Association has invested.

The dealer association is now halfway through a 10-year endowment of $1 million toward Pediatric Regenerative Research with the Shriners Hospitals for Children Northern California.

For this year’s show, Castle and her dealer association contracted with a new decorator, and Shepard Exposition Services stepped up to present a completely new look.

“We were very impressed with the new look,” said Castle. “Particularly with its emphasis on the charity message we were bringing to the public and bright new graphics and signage, something that’s very important when you consider we have 13 separate buildings that are part of our show.”

From an attendance standpoint, Castle said beautiful weather and a sold-out hall contributed to strong numbers, something that was impressive given last year’s record numbers.

Another highlight—an exceptional collection of collector cars—also helped drive overall enthusiasm.

“We had lots of crowd favorites at this year’s event and we had a good collection of people who brought their own high-end vehicles that they wanted to share with others,” added Castle.

Profile: Sacramento International Auto Show

Oct. 21-23, 2016

Cal Expo, Sacramento

Exhibit Space:
275,000 square feet under roof; 800,000 outside space

$13 adults, children 7 and under free

Show Hours:
Fri: 10 am-9 pm; Sat: 10 am-8 pm; Sun: 10 am-6 pm

Produced by:
Castle Communications, Inc.

Show Contact:
ATAE Stacey Castle
Executive Director
Greater Sacramento New Car Dealers Association
916.635.2728, Stacey@castlecommunications.net

Show Web site:

Show Directory

Albany Auto Show
11/4/2016 - 11/6/2016

New Mexico International Auto Show
4/21/2017 - 4/23/2017

Orange County Auto Show
10/6/2016 - 10/9/2016

Atlanta International Auto Show
3/22/2017 - 3/26/2017

Austin Auto Show
3/24/2017 - 3/26/2017

Motor Trend International Auto Show唯altimore
2/9/2017 - 2/12/2017

Bedford, NH
New Hampshire Auto Show
11/18/2016 - 11/20/2016

Bethlehem, PA
Lehigh Valley Auto Show
3/23/2017 - 3/26/2017

Alabama International Auto Show
4/6/2017 - 4/9/2017

New England International Auto Show
1/12/2017 - 1/16/2017

Buffalo Auto Show
2/9/2017 - 2/12/2017

Calgary International Auto & Truck Show
3/15/2017 - 3/19/2017

West Virginia International Auto Show
1/27/2017 - 1/29/2017

Charlotte International Auto Show
11/17/2016 - 11/20/2016

Chicago Auto Show
2/11/2017 - 2/20/2017

Cincinnati Auto Expo
2/8/2017 - 2/12/2017

Cleveland Auto Show
2/24/2017 - 3/5/2017

Columbus International Auto Show
3/16/2017 - 3/19/2017

DFW Auto Show in Dallas
3/22/2017 - 3/26/2017

Dayton Auto Show
2/23/2017 - 2/26/2017

Denver Auto Show
4/5/2017 - 4/9/2017

North American International Auto Show
1/14/2017 - 1/22/2017

Edmonton Motor Show
4/20/2017 - 4/23/2017

Fort Worth
DFW Auto Show in Fort Worth
12/1/2016 - 12/4/2016

South Carolina International Auto Show
1/20/2017 - 1/22/2017

Harrisburg, PA
Pennsylvania Auto Show
1/26/2017 - 1/29/2017

Connecticut International Auto Show
11/18/2016 - 11/20/2016

First Hawaiian International Auto Show
3/24/2017 - 3/26/2017

Houston Auto Show
4/5/2017 - 4/9/2017

Indianapolis Auto Show
12/26/2016 - 1/1/2017

Kansas City
Kansas City International Auto Show
3/8/2017 - 3/12/2017

Las Vegas
Las Vegas International Auto Show
11/25/2016 - 11/27/2016

Los Angeles
Los Angeles Auto Show
11/18/2016 - 11/27/2016

Louisville Auto Show
1/20/2017 - 1/22/2017

Miami International Auto Show
9/10/2016 - 9/18/2016

Greater Milwaukee International Auto Show
2/25/2017 - 3/5/2017

Minneapolis/St. Paul
Twin Cities Auto Show
3/11/2017 - 3/19/2017

Montreal International Auto Show
1/26/2017 - 1/29/2017

New Orleans
Greater New Orleans International Auto Show
3/24/2017 - 3/26/2017

New York
New York International Auto Show
4/14/2017 - 4/23/2017

Oklahoma City
Oklahoma City International Auto Show
3/10/2017 - 3/12/2017

Oklahoma City
Oklahoma State Fair Auto Show
9/15/2016 - 9/25/2016

Midlands International Auto Show
1/26/2017 - 1/29/2017

Central Florida International Auto Show
11/24/2016 - 11/27/2016

Philadelphia International Auto Show
1/28/2017 - 2/5/2017

Arizona International Auto Show
11/24/2016 - 11/27/2016

Pittsburgh International Auto Show
2/17/2017 - 2/20/2017

Portland International Auto Show
1/26/2017 - 1/29/2017

Northeast International Auto Show
1/27/2017 - 1/29/2017

Virginia Motor Trend International Auto Show
2/17/2017 - 2/19/2017

Rochester International Auto Show
3/2/2017 - 3/5/2017

Sacramento International Auto Show
10/21/2016 - 10/23/2016

Saint Louis
Saint Louis International Auto Show
1/19/2017 - 1/22/2017

Salt Lake City
Utah International Auto Expo
1/13/2017 - 1/16/2017

San Antonio
San Antonio Auto & Truck Show
11/10/2016 - 11/13/2016

San Diego
San Diego International Auto Show
12/29/2016 - 1/2/2017

San Jose
Silicon Valley International Auto Show
1/5/2017 - 1/8/2017

Seattle International Auto Show
11/10/2016 - 11/13/2016

Spokane International Auto Show
2/10/2017 - 2/12/2017

Tampa Bay International Auto Show
12/2/2016 - 12/4/2016

Greater Toledo Auto Show
1/26/2017 - 1/29/2017

Canadian International Auto Show
2/17/2017 - 2/26/2017

Tulsa Auto Show
4/7/2017 - 4/9/2017

Vancouver International Auto Show
3/28/2017 - 4/2/2017

Virginia Beach
Hampton Roads International Auto Show
1/13/2017 - 1/15/2017

Washington Auto Show
1/27/2017 - 2/5/2017


Automotive Trade Association Executives

8400 Westpark Drive
McLean, VA 22102

Craig Bickmore
ATAE Chairman

Jennifer Colman
ATAE Executive Director

ASNA Committee

Mike Gempp
ASNA Chairman
Manager, Philadelphia Auto Show

Rick Baker
Miami International Auto Show

Chris Konecki
Chicago Auto Show

Sean Brickell
Hampton Roads International Auto Show

Jo McKinley
DFW Auto Show

Paul Stasiak
Buffalo Auto Show

Lou Vitantonio
Cleveland Auto Show

Jennifer Whisenant
Alabama International Auto Show

The Auto Show Report

Joe Rohatynski, senior editor

J.D. Booth, writer

Marc Harlow, writer

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