ASNA Logo Volume 5, Issue 7 - July 2007
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the Auto Show Report
A compilation of news and developments for and about Auto Shows of North America. To find out more, visit


Industry News
  • Automakers plan introductions at LA Show
  • Paragon to produce Denver show
  • San Jose is now Silicon Valley International Auto Show
  • VW turns to Gail & Rice for auto show staffing
  • Ford without Volvo would likely still be linked
  • Philadelphia selects GES for services contract
  • Comings and goings in the auto show community

    Show Profiles

  • Anaheim: 'Come here often?'
  • Bethlehem: Greater Lehigh Valley Auto Show celebrates 10th
  • Chicago: 'Space is there if we want it'
  • Milwaukee: Beer city celebrates a century of auto shows
  • New York: Much more than cars and carpet
  • Richmond: Show expands floor plan, adds Ride and Drives
  • Vancouver: Coping with nice weather, advancing green message

    Show Directory

  • Alphabetical listing of ASNA shows and dates for 2006-2007

    Auto Shows of North America (ASNA) is a committee of Automotive Trade Association Executives. The Mission of ASNA is to be the industry resource for auto show information and education, and to provide a network for communication between show executives, manufacturers, other industry affiliates and media.

    Automakers plan introductions at LA Show

    Some 14 world premieres and nearly 30 North American debuts are expected at the upcoming LA Auto Show, to be held Nov. 16-25, 2007 at the Los Angeles Convention Center. The introductions include Nissan's all-new midsize Murano crossover. Hyundai will unveil a new sports car and Volkswagen will show a minicar concept. For its part, BMW is planning to show its 1 Series coupe. Other North American unveilings include Jaguar's XF performance sedan, Mitsubishi's 10th generation Lancer Evolution, Nissan's GT-R sports car and Subaru's all-new WRX STI.

    Paragon to produce Denver show

    The retirement of long-time producer Bill Barrow and his wife, Merilee Keene, from the Denver International Auto Show has paved the way for a new production team — the Paragon Group. "Our association board decided to go with a successful company that could expand and enhance an already vibrant show, and we believe the Paragon Group can take the show to the next level," says Tim Jackson, executive vice president of the Metro Denver Automobile Dealers Association, who replaced Barrow when he retired from the dealership group (though Barrow continued to run the show). The Denver show is scheduled for March 26-30, 2008. Paragon also produces the New England International Auto Show, the Portland International Auto Show, the Connecticut International Auto Show and the Jacksonville International Car & Truck Show.

    San Jose is now Silicon Valley International Auto Show

    What's in a name? For Steve Smith, who runs the Silicon Valley Auto Dealers Association, having the name "San Jose" for an auto show just didn't cut it, especially in light of the event's geographic reach. "The auto show encompasses an area that is much larger than just San Jose, as the 66 dealerships that make up our association are from all over Santa Clara County." The new name - Silicon Valley International Auto Show - better reflects the larger geographic area. "It also more effectively communicates to the millions of people who live throughout the area that this is their auto show," says Smith. The show is scheduled for Jan. 10-13, 2008 at the San Jose McEnery Convention Center. Visit

    VW turns to Gail & Rice for auto show staffing

    Gail & Rice will provide auto show staffing and other event services for Volkswagen of America, Inc. this auto show season. “Volkswagen has five new model introductions in 2008 and we have announced plans to dramatically increase sales in the U.S. over the next 10 years,” said Michael Koehler, auto shows team leader for the Volkswagen brand. “One of the important elements of our marketing efforts is auto shows. We found in Gail & Rice a creative energy and true partner that will allow us to reach new heights at these venues.” Agency owner Tim Rice says the 76 year old company’s experience in auto show marketing, and understanding of the VW brand, will enable product specialists to deliver targeted Volkswagen messages to diverse and discriminating audiences.

    Ford without Volvo would likely still be linked

    As automotive Website observes, even if Ford sells its stake in Volvo Cars, the automaker is likely to have a hand in the future of the Swedish company. All Volvos in the foreseeable future are based on one of two Ford-based platforms: the C1 small car chassis and CD-EU architecture, both engineered by Ford Europe. Volvo currently uses the C1 platform (featured on the European Ford Focus and Mazda3) for its C30, C70, S40 and V50 models.

    Philadelphia selects GES for services contract

    The Philadelphia International Auto Show has signed a three-year deal with GES Exposition Services as its official services contractor, beginning with the upcoming show--Feb. 2-10, 2008. Show Director Michael Gempp cited GES’ global presence, depth and experience as well as its focus on exhibitor service as reasons for the selection. "We also were very impressed with GES' design capabilities." GES, based in Las Vegas, services every major exhibition and event market across North America.


    An "Industry News" item in the last issue of The Auto Show Report inaccurately described the awarding to H.B. Stubbs of work for Chrysler's "major" auto shows. The shows are, in fact, regional shows which do not include "major" shows such as Los Angeles, Detroit, Chicago and New York. Long-time Chrysler experience marketing partner George P. Johnson Company will continue to do much of the Chrysler business this year.

    Comings and goings in the auto show community

    Barry Toepke, formerly director of communications with the LA Auto Show and Houston Auto Show, is now director of global communications at RWB, a marketing and communications agency whose clients include Dow Automotive, Ford Racing, Lexus Motorsports and Toyota Motor Sales. He will continue to be based in Los Angeles. PR for the LA Auto Show is now being handled by the Rogers Group.

    John Lyboldt, a former president of ATAE who ran the Rochester Automobile Dealers Association for 17 years, is now vice president of dealership operations at the National Automobile Dealers Association.

    Jim Farley, most recently group vice president and general manager of Toyota's Lexus division, is now group vice president of marketing and communications at Ford Motor Company. The former general manager of Toyota's Scion brand will report to Ford CEO Alan Mulally when he joins Ford in mid-November. The move comes shortly after the retirement of Francisco Codina, Ford's group vice president of North American marketing, sales and service.

    Gail & Rice has hired Kristy Fisher as account executive in its Auto Shows Group. The auto show veteran is responsible for the Pontiac-GMC and GM Corporate accounts, and will hire, train and manage product specialists for the brands throughout the auto show season. Gail & Rice, a leading brand communications and experiential marketing agency, is based in Southfield, Mich., with offices across the United States.

    Anaheim: 'Come here often?'

    While most people go to auto shows in pursuit of their next vehicle, visitors to the 2008 model Orange County Auto Show had another option - finding someone who very well might be their soul mate.

    Love in eight minutes? Maybe, maybe not. But it's another great strategy for getting people in what might be their next vehicle, in this case, a Chevrolet (sponsor of the event at the Orange County Auto Show).

    John Sackrison, executive director of the Orange County Automobile Dealers Association and co-director of the show, along with Todd Leutheuser of the Southland Motor Car Dealers Association, admits he wondered how the idea would work out.

    But no longer.

    "The public and the media ate it up," says Sackrison of the idea, which may find its way into other shows under the Motor Trend Auto Shows banner. The idea behind Eight Minute Dating is centered on couples meeting in a controlled, friendly and safe environment. At the auto show, the venue is the cars - and specifically those by Chevrolet, the event sponsor.

    "Their area was more crowded than they've seen in years," says Sackrison. "It was the busiest at the show."

    The auto show, which helped launch the 2007-2008 North American auto show season, was busier as well - with attendance up about 3.3 percent - bolstered by a repeat of the hip Auto Show Underground (sponsored by Al & Ed's Autosound).

    Eyes on the car, please. Eyes on the car.

    That "show within a show" included the Miss Hawaiian Tropic Orange County Pageant, live DJ entertainment, display of a 15,000-watt sound system (installed in a 2007 Cadillac Escalade ESV), and a DUB magazine celebrity car showcase, among other features.

    Another highlight of the auto show was Toyota's Off-Road, On-Site Adventure, a very popular "ride and drive" that had show goers lined up to experience. "It was packed," says Sackrison.

    Bringing additional features to the show was a deliberate strategy for show organizers, especially in a sales climate that's seen better days.

    "We're down overall for the year and in August, sales were off 16 percent," says Sackrison. "We wanted to make sure we went heavy on the entertainment side so those who maybe weren't looking for a vehicle in the next couple of weeks would still come in and maybe we'd be able to help create the demand."

    The Orange County Auto Show is one of the first major shows of the season.

    Part of that demand creating strategy included bringing in as many concepts as possible, in this case some 11 vehicles from a variety of manufacturers.

    Sackrison says making a strong effort with manufacturers and committing to heavily promote the appearance of the concepts in the marketing campaign leading up to the show went hand-in-hand.

    And when media opportunities arose, the concepts were front and center.

    An additional strategy that worked well was having a tri-fold map of the show floor with concepts clearly highlighted for show goers. "It gave people a path for seeing those concepts, which helped everyone," says Sackrison.

    Another show highlight was a first-ever charity preview event, which Sackrison says will be repeated next year. Beneficiary this year was the Children's Hospital of Orange County, which received just slightly more than $36,000.

    A wide selection of fuel cell vehicles was on display at the Anaheim Convention Center, venue for the Orange County Auto Show.

    Profile: Orange County Auto Show

    Oct. 4-7, 2007

    Next show:
    Oct. 2-5, 2008

    Anaheim Convention Center

    Exhibit Space:
    665,000 square feet

    Adults (13 plus), $10; Seniors (62 plus), $6; Children (7-12), $5; under 6, free

    Show Hours:
    Wed.: 4 pm-10 pm; Thurs.-Fri.: 10 am-10 pm; Sat.: 9 am-10 pm; Sun.: 9 am-7 pm

    Show Contacts:
    Todd Leutheuser, ATAE, 562.595.4326

    John Sackrison, ATAE, 714.424.6090

    Show Web site:

    Bethlehem: Greater Lehigh Valley Auto Show celebrates 10th

    The Incredible Hulk, Miss Pennsylvania and Eagles Star David Akers helped usher in the 10th Anniversary Greater Lehigh Valley Auto Show. Big band sounds rocked Rauch Field House as Lehigh Valley auto dealers welcomed 1,000 guests to celebrate with community leaders, industry colleagues, customers, family and friends, who enjoyed an evening of great food and fun while checking out the latest products the auto industry has to offer.

    The Greater Lehigh Valley Auto Show is a great place to check out all the automotive offerings.

    Auto Show Chair Andy Scott, Scott Chevy, Hummer, SAAB, Chrysler, Mazda, Volvo, Allentown, says the Greater Lehigh Valley Auto Show has come a long, long way.

    "We started out in 1997 as a three-day event, with 85,000 square feet, 15 brands and 150 vehicles, and now it’s the largest consumer show in the region, a four-day event, with 110,000 square feet, 30 brands and over 200 vehicles," adds Scott. "Even more significantly, attendance has grown by 250 percent."

    According to Scott, fully 84 percent of attendees found the auto show helpful in making their purchase decision.

    "The last year has been a challenging one for our industry and we all know that we have to work harder than ever for every sale," says Scott. "One of the most effective venues we have to win new customers is the auto show. They walk in that door ready to learn about the newest products and discover what best meets their needs. Each company has a singular opportunity to show them their best ideas and win their confidence. It’s a big opportunity for an industry show and tell, and the auto show puts the experience on steroids for attendees as the manufacturers send in their best exhibits and product specialists to show product."

    Dad and the boys check out what really matters.

    Manufacturers and dealers agree.

    GM Corporate Show Exhibit Manager Garrett Hansen: "The media coverage on this show was exceptional. It has an A-show media level and we were pleased and amazed with the coverage we received."

    Chrysler District Service Manager George Lupos: "This is the most organized show we have seen."

    Kurt Kelechava, Bethlehem Ford: "Our Web site hits were up significantly during and after the show."

    "We went into Monday with at least 100 + fresh leads from the show." Greg Kelly, Kelly Mitsubishi.

    Increasingly, cycles are becoming an important part of shows like Greater Lehigh Valley.

    "It’s wonderful to look back on a decade of solid progress," says Martha Cusimano, show producer and executive director, Greater Lehigh Valley Auto Dealers Association. "The auto show is one of the biggest events on the Lehigh Valley calendar, and the region continues to thrive. As real estate markets plunged in other areas of the country, the Lehigh Valley "saw the fifth-biggest home price gain among U.S. metro areas last quarter." [Business Week Magazine 8-16-07]. Our economy is solid and growing and that helps our industry," adds Cusimano.

    The West Pavilion venue was added five years ago and has become an enormous draw. Guests purchase tickets immediately outside the huge clearspan structure and pour through the entrances to see the exhibits.

    Notable celebrities included the reigning Miss Pennsylvania, Philadelphia Eagles star David Akers, children’s favorite Patrick Star and Greg Luzinski.

    A Hero Show, featuring Marvel Comics characters, was a hit with families. Pennsylvania State Police provided parents with DNA kits, fingerprinted their children and demonstrated proper use of child and infant safety seats.

    Philadelphia Eagles star David Akers has a new fan.

    Capitalizing on its hometown popularity, candy maker Just Born, one of the world’s largest producers of jelly beans, distributed samples of its Hot Tamales and Peanut Chews to show goers.

    Auto Technology Day welcomed 1,000 students, teachers and family members from the technology schools in the region to enjoy the show. Active military, fire and police personnel were the guests of GLVADA.

    Cusimano says the show continues to grow and serve its main purpose: to shine a spotlight on the industry, show off the best products, and send customers into showrooms.

    "The secondary effects are the success of the dealer association and the establishment of the GLVADA Fund within the Pennsylvania Automotive Association Foundation, which endows dealer supported Lehigh Valley charities in perpetuity."

    Profile: Greater Lehigh Valley Auto Show

    Most recent show:
    March 23-26, 2007

    Next show:
    March 27-30, 2008
    VIP Sneak Preview Party - March 26, 2008

    Lehigh University, Stabler Campus, Bethlehem, PA

    Exhibit Space:
    110,000 square feet

    Adults, $8; Children over 5, high school & college students with valid ID and senior citizens (over 55), $5; FREE Firefighters, Police and Active and Reserve Military with valid ID, FREE; Children under 5, Free; Parking, Free Coupons widely available McDonalds, Wendys, the Burn Prevention Foundation and other charities

    Show Hours:
    Thursday-Saturday, 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.; Sunday 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

    Show Contact:
    Martha H. Cusimano, ATAE
    Greater Lehigh Valley Auto Dealers Association
    Executive Director & Producer Greater Lehigh Valley Auto Show

    Show Web site:

    Chicago: 'Space is there if we want it'

    For Jerry Cizek, it just keeps getting better.

    The cavernous McCormick Place, home to the Chicago Auto Show.

    "Thinking ahead, we have first opportunity to take another 300,000 square feet of space, the result of McCormick Place adding its West building, which led to other shows moving around,” says the Chicago Auto Show General Manager. “It's there for us if we want it."

    Whether that expansion comes to fruition or not, Cizek is certain about plans for the upcoming show, which will see General Motors increase its space by 14 percent as it celebrates its 100th anniversary. Coincidentally, the Chicago Auto Show is also marking its 100th show, which takes into account the period of 1942-1949 when World War II suspended such events.

    "It's a multi-year commitment from GM," says Cizek, who notes GM will use some two-thirds of the McCormick Place North Hall. The long-term arrangement was asked for and granted in light of the displacing of some 16 exhibitors; they'll be part of an all-new look for the South Hall.

    The most recent show was successful at a number of levels, says Cizek, one being the "Best of Show" voting, which turns over the role of picking out the industry's best to the "ultimate judges" - consumers who vote with their wallets.

    Increasingly, consumers have the opportunity of telling manufacturers what they're looking for in a vehicle, at the Chicago Auto Show through one of several kiosks set up for that purpose.

    This Chicago Auto Show gave show goers 10 finalists in four categories to choose from, the list having been selected by a panel of journalists. A fifth category, "Vehicle I'd Most Like to Have in My Driveway," gave voters the choice of any vehicle on the show floor. They picked the Camaro Convertible, followed by the Corvette and Mustang.

    One of the most popular areas of the show continued to be the Chrysler, Jeep, Dodge "Chicago Drive" display, which for three years has been voted as the "Consumers Choice" in independent surveys. The incremental improvements to the exhibit area, developed by the George P. Johnson Company, have included a Jeep mountain (which stole the show in year one), an SRT performance zone with acceleration and braking demos (in year two), most recently, a Dodge Truck hill and ice track to demonstrate stability and antiskid braking.

    An additional awards program, the MotorWeek Drivers' Choice Awards, has its home at the Chicago Auto Show. Its "Best" line up of 13 winners included the Honda Fit (small car), Saturn Aura (family sedan), Hyundai Entourage/Kia Sedona (minivan), Volkswagen Eos (convertible), Lexus LS (luxury sedan), Infiniti G35 (sport sedan), Ford Shelby GT 500 (performance car), Honda CR-V (small utility), Chevrolet Tahoe/GMC Yukon (large utility), GMC Acadia/Saturn Outlook (crossover utility), Chevrolet Silverado/GMC Sierra (pickup truck), Toyota (eco-friendly), and Jaguar XKR, Ferrari 599 GT B Fiorano, and Porsche 911 Turbo (dream machine).

    Chicago was also the venue for Ford announcing its return of the Taurus brand, which replaces the Five Hundred.

    Continental Automotive Systems brought its new "Safely There" exhibit to the Chicago show. The hands-on display features kiosks that consumers can use to test their knowledge of safety systems available and learn about near future systems that will help prevent crashes, reduce injuries and save lives.

    "Continental is contributing to the increasing intelligence of today's vehicle with equipment that is increasing a car's brainpower, making the driving experience safer and more enjoyable," says Bill Kozyra, Continental's North American president and CEO. "Vehicle-to-vehicle communications is a key technology for us and one that is growing in importance."

    Mayor Richard M. Daley, left, toured the Chicago Auto Show on opening day with Producer Jerry Cizek.

    The Chicago Auto Show's "First Look for Charity" attracted nearly 12,000 people, who helped raise more than $2.8 million for 19 local charities, among them Advocate Hope Children's Hospital, American Lung Association of Metropolitan Chicago, Boys and Girls Clubs of Chicago, Cancer Health Alliance of Metropolitan Chicago and Ronald McDonald House Charities.

    Cizek, who doubles as president of the Chicago Automobile Trade Association, is decidedly positive about the future of the First Look for Charity event - and for that matter the entire show.

    "We’ll be giving away three vehicles at the event, just as we did this past year," says Cizek. "At $225 a ticket, we still have 14,000 people attending."

    Cizek sees even bigger possibilities relating to the venue, such as making room for offshore manufacturers (think China and India) who want to display their wares.

    "When they decide they want to be a player in the North American market, we want to be the destination."

    A Chicago Auto Show attendee and his young son get the chance to rub shoulders with legendary racing great Mario Andretti (right) and (second from left) his grandson, Marco Andretti, son of Michael. In the background is the blue Ford that Mario drove to win the Daytona 500.

    Profile: Chicago Auto Show

    Feb. 9-18, 2007

    Next show:
    Feb. 8-17, 2008

    McCormick Place

    Exhibit Space:
    1.3 million square feet

    Adults, $10; Seniors (62 plus) and Children (7-12), $5; under 6: free with accompanying adult

    Show Hours:
    Every day, 10 am-10 pm, except last day, 10 am-8 pm

    Show Contact:
    Jerry Cizek III, ATAE
    Chicago Automobile Trade Association

    Show Web site:

    Milwaukee: Beer city celebrates a century of auto shows

    History buffs might have thought they had died and gone to heaven, walking into the Midwest Airlines Center to attend the Greater Milwaukee Auto Show.

    Nostalgia reined at the Greater Milwaukee Auto Show this year, in celebration of its centenary.

    And for good reason.

    A display of "Vehicles Through the Decades" commemorated the extensive history of the auto show, dating back to 1907 and featuring a collection of rare roadsters, speedsters, convertibles and touring cars that represented the paste 10 decades of automotive design.

    Among the vehicles shown were a 1912 Metz Roadster, 1915 Chevrolet Baby Grand Touring car, 1917 Ford Model T, 1920 Kissel Speedster, 1934 Ford Convertible Roadster, 1952 Crosley Convertible, 1953 Chevrolet Corvette Convertible, 1957 Nash Ambassador, 1964 ˝ Ford Mustang, 1970 Plymouth Superbird, 1971 Honda 600, 1973 VW Thing, and 1999 Shelby Series One.

    The Shelby was one of a display of original vintage vehicles that included a 1965 Cobra 427, 1966 GT350H, 1967 GT500, 1968 GT500KR Convertible, 1969 GT350 Convertible, and a 2007 Shelby GT500, all courtesy of the Northwoods Region Shelby Club.

    Not everything was from the past, witness the display by Smart, a division of Mercedes-Benz.

    In addition to the displays, show goers got to see "Prestige and Prominence," a documentary that included interviews with renowned celebrities, local legends and longtime Milwaukee auto dealers.

    The auto show featured a Black Tie Charity Gala, with funds from the $250/ticket event going to the Froedtert Hospital Foundation, Midwest Athletics Against Childhood Cancer and the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Wisconsin.

    Other show features included an appearance by Miss Milwaukee 2007 Janel Mayer, Motor Trend's classic "College Two-Fer Day," a Field Trip Day, where students from local schools were invited to learn driving safety tips from the Automobile Dealers of Mega Milwaukee (and get free admission to the show), and a Kids Day, where children 12 and under were admitted free when accompanied by a paying adult.

    It was the "return" of Ford's Robot that had so many show goers rapt with attention.

    Profile: Greater Milwaukee Auto Show

    Feb. 24-March 4, 2007

    Next show:
    Feb. 23-March 2, 2008

    Midwest Airlines Center

    Exhibit Space:
    300,000 square feet

    Adults, $9; Seniors (62 plus), $5; Children (7-12), $4, under 6 free

    Show Hours:
    Monday-Thursday, 3 pm-9 pm; Friday, 1 pm-10 pm; Saturdays, 10 am-10 pm; Sundays, 10 am-6 pm

    Show Contact:
    Don Hansen, ATAE
    President, Automobile Dealers Association of Mega Milwaukee

    Show Web site:

    New York: Much more than cars and carpet

    Certainly, New York is among the largest automotive markets in the nation, a good reason in itself for a major auto show.

    Nicole Nason, administrator of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, speaks at a special conference at the New York International Auto Show.

    And the New York International Auto Show is that.

    But as Greater New York Auto Dealers Association President Mark Schienberg explains, the show has continued to try to do more than simply showcase vehicles, as important as that is to the dealers and the overall economic impact in the community.

    "One of the things we keep trying to do is bring additional people and groups to the table," says Schienberg. "There are topics that are important to the industry, and not just the manufacturers and dealers, and we've been able to have a discussion on those at our show."

    Ford CEO Alan Mulally, who had recently joined the automaker from Boeing, was front and center at the New York International Auto Show.

    Schienberg points to one of the features of the most recent show, a discussion related to the effectiveness of automotive advertising presented through media consulting group IAG.

    "There's a recognition that ad agencies and manufacturers have done a good job," says Schienberg. "We wanted to put some light on the role the media and advertising plays in moving product and we did that and we're planning to do it again."

    Another repeat performance is likely with the World Car of the Year presentations; this past year the Lexus LS 460 took the honors from a field of 28 contenders nominated by jurors from 22 countries.

    New York's reputation as being a forum for discussing issues of importance to the industry is hardly new; some 17 years ago, the show began its World Traffic Safety Symposium. It was a time when now commonplace innovations such as side air bags were merely discussion points.

    Mark Schienberg

    Schienberg says that while there are numerous reasons for the New York show being able to get its share of vehicle world introductions (some 40 introductions this past year alone), one is the tie-in with some of the issues addressed at the show, with some of the vehicles being unveiled related in some way.

    He says the show has also had some success in bringing visibility to products and services that in another era might have been strictly in the court of the manufacturer. An example: satellite radio services from XM and Sirius. "There are clearly things going on that the consumer wants to know about," says Schienberg. "It's created a whole new set of messages and relationships that we haven't had before."

    Crowds surge through the entrance to the Javits Center, home of the New York International Auto Show.

    Next year, Schienberg says the show, which will be an OICA-sanctioned event, is looking to present a discussion on how personalities at the senior level of an automotive manufacturer affect the visibility and marketing. Think Jim Press, formerly of Toyota and now at Chrysler. Or Jim Farley, who recently moved from Toyota to Ford.

    For members of the automotive media, attending the New York International Auto Show is one of the key events of the year.

    "These people, as well as those like Rick Wagoner of GM and Alan Mulally of Ford, are strong, identifiable leaders," says Schienberg. "One of the questions we'll be hearing is 'how dramatic is that going to be when it comes to decision-making in the business?'"

    Schienberg says the future of auto shows in general is bright.

    "There's no better place for manufacturers to market their vehicles than at auto shows. There are billions of dollars being spent on various forms of marketing, but when it comes down to it, auto shows are about getting people excited about the vehicles. It's a message we don't get out enough."

    Profile: New York International Auto Show

    April 6-15, 2007

    Next show:
    March 21-30, 2008

    Jacob K. Javits Convention Center

    Exhibit Space:
    846,000 square feet

    Adults, $14; Children (under 12), $4

    Show Hours:
    Sundays, 10 am-7 pm; Mon.-Sat. 11 am-10:30 pm

    Show Contact:
    Mark Schienberg, ATAE
    President, Greater New York Automobile Dealers Association, 718.746.5900

    Candida Romanelli
    Show Director, New York International Automobile Show
    Vice President, Greater New York Automobile Dealers Association", 718-746-5300

    Show Web site:

    Richmond: Show expands floor plan, adds Ride and Drives

    For most auto shows, space is a challenge.

    Wrestling icon Mick Foley was on hand at the Virginia auto show.

    This past season, the Virginia Motor Trend International Auto Show took a bite out of that problem with its expansion into the Atrium Hall, a street-level all-glass area of the Richmond Convention Center, the bonus being that displays were visible to people walking along the street.

    But it was in the show where the action could be found, notably in two new Ride and Drive exhibits: the GM Experience Ride & Drive and the Chrysler Mobile Marketing Tour, an interactive exhibit with the latest vehicles, video games, film shorts and a free gift. There was also the opportunity for show goers to test drive several Chrysler models at the show.

    For many auto show attendees, new is not always everything and such was the case in Richmond with a display of classic and performance Ford Mustangs, made possible by the Central Virginia Mustang Club. Notable models included a 1964 ˝ Mustang, 1966 Mustang Convertible, 1995 Mustang Cobra and a 2002 Saleen Mustang.

    The Central Virginia Mustang Club brought an entertaining collection of the pony cars to the Virginia Motor Trend International Auto Show this past season.

    Other popular features at the show included an appearance by World Wrestling Entertainment's Mick Foley (who is also a New York Times best-selling author) and an appearance by Courtney Hansen, who hosts two TV shows: “Destination Wild,” a travel series on Fox Sports Net, and Spike TV's “PowerBlock.”

    But back to cars. Also on display was the Roush Racing/AAA #6 Ford Fusion Nextel Cup series car as well as a race car simulator that offered show goers a virtual racing experience.

    Maybe not for everyone, but everyone loves taking a look at a Ferrari up close.

    Profile: Virginia Motor Trend International Auto Show

    Mar. 9-11, 2007

    Next year:
    Mar 7-9, 2008

    Greater Richmond Convention Center

    Exhibit Space:
    180,000 square feet

    Adults, $8; Seniors (62 plus), $5; Children (7-12), $3, under 6 free (under 12 free on Kids Day, Mar. 12)

    Show Hours:
    Friday-Saturday, 10 am-10 pm; Sunday, 10 am-6 pm

    Show Contact:
    Don Hall, ATAE, (CEO)

    Show Web site:

    Vancouver: Coping with nice weather, advancing green message

    In Vancouver, Canada's major west coast city, a temperate climate has both its good points and challenges.

    Understandably, the dealer association's display at the Vancouver International Auto Show was in a strategic position to attract attention.

    Certainly, when many other parts of the country are still keeping their snow shovels and snow blowers in ready condition, it's not unusual for residents of British Columbia's biggest city to be tending their gardens.

    But from the perspective of the auto show and Paul McGeachie, general manager of the New Car Dealers Association of BC (owners of the event), having good weather can present a problem from an attendance standpoint.

    "You need two weekends if the weather gets too good," says McGeachie, referring to the nine-day event that this past season ran through Easter weekend, which was unusual in itself.

    "I can't remember the last time that happened," says McGeachie. "But Good Friday was off the scale. It was one of the busiest Fridays we've ever had, with Saturday and Sunday a little softer."

    Tuner Alley at the Vancouver auto show was a popular place to be.

    The show, which is held in BC Place, a domed stadium with an air-supported roof (which two months earlier had "spontaneously deflated" due to a rip), is one that McGeachie says offers a great deal of flexibility in layout. "There are no corners; you only go around in circles."

    Even though the venue is maxed out as far as the auto show is concerned, McGeachie and his association are looking for new opportunities to drive traffic to dealerships, including organizing events throughout the week of the show, the obvious intention being to bring even more people in the doors while allowing the show to expand its reach to the community.

    A charity VIP night this year (the first time in five years it was held at BC Place) helped raise funds for the Special Olympics, a long-standing charity of the dealer association.

    One new feature for the show was an area where consumers could shop for accessory items, among them tires, rims, sound systems and the like.

    The MINI continues to attract its share of attention at auto shows.

    The show also had, for the first time, a careers display, the message being that the auto industry provides a good career choice.

    McGeachie says plans are underway to expand the exotic vehicle display. And the auto show is on track to introduce a test drive feature that will allow consumers to book ahead for select vehicles, meshing the system into the dealer system, again helping to bring shoppers into the dealership.

    Another event to look forward to, and one that McGeachie hopes will tie in nicely to the auto show, is GLOBE 2008, a bi-annual international conference and trade fair designed to highlight advances in green technology. The event, held just before next year's auto show, will also include an Auto FutureTech Summit.

    "We don't conflict with it," says McGeachie. "Rather, they help our green message and consumers get to see how new cars fit into the program."

    A "draw for diamonds" at the Vancouver show made the charity preview event even more popular.

    Profile: Vancouver International Auto Show

    Mar. 30-April 8, 2007

    Next show:
    Mar. 29-April 6, 2008

    BC Place Stadium, Vancouver, British Columbia

    Exhibit Space:
    250,000 square feet (approximate)

    Adults, $12; Seniors/students, $10; Children 7-12 (accompanied by adult), $4; under 6 free; Family (2 adults, unlimited children 12 and under), $28; Multi-day pass, $17.

    Show Hours:
    Opening Friday, 3 pm-10 pm; Saturdays, 10 am-10 pm; Sundays, 10 am-6 pm; Mon.-Fri., 3 pm-10 pm

    Show Contact:
    Paul McGeachie, ATAE
    General Manager
    New Car Dealers Association of B.C., 604.214.9964, ext. 303

    Show Web site:

    Auto Shows of North America Show Directory

    Albany Auto Show
    4/4/2008 - 4/6/2008

    Empire State Plaza Auto Show
    11/2/2007 - 11/4/2007

    New Mexico International Auto Show
    4/25/2008 - 4/27/2008

    Orange County Auto Show
    10/2/2008 - 10/5/2008

    Atlanta Journal-Constitution International Auto Show
    4/19/2008 - 4/27/2008

    Austin American Statesman Auto Show
    12/7/2007 - 12/9/2007

    Baltimore International Auto Show
    2/7/2008 - 2/10/2008

    Bethlehem, PA
    Greater Lehigh Valley Auto Show
    3/27/2008 - 3/30/2008

    Alabama International Auto Show
    11/8/2007 - 11/11/2007

    New England International Auto Show
    11/28/2007 - 12/2/2007

    Buffalo Auto Show
    2/6/2008 - 2/10/2008

    Calgary International Auto & Truck Show
    3/12/2008 - 3/16/2008

    West Virginia International Auto Show
    1/18/2008 - 1/20/2008

    Charlotte International Auto Show
    11/15/2007 - 11/18/2007

    Chicago Auto Show
    2/8/2008 - 2/17/2008

    Cincinnati Auto Expo
    2/21/2008 - 2/24/2008

    Cleveland Auto Show
    2/23/2008 - 3/2/2008

    Columbus International Auto Show
    3/8/2008 - 3/16/2008

    Dallas Auto Show
    4/2/2008 - 4/6/2008

    Iowa/Illinois Regional Auto Show
    2/8/2008 - 2/10/2008

    Dayton Auto Show
    3/21/2008 - 3/25/2008

    Denver Auto Show
    3/26/2008 - 3/30/2008

    North American International Auto Show
    1/19/2008 - 1/27/2008

    Edmonton Motor Show
    2/28/2008 - 3/2/2008

    Fort Worth
    Greater Tarrant County Auto Show
    3/13/2008 - 3/16/2008

    Central California International Auto Show
    11/2/2007 - 11/4/2007

    South Carolina International Auto Show
    1/18/2008 - 1/20/2008

    Harrisburg, PA
    Pennsylvania Auto and Boat Show
    1/23/2008 - 1/27/2008

    Connecticut International Auto Show
    11/16/2007 - 11/18/2007

    First Hawaiian International Auto Show
    3/6/2008 - 3/9/2008

    Houston Auto Show
    1/26/2008 - 2/3/2008

    Indianapolis Auto Show
    12/27/2007 - 1/1/2008

    Kansas City
    Greater Kansas City International Auto Show
    3/5/2008 - 3/9/2008

    Las Vegas
    Las Vegas International Auto Show
    11/23/2007 - 11/25/2007

    Los Angeles
    Los Angeles Auto Show
    11/14/2007 - 11/25/2007

    Louisville Auto Show and Sale
    2/22/2008 - 2/24/2008

    South Florida International Auto Show
    11/9/2007 - 11/18/2007

    Greater Milwaukee Auto Show
    2/23/2008 - 3/2/2008

    Minneapolis/St. Paul
    Greater St. Paul & Minneapolis International Auto Show
    3/8/2008 - 3/16/2008

    Montreal International Auto Show
    1/18/2008 - 1/27/2008

    New Orleans
    New Orleans International Auto Show
    2/29/2008 - 3/2/2008

    New York
    New York International Auto Show
    3/21/2008 - 3/30/2008

    Oklahoma City
    Oklahoma City International Auto Show
    3/6/2008 - 3/9/2008

    Midlands International Auto Show
    1/24/2008 - 1/27/2008

    Central Florida International Auto Show
    11/15/2007 - 11/18/2007

    Philadelphia International Auto Show
    2/2/2008 - 2/10/2008

    Arizona International Auto Show
    11/22/2007 - 11/25/2007

    Pittsburgh International Auto Show
    4/17/2008 - 4/21/2008

    Portland International Auto Show
    1/24/2008 - 1/27/2008

    Northeast International Auto Show
    1/24/2008 - 1/27/2008

    Virginia Motor Trend International Auto Show
    3/7/2008 - 3/9/2008

    Rochester International Auto Show
    2/27/2008 - 3/2/2008

    Sacramento International Auto Show
    11/9/2007 - 11/12/2007

    Saint Louis
    Saint Louis International Auto Show
    1/23/2008 - 1/27/2008

    Salt Lake City
    Utah International Auto Expo
    1/18/2008 - 1/21/2008

    San Antonio
    San Antonio Auto & Truck Show
    11/8/2007 - 11/11/2007

    San Diego
    San Diego International Auto Show
    12/26/2007 - 12/30/2007

    San Jose
    San Jose International Auto Show
    1/10/2008 - 1/13/2008

    Seattle International Auto Show
    10/31/2007 - 11/4/2007

    Spokane International Auto Show
    2/15/2008 - 2/17/2008

    Tampa Bay International Auto Show
    11/8/2007 - 11/11/2007

    Greater Toledo Auto Show
    1/24/2008 - 1/27/2008

    Canadian International Auto Show
    2/15/2008 - 2/24/2008

    Vancouver International Auto Show
    3/29/2008 - 4/6/2008

    Washington Auto Show
    1/23/2008 - 1/27/2008


    Automotive Trade Association Executives
    8400 Westpark Drive
    McLean, VA 22102
    703.556.8581 - fax

    Denise Brennan, ATAE Chairman

    Jennifer Lindsey, ATAE Executive Director

    ASNA Focus Group
    Candida Romanelli, New York
    Jerry Cizek, Chicago
    Shayne Wilson, Atlanta
    Craig Bickmore, Utah

    The Auto Show Report
    Joe Rohatynski, senior editor

    J.D. Booth, editor

    John Koenig, industry editor

  • ASNA Partners

    ASNA Manufacturing Partners