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ASNA 2.0 - The Auto Show Report
Industry News
» ASNA Summer Meeting to attract
   industry's brightest
» Industry editor says dealers are more
» Industry may surge to 16 million units
» Foresight Research: latest findings
   show auto shows 'very efficient'
» People on the Move

Show Profiles
» Tampa: Dealers all smiles in a
   rebounding market
» Boston: Change in dates delivers what
   organizers expected: more visitors
» Greenville: The new and the old in
   South Carolina
» Montreal: OEM investment, new show
   executive leads to strong event
» Toledo: 'Hard core' automotive
» Buffalo: With historical emphasis
   on auto industry, area continues
   its love of cars
» Cincinnati: Resurging market results in
   first sold-out show in three years
» Dayton: Combating the 'February blues'
» Columbus: Positive atmosphere:
   "the way it used to be"
» Denver: Green and Ride and Drives
   rule the day
» Honolulu: Energizing the Aloha State
» New York: Big Apple has its
   'show of shows'

» Show Directory
» Credits/Contacts

Industry News

ASNA Summer Meeting to attract industry's brightest

The energy is building and the momentum is increasing as plans develop for the 2012 ASNA Summer Meeting, July 10-11, at the Stein Eriksen Lodge in Park City, Utah.

"This may be the best ASNA meeting ever," said Stacey Castle, chair of ATAE’s ASNA Committee. "Every day we're hearing from our manufacturer partners, exhibit houses and, of course, ASNA show directors, and are expecting a level of excitement and participation consistent with what we all saw at our shows this past season. It's great. The ASNA committee and I are all very excited."

New this year will be an Exhibit House panel discussion featuring lively conversation with representatives from many of the top companies critical to the success of ASNA member shows. Brief presentations and panelist-audience interaction will lead to an informative session, demonstrating the important partnership role these companies play with manufacturers and auto shows.

"Exhibit houses are so important to auto shows and play such an integral role with manufacturers, we wanted to provide them an opportunity to share their knowledge, and be heard, too," said Castle. "We're very excited about this addition to the agenda."

Castle added that many OEMs have already confirmed meeting attendance and sponsorship, including Chrysler, Dodge, Fiat, Jeep, Ram, Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet, GMC, Nissan, and Volkswagen. Others meeting sponsors include Freeman; George Fern Exposition & Event Services; and trade show management and special event company, Hargrove, Inc.

A key feature of this year's Summer Meeting is the opportunity for potential auto show suppliers to connect with ASNA members and show organizers in a mini-trade show environment, or "trade show light," according to Castle.

"Coupled with a strong program that we are hopeful will include keynote speaker Phil Lebeau from CNBC, the meetings will feature panel discussions on a variety of key auto show issues, including insurance, legal services and relationships with OEMs," she said. "The OEM Panel, for example, will include Chrysler's Bo Puffer, GM's Grace Morgan, and Nissan's Joe Gallant. And more are expected to sign on."

A reception the day before the ASNA Summer Meeting begins is also being planned.

The format will include a "passport" that attendees will have stamped as they circulate around sponsor displays. Holders of passports bearing the stamps of all the exhibitors will be eligible for gifts.

The Summer Meeting will also feature a presentation by Univision National Network on marketing in an increasingly fragmented media world. Additional details on the ASNA Summer Meeting will be released in future ASNA emails. Until then, save the date: July 10-11, 2012.

For more information and sponsorship opportunities, contact Joe Rohatynski joe@joepr.com; Jennifer Colman jcolman@nada.org; or Stacey Castle Stacey@castlecommunications.net

Industry editor says dealers are more respected

Steve Finlay, senior editor, Ward's Dealer Business, says dealers are getting more respect than in the past.

Finlay writes that auto manufacturers "have wised up" and "realize that, while they are experts in producing cars, dealers are the pros at selling them."

In a recent blog posting, Finlay quoted Dodge chief Reid Bigland: “We should let dealers be dealers, and not come in and tell them how to run their businesses. Let dealers do their own thing.”

Industry may surge to 16 million units

The idea of a 16-million unit year may not be as farfetched as some might have thought just a few months ago. At least not if you take the musings of several key analysts, big dealership groups and even automakers such as Mercedes-Benz, Hyundai, and Chrysler, which have increased their forecasts for this year and through 2014. Steve Cannon, who heads Mercedes-Benz in the U.S., has been quoted as such; so has John Krafcik, CEO of Hyundai Motor America. And Morgan Stanley's Adam Jonas "would not rule out 17 million" in three years, according to a report in Automotive News. The last time U.S. sales reached 16 million was in 2007. In 2009 sales dropped to 10.4 million, rising to a selling rate of 14.5 million in the first quarter of 2012.

Foresight Research: latest findings show auto shows 'very efficient'

Interviews of nearly 8,000 new vehicle buyers in the U.S. indicate 40% of those attending auto shows were significantly or completely influenced in their vehicle purchase. The findings, released by Foresight Research of Rochester, Mich., appear to validate what various auto show industries have been saying for years: that these experiential events are targeted to and reaching customers in one of the most efficient ways possible. Foresight CEO Steve Bruyn, agreeing that "auto shows are a very important element of an auto manufacturer’s marketing toolbox," said the company's sample of 2010-2012 model year buyers "confirms the communications power of auto shows and explores factors that drive shoppers to shows and what experiences within the displays are most impactful."

Show Profiles

Tampa: Dealers all smiles in a rebounding market

With a 17% increase in year-over-year attendance, Tampa area dealers have nothing but smiles following the Tampa Bay International Auto, held Nov. 18-20, 2011.

David "Tanker" Snyder, a former Air Force Brigadier General who became executive vice president of the Greater Tampa Bay Automobile Dealers Association on the recent retirement of George Wilson III, is one of those who welcomed the resurgence of the market.

"I think customers as well as dealers are rebounding from a very tough market," said Snyder. "As the economy continues to improve, everyone is pretty happy with the results."

Key among the highlights for Snyder's first auto show were a number of Ride and Drives that Snyder said put smiles on the faces of the manufacturers involved.

Snyder, as one might expect from an ex-military professional, has every intention of continuing to build on a solid relationship with MacDill Air Force Base.

A true West Pointer, Snyder was base commander and wing commander at the base before retiring. Shortly thereafter the dealer organization came knocking.

Snyder had started his own consulting business, leveraging his knowledge of the defense, space and auto related business he'd gained over a career in the military. And now overseeing an auto show is part of his resume.

David "Tanker" Snyder
Even as plans are underway for next year's auto show, Snyder will likely bring the same kind of military discipline he's cultivated on behalf of the greater public.

"We have a robust partnership already in place," said Snyder, the show offering special rates for members of the military and their families.

But Snyder is also building relationships with other key partners in the area, including the Florida Aquarium, based in downtown Tampa, which offered special discounts for auto show attendees.

"I think a good next step as far as the auto show is concerned would be helping to get some military type vehicles at our show," he said.

"We'll be figuring out the right way to serve both the dealers and the car-buying public," said Snyder. "I think there's lots of opportunity ahead for us."

Profile: Tampa Bay International Auto Show

November 18 - 20, 2011

Tampa Convention Center

Exhibit Space:
Over 200,000 square feet

Adults (13 plus), $9; Seniors (62 plus) $5; Military, $5; children (7-12), $5; under 6, free

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

Produced by:
Motor Trend Auto Shows

Show Contact:
David "Tanker" Snyder, ATAE
Executive Director, Greater Tampa Automobile Dealers Association
813.644.6803 snyder@tnada.org

Show Website:

Discount Coupons:
$2 off on Web site, valid Friday only

Boston: Change in dates delivers what organizers expected: more visitors

Even in an economic climate where near double-digit increases in auto show attendance is welcome news for organizers throughout North America, registering a whopping 38% surge in the number of people showing up has to be worthy of a second look.

For Paragon Group's Barbara Pudney, the reason behind those kinds of numbers for the New England International Auto Show, held Jan. 12-16, can be outlined in one sentence:

"We changed the dates of the show."

Of course, there's a bit more to the story than that, starting with the former dates of the event, which is owned by the Massachusetts State Automobile Dealers Association.

"We were held the week following Thanksgiving," explained Pudney. "That was a very difficult time for people who might be thinking about attending an auto show to think about buying a vehicle when they're more likely concentrating on Black Friday sales and Christmas."

Moving to the weekend of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day was positive for another reason, this one being somewhat historic for the Boston area.

"Presidents' Week is one of the biggest car sales periods of the year for the Boston area," said Pudney. "Timing the auto show one month prior to what is already seen to be a heavy period for vehicle sales meant that show goers could shop the show and then take advantage of Presidents' Week sales, which is what they did."

Among show highlights was an appearance of Camp Jeep, plus some seven Ride and Drive opportunities, including Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet, Ford, GMC, Kia and Toyota.

Organizers also held a Charity Preview Party on the Wednesday prior to opening day, with the $100 ticket price benefitting automotive technician scholarships provided through the Massachusetts State Auto Dealers Association.

Pudney proffers another reason for the outstanding success of the New England International Auto Show.

"It was the coldest weekend we had this year," she added. "People were looking for something to do indoors and we gave them just that. Everything worked out extremely well."

Profile: New England International Auto Show

January 12-16, 2012

Boston Convention and Exhibition Center

Exhibit Space:
350,000 square feet

Adults, $12; Children (6-12), $6; under 6 free

Show Hours:
Thursday & Friday, Noon-9 pm; Saturday, 10 am-9 pm; Sunday, 10 am-7 pm; Monday, 10am-6pm

Show Contact:
Robert O'Koniewski, ATAE
Massachusetts State Automobile Dealers Association
617.451.1051 rokoniewski@msada.org

Produced by:
Paragon Expo

Show Website:

Greenville: The new and the old in South Carolina

Local car clubs abound in the Greenville, S.C. area, and Motor Trend, producers of the South Carolina International Auto Show, made sure those enthusiasts had every chance to show off their best.

Certainly the latest in new cars and trucks were a part of the excitement at this season's event, owned by the South Caroline Automobile Dealers Association and held Jan. 13-15.

But as Lauren Holzman, vice president at Motor Trend Auto Shows, explained, having the enthusiasts in the same show as the latest and greatest just makes sense given the circumstances.

"In South Carolina we are lucky to have some very active local car clubs that bring a variety of displays," said Holzman. "This year the auto show hosted the Foothills Mustang Club, Foothills British Car Club and the Greenville Exotic Car Club. These local car enthusiasts bring elements to the show that manufacturers are unable to provide with vintage and specialty cars that many attendees look forward to seeing."

Even so, those looking for a new vehicle weren't disappointed.

The auto show had eight brands hosting Ride and Drives, with attendees getting the chance to try out as many as 35 models, ranging from the electric Chevrolet Volt to the newest Italian imports from Fiat, and even muscle cars like the Dodge Challenger SRT8.

Holzman said a unique partnership with the South Carolina Highway Patrol brought a safe driving display that has become a perennial favorite with show goers.

"They always bringing a demo that shows the effects of someone being thrown from a car accident," said Holzman. "Not always the most pleasant thing to see, but not wearing a seat belt is a very serious matter. Anything we can do to make people safe in a proactive way is a positive message."

The auto show also featured an eco-friendly "Green Trail" where the latest technology and trends in alternative fuel vehicles were featured.

This Motor Trend innovation included a variety of hybrid models as well as several fuel-efficient, non-hybrid vehicles for drivers to choose from—all able to achieve more than 30 mpg highway.

Profile: South Carolina International Auto Show

Friday, January 13-Sunday, January 15, 2012

TD Convention Center

Exhibit Space:
Over 100,000 square feet

Adults (13 and over), $8; Seniors (62 and over), $5; Children (7 to 12), $5; Children (6 and under), Free

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

Produced by:
Motor Trend Auto Shows

Owned by:
South Carolina Automobile Dealers Association

Show Website:

Montreal: OEM investment, new show executive leads to strong event

It may have been her first auto show, but Claudine Vachon was nonetheless impressed by the level of manufacturer support for the 44th edition of the Montreal International Auto Show, held Jan. 13-22.

Vachon, who came to the Montreal Automobile Dealers Corporation last summer having previously worked at the Montreal Food Trade Show, said one key improvement this year was the increased number of vehicle showings new to the market.

"We normally have around 30 vehicles that members of the public see for the first time," said Vachon. "This year it was up to 46."

The auto show worked with attendees to support breast cancer research this year through "Pink Days" Jan. 16-18, during which time $2 from every ticket redeemed by someone wearing something pink (a scarf, pin, etc.) would go to the cause.

Vachon said the three levels of the 350,000-square-foot la Palaise de Congres Montreal were crowded with those looking to see the latest in offerings from manufacturers.

"We were very impressed with the quality of the displays," said Vachon. "Manufacturers really invested in the show and they did a great job in keeping visitors entertained and interested in what they were bringing to the marketplace."

Claudine Vachon
Changes included bigger displays and more multimedia attractions. "The displays themselves seemed to be better organized as well," said Vachon. "The result was that people stayed longer, which is always a good thing."

A "Performance Zone" (sponsored by Scion) included a collection of some 40 modified vehicles that Vachon said was a popular addition this year.

A VIP night (which raised more than $525,000 for medical organizations in the Montreal area) and a well-attended press day were among the highlights of this year's Montreal International Auto Show, she added.

A childcare center, sponsored by Kia, gave show goers an opportunity to walk throughout the event with less distraction.

And attendees got a chance to participate in a vehicle giveaway contest, this year a 2012 Jeep Sahara.

Also adding to the excitement was a display of racing simulators, giving guests the opportunity of getting as close to a Formula 1 experience without actually getting in the vehicle itself.

Profile: Montreal International Auto Show

Jan. 13-22, 2012

Palais de Congres de Montreal

Exhibit Space:
375,000 square feet

$15 adults (over 12), $12 seniors (65 plus), students, $5 children (6-12), Family package $35, free under 6

Show Hours:
10 am-10 pm (closing at 7 pm last day of show)

Show Contact:
Claudine Vachon
Executive Director of the Montreal International Auto Show
514.331.6571 ext. 234 c.vachon@ccam.qc.ca

Show Website:

Toledo: 'Hard core' automotive

It may be one of the smaller shows as far as square footage is concerned, but the Toledo Auto Show, held Jan. 26-29, is no slouch when it comes to drawing interested auto enthusiasts.

Indeed, as far as auto show director Dan Zinni is concerned, the Toledo show is a standout in at least one respect—the ratio of men to women attendees.

"Typically, at least for our other shows [Zinni manages Dayton and Columbus events as well], there's a 60/40 ratio between men and women. But at Toledo, that is closer to 50/50."

Zinni said it's the emphasis on the manufacturer presence in Toledo that is the difference.

"There's a good number of women working at the Jeep plant in Toledo," he said. "Those folks know their cars and they're coming to the show in large numbers."

In fact, Zinnni said, attendance numbers and the health of exhibits never really slumped in the four years previous, unlike other shows which may have not fared as well.

The difference, Zinni said, can be attributed to a strong dealer presence at the auto show.

It may be one of the smaller shows as far as square footage is concerned, but the Toledo Auto Show, held Jan. 26-29, is no slouch when it comes to drawing interested auto enthusiasts.

"We've been sold out three or four years in a row," said Zinni. "But here it's dealers that are doing a good deal of the exhibiting, investing their marketing dollars in what they know works—the auto show."

Still, this year was outstanding in a number of respects, not least of which was attendance.

With a 29% increase in guests flowing into the hall, Zinni and his dealers couldn't be happier.

"On Saturday you could barely walk in the place," he said. "Everyone walked away really happy this year."

With an appearance by Ford's 2013 Fusion as well as Audi showing its R8 Spyder convertible, show attendees had more than their fill.

"Anytime you get both futuristic and dream cars together in one place, people are smiling."

Profile: Toledo Auto Show

Jan. 26-29, 2012

SeaGate Convention Center

Exhibit Space:
70,000 square feet

$5 adults; children under 12 free

Show Hours:
Thurs: 3 pm-9 pm; Fri: noon-9 pm; Sat: 10 am-9 pm; Sun: 10 am to 5 pm

Produced by:
Ohio Automobile Dealers Association

Owned by:
The Toledo Automobile Dealers Association

Show Contact:
Dan Zinni
614.923.2235 dzinni@oada.com

Show Website:

Buffalo: With historical emphasis on auto industry, area continues its love of cars

It may be a "steady as she goes" message as far as this season's Buffalo Auto Show is concerned.

With attendance at the Niagara Frontier Auto Dealers Association event roughly the same as last year, show director Trey Barrett, who's been organizing the event for some 16 years now, said this season's event was a further reflection of a new stability in the auto industry.

"Our area is heavily invested in the industry in a number of areas," noted Barrett, referencing a Ford stamping plant, a GM Powertrain facility and Delphi operations in the immediate Buffalo vicinity.

"There's a lot more confidence in the automotive industry than there has been," said Barrett. "That resurgence has certainly lead to a lot more interest in the new product that's on the road."

An appearance from Fisker would be considered among the highlights of the Buffalo show, the first time the all-electric sports car manufacturer had appeared. "We quite rightly thought that would help drive traffic, so we featured Fisker in our pre-show advertising," said Barrett. "Not only is it a beautifully sculpted automobile, there's the environmental focus that people are interested in right now."

Included in the Buffalo Show were appearances by at least a couple of NHL Buffalo Sabres players as well as those from the NFL Buffalo Bills, plus kid-magnet Captain America.

"He definitely did draw in the kids," said Barrett.

Safety was also on the Buffalo Auto Show agenda, with a "texting simulator" display courtesy of Nationwide Insurance and the New York State Troopers.

“We asked Nationwide to locate the simulator right next to where the state police were setting up, because who better than them to be able to talk to drivers and their friends and families about the dangers of this distraction?”

The auto show also included a Charity Preview Gala, with proceeds from the $95 tickets going to the NFADA Charitable Foundation. More than $500,000 has gone to Western New York charitable organizations since the gala began in 1999.

Profile: Buffalo Auto Show

Feb. 8-12, 2012

Buffalo Niagara Convention Center

Exhibit Space:
110,000 square feet

$9 at the gate
$8 individual tickets - presale
$27 family 4 pack - presale

Show Hours:
11 am-9 pm Wednesday-Thursday; 11 am-10 pm Friday; 10 am-10 pm Saturday; 10 am-6 pm Sunday

Produced by:
Niagara Frontier Auto Dealers Association

Show Contact:
Trey Barrett, Show Director
716.631.8510, ext. 232, trey@nfada.com
Paul Stasiak, ATAE
716.631.8510, ext. 228, pstaskiak@nfada.com

Show Website:

Cincinnati: Resurging market results in first sold-out show in three years

For Ace Ammann and the Cincinnati Auto Expo, supply and demand is one of those most basic economic concepts that tipped in favor of the Feb. 16-19 event this year.

While attendance was up by about 5% over last year, the big news was in the sale of space at the Duke Energy Convention Center, said Ammann, executive director of the Greater Cincinnati Auto Dealers Association.

"We sold all the space we had," he said. "Some manufacturers would have liked even more but there was no more space to sell them."

Renewed enthusiasm for the Hart Productions event was, of course, a reflection of a recovering economy, especially in the auto sector. Not only do manufacturers recognize the impact an auto show has, but in Cincinnati there were those exhibitors that had skipped shows during the "lean years" that were in line for display space.

Producer Chip Hart said this year was probably the first in three years that the event was sold out.

Hart said it's not just economic factors that had a direct effect on the market.

"When consumers see that there isn't a full show, as was the case for the last couple of years, it raises questions in their mind about what's going on. They don't necessarily make the connection between the economic climate and the economics of the show."

Hart said as a result of that mindset, a full show has an even greater positive rebound.

"Consumers were ecstatic about what they saw at a show that was absolutely top notch," he added.

Hart said even mid markets like Cincinnati are now seeing new prototypes, vehicles that are very close to being production vehicles rather than concepts that might never see the inside of a plant or showroom.

"All in all, it's a great feeling to be able to present to the buying public a full show that plays well to the psychology of the participants as well. It was a vibrant atmosphere," said Hart.

Profile: Cincinnati Auto Show

February 16-19, 2012

Duke Energy Cincinnati Convention Center

Exhibit Space:
200,000 square feet

Adults $10; Children (13 and under) $2; Adults 2 for 1 on Thurs/Friday 11 am-6 pm; Kids free on weekdays

Show Hours:
Thurs.-Fri. 11 am-9 pm; Sat. 10 am-9 pm; Sun. 10 am-6 pm.

Produced by:
Hart Productions

Show Contact:
Ace Ammann, ATAE
Executive Vice President, Greater Cincinnati Auto Dealers Association
513.326.7100 ace@gcada.com

Show Website:

Discount Coupons:
$3 off advance sale adult tickets through Cincinnati/North Kentucky Kroger

Dayton: Combating the 'February blues'

When it comes to driving attendance to an auto show located in the not-always-wonderful days of an Ohio winter, sometimes the worse the weather, the better it is, at least from the perspective of an event organizer.

And so it was for Dan Zinni, show director for the Dayton Auto Show, held Feb. 23-26.

Zinni, who works for the Ohio Automobile Dealers Association (headed by ATAE Tim Doran), was part of the decision to move this year's show to February (it was traditionally held a month later).

The result: a 15% bump in attendance.

It's a number Zinni attributed to what's called the "February Blues" (those of you living in warmer climes will just have to use your imagination).

"We're sitting around here, with gray skies for four months, and when we get a couple of days of 70 degree weather, people just aren't willing to check out cars," said Zinni, referencing the problems an auto show in March can generate.

"In short, what we want is lousy weather, something that will bring people indoors."

Zinni got what he asked for and the rest is history.

The fact that Zinni is a Certified Public Accountant by profession means he pays attention to the bottom line, so the date change, he assures, is a move that made financial sense.

Still, running a smaller show like Dayton is no small task, said Zinni, even with the same basic organization (the Ohio Automobile Dealers Association) running three shows—Toledo, Dayton and Columbus.

"The demographics are different, the dealers are different and while you wouldn't necessarily think so, quite often the manufacturer contacts are different," said Zinni.

"But the biggest challenge with Dayton is making sure with budgets being tightened that we don't get left behind."

Zinni described Dayton as having a different demographic and an economy that hasn't had the same kind of "soaring recovery" that other cities have experienced.

"We've seen sales here creep up, but it hasn't turned totally."

Profile: Dayton Auto Show

February 23-26, 2012

Dayton Convention Center

Exhibit Space:
67,000 square feet

$7 adults; children under 12 free

Show Hours:
Thurs: Noon-9 pm; Fri: noon-9 pm; Sat: 10 am-9 pm; Sun: 10 am to 6 pm

Produced by:
Ohio Automobile Dealers Association

Show Contact:
Dan Zinni
614.923.2235 dzinni@oada.com

Show Website:

Columbus: Positive atmosphere: "the way it used to be"

"As good as it's been in five years."

For Dan Zinni the show director for the Columbus Auto Show, held March 15-18, it's good news indeed coming from Ohio's biggest city.

With manufacturers reinvesting in their auto show presence, Zinni said a 24% increase in attendance helped bring a positive atmosphere to the Greater Columbus Convention Center "back to the way it used to be."

Zinni said the atmosphere was made even more positive by the energy generated as soon as you walked into the show.

"You heard wheels squealing from one side of the hall and on the opposite side, you could see BMX riders flying through the air. It really pumped up the crowd."

While there's no obvious state government presence at the show (Columbus is Ohio's capital city), Zinni and his staff made sure auto show attendees weren't missing any of the action associated with NCAA's March Madness.

"We had a March Madness Lounge with TV coverage of the games," said Zinni. "This is, after all, Ohio State territory."

Among other auto show highlights were the giveaway of a Fiat 500, and a wide assortment of exotics, among them Lamborghini and Ferrari. The hourly BMX & Dialed Action Sport Shows helped as well.

"This was a great show for us."

Profile: Columbus Auto Show

March 15-18, 2012

Greater Columbus Convention Center

Exhibit Space:
Under 300,000 square feet

$8 adults; children under 12 free

Show Hours:
Thurs: Noon-9 pm; Fri: noon-9 pm; Sat: 10 am-9 pm; Sun: 10 am to 6 pm

Produced by:
Ohio Automobile Dealers Association

Show Contact:
Dan Zinni
614.923.2235 dzinni@oada.com

Show Website:

Denver: Green and Ride and Drives rule the day

How about the biggest single attendance day ever for a good news story?

That's part of what is now a great story from the Mile High City, where since 2008 the Paragon Group has been producing the Denver Auto Show for the Colorado Automobile Dealers Association, headed by Tim Jackson.

Barbara Pudney of Paragon said Saturday's gate for this season's event, held March 21-25, was the record-breaker, but the night before, dubbed "Industry Night," was also a standout, with double the attendance of the previous year.

"We just had a terrific show," said Pudney. "Among the highlights were Camp Jeep, which is always a popular reason to come to the show."

As is the case in a number of other cities throughout North America, Ride and Drive events were also a big part of the Denver show, with Cadillac, Buick, Chevrolet, Chrysler, Fiat, GMC, Jeep, Kia and Ram brands all taking prospective buyers on test drives.

And as the economy begins to heat up, so does the need for employees at dealerships, a good reason enough for holding a first-ever career fair, said Pudney.

Green was also in evidence at a number of displays, notably newcomer Fisker with its all-electric brand being displayed at the show. "They drew a huge crowd," said Pudney.

In conjunction with the show, a stationary “Green Car Parade” at the Colorado State Capitol showcased the newest energy-efficient vehicles at noon on the Sunday before the show officially opened.

Also noteworthy was an appearance by Lamborghini and its Aventador sports car.

It may not be the sportiest model on the road, but those with mobility issues found the MV-1 of interest. The vehicle is said to be the first and only mobility transportation solution to come off the assembly line ready for wheelchair accessibility.

"That was another huge attention getter," added Pudney.

The five-day auto show included a media day and a charity event that benefitted the Clear the Air Foundation and Denver Post Community. The Charity Preview Party, just coming off its fourth year, attracted its first title sponsor with UMB Bank.

CTAF is a nonprofit organization committed to helping Coloradans who suffer from asthma or other breathing disorders by improving air quality in the state. It focuses on lessening the amount of pollution emitted by old or not properly maintained vehicles by getting them off the road for good.

A ribbon-cutting ceremony featured NFL Hall of Fame Quarterback John Elway of John Elway Chevrolet in Denver, and EVP of the Denver Broncos; and Denver Mayor Michael Hancock. 

Profile: Denver Auto Show

March 21-25, 2012

Colorado Convention Center

Exhibit Space:
500,000 square feet

Adults $10, Seniors (free Wednesday evening), Children (6-12) $2, under 6 free

Show Hours:
Wed., 6 pm to 10 pm; Thurs. 5 pm to 10 pm; Fri., noon-10 pm; Sat., 10 am-10 pm; Sunday, 10 am-6 pm

Show Contact:
Tim Jackson, ATAE
Colorado Automobile Dealers Association
303.282.1448 Tim.jackson@coloradodealers.org

Produced by:
Paragon Group, Inc.

Show Website:

Honolulu: Energizing the Aloha State

At a state-sponsored press conference prior to the opening of the First Hawaiian International Auto Show, Lt. Gov. Brian Schatz pointed out that the Aloha state now has the highest number electric vehicle charging stations per capita-one for every 5,500 residents.
While Hawaii's auto dealers may be waiting for the kind of automotive recovery other areas are enjoying, that hasn't stopped Dave Rolf, head of the Hawaii Automotive Dealers Association, from pointing out some very positive news around the recent First Hawaiian International Auto Show.

Held March 30-April 1, the event did a grand job of heralding the future of renewable energy.

And in a state where the source of renewable energy is likely one of the most abundant on the planet (think oceans, solar and wind), Rolf has every reason to be optimistic.

"Yes, we have the highest gasoline prices in the nation," said Rolf. "But that's a sign of things to come as far as the development of infrastructure in the islands that will transform this industry."

The fact that there was an electric utility display at the very center of the show underscores the fact that Hawaii has more electric charging stations per capita than any place in the U.S.

"Hawaii is to the electric car what Napa Valley is to the grape," said Rolf. "We have perfect temperature, which helps with battery life, short commutes and public policies here that favor renewable options."

Rolf acknowledged that the state has had its economic challenges around the automotive industry, making only modest gains compared to the rest of the nation.

But what he called a "spectacular auto show in the midst of a weak economic recovery" received rave reviews from those attending.

"They gave it the highest ratings we have ever had," said Rolf. "We had some of the highest crowd density of any of the Motor Trend Shows."

Attendance growth was helped with the production of a video that Rolf and Motor Trend organizers made sure received wide distribution.


Profile: First Hawaiian International Auto Show

March 30-April 1, 2012

Hawai'i Convention Center

Exhibit Space:
200,000 square feet

Adults, $8; Seniors $6 (62 plus), students, military $6; and, for the 2012 show, FREE for attendees 17 and younger

Show Hours:
Friday, noon-10 pm; Saturday, 10 am-10 pm; Sunday, 10 am-7 pm

Show Contact:
Dave Rolf, ATAE
Executive Director, Hawaii Automobile Dealers Association
808.593.0031, drolf@hawaiidealer.com

Show Website:

New York: Big Apple has its 'show of shows'

New York's Mark Schienberg has many reasons to be delighted with the 2012 New York International Auto Show (NYIAS), held April 4-15.

This year’s World Traffic Safety Symposium covered the topic of “drugged driving,” one of the fastest-growing traffic safety issues on the road today. The 23rd annual event, held at NYIAS featured three White House appointees. From left to right: Hon. Gil Kerlikowske, “U.S. Drug Czar,” Director of National Drug Control Policy, The White House; Hon. Deborah Hersman, Chairman, National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB); GNYADA President, Mark Schienberg; and Auto Show Chairman, John LaSorsa.
"It was our 'show of shows,' and probably the largest, most successful event we've had as far as I can remember," said Schienberg.

The New York show is actually two events dedicated to two distinct audiences: industry and public.

Both were spectacularly successful.

"Starting with media registrations, which are very important from the industry standpoint, while creating awareness of the public show from our visitor standpoint, we were up some 27% from last year," noted Schienberg. "That was at least partially driven by the fact that we had a combined 60 world and North American introductions here in New York."

Also included during the industry portion of the show: an opening press breakfast featuring Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn; and the World Car of the Year awards program, the signature award being presented to Volkswagen's Up! vehicle.

"Manufacturers were enormously pleased with what they saw," said Schienberg, referencing at least in part to the industry focus that lead into the public show.

"All those pre-public show events were extremely well attended," said Schienberg, who called the World Car program "one of the strongest."

While Schienberg is still calculating a percentage of increase in total public attendance, he has no doubt that it will be higher than last year.

"We never saw a downtime from the first day on," said Schienberg. "It was extraordinary how packed it was. When you look out and can't see carpet, you know it's a good thing."

NYIAS also included a two-day automotive career fair, a World Traffic Safety Symposium, and a pre-show Automotive Forum, sponsored by the IHS Global Insight, the National Automobile Dealers Association and the NYIAS.

The forum, designed to bring together leaders from OEMs, suppliers, retailers and media, included discussions on how the auto industry and economic conditions will shape the future.

Profile: New York International Auto Show

April 6-15, 2012

Jacob Javits Convention Center

Exhibit Space:
More than 846,000 square feet

$15 adults; $5 children

Show Hours:
Monday-Saturday, 10 am-10 pm; Sundays, 10 am-7 pm

Produced by:
Greater New York Automobile Dealers Association

Show Contact:
Mark Schienberg, President
Greater New York Automobile Dealers Association
718.746.5900 mark@gnyada.com

Show Website:

Show Directory

Albany Auto Show
3/9/2012 - 3/11/2012

Empire State Plaza Auto Show
11/4/2011 - 11/6/2011

New Mexico International Auto Show
4/13/2012 - 4/15/2012

Orange County Auto Show
10/4/2012 - 10/7/2012

Atlanta International Auto Show
3/14/2012 - 3/18/2012

Austin American
5/18/2012 - 5/20/2012

Motor Trend International Auto Show—Baltimore
2/9/2012 - 2/12/2012

Bethlehem, PA
Greater Lehigh Valley Auto Show
3/22/2012 - 3/25/2012

Alabama International Auto Show
11/10/2011 - 11/13/2011

New England International Auto Show
1/12/2012 - 1/16/2012

Buffalo Auto Show
2/6/2013 - 2/10/2013

Calgary International Auto & Truck Show
3/14/2012 - 3/18/2012

West Virginia International Auto Show
1/27/2012 - 1/29/2012

Charlotte International Auto Show
11/17/2011 - 11/20/2011

Chicago Auto Show
2/10/2012 - 2/19/2012

Cincinnati Auto Expo
2/16/2012 - 2/19/2012

Cleveland Auto Show
2/25/2012 - 3/4/2012

Columbus International Auto Show
3/15/2012 - 3/18/2012

DFW Auto Show in Dallas
3/21/2012 - 3/25/2012

Iowa/Illinois Regional Auto Show
2/10/2012 - 2/12/2012

Dayton Auto Show
2/23/2012 - 2/26/2012

Denver Auto Show
3/21/2012 - 3/25/2012

North American International Auto Show
1/9/2012 - 1/22/2012

Edmonton Motor Show
3/1/2012 - 3/4/2012

Fort Worth
DFW Auto Show in Fort Worth
12/6/2012 - 12/9/2012

Central California Auto Show
11/18/2011 - 11/20/2011

South Carolina International Auto Show
1/13/2012 - 1/15/2012

Harrisburg, PA
Pennsylvania Auto Show
1/26/2012 - 1/29/2012

Connecticut International Auto Show
11/11/2011 - 11/13/2011

First Hawaiian International Auto Show
3/30/2012 - 4/1/2012

Houston Auto Show
1/25/2012 - 1/29/2012

Indianapolis Auto Show
12/26/2011 - 1/1/2012

Kansas City
Greater Kansas City International Auto Show
3/7/2012 - 3/11/2012

Las Vegas
Las Vegas International Auto Show
11/25/2011 - 11/27/2011

Long Beach
So Cal Test Drive Expo
6/15/2012 - 6/17/2012

Los Angeles
Los Angeles Auto Show
11/18/2011 - 11/27/2011

Carl Casper Custom and Louisville New Car Auto Show
2/24/2012 - 2/26/2012

South Florida International Auto Show
10/28/2011 - 11/6/2011

Greater Milwaukee Auto Show
2/25/2012 - 3/4/2012

Minneapolis/St. Paul
Greater St. Paul & Minneapolis International Auto Show
3/10/2012 - 3/18/2012

Montreal International Auto Show
1/18/2013 - 1/27/2013

New Orleans
New Orleans International Auto Show
3/16/2012 - 3/18/2012

New York
New York International Auto Show
4/6/2012 - 4/15/2012

Oklahoma City
Oklahoma City International Auto Show
3/1/2012 - 3/4/2012

Oklahoma City
OKC Auto Show
3/2/2012 - 3/6/2012

Central Florida International Auto Show
11/24/2011 - 11/27/2011

Philadelphia International Auto Show
1/28/2012 - 2/5/2012

Arizona International Auto Show
11/24/2011 - 11/27/2011

Pittsburgh International Auto Show
2/17/2012 - 2/20/2012

Portland International Auto Show
1/26/2012 - 1/29/2012

Northeast International Auto Show
2/2/2012 - 2/5/2012

Virginia Motor Trend International Auto Show
3/23/2012 - 3/25/2012

Rochester International Auto Show
3/1/2012 - 3/4/2012

Sacramento International Auto Show
10/19/2012 - 10/21/2012

Saint Louis
Saint Louis International Auto Show
1/26/2012 - 1/29/2012

Salt Lake City
Utah International Auto Expo
1/13/2012 - 1/16/2012

San Antonio
San Antonio Auto & Truck Show
10/27/2011 - 10/30/2011

San Diego
San Diego International Auto Show
12/29/2011 - 1/1/2012

San Jose
Silicon Valley International Auto Show
1/5/2012 - 1/8/2012

Seattle International Auto Show
11/2/2011 - 11/6/2011

Spokane International Auto Show
2/10/2012 - 2/12/2012

Tampa Bay International Auto Show
12/7/2012 - 12/9/2012

Greater Toledo Auto Show
1/26/2012 - 1/29/2012

Canadian International Auto Show
2/17/2012 - 2/25/2012

Vancouver International Auto Show
4/3/2012 - 4/8/2012

Washington Auto Show
1/27/2012 - 2/5/2012


Automotive Trade Association Executives

8400 Westpark Drive
McLean, VA 22102

Loy Todd
ATAE Chairman

Jennifer Colman
ATAE Executive Director

ASNA Committee

Stacey Castle, committee chair
Sacramento International Auto Show

Rod Alberts
North American International Auto Show

Tom Kwiatek
Greater Lehigh Valley Auto Show

Greg Remensperger
Portland International Auto Show

Scott Roth
Louisville New Car Show

Mark Schienberg
New York International Auto Show

The Auto Show Report

Joe Rohatynski, senior editor

J.D. Booth, writer

Marc Harlow, writer

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