Latino Traffic Report recently ventured to Chicago to attend the media reveal for the city’s annual auto show. Celebrating 111 years as the showcase for the auto industry in the Midwest and with nearly 1,000 cars, trucks and SUVs displayed on over one million square feet of showroom floor, the Chicago Auto Show (CAS) exposed several causes for celebration this year, starting with anniversaries for three iconic models, and peeks at what’s coming in 2020.
Any vehicle that manages to survive for 30 or more years deserves recognition so kudos to the Mazda Miata and Acura NSX, as well as the 35-year-old Chrysler minivan. Each marks these significant anniversaries with special editions.
At the Mazda reveal of the 2019 special edition Miata in Racing Orange (imagine mango pudding to appreciate the color), CEO Masahiro Moro welcomed several members from seven of the more than 100 Miata clubs based in the United States. Only 500 production vehicles were reserved for the U.S. market. Not surprisingly, the special edition sold out by the end of the day. it’s also not a surprising result. For those who would like to add their names to the waiting list, the special edition will also include orange accents on the Recaro seats, brake calipers, shift knob and dashboard, plus a Bose stereo and thirtieth anniversary badging.
Introduced as the NS-X Concept, the precursor to the production NSX, Acura chose the Chicago Auto Show for the global debut at the Drake Hotel on February 9, 1989. The NSX broke new ground when it first appeared and the second-generation 2019 version continues to break new ground in its segment. It’s the only supercar made in America and the only one utilizing electric motors matched to a three-motor Sport Hybrid Super Handling All-Wheel Drive with a bespoke twin-turbocharged, mid-mounted V6 engine.
Pacifica Hybrid, and Dodge Grand Caravan. Each includes unique design cues, like an all-black interior with Cranberry Wine accent stitching (right), on the Pacifica, as well as upgraded content, like a memory driver’s seat, Mopar overhead DVD, and a dual-pane sunroof.
Despite coming in and out of favor, the minivan remains the ultimate family vehicle. Chrysler was the first to introduce it in 1984 with the Dodge Caravan and Plymouth Voyager (above). This year FCA celebrates 35 years of history with a special edition of the 2019 Chrysler Pacifica,
Nissan unveiled a special edition of the Pathfinder Rock Creek Edition package for adventurous families plus the 2020 Rogue Sport gets a refreshed look and new
technology. Priced at $995, the Rock Creek package includes unique darkened accents like the 18-inch wheels, mesh grille, roof rails, door handles and outside rearview mirrors, and front and rear fascia accents. It has unique “Rock Creek” badging on the front doors plus two-tone seating surfaces and badging, high contrast stitching on seats, door, console lid, and steering wheel. Every Rock Creek Edition also features a standard trailer tow hitch and harness and splash guards.
Available for sale in the spring of this year, the 2020 Rogue Sport has been refreshed inside and out with a new front fascia, hood, Vmotion grille, bumper and LED signature Daytime Running Lights. Enhanced technology includes ProPILOT Assist, Nissan Safety Shield 360 technologies, and an updated audio system with standard Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.
For truck lovers, GMC, Ford and Chevrolet introduced heavy duty models for 2020, each with bragging rights, like max towing of 35,500 pounds on the Sierra and Silverado, plus Toyota showed a new lineup of 2020 TRD models including the Tacoma and Sequoia.
More 2020 models at the show included the all-new Land Rover Evoque, Alfa Romeo 4C Spider Italia, Kia Sportage, and Subaru Legacy.
Special kudos also goes to the CAS for setting aside a day for Latino car buyers on Feb. 15, hat featured performances by Latino artists including ballet folklórico and mariachi. Not many if any auto shows make such a special effort. ¡Muchas gracias!