Press day at the LA Auto Show is unlike any other event. I have been attending the LA Auto Show for many years on both public days and press days. Public days are busy and chaotic. Consumers substitute multiple trips to dealerships by attending the auto show. Trying out every car they can get in line for, almost like a giant dressing room in a retail store. The more expensive cars are locked beyond the red carpet, only to be seen from a distance.
Press days are quite different. The room feels very serious as car enthusiasts, car designers, and the press inspect each car carefully as some of the newest cars are reveled. Occasionally, the kindergartner in all of us will kick in and someone in a grey suit will slip into a Maserati and pretend for a minute he is the owner.
Being present during the debut of a new car is like being at a concert. The ‘Oohs and Ahhs’ fill the room as soon as the drape is removed from the car. Each company’s booth offers a unique sense of hospitality. Some offer guests wine and champagne, while others give away small electronics or apparel. There is a level of competitiveness amongst the companies: each trying to present the most creative setting, attract the largest audience, while dressing each car with a couple of super models. Cars that are worth over a million dollars sit on pedestals with their doors open, welcoming the guests inside.
While each debut is filled with glamor and joy, the event is also a farewell party to the cars who are entering their final year of production. The Mercedes SLS AMG for example, was presenting its Final Edition GT model, which only 350 will be made of and never to be produced again.
I think the most exciting moment for everyone was seeing the Porsche 918 Spyder. iPhones and professional cameras occupied every inch around the car as one waited to have their turn to sit inside.
Want to see more and only have an hour or two for the LA Auto Show? Brian Cooley of CNET shares a video of what not to miss.LA Auto Show Los Angeles Convention Center
1201 S. Figueroa Street
Los Angeles, CA 90015 $10/weekdays $12/weekends http://laautoshow.com/ Alexandra Cooper is a professional photographer who is in her last year at Art Center College of Design. She hopes to become a photojournalist. You can find more of her work at Alexandra Cooper Photography.