As we walked around the halls of the COBO Center in downtown Detroit, Michigan on the third weekend of the fresh 2016 calendar year I had a few thoughts running through my mind. Firstly, that I really don’t enjoy big, fancy auto shows like this as compared to say a grassroots or more local event. The scale to which the manufactures are willing to go to draw attention to their products is staggering. No amount of money was too much for some of the companies.
Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, for example had probably 20% of the total show space, just to themselves. That truly shows how large of an entity they are. The hired in models, the flashy lights, the suits. It’s just not something that appeals to a home grown car enthusiast like myself and my Afterburner team mates.
On the other hand. I can appreciate what shows like NAIAS are about. The future.
I can confidently say that the future of the performance car is safe and sound. There should be no doubt in the mind of car guys and gals around the world that the future of the enthusiast cars is going to be amazing. Each company had something on offer for us petrol heads. Whether your tastes be geared more towards the affordable, every mans sports cars or something more on the exotic side. There will be something for you in the coming years.
Mazda brought along one of their new Global MX-5 Cup cars to show off for the amateur racers among the attendees. Fiat had their Abarth 500 on display and Subaru had their WRX STi out for all the rally enthusiasts to drool over.
As the GT86 enters its third full year of production it looks like enthusiast aren’t going to stop purchasing arguably the best cheap sports car on the market. With the plethora of aftermarket support available for the FR-S/BRZ it won’t be hard to individualize and modify your car to suit your tastes.
Scion even had an ex. Pikes Peak Hill Climb FR-S on display for me to drool over for a good fifteen minutes. Complete with a Rocket Bunny Version One Body Kit, carbon fiber everywhere, and a BC Racing stroked 2jz under the hood. What wasn’t there to like? In fact, this particular vehicle was my choice for my favorite vehicle at the show. I guess its pretty apparent that I really can’t get that excited about new cars can I?
The new Ford GT is a thing of beauty. It really makes me proud to see an American company make an effort to build a super car again. With a 3.5L, twin turbocharged Eco-Boost V6 producing 720hp and 539ft.lbs of torque, what isn’t there not to like? Not to mention, the things a looker. There isn’t a bad angle to view this car from.
Ford even had one of the new GT LM cars on display. They will be campaigned by Chip Ganassi Racing at the 24hours of Daytona here in a couple of weeks, and a few of the other major World Endurance races in the coming year. It’s good to see another factory backed GT effort from Ford. I can’t wait to see how they do out on the track with the other GT Machinery from around the globe.
BMW isn’t slowing down when it come to pumping out great performance cars. With the new minuscule (compared to its siblings) M2 joining the ///M lineup it’s good to see that BMW isn’t forgetting about its enthusiast customer base. I look forward to the possibility of owning one of these cars down the road in my life, as do a couple more of my Afterburner mates.
I will never tire of looking at the BMW i8. It is the only hybrid/electric vehicle I would actually own that is currently being made. BMW certainly knocked it out of the park with this car. It’s because of this car, that I have faith that the automobile manufacturers aren’t forgetting about making fast cars. Even if they have to be electric.
For a while there, I was beginning to question that there would be a car that I and other car enthusiasts would lust after in this new, fuel efficient, electric, and globally conscious automotive landscape that is unfolding in front of us every day. Gladly though, the performance car isn’t dying, however, its evolving. As new materials, power plants, and manufacturing methods are introduced, the enthusiasts car seems to be adapting to fit the new trends and standards. That makes me very happy, the sports car isn’t going away, it’s just taking a new form. There will be cars in the future that we car enthusiasts lust after, cars we want to own, vehicles that will grace the bedroom walls of future petrol heads in training. The dream cars are safe and sound, they just look a little different. We left Detroit that day with a sense of reassurance, that the cars of the future might be all right after all.
You can view the rest of the photos from the event ——> HERE