LOS ANGELES — It was packed like sardines. Nearly 100,000 people filled the L.A. Convention Center on each of the first two days that the 2017 Los Angeles Auto Show was open to the public.
More consumers are moving away from sedans and getting into SUVs, according to analysts at Kelley Blue Book (KBB). The evidence is clear at the L.A. Auto Show with more SUVs on display than ever before.
“It’s our first time here,” said Mary Gregory from Paso Robles, Calif. “There’s a lot of really cool cars here. It’s been a lot of fun. My favorite car here was the Tesla Model X. That one was really nice. I really like SUVs. They are practical cars especially when thinking about kids. I like them.”
Her boyfriend, Ethan Pahler, added: “It’s overwhelming. It’s been a great experience. I like the Subaru WRX STI. I’m never going to drive an SUV, but she likes them. It’s fun to see.”
One of the cars that drew lots of eyeballs is the Redspace electric vehicle concept. It will be sold in the Chinese market as a way to get around heavy traffic and serve as an office on wheels. Well-known automotive designer Chris Bangle came up with the idea.
California-based automaker Tesla Motors has a display inside the L.A. Auto Show this year. They are showing off their all-new Model 3 sedan, Model X SUV and their new solar panel roof shingles.
“I really like it…there’s a lot of really cool cars here,” said Lincoln Frazier from Seal Beach, Calif. “It’s a real good place to kind of scope out cars–something I might buy in the future. I like the Mercedes-Benz G Wagon or the Lexus LX. Those are pretty nice. I’m not really into electric cars. I kind of like the gas, the old way. I like sedans.”
Several of the automakers offered test drives of their new vehicles outside the convention center. Land Rover had a hilly test track across the street from the auto show. Meanwhile, FiatChrysler offered attendees a $10 gift card if they got behind the wheel of a Fiat.
“I’ve been coming here for over 30 years,” said Rick Stryker from Brea, Calif. “It is easy to see the march of the industry heading toward electric cars and hybrids as well. I grew up in the era of station wagons. It’s easy to see how the market would accept something with a shorter length like an SUV rather than a station wagon that I’ve seen. I would trade in my car for a hybrid or electric SUV. I really like the Chevrolet Bolt EV. That makes a lot of sense with many of the Model 3 features with a dealer network.”
Inside the auto show, Forza Motorsport 7 has an activation where kids and adults can try out their new video game on an XBox One X or on the motion activated driver’s seat. Prizes are available for those who can beat the lap time of two minutes and 15 seconds.
Attendees can also make a miniature Lego guy and take it home at the Ford display. Ford also features a virtual reality experience within its exhibit.
The 2017 Los Angeles Auto Show continues through December 10 at the L.A. Convention Center. For tickets and more information, visit www.LAautoshow.com.