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This article is from our archives and has not been updated and integrated with our "new" site yet... Even so, it's still awesome - so keep reading!

Published on Fri, Sep 23, 2011

By: The LACar Editorial Staff

0LAcar Camp Jeep out the window
The view from atop Camp Jeep Anaheim (Mark Dorman)

The Orange County International Auto Show is now The Big Orange County International Auto Show. For a few years now, the OC show fell under the shadow of the Los Angeles Auto Show when the LA group moved its show from January to November (coincidentally, to get out from under the shadow of the Detroit show). This year, the OC show was bigger than it's been in years, with more cars and more ride-and-drive events than ever before. ANAHEIM, Calif.—More than 400 cars, trucks, crossovers, and exotics cruised into the Anaheim Convention Center for the 2012-Model Orange County International Auto Show. The OC show featured the world debut of the 2012 Honda CR-V Concept, a $595,000 Gumpert and the first public ride-and-drive of the 21st Century Volkswagen Beetle.

0LAcar CR-V Concept 1
Honda CR-V Concept (Mark Dorman)

The OC International Auto Show is one of the first auto shows of the 2012-model season and the place to see virtually all of the new vehicles side by side, growing by 15 percent. More than 40 models from Buick, Chevrolet, Chrysler, Ford, GMC, Hyundai, Toyota and Volkswagen were available for ride and drives, as well as Camp Jeep Anaheim, an off-road rest track to experience the latest from Jeep. Models at the show included the Chevrolet Sonic, FIAT 500, Ford Focus, Hyundai Veloster, Kia Rio, Lexus LFA and Scion iQ, as well as pre-production models including the 2013 Chevrolet Malibu, 2013 Lexus GS, 2012 Subaru Impreza 2.0i 4-Door Limited and 2012 Subaru Impreza 2.0i Sport Premium 5-Door.

The new Jetta GLI (R Nakano)

“We are thrilled that the OC International Auto Show was one of the first places in the country for consumers to see the new model vehicles,” said OC International Auto Show’s Director John Sackrison. “In addition to hot cars, we had more ride and drives than ever before, with more than 40 different models that were ready for attendees to jump in and drive. The auto show was also 15 percent bigger than last year.” Attendees enjoyed the first public test drive opportunity for the all new 21st Century Volkswagen Beetle, as well as the 2012 Volkswagen Passat. Also, Volkswagen brought Max Page, child actor and the Mini Darth Vadar star of Volkswagen’s 2011 Super Bowl commercial, to the show. Max met and greeted fans and signed autographs in the Volkswagen display.

0LAcar VW Beetle 2012 front
The third generation VW Beetle (Mark Dorman)

Drivers were invited to participate in Camp Jeep Anaheim, an interactive adventure zone where professional 4x4 drivers shared the experience of Jeep’s off-road capabilities with riders. The Jeep test track included logs, stumps, an angled drive-over and other terrain. It also featured a hill climb where passengers experienced the vehicle's traction capabilities while climbing a 35 degree Jeep Mountain. Auto show visitors will got an up-close look at a JuiceBar electric vehicle (EV) charging station, from Green Garage Associates. These Level 2 and Level 3 stations are said to offer fast charging capabilities and are available in garages throughout Los Angeles and Orange County. Also present was CODA, a zero emission EV sedan featuring a 36kWn battery pack, as well as a 134 horsepower motor that achieves 221 lb-ft of torque, regenerative braking system and air-cooled active thermal management system. CODA says its sedan provides consumers 120-150 real-world driving miles per charge. The 6.6 kW on-board charger takes six hours to fully charge from empty, and two hours to charge for an average 40 mile commute.

At the DUB exhibit (R Nakano)

The DUB® Magazine Celebrity Car Showcase returned with a collection of tricked-out celebrity rides. Also present were exotics and Michael Schumacher’s 1996 Formula 1 race car, courtesy of the Marconi Automotive Museum, in The RPM Lounge™. SHIFTR Automotive and Lifestyle Expo provided a custom car show within the auto show featuring exotics, drift cars, lowriders, DJs and more. A collection of high-end exotics from Lamborghini, Bentley, Ferrari, Maserati and Porsche were part of the show, including the new 2012 Bentley Continental GT Coupe, Porsche Panamera, Ferrari 458 Italia, and Maserati GranTurismo MC Stradale. Car enthusiasts got an up-close look at the 2012 Lamborghini Aventador LP 700-4 with a 700 horsepower engine that the manufacturer says will reach a top speed of 217 mph and travel from 0-60 mph in 2.9 seconds (Courtesy of Newport Auto Center, Ferrari & Maserati of Newport Beach and Lamborghini Newport Beach).

The Gumbert Apollo (R Nakano)

The OC International Auto Show was home to the Gumpert Apollo, a supercar that reaches a top speed of 203 mph and accelerates from 0-60 in 2.8 seconds. This serial #001 Gumpert is the first one in the series of supercars with a base price tag of $595,000, courtesy of CEC. Supercar fans also saw the Saleen S7R, the last Saleen S7R to be built, #15 of 15, and valued at nearly $1 million, courtesy of Family Classic Cars. The Acura display had the 2012 S.H.I.E.L.D. Acura TL that was inspired by Acura’s involvement in the summer’s blockbuster hits, Thor and Captain America. Acura is the official vehicle of S.H.I.E.L.D., which is, of course, the secret peacekeeping intelligence agency that protects humanity from superhuman threats as seen in the movies Thor and Captain America. This futuristic vehicle sports a 32-valve, Palladium-powered engine with a 9 Speed HYPER-Shift transmission. It features advanced radar-deflecting capabilities, bulletproof clear coat and night-vision HUD windshield, according to Acura. This Acura retails for $227,085 with additional features but does not include Palladium fuel. (*All onboard technology and weaponry of the Acura 2012 TL S.H.I.E.L.D. Edition shall only be operated by active and qualified S.H.I.E.L.D. agents, operating at a L2 clearance. Anyone found tampering with unregistered and unauthorized equipment will be prosecuted. All technology is patented under Acura and Stark Technologies, Inc. Vehicle not actually for sale.)

0LAcar Ferrari 458 Italia Rear Yellow
Ferrari 458 Italia (Mark Dorman)

Show organizers say more than 40 models from twelve manufacturers were available for test drives at the OC International Auto Show: • Volkswagen 2012 Beetle and Passat Test Drive Experience – 2012 Volkswagen Beetle, 2012 Passat • Camp Jeep Anaheim – Jeep Wrangler Rubicon, Wrangler Unlimited, Grand Cherokee • Chevrolet, Buick, GMC – Experience the Drive – Chevrolet Camaro, Cruze, Equinox, Malibu, Silverado, Traverse, Volt, Sonic; Buick Regal, LaCrosse, Enclave; GMC Acadia, Yukon Denali Hybrid, Sierra • The Toyota Drive Center – Toyota Next Generation Camry, Prius, Prius v, RAV4, Corolla, Tundra • The Chrysler Drive – Chrysler 200, 300, Town & Country; Jeep Compass, Grand Cherokee, Wrangler; Dodge Challenger, Charger, Journey; Ram 1500; FIAT 500 • Hyundai Drive Experience – Hyundai Equus, Genesis, Sonata, Tucson, Elantra, Veloster • Ford Drive One Experience – 2012 Ford Focus, Fiesta, Explorer, F-150, Fusion Hybrid, Edge, Flex, Mustang

Fiat 500c (R Nakano)

The auto show was also a hub for family entertainment offering interactive robots, RC car racing, climbing walls and more for children of all ages. The Ford display had Hank the Ford Robot, who entertained throughout the day. Additionally, King Robota, an eight-foot tall Comic-Bot, entertained showgoers on Saturday and Sunday. The following are the details on additional special appearances and events: • L.A. Lakers Girls – The L.A. Lakers Girls greeted fans and signed autographs on Friday. • Hooters’ Miss OC International Auto Show Contest on Friday. • Hooters Poster Girls of OC – Hooters poster girls met fans and signed autographs Friday through Sunday. • Swimsuit International Model Search on Saturday. • Hooters Wing Eating Contest on Saturday. • LFL’s Los Angeles Temptation greeted fans and posed for photos Saturday and Sunday. • The OC Roller Girls were available to sign autographs and pose for pictures on Saturday and Sunday. • Anaheim Bolts, the OC's newest professional indoor soccer team were there all show days.


The OC International Auto Show is owned and presented by the Orange County Automobile Dealers Association and produced by Motor Trend Auto Shows, LLC. The auto show was open to the public September 22 through September 25, at the Anaheim Convention Center More details at

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