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All eyes on the first show of the model year

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Published on Mon, Nov 16, 2015

By: The LACar Editorial Staff


All eyes on the first North American auto show of the calendar year (Nakano)

As the first major auto show of the model year in North America, the Los Angeles Auto Show is like the Iowa caucuses and New Hampshire primaries of the show circuit. The New York show has the largest attendance, Chicago has the most square footage, and Detroit the most debuts, but the LA Auto Show lays claim as the pacesetter—the show that rides the crest of the new model year wave. It’s a distinction it acquired when it moved the show from January to November. The show takes place on November 20-29, 2015, but all eyes are on the press and trade days on November 17-19th:


Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti (Zoran Segina)

CONNECTED CAR EXPO Mayor Garcetti arrived to open Connected Car Expo in a partially driverless Volvo XC 90. The keynote by John Zimmer, founder of Lyft, and other speakers made it clear that, to them, individual car driving and ownership is an obsolete concept. It their world teenagers no longer care about getting a driver's license, and driverless Taxibots timely answer customer calls from Hollywood and South Central LA alike. Owners of automated cars surf the Internet and sip cappuccino while machines drive them around. The afternoon sessions attempted to emphasize benefits of this brave new approach (computer-assisted car manufacturing, and wireless updates of car software systems.) Unfortunately, the computer systems remain inadequate and can be hacked. Meanwhile, the older customers with money do not understand the interconnected car, and the kids who do, lack money and desire to purchase one. - Zoran J. Segina TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 17, 2015 7:15 am CCE Exhibit Floor Opens 8:00 - 8:10 am Welcome Address by Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti 8:10 - 8:25 am Welcome by CCE Emcee Brian Cooley, CNET 8:25 - 8:40 am Opening Keynote by Lyft Co-Founder & President, John Zimmer 8:45 - 8:55 am Top Ten Automotive Startups Presentation Featuring: Michelle Avary, VP Automotive & Strategy, Aeris 9:00 - 9:25 am The Long and Winding Road to Autonomous Of all the recent innovations and industry visions, nothing has captured the public’s attention and piqued its imagination like the autonomous vehicle. While some love the idea and others fear it, most experts agree that the road to autonomy will not be a straight one. Join us for a discussion of the twists and turns that lie ahead as well as ways for achieving a smoother ride. Featuring: Prof. Thomas Form, Electronics & Vehicle Research, Volkswagen; Brian Droessler, VP of Software & Connected Solutions, Continental; and Gary O'Brien, Global Director Advanced Engineering, Delphi Silicon Valley. 9:35 - 9:50 am Press Conference Vision Fleet 9:55 - 10:10 am Press Conference Quanergy Systems 10:20 - 10:35 am Android Auto: From the Inside Out While we have all heard about Android Auto, how many of us know what’s going on under the hood? How was it designed? What tradeoffs were made? What lessons were learned and what were the big surprises during its development? We hear from Google’s Henry Newton-Dunn and Evan Malahy, who will discuss similarities between auto-centric and mobile-centric design and how Google has amalgamated the two to create Android Auto. Featuring: Henry Newton-Dunn, Design Manager, Google; and Evan Malahy, Design Lead, Android Auto. 10:30 - 11:15 am From Start-up to the Big Leagues, How to Get Your Break in the Automotive Industry When a startup tries to work with automotive companies, the lingo can be confusing, the timelines can be frustrating, and the decisions can be opaque. What does it take for a fledgling company with amazing innovative ideas to really make the sale? How can a tiny startup benefit from massive automotive companies without being crushed? Take a lesson from our industry veterans who know from experience what tactics to avoid and what business strategies to use. If your startup is trying to crack into automotive, you can’t afford to miss this opportunity to learn from the pros. Featuring: Andrew Poliak, Global Director Business Development, QNX; Lars Boeryd, Director of Automotive Marketing, Qualcomm; Ben Hoffman, CEO, Movimento; and Paul Asel, Managing Partner, Nokia Growth Partners 10:40 - 11:00 am Consumer Confidential: What Research Reveals About Buyers’ Deepest Desires While we may often think that we know the car buyer’s desires, working in the industry can easily skew our vision of what the mass market really wants. Here to provide clear insights are three industry experts whose research focuses on the automotive consumer. Featuring: Kristine Kolodge, Executive Director of Driver Interaction and HMI, JD Power; Roger Lanctot, Associate Director, Global Automotive Practice, Strategy Analytics; and Claudiu Dimofte, Associate Professor of Marketing and Research Fellow, San Diego State University


Fiat surprised the press with the debut of its new 124 Spider (Nakano)

11:05 - 11:30 am Going My Way? Car Sharing and the Future of Vehicle Ownership Car sharing and ride sharing provide radical alternatives to traditional transportation systems and may alter who wants or needs to own their own car. While they may not exactly complement existing infrastructure, is it possible to have new car sharing business models that do? We hear from pioneers in this field who see a future that both competes and complements today’s car-owner-centric society. Featuring: Eric Spiegelman, President, LA Taxi Commission; Joanna McFarland, Co-Founder, Hop Skip Drive; and Alicia Agius, GoDrive Project Lead, Ford of Europe. 11:40 - 1:10 pm Interactive Networking Luncheon and Presentation 1:25 - 1:40 pm No Assembly Line Required: the Future of Car Production Not since Henry Ford’s introduction of the assembly line has automotive production faced so much change. Join us as Local Motors’ Justin Fishkin offers an insider’s look at 3D printing and shares on the progress made in the field since his explosive appearance at last year’s CCE. Featuring: Justin Fishkin, Chief Strategy Officer, Local Motors. 1:45 - 2:10 pm OTA Updating: Why Your Vehicle Will Never Be the Same Until now, software update discussions have primarily focused on bug fixes, recalls and security patches; however, with so many of the car’s capabilities provided via software, updates may provide flexibility that the industry has yet to fully realize. Join our experts as they explore the opportunities and challenges for keeping the car relevant from cradle to grave. Featuring: Matt Jones, Head of Future Infotainment, Jaguar Land Rover; Mahbubul Alam, Chief Technology Officer, Movimento; and Oren Betzaleli, Executive VP Product, Strategy and Marketing, Redbend. 2:15 - 2:40 pm The New Consumer Electronics Invasion and How It’s Reshaping the Vehicle Interior The mobile phone, one of many subsegments in the consumer electronics space, has had a major influence on vehicular electronics. Could another device/technology have a similar impact? Which new developments might make their way into automotive? Gaming? Smartwatches? Wearables? Join industry experts from Google, Pebble, and Edison Research as they consider how the consumer electronics industry may once again change how, when, and where we interact with our cars. Featuring: Larry Rosin, President, Edison Research; Asad Iqbal, Head of Business Development, Pebble; and RJ Mical, Director of Games, Google. 2:50 - 3:05 pm Press Conference - OpenCar KPMG 3:35 - 4:00 pm Californivation: How OEMs are Tapping into West Coast Technology The connected car continues its rapid evolution with technology innovation constantly streaming out of Silicon Valley. How can OEMs extract new ideas from the world’s technology pressure-cooker without compromising automotive safety or quality? What is the secret to a successful relationship between idea-generating startups and production-minded OEMs? In this interview-style session, we sit down with C-level OEM executives to see how they are working with a “fail fast” and agile California culture to experiment in different technologies — even those outside of transportation/mobility — in order to stay ahead in the technology arms race. Featuring: Neal Boudette, Journalist, Automotive News; Dr. Frankie James, Managing Director, Advanced Tech Office, General Motors Silicon Valley; Nick Sugimoto, Sr. Program Director, Honda Silicon Valley Lab; and Ned Curic, CTO, Toyota Motor Sales. 4:05 - 4:30 pm The Hack Heard Around the World You might be able to hack into a car with a physical connection but it’s virtually impossible otherwise, right? Wrong. Uber’s Chris Valasek shares how he and Charlie Miller were able to remotely control a vehicle’s steering and brakes over a 3G connection; he will also identify the cybersecurity vulnerabilities that the automotive industry must immediately close. Featuring: Chris Valasek, Security Lead, Uber Advanced Technology Center Pittsburgh. 4:35 - 4:50 pm The Cybersecurity Trilogy: Three Problems, Three Solutions Cybersecurity is top of mind for everyone. But with so many different angles to consider, it is hard to know where to focus. Join us as three top experts pinpoint the automotive industry’s most crucial cybersecurity issues and offer solutions that can have an immediate impact. Featuring: Andre Weimerskirch, Associate Research Scientist, UMTRI; and Karl Heimer, Special Adviser for Cyber Security to the State of Michigan, founding partner, Autoimmune. David Strickland, Partner, Venable 4:55 - 5:10 pm Interview with Arwed Niestroj, CEO, Research & Development North America Mercedes-Benz 5:15 - 5:20 pm Closing Remarks with Brian Cooley, CNET 5:00 - 8:00 pm Press & Trade Days Kickoff Party


Alfa Romeo unveiled its new Giulio (Nakano)

WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 18, 2015 7:00 - 8:25 am MPG Motoring Invitational presented by Alfa Romeo 8:25 am - 8:45 am Alfa Romeo 9:00 am - 9:25 am Ford Motor Company


The new Lincoln MKZ (Nakano)

Lincoln MKZ It was a textbook example of how not to showcase a world debut. Several hundred journalists gathered around the roped-off Lincoln area surrounding a car under wraps. Suddenly, the presentation (fake as it turned out) commenced at a nearby Ford display causing a mad scramble. When the commotion settled we were introduced (at the initial location) to the 2017 Lincoln MKZ. The car is powered by a turbocharged 3.0-liter V6 with 400 horsepower and 400 lb.-ft. of torque There is also a 2.0-liter, 245-hp four-cylinder engine with front-wheel drive powering the hybrid. The three liter version includes 19-inch wheels and continuously controlled damping and suspension. Will be in showrooms by summer of 2016. No information on price yet. – Zoran J. Segina 9:30 am - 9:55 am Nissan 2017 Nissan Sentra Nissan has been working hard at updating the look of their fleet and the Sentra is next up on the list. The mid-cycle refresh will bring about some pretty significant changes. We are expecting styling cue updates to better familiarize with the new Maxima, Murano, Rogue, etc. Nissan has also said the seats will be changed which is aimed at increasing the comfortability along with other new tech features. Nissan has not released any information on the engine, but we do not expect any changes to the transmission. Expect to see the Sentra refresh to release sometime mid to late 2016. – Mark Dorman 10:00 am - 10:25 am Fiat 10:30 am - 10:55 am Porsche


Porsche Cayman GT4 Club Sport (Zoran Segina)

Porsche Cayman GT4 Club Sport For the Porsche customers itching to hit the track, this version of the Cayman is the answer. The 3.8-liter, 385-hp competition version of the flat-six will come with a standard PDK dual-clutch transmission, and the 911 GT3 Cup car front suspension. Four 14.8-inch steel disc brakes, a single bucket seat, and six-point harness attached to an integral roll cage, make the Clubsport race-ready especially with 7.44 lb power to weight ratio. This is the first non-911 race car since 1995. Porsche seeks homologation for the Pirelli GT3 Cup Trophy, and World Challenge and Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge. This entry-level machine costs $165,000, but to get the car the buyer must agree to annually participate in at least six Porsche sanctioned races for the first two years. Air jacks, engine management data and spares bring the price to $200,000. – Zoran J. Segina


Porsche 911 Targa 4S (Zoran Segina)

Porsche 911 Targa 4 and 4S Targa was unveiled at the 2014 Detroit Auto Show, and the GTS version came shortly thereafter. Porsche’s latest iterations of the 911 Targa are 4 and 4S. The 4 is powered by a 3.4 liter flat six with 350 hp at 7400 rpm and 287 lb.-ft of torque at 5600 rpm. Rowing a seven speed manual transmission will bring the driver from 0 to 60 mph in 5.0 seconds and a top track speed of 175 mph. Those requiring more oomph will opt for the 4S model with its 3.8 liter flat engine, developing 400 hp at 7400 rpm, and 325 lb.-ft. of torque. To reach 60 from 0 in 4.2 seconds, and go all the way to 182 mph top speed, the driver will have to supplement this open roof beauty with the optional Sport Chrono Package (Porsche Doppelkupplung -PDK sounds so much better), and use launch control. Because roads tend to get bumpy and curvy, the Porsche Active Suspension Management (standard on the 4S, option on the 4) and Porsche Dynamic Chassis Control (option for the 4S) may represent a good investment. The prices start from $108,600.00 for a basic manual 4. – Zoran J. Segina 11:05 am - 11:30 am Buick


2017 Buick LaCrosse (Nakano)

2017 Buick LaCrosse You might not think of yourself as a potential Buick owner, but you’re going to be surprised by what the company is calling “the new face of Buick,” seen first on the 2017 LaCrosse. “Crafted” and “captivating” are two words that the General is using to describe the car, which they promise will push luxury to new levels. A striking chrome grille, which hearkens back to the 1954 Wildcat II, announces the car’s presence. Newly swoopy character lines and a curved body crease near the rear accentuate the exterior design. The technical highlight is a five-link rear suspension which promises a smoother and more responsive ride than luxury competitors, not to mention the outgoing model. - Brian Kennedy 11:35 am - 12:00 pm Jaguar Land Rover 12:05 pm - 12:30 pm Mercedes-Benz


The new Mercedes-Benz SL (Sean Spear)

2017 Mercedes Benz SL Wh grill says that loudly.” If Wagener’s efforts were akin to a LA cosmetic surgeon’s rework, one could argue that the surgery was successful. - Sean Spear 12:35 pm - 1:00 pm Volvo Volvo Concept 26 Volvo wants to set you free! That’s the idea underlying its autonomous driving technology, which it calls Concept 26: if a car drives itself, your time is freed so you can work or relax. That’s sure to appeal to LA commuters. Volvo displayed a patented driver’s seat, dashboard with large video screen and retracting steering wheel. The company’s goal is to deliver 100 fully autonomous vehicles by the end of 2017 -- and by 2020 ensure no one is killed or seriously injured in a Volvo. Hardware and software were developed at the Volvo Monitoring and Concept Center in Camarillo. - BT Justice 1:05 pm - 1:30 pm Hyundai 1:35 pm - 2:00 pm Mazda


The new Mazda CX-9 (Nakano)

2017 Mazda CX-9 The 2017 CX-9 is all new, including a new platform. Styling of this large crossover borrows heavily from Mazda’s Koeru concept, which was unveiled in Frankfurt in September. The design is more sporty and premium. It has clear has a family feel with the Mazda6. The interior is upgraded. Again, we can use the word premium. Seating for seven in three rows. A new, turbocharged, direct-injection, 2.5-liter SkyActiv four replaces the current model’s V-6. On sale in the spring. - BT Justice 2:05 pm - 2:30 pm Scion


The Scion C-HR Concept at the LA Auto Show (Nakano)

Scion Concept Scion introduced the C-HR Concept at the LA Auto Show. The parent company Toyota seems more eager than ever to increase the vehicle lineup from its Youth Targeted Brand. As a concept vehicle, there is plenty of room for speculation whether it will make it to production - and if it does, how closely it resembles the concept car. Either way, it will be interesting to see how Scion continues to fair in the US Market. – Mark Dorman 2:35 pm - 3:00 pm Subaru


Subaru Impreza Sedan Concept (Brian Kennedy)

Subaru Impreza Sedan Concept Longer, wider than the current model, but still light enough to compete with its Japanese brethren on performance, the new Subaru Impreza four-door uses the company’s new “Subaru Global Platform” as underpinnings to what many are describing—surprise!—as a sexy Subie. The rake is aggressive, the fender lines curving, and the subtle hint at a tail-end spoiler all it takes to get the enthusiast who might have thought of a four-door car as a compromise to reconsider. Add to that a snout that integrates its headlights in a seamless design and you’ve got a concept which strongly suggests what the production car will look like when it debuts late in the 2016 calendar year. - Brian Kennedy 3:05 pm - 3:30 pm Volkswagen 3:35 pm - 4:00 pm Audi


The new Audi RS7 Performance (Sean Spear)

2016 Audi RS7 Performance Confronted with the fallout from the TDI controversy, Audi used their press conference to highlight their pivot from diesel-based products to a full integration of hybrid and all-electric versions of their models here in the US. Audi is projecting to have fully 25 percent of their US sales to be electric-based products within 10 years. This focus left the unveiling of the Audi RS7 Performance in the proverbial dust. Still, it is notable that Audi hasn’t forgotten those people for whom the current RS7’s 560hp is just not enough. The RS7 Performance variant offers a further-tuned version of the same 4.0 TFSI engine, but now producing 605 hp and 516 lb-ft of torque. If that is still not enough to please, the driver can engage an overboost function, allowing a temporarily increase in torque to an impressive 553 lb-ft. All of this translates to a 0 to 60 mph time of just 3.6 seconds, with a top track speed of 190 mph. - Sean Spear 4:10 pm - 4:35 pm Kia 4:40 pm - 5:05 pm Mitsubishi 8:00 am - 5:00 pm CCE Networking Lounge


The new Honda Civic Coupe at the LA Auto Show (Nakano)

2016 Honda Civic Coupe The Honda Civic is the best-selling car in California. Last week the all-new 2016 Civic sedan went on sale. Wednesday we saw the coupe for the first time, which will be at dealers in the spring. We love the bold, new styling, clearly more sporty than the outgoing Civic. The coupe’s rear end is distinct from the sedan. Powertrains on the coupe are the same as the sedan. Base is a 158-hp, 2.0-liter four paired with a CVT. Optional is a direct-injection, 1.5-liter turbo that kicks power to 174 horses. No word on when we can expect the Civic Si. - BT Justice.


The new Infiniti QX30 Concept crossover vehicle (Nakano)

Infiniti QX30 Concept Infiniti released its most recent concept at the LA Auto Show this week. The QX30 will be Infiniti’s rendition of the premium compact crossover that is gaining popularity. This would compete with vehicles like the Acura RDX, Audi Q3, BMW X1, Lexus NX which are becoming more and more popular here in the US. Expect to see a smaller displacement motor in the QX30 with options for AWD. If you are curious about the differences between the QX30 Concept and the Q30 which is scheduled to release next year; Infiniti says the higher stance, larger wheels, bigger tires, and lower bumpers are feature to pay attention to. – Mark Dorman THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 19, 2015 8:30 am - 8:45 am EV Trade Association 9:00 - 9:20 am Green Car of the Year Award

2016 Chevrolet Volt

The 2016 Green Car of the Year

Clean and Green on the LA Scene DATELINE: The eleventh annual “Green Car of the Year®” Award was presented at the Los Angeles Auto Show. The A3 Audi E-Tron, Chevrolet Volt, Honda Civic, Hyundai Sonata, and Toyota Prius were listed as contenders for the honor - with the honor going to the new Chevrolet Volt. It marks the first time that the award has gone to the same car twice (the first-generation Volt also won it in 2010). Ron Cogan, editor/publisher of Green Car Journal and sponsor of award indicated that he felt this year’s finalists were “the strongest field we’ve seen.” Perhaps in reaction to the ongoing Volkswagen scandal, diesel-powered vehicles were conspicuously absent from Cogan’s list. A diverse group of automotive and environmental experts (including Jay Leno and Jean-Michel Cousteau!) are jurying the 2016 selection. - Doug Stokes 9:30 am - 9:55 pm Cadillac


The new Cadillac XT5 (Sean Spear)

2017 Cadillac XT5 The 2017 XT5 is more than just a rebranding of Cadillac’s SRX, serving as an example of the company’s desire to improve in both appearance and materials quality. The XT5’s looks are firmly planted in the current Cadillac design language, with vertical front lighting and a cleaner dashboard layout. Not forgetting that the car is still a crossover, important family-supporting considerations seem to be well addressed here, with up to 63 cubic feet of cargo space and class-leading legroom both front and rear. Safety-focused options include a camera and radar-enabled Side Blind Zone Alert and Pedestrian Collision Mitigation systems. Despite its height and short wheelbase, the vehicle does give you the impression of a well-planted stance. Still, the luxury crossover segment is a well-populated one, and it’ll be interesting to see if the car is ultimately able to separate itself from the crowd. - Sean Spear 10:00 am - 10:25 am Elio Motors 10:35 am - 11:00 am DiMora Motorcar 11:10 am - 11:40 am George Barris Tribute Comedian Jeff Dunham to unveil restored Voxmobile (originally built by Barris in 1967) 12:30 pm - 3:30 pm Design Developer Challenge Teams Unveiled Panel Discussion Open House Design and Developer Gallery, Los Angeles Convention Center 1:00 pm - 1:40 pm Revolutionizing Vehicle Design for the Connected Era The car is undergoing a revolution. From IoT and self-driving to car-sharing and personalization, this is a journey that requires a delicate mix of skills to explore the possibilities of a high-tech future, bounded by the reality of what consumers will accept. How do we design for the new roles that cars will take in our society? How does the automotive industry collaborate with new industry players to take innovation to another level? What elements of design will dominate in the near future when digital natives are making most of the vehicle purchases and usage? And, just as importantly, what current traits are sure to be dismissed in the future? Where is the future of car design headed and who’s going to take us there? Featuring: Kevin Ketchum, Global Creative Design Specialist, The Foundry Jim Mainard, Head of Digital Strategy & New Business Development, DreamWorks Animation Richard Kim, Head of Design, Faraday Future Stewart Reed, Chair Transportation Design Department, Art Center College of Design 9:30 am - 3:30 pm Green/Tech Ride & Drive 8:00 am - 4:00 pm CCE Networking Lounge 7:00 - 10:00 pm Preview Party Benefiting the Grammy Museum & Staples Center Foundation For more information about the LA Auto Show, go to


LA Auto Show at the LA Convention Center (Nakano)

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