2017 Chicago Auto Show: Sales Matter
As the auto industry faces a market that has hit a plateau, individual makes will be fighting hard not only to protect their fair shares, but also will be looking at their rivals for any potential growth. That scrappier attitude will find the perfect arena in Chicago, where this annual event draws some of the biggest crowds on the show circuit.
There will be little or no talk of an autonomous future, because at the Chicago Auto Show, the future is now. And the now means that trucks and crossovers are the hot ticket, so expect the new launches to concentrate on these segments. Among the featured debuts will be a new King Cab version of the Nissan Titan as the Japanese automaker broadens its presence in the full-size truck market that starts with a basic work truck and nips at the heels of more established heavy duty competitors with the XD.
Dodge is expected to have an SRT variant of its Durango, which shows that these days, the great American Muscle Car is also a truck. Mitsubishi will have a new limited-edition of the Outlander Sport, while there’s talk of a brand new full-size Expedition from Ford making a simultaneous debut in Chicago and Texas. Chevrolet is also expected to have a truck debut as well as bringing its Detroit-introduced Traverse to the Windy City so potential buyers there can get a close-up look at this important new model. Likewise, Toyota and Honda will be looking to get their respective mainstream Camry sedan and Odyssey minivan, fresh off their Detroit debuts, in front of the buyers in this critical market.
Cars are not totally left out of the equation. Subaru will have an update of its Legacy bowing in Chicago, while Hyundai will take the wraps off the Elantra Sport, a 5-door hatch based off the new sedan version that bowed a year earlier.
There will be plenty of meat-and-potatoes entries on the show floor at McCormack Place. Check back for more breaking news and videos.
Previous Chicago Auto Shows
According to show organizers, the Chicago Auto Show was the first North American auto show to tally 100 shows. Officials also describe the Chicago Auto Show as the nation's largest, utilizing 1.3 million square feet of Chicago's McCormick Place complex, or enough floor space to accommodate 26 Boeing 747s. The Chicago Auto Show doesn't garner as much worldwide attention as the Hollywood or Motor City shows, but the Second City nevertheless plays host to a number of important new car introductions every year.
This year's SUV-centric show brought out the new Nissan Armada, updated versions of the Hyundai Santa Fe and Santa Fe Sport, plus Kia's first dedicated gas and electric hybrid called Niro.
Honda revealed a stylish new Pilot while Toyota unveiled a refreshed Avalon.
Subaru unveiled a new Legacy and Kia unleashed an Optima hybrid and Soul EV.
Where the 2014 Toyota Tundra and that Superman-themed Kia Optima were born.
Hyundai brought a pair of Elantras, while Acura offered up the first-ever ILX and a redesigned RDX.