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February 14 - 22, 2015
About the Show
About the Show
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First Look for Charity
First Look for Charity
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News & Events
Daily Events and Appearances
2014 Best of Show Winners
2013 Best of Show Winners
2012 Best of Show Winners
2011 Best of Show Winners
2010 Best of Show Winners
Concept Car History
Concept Car History
Chicago Auto Show -
This year, the Chicago Auto Show expanded to 1.2 million square feet, which was more than 40 percent since the 2004 event. New exhibitors included Chicago's own International Truck, featuring its CXT concept. Also new was a 20,000 sq.ft. exhibit by the Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA). Chrysler/Dodge/Jeep featured simulated off-road trails, dirt hill and test tracks within the South Hall. More than a dozen exciting concept vehicles at the '05 show included the Ford SYNus, Jeep Hurricane, Lexus LF-A, Mercury Meta One, Chrysler Firepower, Jaguar Advanced Lightweight Coupe and Suzuki Concept-X.
Don Esmond, senior vice president and general manager, Toyota Division, unveiled the all-new FJ Cruiser sport utility vehicle at a Feb. 9, 2005 Chicago Auto Show press conference. Inspired by the legendary FJ 40 model from the 1960s into the 1980s, the 2007 FJ Cruiser was based on a modified 4Runner platform. Power was supplied by a 4.0 liter V-6, generating 245 horsepower paired with a five-speed automatic on both 4x2 and 4x4 configurations and an available six-speed manual on 4x4 models. The FJ Cruiser came with 17 inch steel wheels, four-wheel disc brakes, locking rear differential and traction control.
Kia selected the 2005 Chicago Auto Show to debut its 2006 Sedona minivan. Standard engine is a 3.8-liter V-6 that produces 240 horsepower. A five-speed automatic transmission drives the power to the front wheels and four-wheel-disc antilock brakes are included. With increased performance and decreased curb weight, the Sedona has quicker acceleration. Redesigned cabin features a gear selector mounted to the instrument panel, optional faux wood trim, leather and one-handed flip-and-fold second-row captain's chairs. Safety highlights contain six standard airbags that protect in all three rows of seats.
Cadillac held its world debut of the 2006 DTS full-size luxury sedan at the 2005 Chicago Auto Show. Replacing the DeVille, the front-wheel-drive DTS offered a Northstar 4.6 liter V-8, available as a 290-horsepower L37 or 275hp LD8. Each came mated to the Hydra-Matic four-speed automatic transmission. Redesigned, the interior contained dual-firmness seats with an additional inch of travel. Front seats were heated and cooled, the rear seats heated, as was the steering wheel and windshield washer fluid. DTS also had Adaptive Remote Start, front and rear ultrasonic park assist; IntelliBeam automatic high-beam headlights and six air bags, including an industry-first dual depth front passenger air bag.
Steven Saleen speaks to the media at the Chicago show seconds before he unveiled the 2005 Saleen S281 Extreme, which is based on the Ford Mustang. The S281 Extreme boasts 500 horsepower, a tire-ripping 480 ft.-lbs torque and 0-60 mph in 4.5 seconds from the 281 cubic inch V-8. A Saleen-designed Series VI integrated Twin Screw supercharger with two-stage water-to-air intercooling is standard equipment. A heavy-duty six speed manual transmission, balanced driveshaft and Saleen MaxGrip differential all get the ponies to the pavement. Standard on the S281 Extreme are Pirelli P-Zero Rossos with 275/35ZR20s up front and 275/40ZR20s bringing up the rear.
Moments after Steven Saleen unveiled the 2005 Saleen S281 Extreme, he takes questions from the media. Based on the Ford Mustang, the S281 Extreme boasts 500 horsepower, a tire-ripping 480 ft.-lbs torque and 0-60 mph in 4.5 seconds from the 281 cubic inch V-8. A Saleen-designed Series VI integrated Twin Screw supercharger with two-stage water-to-air intercooling is standard equipment. A heavy-duty six-speed manual transmission, balanced driveshaft and Saleen MaxGrip differential all get the ponies to the pavement. Standard on the S281 Extreme are Pirelli P-Zero Rossos with 275/35ZR20s up front and 275/40ZR20s bringing up the rear.
People attending the Chicago show had the opportunity to take rides with professional drivers in DaimlerChrysler vehicles on simulated off-road trails and inclines situated on the show floor. Ironically, the very first Chicago Auto Show in 1901 featured a track where visitors could take rides to learn what the automobile was all about.
Visitors to the Chicago Auto Show saw the release of the new 2006 Chevrolet Corvette Z06, rated the most powerful production General Motors car to date. Hand-built by GM's Performance Build Center, the new 500 horsepower aluminum 427-cid Gen IV small-block V-8 used titanium rods and intake valves. Top speed was 190 mph with 0-to-60 in less than four seconds. The wider body broke from Corvette fiberglass tradition and was constructed of aluminum and carbon-fiber composite front fenders and wheel housings. The ZO6 carried on a tradition of ultra-high performance Corvettes that dates back to the 1963 Gran Sport.
A master engine builder from AMG, the high-performance division of Mercedes-Benz, demonstrated his skills at assembling the 604 horsepower, V-12 AMG engine from start to finish, right on the floor of the 2005 Chicago Auto Show. The live demonstration celebrated the launch of the new S65 AMG and revealed the ‘One Man, One Engine’ philosophy employed at the AMG headquarters in Affalterbach, Germany.
Celebrating the return of the Dodge Charger to the Daytona International Speedway after a 27-year hiatus was the limited-production 2006 Charger Daytona R/T. Distinguishing the Daytona R/T model was a fascia with a chin spoiler, black honeycomb grille; black 'Daytona' and 'HEMI' decals, signature heritage R/T badging, black rear decklid spoiler and 18-inch polished wheels. A 5.7 liter HEMI V-8 engine with 350 horsepower and 390 lb.-ft. of torque came standard, mated to a five-speed automatic transmission with AutoStick. The interior featured performance front seats with suede inserts and embroidered Daytona logos on the headrests. Custom exterior colors included the 1970 MoPar high-impact Go ManGo! and Top Banana.
Introduced at the 2005 Chicago Auto Show, the 2006 Dodge Ram Mega Cab laid claim to the largest cab in its field. It was the latest answer to the demand by consumers for more passenger space along with increased hauling capacity. The new cab was 111.1 inches long and had 145.2 cubic feet of interior space, enough to comfortably seat six adults. Available in the Ram 1500, 2500 and 3500 series, the Ram Mega Cab offered a choice of 345-horsepower Hemi V-8 or 5.9L, inline-six Cummins turbo-diesel, producing 325 horses. Towing rating was 15,800 pounds. The Ram Mega Cab models arrived at Dodge dealerships in the fall of 2005.
With its 5.7 liter 605 horsepower V-10 engine, the 2005 Porsche Carrera GT boasted guided missile performance. Carbon fiber reinforced composite body panels kept the weight down and the speed up.
An example of the 2006 Eclipse coupe is highlighted on a slanted turntable inside the Mitsubishi exhibit. With its taut body that pushes the aerodynamic envelope to beautiful extremes, the next-generation production model incorporates design elements first seen on the Eclipse Concept-E that appeared during the 2004 Chicago show. The 2006 Eclipse offers more powerful 4 and V-6 engines than previous models, with up to 260 horsepower. Available with five-speed Sportronic or six-speed manual transmission, the sporty coupe rides on 18-inch wheels. New for 2006, an entertainment package consists of a 650-watt Rockford Fosgate audio system with six-CD in-dash changer, MP3 playback, and nine speakers with a 10-inch subwoofer.
Mercury displayed the 2006 Milan five-passenger mid-size sedan at the 2005 show. Named after Milan, Italy, the five-passenger automobile featured a chiseled body, satin aluminum trim, waterfall grille, and light-emitting diode (LED) taillights. Milan interiors were available with two-tone leather seats and either satin metallic or Wales Mahogany wood trim finishes. Its 15.6-cubic-foot trunk boasts a flat load floor and low lift over height. Standard was a 160 horsepower 2.3 liter Duratec inline four-cylinder engine linked to either a five-speed manual or automatic, while an optional 3.0L Duratec V-6 pumped out 210 horses through an advanced six-speed automatic transaxle.
Buick premiered the 2006 Lucerne entry-level luxury sedan at the 2005 Chicago show. Lucerne replaced the LeSabre name, which has been in the Buick lineup since the 1959 models. The five-and six-passenger four-door Lucerne came standard with a 195 horsepower V-6. An optional 4.6L 32-valve dual overhead cam V-8 engine developed 275 horsepower and 300 lb.-ft. of torque. This made Lucerne the first Buick sedan since the 1996 Roadmaster to offer V-8 power. It was also the first Buick offering Magnetic Ride Control, paired with StabiliTrak, to enhance ride performance. A total of six air bags came standard, including an industry-first dual depth front passenger air bag.
Appearing at the 2005 auto show was the 2006 Chevrolet HHR, featuring retro styling reminiscent of the second series 1947 and first series 1955 Suburban Carryall utility wagon. Design cues included a high roof, deep-draw, flared fenders and a one-piece stamped metal hood. Built on the same small car structure as the 2005 Cobalt, the five-passenger HHR had an overall length of 174.5 inches and a cargo capacity of approximately 63.1 cubic feet. Available in two model levels: LS and LT, the HHR offered 140 horsepower 2.2 liter and 170 hp 2.4L four-cylinder engines. Each model was available with either the standard Getrag five-speed manual or optional Hydra-Matic electronically controlled four-speed automatic transmissions. The HHR models arrived at Chevy dealerships in the fall of 2005.
On display in the Honda exhibit was a special cutaway version of the 2006 Ridgeline four-door pickup truck and a fully assembled Ridgeline in the background. Ridgeline is Honda's first half-ton payload truck in North America and introduces the industry's first fully integrated, closed-box frame with unibody construction. A steel reinforced, five-foot, composite truck bed (6.5 feet with tailgate down) features an 8.5 cu.-ft. lockable and water resistant in-bed trunk. The five-passenger Ridgeline came equipped with a 255 horsepower 3.5 liter SOHC VTEC V-6 engine, five-speed automatic transmission, and fully automatic four-wheel drive system and 5,000-pound towing capacity. Standard safety items included four-wheel anti-lock brakes, side curtain airbags and Vehicle Stability Assist (VSA) with traction control.
All new for 2006, the Infiniti M35 and M45 four-door luxury sedan featured muscular proportions, and lively performance. The M45 came equipped with the 4.5 liter DOHC V-8 currently used in the Infiniti Q45 and FX45. This version pumped out 335-340 horsepower. A 3.5L DOHC V-6 producing 280 hp in the M35. Both the M45 V-8 and M35 V-6 came mated to a five-speed automatic transmission with short-throw performance shifter and manual shift mode. The Rear Active Steer system improves handling performance by adjusting the geometry of the rear according to steering input and vehicle speed, and Land Departure Warning (LDW) technology helps alert the driver of a pending, unintended lane departure.
For only $400,000, plus change, you could've bought an SLR McLaren with Mercedes styling; formula 1 technology and AMG performance. The supercharged V-8 developed 617 horsepower and a top speed of 208 mph.