Cars ranging from $20000 to $200000 at the Rochester International Auto Show – Rochester Democrat and Chronicle
Checking out the Rochester International Auto Show is an annual tradition for Kelly and Nick Schafer. They make the trip from Shortsville to see what car makers are touting.
“We come every year to look and play with the cars,” said Kelly Schafer, 26, who was testing a Toyota Highlander with her daughter Parker, 2. The family recently purchased a 2017 Subaru Forester and enjoy perusing the show for their next buy.
From cars in the $20,000 range to a $204,000 Acura NSX sports cars, the car show offered families and car enthusiasts a chance to see and touch this year’s models without any sales pressure. The show drew over 80,000 people over a five-day period to the Rochester Riverside Convention Center downtown.
“It is one of the best opportunities for people to look at cars,” said Brad McAreavy, president of the Rochester Auto Dealers Association that represents 100 franchise new car dealers in the region. “They can get into the cars, they can car shop. No sales people are here to sell a car.”
Various manufacturers highlighted different cars in their fleet. While the Toyota Camry is a perennial best seller, one car getting attention at the show was the Toyota Prius Prime, a hybrid vehicle with gasoline and plug-in electricity option with a $4,500 federal rebate in the $26,000 range.
Hyundai had its own version of a plug-in vehicle named Ioniq on display. The price started at $22,200 for the new model.
At the BMW display, the 2 series convertible is a reminder that warmer ‘top down’ driving days are ahead.
“It’s all about that feeling of performance,” said Patrick Sheehan, client adviser at BMW of Rochester, explaining that luxury car buyers are seeking for performance and drive in a vehicle.
There’s something for just about everyone at the show, said Dick Sherman, the show’s manager. Different consumers have different needs, and while some may be looking for a sedan, others are seeking a truck.
In recent years, crossover vehicles — small SUVs— have been popular with consumers as families seek a sleeker image than a station wagon, he said.
Car sales are an important contributor to the local economy, McAreavy said. Each dealership employs an average of 45 people and auto dealers generate tax revenues for the community from sales to income tax, he noted.
Car purchases are also a gauge of the overall economy, said Amitrajeet A. Batabyal, Arthur J. Gosnell Professor of Economics at Rochester Institute of Technology.
“If consumer confidence about the economy, in general, is high then this will tend to be reflected in relatively high car sales,” Batabyal said. “This is largely because cars are durable goods that are purchased with credit for most consumers.”
Consumers generally feel good about both personal financial circumstances and the economy to agree to be contractually bound for three to five years, he said.
The show drives many people to head to dealerships to make car purchases, McAreavy said, noting that sales always spike during the following weeks after the show.
Rochester residents Tony and Kim Jordan were eager to see what’s new at the car show, keeping in mind what they like. They tested a Lexus SUV and continued to browse other brands.
“I’m a car enthusiast,” Tony Jordan said. “I enjoy coming here and love to see the innovation and where the trends are.”