Complete with Batmobile, auto show opens to the public – Detroit Free Press
There was a dancing hamster, a superhero’s ride and, of course, lots and lots of shiny, new automobiles to check out Saturday as the North American International Auto Show opened to the public.
The day kicked off with a big reveal by Chevrolet: the Lego Batmobile.
“Look at Batman!” 10-year-old Malachi Julian of Washington Township said once he spotted LEGO Batman hanging out on a wall. He was among a crowd that gathered as the 17-foot-long, nearly 1,700-pound Lego Batmobile — inspired by Batman’s vehicle in the soon-to-hit-theaters “The Lego Batman Movie” — was revealed.
According to a news release. 344,187 Lego bricks were used to make the Batmobile, it took 1,833 hours to build and was designed and assembled by Lego master builders in Enfield, Conn.
Across the show, which runs through Jan. 22 at Cobo Center, people hopped in and out of vehicles, checked out racing simulators and ogled their favorite autos. There were selfies with the Ford GT, little kids in the driver’s seat (and not tall enough yet to see over the wheel) of the Dodge Viper and visitors piling into the GMC Yukon XL.
Frank Gates, III, 5, and his cousin giggled from the bed of a GMC Sierra 1500, while Grandpa took out his phone to take a picture.
“They enjoy it every year,” Frank Gates Jr. of Detroit said of his son and nephew. He said the kids like to “see some of the fun stuff in regard to technology that they’re able to be a part of.”
Asked what was the coolest thing he saw at the auto show, the youngest Frank said a truck.
“A blue one,” he said.
Grandpa — Frank Gates, Sr. — saw the show as a convenience.
“I like the opportunity to see all of the cars in one place and especially in a year like this where I’m shopping for a car,” he said. “It keeps me from going from showroom to showroom. It allows me to narrow down my choices.”
For the younger visitors, the Batmobile isn’t the only kid-friendly feature. There’s also Lightning McQueen from the “Cars” franchise, (“Dude, it’s my childhood,” one young man remarked) and a dancing hamster (well, a person dressed in a hamster costume) at Kia.
Five-year-old Miguel Burton went up to the hamster and gave him a hug.
Asked what cars he liked, Miguel said “remote-controlled cars.”
His mom, Sharaine Burton of Madison Heights said she was enjoying her first-ever auto show.
“It’s awesome,” she said. “I love it. I love it. I’m having such a wonderful time.”
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