Foggy roads don’t keep crowds from final day of Detroit auto show – Detroit Free Press
While her 2-year-old grandson seemed more mesmerized by the big digital video displays, Deborah Black of Redford Township was drawn to the Ford F-150 on the floor of the North American International Auto Show Sunday, taking in the pickup’s shiny blue paint job and spacious second-row seating.
Until a recent car crash on icy roads, she drove a Ford Fusion, and the 59-year-old was checking out potential replacements at the show. She also said she promised her 80-something father — a retired Ford Motor designer — that she’d take lots of pictures to show him what his former employer is up to these days
“I love it — I want a truck,” Black said, with grandson Jace Berry in her arms. “It’s just so roomy, and the color — it looks good. I think I’d look good in it.”
Black, a medical assistant, described her family as “Ford people” and said she was also eyeing a Ford Edge or a Lincoln MKZ. She and thousands of people braved foggy roads for the last day of the 2017 auto show at Cobo Center amid record-setting years of vehicle sales.
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The show closed Sunday night with 98,125 attendees, bringing total ticketed attendance for 2017 show to 806,554, organizers said in a press release. That’s down slightly from 815,000 last year.
There were big crowds checking out muscle cars and luxury vehicles, along with interactive exhibits.
Mirna Noles, 48, an IT specialist from Westland, admired the 2018 Chevrolet Equinox, whose redesign was unveiled this year at the show. She came with her sons Carter, 20, and William, 18. She drives a 2013 version of the vehicle and couldn’t decided whether she was in the market for a new one.
“I’m not sure, because mine’s almost paid off,” Noles said. But she liked the vehicle’s new looks. “It just seems sleeker. It’s a different body style. It’s rounder. Mine’s more square.”
Amid an era of cheaper gas prices and higher sales of SUVs and crossover vehicles, crowds were smaller around old standbys like the Toyota Camry, whose stylish new 2018 design also debuted at the Detroit show.
Joan Hoeft, an Ann Arbor-area financial planner, said her favorite vehicle of the show was the Lexus LS, and she also checked out the new Camry, along with her husband, Kevin, and their son, Joel, 5.
“I think it looks great,” she said. “I”m a little biased, because my husband works for Toyota.”
Despite admiring the two cars, Hoeft said she wouldn’t be buying one to replace her Lexus RX crossover.
“I like having an SUV vs. having a sedan,” she said.
John Monroe, 67, a General Motors retiree from Dimondale near Lansing, took a close look at the tiny two-seater Smart Fortwo electric vehicles, but if anyone’s buying them, Monroe said he won’t be one of them.
He said its its lack of leg room, minimal storage space and limited distance range — estimated at 68 miles per charge in combined city-highway driving — made it impractical for him. His current vehicle is a GMC Yukon SUV.
“For a long ride, I wouldn’t be comfortable,” he said. “And you couldn’t go very far. We figure we couldn’t get here from Lansing. We’d have to stop halfway and plug it in.”
But Monroe said he could see an upside to owning one.
“It would be perfect for taking my wife to garage sales,” he said. “I could tell her if it doesn’t fit she can’t have it.”
Staff writer David Jesse contributed to this story. Contact Matt Helms: 313-222-1450 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter: @matthelms.