I’ve always questioned the wisdom of the New York Auto Show. If you’ve ever been to Manhattan, you’d know that it’s a city that hates cars. No parking for them exists (places that do cost a kids college tuition), pot holes the size of canyons try to ruin your wheels, and almost everyone drives on top of you. It’s panic-inducing. That said, I’ve been going to this show for over 20 years, since high school, and it used to be something really special. Now, it’s a shell of its former self.
While the Javits Center used to be packed with three floors, the show is now down one level, with the basement reserved for vendors like you might find at a flea market. Not attending this year were BMW, Mercedes, Audi, Porsche, Jaguar, Land Rover, Mitsubishi (hey, I like them), Cadillac, Buick, GMC, and Mazda.
In their place were electric startups like VinFast that I’ve never heard of. Will these makers even be around in a year? I doubt it. The big chance to break into the electric vehicle market was actually ten years ago with Tesla. Now, mainstream makers have caught up. Would you rather have an electric BMW, or a VinFast? It’s not made by Vin Diesel and his FF crew.
In place of displays were three large “test tracks” for electric vehicles. I say tracks loosely – you can’t go above 15 mph on them. It’s a cool concept that wasn’t possible with ICE cars.
What were some 2022 New York Auto Show highlights?
How about the all-new Nissan Z. I loved both of my 350Zs, but Nissan had let the 370 get a bit long in the tooth. This new Z has a 400-horsepower twin turbo V-6, a cabin that still maintains comfort and nostalgic style (from both the 350 and original 240), and rejoice! A manual transmission is available! I hope to be able to get my hands on one and do a review soon. Sadly, I did not see a GT-R, but that is too due soon for a replacement.
A Z competitor, the Supra, has now reached mid-point in the sports car life cycle of relevance, and that means special parts and updates. Check out the TRD wing, carbon fiber wheels, and T tops. Also, again, a manual transmission is coming. But if I were a current Supra owner, I’d be pretty upset. They’ve waited 20 years fro a new Supra. The second year got a better BMW motor, and now this year, a manual. Imagine if they just gave the good stuff right away. All Toyota has done is annoy a loyal fan base.
Lexus IS 500
Staying with Toyota, I was also excited also to see the Lexus IS 500, a replacement for the IS F from a decade ago. Still available with a V-8 and ten grand cheaper than an M3, it would provide a fun alternative to the Germans.
I loved the base C8 Corvette, and the new Z06 is coming soon. A V-8 with an increased red line to 8,600 RPM (higher than the S65!), the Z06 is faster in every regard than the base model. Not that it needed it. Looks good too.
The WRX has always been a favorite of mine, and the new one should improve on refinement levels. To me, the WRX remains the perfect daily. Quick, able to drive through any weather, and efficient, what else is needed? Not exactly a looker, but that’s ok.
Though commonplace, it’s always nice to see a clean Lamborghini and Rolls-Royce. I’m going to guess these were from a local dealer, as there was no official display for the brands. The Huracan’s face is revised for 2022.
Cultivated Collector at the New York Auto Show
It was fun to see a yellow XJR-15 in TWR livery after shooting one last year. Also on deck from CC were some classic Japanese metal – a Mark IV Supra, original NSX, and RX-7. I was at the auto show when these cars were still new and sold to the public, so it was both nostalgic and sad to realize the passage of time. Sadly, no 3000GT. These cars still don’t get the respect they deserve.
In a few weeks, I’ll be reviewing a BMW i4 M50, and from my brief time with one during the day, I enjoyed it. But there are many other makers coming out with electric cars as well, and I must say that Kia/Hyundai really have some good looking cars coming. The displays were certainly first rate. I just hope they can fix their quality issues.
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