The Vancouver International Auto Show is back at the Vancouver Convention Centre this year. Now in it’s 93rd year, the VIAS is Canada’s third largest Auto Show, and one of Western North America’s premier automotive exhibition events. I checked out the media preview and got a sneak peak at some of the highlights of the show. If you’re a car buff or in the market for a new car, you should definitely check it out. It runs from March 26-31.
Breakfast kicked off with a few keynote speakers, notably Terry Lake, BC Environment Minister, and Dianne Craig, CEO of Ford Canada. Terry Lake announced today that British Columbia’s point-of-sale incentive program ($5,000 rebate) for clean energy vehicles has been extended for another year. “By having a significant network of charging stations in place throughout the province, we now have the opportunity to make B.C. the clean energy vehicle centre of North America. Extending the CEV for BC point-of-sale incentive program by another year will allow even more British Columbians to make better, clean transportation choices.”, said Lake.
“At Ford, we’re committed to delivering a full line-up of hybrids, plug-in hybrids and electric vehicles to help consumers find the vehicle that best fits their needs. In fact, Ford is tripling production capacity for electrified vehicles through 2013. It’s all about helping people find the vehicle that’s right for their lifestyle, while also making a good choice for the environment.”, said Dianne Craig.
Here are some of my highlights at today’s media preview:
2013 Volkswagen Super Beetle – the Canadian debut of the stretched-nose Canadian-exclusive, with 2-toned red and black leather interior and 19″ alloy wheels.
Left: 2014 Chevrolet Impala – Regional Debut; Right: Chevrolet Tru (concept). Chevrolet has really stepped things up on the styling front in recent years. I think they’re the most improved OEM manufacturer in terms of exterior styling.
Brent Hayden, Canadian Olympic bronze medalist, chats with Eduardo Villaverde, President and CEO of BMW Canada. BMW is the National Partner and Official Vehicle of the Canadian Olympic Team through to 2016. Shown here is the beautiful BMW M6 Gran Coupe. I love the front lights and the matte silver finish on this car.
Wolfgang Hoffmann, President and CEO of Audi Canada shows off the stunning 2014 Audi RS5 Cabriolet. This is by far my favourite car at the show. I love the silver front lip. This car is a beauty.
Tim Reuss, President and CEO of Mercedes-Benz Canada, proudly announces the Canadian debut of the SLS AMG GT Roadster. It sports a 583-hp 6.8-liter V-8 engine and boasts a 0-60 mph time of 3.6 seconds. This sleek beauty can be yours for a mere $206,000 (base MSRP).
2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT is quite the sleeper of an SUV. With a massive 6.4-liter Hemi V8 engine, it gets from 0-60 in 4.8 seconds, and to a quarter mile (or Costco) in the low 13-second range at a top speed of 160 miles per hour. A bit excessive if you ask me.
2014 Lexus IS 350. Lexus is beginning a mass facelift of their entire lineup. I’m not sure if I like the new styling. All their models will sport this (or a simliar) agressive front fascia and grill. Move towards the back and it’s a completely different story, as it’s quite understated from the other end. It doesn’t seem balanced to me.
Acura has completely reinvented its flagship sedan, now known as the RLX, for 2014. It features crisp character lines, an elegant rendition of the automaker’s corporate “shield grill”, and distinctive “Jewel Eye” all-LED headlamps. It is available as a front-wheel-drive and an all-wheel-drive hybrid. Both RLX models come equipped with a 3.5-liter V6 that delivers 310 horsepower and 272 lb-ft of torque.
There was a small dedicated section in the corner of the exhibition hall just for exotic cars. Left to Right: Ferrari California, Maserati Quattroporte, McLaren MP4-12C. I would’ve loved to see more supercars at this car show.
The VIAS is on now until Sunday. You can purchase tickets directly from their website by clicking here.