NYIAS 2016 – New York International Auto Show
I arrived in New York a day before my friend Itswhitenoise’s RWB Brooklyn Build. That meant I had a bit of time. Luckily, that also happened to be the first day of the press days for the New York International Auto Show (aka NYIAS), at the Javits convention center (at first I thought it was Jarvis, like Iron Man’s computer. No wonder I laughed alone at my own joke lol). To be perfectly honest, I had no idea how things were going to happen there, I absolutely did NOT plan this, contrary to what I’ve been telling you to do. That being said, it doesn’t usually mean you’re going to have a bad time, there is some beauty in “let’s see how it goes”.
Woke up early to attend the motor show. Started walking around with Elizabeth from #ItsWhiteNoise, where she showed me some well-known parts of New York, like The Empire State Building, Madison Square Garden or Macy’s. I’ve grown up hearing about those places, seeing pictures of them, but nothing would prepare me for the real thing and how MASSIVE those places really were for us tiny puny humans. After walking for too long, we took a cab to go to the huge glass structure that hosted the motor show, the Javits center.
And there we were!
We entered through the first door we saw that lead to the motor show. Straight into the Nissan booth. The 2017 Nissan GTR was about to be revealed in the next few minutes, but I only understood that later (silly me lol). Eventually, I came back to the booth to check-it out. Though it was full of people, I still managed catch a glimpse of what is to become the “ultimate GTR” and take a few pics here and there. The presentation colour was absolutely incredible, that’s a no-brainer. Looks? Basically a buffed-up GTR. I’m no expert on japanese cars, nor on GTRs, but I didn’t see much aesthetic difference from the previous model. As far as specs go, I didn’t really look into it to be honest, but I think it’s safe to say it’s slightly better than the last one, right?
Next booth was FORD. I have a deep love for the brand ever since they launched the brand new Ford GT, which I consider to be an utterly amazing car (as far as looks go, at least – haven’t heard the engine of a production version, yet!). And luckily for me, I saw my 3rd model of the Ford GT! A stunning “Bumblebee”, aka yellow with black stripes. This specific one had already seen before at other motor shows, including the Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance, where I had seen pictures of it for the last time. It was quite a nice surprise to see it there, though I didn’t expect nothing less though. I mean we are on US soil, home of the brand!
They also had a fancy-looking Shelby Mustang 350GT. I have a bunch of friends who are interested in this car, and I can understand why. Appart from the sheer performance upgrade compared to the Mustang GT, the Shelby simply looks badass. Especially with the stripes (like it or not, they play a huge difference on a car lol). Last but not least, the tiny brutal Ford Focus RS in its cool blue livery, I can’t wait to see it in more details one of those days, and talk to you wayyy more about it!
When I woke-up that morning, I had seen Mazda reveal a new MX5 with hard-top & soft top. Therefore seeing it at the motor show was quite fun and unexpected (though to be faire, we were at a motor show so… not *that* unusual either). It looked pretty nice, though for the moment I still prefer the older version, which speaks more to me (mainly because a few friends own little Miatas)! We kept walking on the motor show among the aisles, which brings me to an interesting and very important point for me: the WiFi. They had two free networks over there, and they both ran incredibly good, considering everyone was probably using them. To me, having decent WiFi is very important because it allows me to bring you guys all the updates in real-time, as well as sometimes reply, moderate & simply be active on stuff. So even if I said “MURICA” in a mocking way quite a few times during this trip, one thing is for certain: they do NOT mess around with WiFi! NYIAS 2016 had incredible WiFi lol.
As we were walking my eye was caught by a bright shiny red object in the far. Could it be? Was I dreaming? As I got closer, I realized that no, I wasn’t. That was the cherry red Koenigsegg Regera from Geneva! And boy, that wasn’t it. The Manhattan Motorcars dealership had brought in a couple of awesome supercars, which I honestly did NOT expect. Mainly because I’m not used to seeing dealerships during Motorshows, but hey, judging by how awesome that was, maybe it’s not such a bad idea! A dark blue Bugatti Veyron (almost black), the new Spyker, the Regera…
… and my favorite: the white Koenigsegg One:1. I knew this car was in the US for quite some time now, it had already been seen here and there. But seeing it in the flesh is always a special treat. Also, adding yet another One:1 to my “hunting list” is something pretty cool. With only 5 or 7 models in existance (it varies depending on who you ask), it was the perfect unexpected surprise. I sincerely enjoyed it!
The Porsche booth had the whole line-up, as well as the 718 boxster (didn’t get pictures of it sadly) and the 911 R I had seen in Geneva (no pictures either, my bad)! Apparently everyone is very interested in the 911 R and wants one, I can fully understand: who doesn’t like a manual.
Elizabeth and I stopped by at the Infiniti booth, discussed a bit with the guys there, and ended up coming up with a pretty interesting and completely new project for me: interview their Executive design director, Alfonso Albaisa. This is not something I usually do, but I really enjoyed the challenge and the opportunity to do it as well. Alfonso was a very chill guy, he instantly made us feel welcome. Though I feared he might not speak loud enough because of the ambient sound, it turned out to be just fine. I spent about 15 minutes discussing about who he was, how he became a designer. Basically, his backstory. We then moved on to more “car-focused” matters, aka the actual design language of Infiniti. Who else but the executive design director to speak of this, right next to a stunning red Infiniti Q60? As he explained his take on things, we could feel the sincerity and the passion of the man which shows in his latest designs, with interesting anecdotes, like the “birth” of the “Mohawk”, the little crest found on the hood of the Q60.
But to me the best part probably was when we took out a piece of paper and a pen, and filmed him doing a sketch, as we discussed all sorts of matters. This is when I really felt a connection with the man, who he was, why he does what he does. As a child, I used to draw & doodle a lot, and seeing him work his magic on paper was a privileged moment. It reminded me of all the archives of old drawings I have, and how I stopped drawing, mainly because of the internet. I think Alfonso had a pretty good time with Elizabeth and I, and he wasn’t expecting the Interview to take such a free & unusual turn, discussing about the future of automobile and even going as deep as debating the human condition in regard of cars. It was very interesting, and those are the kind of chats I wish I could have everyday with people from the car industry: hearing their story, what makes it unique and what animates them. More often than not, you have a whole other vision on their work afterwards, you start understanding some things that merely looked like “a detail”. Basically, I really enjoyed this interview with Infiniti, and I hope there will be more in the future! I invite you to check the full interviews down below:
There weren’t that many other “novelties” for me. I mean, this was less than a month after Geneva, where i had already seen all my favorite supercars. The best of the best. That being said, a particular car caught my eye. This green Audi R8 V10 plus.
Comes to show you only really need one good livery to seduce a potential customer. And if you bring a bunch of cars, you have as many chances as you have cars to seduce different types of personalities and tastes. This is probably the coolest colour on an Audi R8 I’ve ever seen. And the marriage with the brown interior was a perfect match. Although I might get some hate for saying this, but this spec felt very british, very classy & elegant. Almost like a Bentley. Completely in love with it!
Some other cool cars during the motor show: this lovely two-tone Range Rover Autobiography. This is the latest model, most luxurious one in the range. And it looks absolutely cool! Fell in love with the spec. There arelso was another black Rolls Royce Dawn (I’m fairly certain I saw it in Geneva too)!
The Acura NSX I had already seen in Geneva. But the Acura NSX GT3 was quite an unexpected surprise too, that thing looks so badass. It’s also interesting to see how many manufacturers are now building GT3 cars. From Ferrari to Lamborghini, but with now more and more brands. Understandable, too! Race cars in very competitive and followed tournaments. Also, it sells cars, let’s face it! 🙂