Highlights At The Detroit North American International Auto Show

As opposed to the past edition, this year’s Detroit North American International Auto Show is poised to show more optimist carmakers as the end of 2011 promised a successful 2012 for the industry. Here are some of the highlights at the Detroit North American International Auto Show.

The 2012 Detroit North American International Auto Show features 40 vehicle introductions from all segments of the market. Models such as Kia Sorento sport-utility vehicle, Audi AG R8, Cadillac XTS, Chevrolet Malibu, Ford Fusion 2013, Lincoln MKZ, Honda Accord and Dodge Dart, to name a few, are carmakers’ proposals for this year.

Analysts say that this year’s expectations for the auto show are high and carmakers have run out of excuses. They need to rethink strategies and come up with better consumer vehicles. Mark Fields, Ford president of the Americas, said “it is back to being all about product, which is the way it should be”.

So, what will be this year’s focus? According to Fields, “two-thirds of shoppers want midsize or small cars or SUVs”. Ford has decided to go to “new heights” at this year’s edition of the auto show. The company set up a media display that features a 20-foot-tall elevator that takes guests into “the Cloud” to enjoy a video presenting Ford’s vision regarding its customers and strategy.

“We want our customers to walk away from the Ford stand with a lasting memory that will draw them into a Ford dealer’s showroom”, said Darrell Bryja, director of Global Auto Shows and Events.

Earlier this month, Bloomberg wrote that General Motors. Co, Ford Motor. Co and Chrysler Group LLC have finished 2011 a lot better than what analysts were expecting. Basically, in 2011 the annual U.S. auto sales reached 12.8 million and for the first time since 2008, all these automakers managed to gain market share in the United States. For these three carmakers, 2011 meant achieving a combined market share of 47.1 percent of the U.S. market.

The auto show will be open to the public January 14 through January 22. Tickets for adults are sold with $12, while children 7 to 12 years are half the price. The charity preview takes place January 13 and it costs $250 per person.

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