Mo­tor City revs up for big Auto Show

The Delhi News-Record - - TRAVEL - JIM FOX Jim Fox can be reached at one­tank­trips@hot­mail.com

When it comes to plan­ning an au­to­mo­tive-themed get­away, all roads lead to Detroit — the “Mo­tor City.”

High­light­ing an­nual events in this mo­tor mecca is the world renowned North Amer­i­can In­ter­na­tional Auto Show revving up next week.

It at­tracts more than 800,000 peo­ple over nine days to view 750 ve­hi­cles and count­less dis­plays.

While in town, cruise over to the Henry Ford mu­seum, tour auto baron homes and cap it off with a stay at Mar­riott’s Dear­born Inn built by Henry Ford.

The auto show from Jan. 14 to 22 at the Cobo Cen­ter is the place to see “next-gen­er­a­tion au­to­mo­tive prod­ucts and tech­nolo­gies.”

Among those is the new fifth­gen­er­a­tion Lexus flag­ship sedan said to have an ex­tended “bold new look with a coupe-like sil­hou­ette” and pre­mium rear-wheel drive “for a more dy­namic ex­pe­ri­ence on the road.”

There will be Dis­ney Pixar shar­ing “an early sneak peek” at its next film Cars 3.

The Au­toMo­bili-D show­case fea­tures a start-up expo of in­ter­na­tional com­pa­nies “tack­ling ev­ery as­pect of fu­ture au­to­mo­tive mo­bil­ity,” said Sam Slaugh­ter, show chair.

Some 1,500 work­ers have been trans­form­ing Cobo’s huge in­te­rior into this high-tech au­to­mo­tive show­case since Oc­to­ber.

The night be­fore the pub­lic show opens is the gala, black-tie Char­ity Pre­view on Jan. 13 to min­gle, sip cham­pagne and see the Beach Boys per­form. Tick­ets are US$400 and sup­port chil­dren’s char­i­ties.

Cobo Cen­ter is at 1 Wash­ing­ton Blvd., Detroit. Hours are 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily (ex­cept 7 p.m. on Jan. 22). naias.com

Start your en­gines

They’ll be pop­ping the hoods of 50 rare au­to­mo­biles for a closer look at the Henry Ford mu­seum in sub­ur­ban Dear­born (20900 Oak­wood Blvd.).

En­gines Ex­posed from Jan. 14 to Feb. 28 will “share the in­sider’s story of this evolv­ing tech­nol­ogy.”

Vis­i­tors will dis­cover the think­ing be­hind how the most ad­vanced hy­brid and elec­tric cars started more than a cen­tury ago and current in­no­va­tions in self-driv­ing autos will be ex­plained.

There’s the 1919 Model T, which had Ford’s first elec­tric starter, to the 500-horse­power 1967 Ford Mark IV Le Mans Race Car and the Gold­en­rod Land Speed Record Car on dis­play.

The mu­seum is packed with the “world’s premier auto col­lec­tion” and pres­i­den­tial lim­ou­sines in­clud­ing the one in which Pres­i­dent John F. Kennedy was as­sas­si­nated.

It show­cases Amer­i­can ideas and in­no­va­tions, tech­no­log­i­cal and so­cial, that have “fired our imag­i­na­tions and changed our lives.”

The mu­seum also of­fers the Ford Rouge Fac­tory Tour of the his­toric plant that was the birth­place of the Model A, V-8 en­gine, Mus­tang and Thun­der­bird, and where F-150 trucks are made to­day. the­hen­ry­ford.org; 1-800-835-5237

Sweet dreams

Com­plete the auto-visit ex­pe­ri­ence with a stay at the ho­tel that Henry built.

Ford opened his Dear­born Inn in 1931, a strik­ing Ge­or­gian-style ho­tel across the street from his air­port (now a Ford test track) on Oak­wood Boule­vard in Dear­born.

He com­mis­sioned fa­mous ar­chi­tect Al­bert Kahn to de­sign what be­came the world’s first air­port ho­tel.

Now part of the Mar­riott chain, it has un­der­gone ex­pan­sions and multi- mil­lion- dol­lar ren­o­va­tions and is des­ig­nated a Na­tional His­toric Site. dear­bornin­n­mar­riott.com (313) 271-2700

Left: The or­nate lobby of Henry Ford’s Dear­born Inn.

PHO­TOS BY BARB FOX/ SPE­CIAL TO POST­MEDIA NEWS

Bot­tom: Writer Jim Fox sizes up a red Corvette con­vert­ible at the Detroit auto show gala.

JIM FOX/ SPE­CIAL TO POST­MEDIA NEWS

Above: Henry Ford’s Dear­born Inn was said to be the world’s first air­port ho­tel.

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