Two cities have been vying for our automotive attention this
week. While Shanghai has been rolling out the more exotic stuff, New York
offered up more things that are down to Earth – more like, down to our
Needless to say, my focus was already on New York. Not
because they are introducing new products for our specific market, but of their
significance. Rather, the manufacturers saved the best for the last major auto
show in the Western world.
By the best, what exactly do I mean? Let me run down the six new vehicle debuts that will play a significant part of the upcoming 2020 model year. And, no, these are not aligned with the future “The Jetsons” laid out for us in cartoon-land.
This site’s eight years have had its moments. These great moments that were beyond limited to the four I listed in the last article.
We also had the opportunity to work with some great
automobiles – also, too numerous to list beyond the four we posted before.
Maybe, someday I’ll have a list of everything that made this website and my own
media work worth these past eight years.
However, you may have found that there were a few vehicles
missing among the well over 350 of them utilized for editorial on this site.
This is the purpose of this article – to list out those vehicles that have been
missed by this work.
It is actually not that long of a list. However, you may be
scratching your head and wondering “how come I did not have that in for review
or for an article of some sort.” Too many reasons. Maybe missed opportunities?
Who knows? Who cares?
As I was planning my trip to Washington, DC and
Baltimore for the Washington Automotive Press Association’s EV Day at the
Washington Auto Show, an e-mail came from a public relations representative
from Audi. It was an interesting pitch regarding the expansion of their
vehicle-to-infrastructure technology that includes Traffic Light Information
and Green Light Optimized Speed Advisory features.
I’ll admit that, at first, I ignored it. Then, she
followed up with asking if I would like to try out the technology. Eventually, the
discussion turned towards this trip to Washington. Therefore, I was scheduled
an Audi Q5 for the purposes of experiencing this advances technology.
Before I go off the deep end of driver assistance
technologies and the brass tacks of vehicle-to-infrastructure technology, there
is a vehicle to discuss here. A very important vehicle for consumers in higher
income brackets who simply want a compact SUV to roll around comfortably in
places, such as Washington, DC.
First off, 4Runner sales are on the rise. The first quarter
of 2019 saw a 4.1-percent increase in deliveries over the same period in 2018.
It is the sixth best-selling vehicle in the Toyota lineup – one of seven that
are selling over 10,000 units per month.
Then, there’s the reports and accolades pointing to the
longevity of 4Runners out on the road. Between Autoweek, iSeeCars, and other
outlets, their reports put the 4Runner among the Top 10 or Best In Class in
terms of dependability and durability.
Lastly, we keep on forgetting that the 4Runner is built as a
body-on-frame SUV. According to enthusiasts, that is considered a proper SUV.
Therefore, we see 4Runners going into off-road trails and overlanding
everywhere across North America.
The Twin Cities Auto Show was not my final stop on the
circuit. That was reserved for something that challenged my memory.
In December of 1996, I arrived in Washington, DC seeking a
complete change of life. I was already involved in an online community of
like-minded gay/bisexual men and I also brought that movement to the Nation’s
It was an interesting time. I learned a lot about life and
where I should be in it. It was well before I would undertake a career in
I tried to recall whether I attended the Washington Auto
Show during my time in DC and Northern Virginia. I don’t think I ever attended
any auto show on the East Coast ever – even after I moved from there in October
To wrap up our coverage of the 111th Chicago Auto Show, we now turn to Josh Dvorak and FlecsMedia for a series of videos from McCormick Place.
Josh and Veronica Krawiec have been on our team for last year’s show. This year, we had a few ideas in mind. They appear to be random, but we think these are some of the headlines you will find at any auto show across North America.
It is cause for celebration. But, it is also a prompt to get
busy on ensuring the future of this site through the work it is doing
currently. It is also a cue for us to reflect and plan at the same time.
To know its future, you must know its past. At its core,
V&R is a website. It is about the written word, telling stories, passing
down history, and analyzing the industry we love.
But, it is just a component of everything V&R does. It
collaborates on video projects with others, engaging readers and social media
followers, create experiences, and pursues stories that pertain to your
The top three best-selling vehicles in the USA were, of
course, pickup trucks. Ford, Chevrolet, and Ram continue to dominate vehicles
sales with the combined force of their half-ton and heavy-duty pickup trucks.
This has always been this way for decades.
We often talk about thee proliferation of the SUV in this
country. Last year, that has continued to dominate the market equally with the
pickup truck. Families have decided that the SUV is the way to go for family
transport and to fill the parking lots and garages of their place of
employment. You cannot go to a shopping center without having to sift through
them for an open space.
Believe me, the enthusiasts are upset. Their precious
coupes, sedans, convertibles, and wagons are slowly fading into oblivion.
Several car lines have been cut for 2019. Woe is you.
Name one of the most enduring and memorable vehicle
platforms of the past 40 years?
There are several to choose from. Although, we tend to remember those from the “Big Three” – Detroit’s automakers. But, if we sift through every one of them to find a platform that is still fondly remembered – if for one particular model – you may or may not be surprised to know which one.
Here is a hint: It’s not a front-drive platform.
Another hint? It was originally made for a “compact” car.
Spring is a relative concept, isn’t it? At least here in
Minnesota, it seems to be a bit bipolar.
However, one can be optimistic. The temperatures are up. The
ice is melting. If abated, it has not caused major flooding at your home or street.
Some communities had not been lucky – ranging from major floods in Nebraska to
the mass of potholes across the northern part of our country.
But, spring is a cause for us to celebrate a bit. Baseball’s
Spring Training will soon transition to the regular season. March has become a
time when brackets matter more than productivity at work. We are also wearing
less layers of clothes.
Victory & Reseda is a website/blog telling the story of the automobile through the eyes of freelance automotive writer Randy Stern and friends. This website/blog serves as a virtual intersection of the automobile, its culture, the past, present and future of personal transportation. It also features travel pieces that center on the automotive experience.