My Favorite Vehicles of 2012

TweetLast year was simply a breakout year. This year eclipsed it. All told, I drove over 35 vehicles of all stripes throughout this year….

VOTY '12: Shortlisted

Tweet Photo by Randy Stern The data has been crunched. The panel of jurors has spoken. Out of 39 vehicles considered for the Victory…

Five Favorites from a Very Busy Period in This Work and Art

Once there were five…then I forgot.

It’s been a while since I did a Five Favorites piece. They usually involve a theme and five items related to that theme. Sometimes, it’s a personal experience that dictates these five items. Sometimes, it’s other factors that parse out the list. Either way, you get five stories from one idea – novel, isn't it?

A thought popped in my head: I've been asked a lot about the vehicles I've driven since the beginning of March. Two particular questions come up: "Which would I buy?"< ?i> and "Which one would you buy?"

Coming Full Circle

I remember the day I took delivery of a 1991 Acura Integra RS coupe. It was dusk on a Thursday in November of 1990. I arrived with a cashier's check at Marin Acura in Corte Madera, California ready to take my brand new baby home. The vehicle in question just finished with detailing after the air conditioning unit was installed into my Concord Blue Metallic hatchback.

Chicago 2012: Plenty of Catching Up To Do…

Consider how large the Chicago Auto Show's exhibition space is. That is 1.2 million square feet of space that has everything and anything you will need to navigate through the automotive world. Couple that with in-show experiences – ride-alongs, an area celebrating the United States Army, fun areas for the kids, vendors, and so forth – then you understand why one would come to McCormick Place in mid-February.

Between the two auto shows I attend annually, Chicago offers more bang for the buck. The First Look for Charity is considered one of the top events to do for the socially mobile in the Chicagoland Area. The show attracts an entire region to McCormick Place with new vehicles that are currently on sale or coming soon to a dealer near you.

As a member of the working automotive media corps, if I was unable not attend the shows in Los Angeles, Detroit, New York, Houston, Washington, or anyplace we are welcome, Chicago is a great place to catch up on what I missed throughout the calendar.

Let’s do some catching up, shall we?

Detroit 2012: Quandaries from Afar

It was tough picking just nine from a plethora of debuts from the North American International Auto Show. Detroit yielded plenty of excitement, tempered with some criticism. I, for one, had my share of concerns and quandaries.

It was also tough to stay balanced here.

Detroit 2012: The View from Afar

No, I was not there this year.

If you read my Twitter, you'd probably wondered if I were to show up at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit. Unfortunately, the stars did not align properly. Yet, I was asked by fellow journalists, media relations people and other industry support people whether I would make the trek to the Motor City for this very important exhibition of the automobile. Not this year. I will someday.

Because of the speed of information available online and the ability to see video and images from the show readily, I was able to ascertain the big debuts and the most curious appearances at Cobo Hall. This helped in my coverage last year from my home in the Twin Cities.

Of course, there's nothing like being there. You get to see and touch these new products ahead of consumer sale. You get to see whether you'd feel comfortable behind the wheel of one. That’s why we go to auto shows, right?

Without further ado, here are my picks from NAIAS…