The 2014 edition of the North American International Auto Show in Detroit provided even more excitement than last year’s show – by Mark Reuss
Think back to the 2013 North American International Auto Show… we had a very glitzy, pulse-pounding reveal of the all-new 2014 Corvette Stingray… we saw the Cadillac ATS sedan win North American Car of the Year… we introduced the all-new Cadillac ELR extended range luxury coupe… it was one remarkable show. When it was over, I was pretty sure we weren’t going to have that kind of excitement again for a long time.
Well, I was wrong.
For GM, and for me, the 2014 edition of the NAIAS in Detroit provided even more excitement than last year’s show.
It began Sunday evening when we unveiled the new 2015 GMC Canyon midsize pickup. This is a segment that has been ignored and abandoned for too long. We have not one but two outstanding new entries, with the Canyon and the Chevy Colorado, and suddenly we’re able to offer customers the best midsize pickups they can buy. I think our entries will really breathe new life into that segment.
The Canyon reveal was part of what we’ve been calling “GM Truckapalooza,” where we dramatically showed the most robust, complete lineup of trucks and full-size SUVs in the industry, from Chevrolet and GMC. No other manufacturer offers pickups from midsize to HD, and when you combine those with our brand new full-size SUVs, you have a lineup that is unmatched. Truckapalooza ended with renowned guitarist Kenny Wayne Shepherd delighting our guests with his wizardry, including a scorching “Voodoo Child” that would have made Jimi Hendrix proud.
And there was some more rocking on Monday morning, when Chevrolet pulled off the sweep at the North American Car and Truck of the Year Awards. Corvette Stingray and Silverado brought home the bacon for the Bow Tie, and I could not have been any prouder. It’s a true validation for all the hard work that the Corvette team and the full-size pickup teams put in on their programs.
More importantly, it’s also a validation for our customers. They buy our products, especially Corvette and Silverado, because they expect them to be the best. It helps when they see an independent panel of experts declare that they indeed are the best, and award Chevrolet the hardware to prove it. It was a special morning.
It only got better from there, believe it or not. A couple of hours later we revealed the Corvette Z06 and C7.R race car. The Z06 was delivered on a trailer from our Tech Center in Warren, in a convoy that, by the time it reached Cobo Center in downtown Detroit, consisted of 50 brand new Stingrays and a police escort. Between the camera cars and the helicopter shots, it made for some fantastic television, shown on the big video screens around the Chevrolet stand at Cobo. Another great moment, one fitting for the fastest, greatest, nastiest Corvette ever made.
But we weren’t done yet. Tuesday morning Cadillac unveiled the ATS Coupe, further extending and elevating the brand. And it also revealed its new logo, refreshed, refined and updated. The Wreath and Crest becomes simply the Crest, and I think it looks fantastic, and I congratulate Cadillac on its continued evolution.
So it was a hugely successful and exciting show for us. By the time the week was over, GM had three of the top five vehicles in terms of media coverage.
Needless to say, we’re not stopping here. We’ll continue to put the customer first in everything we do, and bring out vehicle after vehicle designed to delight said customer, and make the automotive world stop and take notice.
In 2014, GM will launch 15 new or significantly updated cars, trucks and crossovers, including those full-size SUVs, the HD pickups, and the Camaro Z28. And I can’t wait for the 2015 NAIAS. The bar is very high…
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