The New York International Auto Show (NYIAS) on the John Batchelor radio show

The New York International Auto Show (NYIAS) on the John Batchelor radio show

If the pre-shows are indicative of what the show it’self is going to be like, the New York auto show is going to be about luxury and fuel efficiency. The luxury groups are not going to die, as some had prophesized. What other place, but New York, to main line luxury into the hearts and hybrids of the auto industry.

First up was Bentley with their new Flying Spur. Bentley, like all other luxury vehicles, cater to people that can afford beautiful pieces of art that can drive. At the event Salonge, Beyonce’s sister, sang while the artisans from Crewe showed the crowd the paper thin walnut wood and Italian leather that are used to create parts of the Flying Spur.

Audi showed the A3, which will not be at the New York auto show, but will be shown at the Shanghai Auto show in a couple weeks. The A3 will come to the United States in three engines, all turbo. By late 2014 a diesel and a plug-in hybrid, in the sportback, will be available.

And General Motors showed the piece de resistance, the Cadillac CTS. Unveiled at the Frederick P. Rose Hall, home of Jazz at Lincoln Center, the CTS seemed like it went off without flaw, but General Motors had sweated in the days before. A leaked picture of the CTS had made it to an auto website. GM had no idea how they had received it, and soon found out that their media site had been hacked. According to Ed Welburn, Chief designer for General Motors, the worst part was that the auto website only had a partial picture and had rendered the rest of the car into a picture “that I would never have drawn.”

Tomorrow starts the actual press days.

About the Author:

Lou Ann Hammond is the CEO of Carlist and Driving the Nation. She is the co-host of Real Wheels Washington Post carchat every Friday morning and is the Automotive, energy correspondent for The John Batchelor Show and a Contributor to Automotive Electronics magazine headquartered in Korea. Hammond is a member of the North American Car and Truck of the Year (NACTOY), Women's World Car of the Year (WWCOTY), and the Concept Car of the Year.