The Canadian International Auto Show is, for many car enthusiasts, the high point of the Canadian winter. A chance to spend a day or more poking about in new cars and seeing the newest concept cars. My first impression of the 2011 show is that I was a bit let down.
I suppose I should qualify that feeling, lest you think the show isn’t worth visiting, because it is. Over the 2 previous weeks, I had covered the new car launches at the Detroit and Chicago shows where there were several World or North American premieres. There were no World premieres in Toronto and several of the manufacturer’s booths lacked the extravagance of their counterparts south of the border. I hate to say it, but the first part of my day was a little boring.
After a while, that brought with it the somewhat embarrassing realization that perhaps I’m becoming a little bit jaded. Having been in the car industry for so long and now covering car shows as part of my job for close to a decade means that a show has to really shine to light me up. The truth about the Toronto show is that most, if not all, of the spectacular new models I saw at Detroit and Chicago are also at the Toronto show. There is some really cool stuff there that most show goers will have never seen. The 2012 Hyundai Accent wasn’t at either of the other shows, and is at Toronto. That is a pretty important model in our market and there was quite a buzz surrounding the great looking little car.