January 3, 2005
By: Jason Teller
It’s early January and that means it’s time for the 2005 auto show season to come to life. In most previous years we’ve made Detroit and the massive North American International Auto Show our first major coverage, but this year we’ve added the upstart Los Angeles Auto Show to the mix as well.
The Los Angeles Auto Show has been held before Detroit for the past few years and has really started to gain momentum as a “major”. This year’s theme is Design Los Angeles, which recognizes the Los Angeles region’s enormous influence as an automotive design center. Along with the theme is an actual automobile designers’ conference to be held on the second media day (January 6th).
According to the LA Auto Show this is the first conference of its kind to be held at an auto show which will provide designers with meetings, prominent speakers and discussion topics geared specifically towards the automotive design discipline.
We will of course be focussed primarily on Audi, though, which brings us back to the main reason why LA was added to our travel schedule this year. Audi is set to feature the North America debuts of three vehicles: the 2006 A3 Sportback, the B7 platform A4 sedan and the B7 platform A4 Avant. With Detroit just a few days later we are not expecting any major surprise announcements for Audi at the LA show. That being said the new A3 and A4 variants warrant coverage given the expected importance of the A3 model and the ongoing importance of the A4 models in North America.
Also of signficant note is that Dr. Bernd Pischetsrieder, Chairman of the Board of Management of Volkswagen AG, is scheduled to kick off the media days at the LA Auto Show with a keynote presentation at the Motor Press Guild breakfast on January 5th. Amazingly, California accounts for 11% of all new car sales in the United States, meaning that it is a key market for VW’s revitalization in the US. Later that morning Pischetsrieder will be on hand as VW presents the world debut of the redesigned 2005 Jetta.
Pischetsrieder is Chairman of the Supervisory Board of Audi AG in addition to being leader of the Volkswagen Brand Group (VW, koda Auto, Bentley and Bugatti).
Moving across the country to the North American International Auto Show a few days after LA, we are set to continue our annual coverage from Detroit. Multiple sources we’ve spoken to have failed to confirm or deny something special to be shown in Detroit beyond the already announced C6 platform A6 Avant. History says that there will be something else on the stand when the media days start on January 9th. NAIAS is just that type of show.
Whatever happens, AudiWorld readers should start watching the site around January 6th for complete Audi coverage (including news updates and galleries) first from LA and then from Detroit.