The 2016 Chicago Auto Show will be the ground where new car technology, styling, models and updates to existing ones are unveiled when it is open to the public from Feb. 13 – 21 in McCormick Place.
The show will host a variety of vehicles serving as world introductions, each unveiled to the public for the first time ever. Similar to the show’s 18 last year, Senior Director Of Communications and Technology Mark Bilek said the show is expecting around 15-20 world introductions this year from brands like Kia, Ford, Hyundai, Ram, Infiniti, Toyota, Nissan and Chevrolet.
In addition to these world introductions are the debut vehicles. These are vehicles that have been previously unveiled and are ready for audiences to poke, prod and sit in. Here are just a few of the debut vehicles that will be at the show this year:
2016 Ford GT
Beginning production in the next few months, the Ford GT is an American classic celebrating it’s 50th anniversary. Last produced in 2005, the GT makes a comeback as Ford revamps the nameplate with fresh styling and mechanics. The 2016 GT sports a 600-plus horsepower twin-turbocharged EcoBoost V6 engine. The fast and furious vehicle features aircraft-inspired sculpting with fluid lines, a modern feel and striking styling cues. Inside, enthusiasts will be able to see the F1-inspired steering wheel which allows for a race car feel without sacrificing the functionality of having many controls at the driver’s fingertips.
2017 Fiat 124 Spider
Like the Ford GT, the Fiat 124 Spider was popular almost 50 years ago when it was shown at the 1966 Chicago Auto Show. A convertible once renowned for its beautiful styling, the 124 Spider is back, new and improved. The 1.4-liter MultiAir turbo four-cylinder engine can produce 160 horsepower and sends it to the rear wheels. The compact and sleek 124 Spider was designed at Centro Stile in Turin, Italy, where it developed its low-slung sportiness. Available technology in the Fiat includes a seven-inch Fiat Connect touch-screen infotainment system which allows for Bluetooth connectivity and multimedia control. Paired with a nine-speaker Bose audio system, the two-seater sports dual headrest speakers for great sound, despite quick driving.
2016 Chevrolet Malibu
Although the Chevrolet Malibu regularly gets updates, this is the first time that the 2016 model will be at the Chicago Auto Show. Proven by its standing as Google’s most searched for car in 2015, the Malibu commands attention. New for the 2016 model year is an all-new standard 1.5-liter four-cylinder turbo engine which produces 160 horsepower. Upgraded engines are new too, and employ a 2.0-liter turbo for 250 horsepower of high performance. Also new for the model year is Chevy’s Teen Driver system, which allows the Malibu to score the performance of a driver based on their speed, stability and the amount of near-crash warnings. The Malibu can differentiate drivers based on different codes for parents and their children. The ratings for teen drivers are sent to their parents after each time they drive.
2017 Jaguar F-Pace
An exciting development in the SUV segment, Jaguar will have their attempt at a premium sport utility vehicle at the auto show. Buyers can choose from a 2.0-liter four-cylinder turbo-charged diesel boasting 180 horsepower, a 3.0-liter supercharged V6 producing 340 horsepower or a 3.0-liter supercharged V6 powerhouse with 380 horsepower. The F-Pace isn’t just all muscle, though. Inside is Windsor soft-leather seating with twin-needle stitching, a configurable 10-color interior ambient lighting system and state-of-the-art Jaguar InControl touch-screen infotainment center.
Robert Mathius is a Chicago suburb native who currently lives in Tinley Park. He has a passion for the automotive industry in addition to journalism and works to blend his two passions in his writing. Additional automotive reporting by Robert can be found on Examiner.com.