Bob Lutz, former General Motors executive, has joined a mass of people who think the auto show is starting to become redundant, irrelevant and predictable. Specifically, Lutz used his column at Road & Track to describe the disappointment that was this year’s 2017 North American International Auto Show, or the 2017 Detroit Auto Show.
Lutz called the show flat “flat” and “mediocre” and criticized many of the debuts for their predictability in the crossover space. Those debuts included two, new and important crossovers from GM, the 2018 Chevrolet Traverse and 2018 GMC Terrain. The overarching theme, as told by Lutz, was a forgotten enthusiast at North America’s premier show, save for the surprise Kia Stinger GT.
At the same time, Detroit tried to counter the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas by dedicating the downstairs to autonomous technology and car connectivity. Lutz posed the all-important question following this move.
It might be another deplorable sign that we are at a point of convergence: Are these cars with onboard computing power, or are they computers with four wheels and an engine thrown in?
The show certainly rang duller than years past. After Ford blew media out of the water with the Ford GT, Mustang GT350 and Raptor all in one sitting, Buick revealed the Avenir and Avista back to back and other automakers flexed their creativity in concepts, 2017 came off a tad underwhelming.
Hopefully next year the Corvette team will have something in store for us. And by that, we mean a mid-engine, C8 Corvette.