Viewing of vehicles varies at the Greater Los Angeles Auto Show

Friday, December 01, 2017 01:00PM
Sure, you'll go to the Greater Los Angeles Auto Show to look at cars. But these days, you can also experience them in different ways thanks to modern technology.


LOS ANGELES - Sure, you'll go to the Greater Los Angeles Auto Show to look at cars, but these days, you can also experience them in different ways thanks to modern technology.

"They put up various things, they tell you where to look, kind of like normal reality plus," said Chad Lunceford of Phoenix, Arizona.

He was checking out a virtual reality system called Honda Lens via a set of large goggles. It's a way to give Honda's new Accord a deep once-over.

"Walking around the car, seeing all the new stuff that they've done with the Accord, it's cool. It shows you all the new features, like the new display, all the legroom, stuff like that," said Adam Schlenker of Ontario, who was also checking out the Accord on the Honda Lens VR system.

There's a similar system in the Volkswagen booth too, which makes even more sense. It's the only way you're going to be able to drive one of their far off in the future I.D. electric models.

"You can imagine it, and then you see it a real way. And I even forgot that I was at a trade show or a car expo," said Omar Seffar of West Los Angeles, after trying out the VW exhibit.

Another cool display doesn't use much technology at all, but is very effective. GMC hoisted a Sierra pickup truck more than seven feet into the air via trestles under the wheels. This allows people to walk completely underneath it and see the features of the frame, suspension, and four-wheel drive system.

Outside, you can take a ride on what Mercedes-Benz calls the Iron Schockl, if you dare. The steel contraption is like a metal off-road course, with a variation of a teeter-totter at the very top. Aboard a G500 SUV, you'll feel what it's like to do some serious off-roading, without the husky 4x4 even getting dusty.

Or if you're really brave, take a few hot laps in the three-wheeled Slingshot around a coned-off autocross course outside West Hall. The Slingshot is a kind of mashup of a car and a motorcycle, and looks as much fun as both combined. With a professional driver letting you ride shotgun as he slides the Slingshot around the cones, it's a nice place for a photo op, or a bad place to lose the grip on your phone.

There are also regular old car test drives out front, but you do have to be a little brave. After all, you'll be doing your test drive on the streets of Downtown L.A.
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