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Canada's auto show circuit like Vitamin D in winter's dark days - Metro US

Canada’s auto show circuit like Vitamin D in winter’s dark days

Lots of sobering auto news of late… Many pedestrians at the sharp end of run-ins with motorists… Toyota fixing quite a lot of gas pedals… Ontario ends its grace period for cellphone use while driving and begins to hand out $150 “reminders.”

Time for some auto escapism.

I thought our buddy James Cameron would have helped out here. Given his ground breaking film technology, he could have gave his Avatar people some really fantastical motorized rides, but nooooo… he goes all mythical creature-like, which is so last century.

But we can reliably secure our fix for things shiny and mechanical, at one of this winter’s auto shows. Montreal starts the Canadian auto show season off with a bang in early January, followed by Edmonton later in the month, Toronto next week, Calgary in mid-March, and Vancouver in late March. There are lots of great regional shows as well.

Any will do. As long as it’s indoors, where the cars stay shiny, and the “presenters” never seem to age.

It’s one of the rare places where one can receive the automotive equivalent of Vitamin D during the dark days of winter.

And if you’re like me, you probably spend more time in front of computer and TV screens during winter. Auto shows are nice reminders that dream cars actually do exist in the flesh. You can touch them, and in some cases, plant your butt in the driver’s seat.

Another reason I love auto shows, is that they encourage distraction. I walk a crooked line at all times during my auto show tours.

You’re happily engrossed one moment, with, say, the new bed liner in a full-size pickup, when you spot, off in the distance, the profile of yet another new re-born muscle car.

So off you go. But on the way, you have to negotiate around the midsize sedan that you always maintained was the most boring car ever built, so you need to point that out to your show mates.

But you can’t see them, because they’re off on their own crazy tangents, those idiots, so you might as well check out this new crossover that’s right over here, because your brother is considering one, and wants you to check out the headroom.

Not that he’s tall — he’s actually kind of short — but because he has an unusually long torso.
And then you hear music. Loud dance music that suggests it might be coming from some sort of performance or fashion show. Wouldn’t want to miss that…

It might be a bit rich to call auto show meandering as “living in the moment” but I’m pretty sure it’s close to it, probably on the same road, and I heartily recommend it.


– Michael Goetz has been writing about cars and editing automotive publications for more than 20 years. He lives in Toronto with his family and a neglected 1967 Jaguar E-type.

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