Sunday, November 23, 2014

My First Time at L.A. Auto Show

I have known that there is such a thing as an automobile show. Apparently it is a big thing. But seeing as I don't drive and have limited interest in automobiles (unless they are painted in an artist way or are creatively off the mainstream) then I had no need to go spend money traipsing over the L.A. Convention center.

Until this year. See, I really want a self driving car.  Hell, I want the majority of Los Angeles to have a self driving car. Why? Because most Angelenos can't drive. They cut right in front of city buses. They have the phone in their face slurping something as they turn the corner and almost hit me.

I have witness bone stupidity from people behind the wheel. It is time, long past time for these people to be placed in a controlled vehicle.

So, I got to thinking. I think a lot and most times nothing comes from it. But this time I was thinking harder than usual. Maybe Google and the other autonomous car vendors will be at the show. And I could get a gander at what I think could be functional available by 2017 in California.

So I take a bus, another bus and a train to the Convention Center. Big honking place.

I get my ticket and turn a corner and bam, there it was. This model is from Volvo and the person, who is not a booth bunny, told me that in Sweden they are just about good to go.

I'll put Sweden in the summer on the bucket list of travel possibilities. It doesn't bother me I would travel half way around the world to test out the car. I'm impatient.

So I found one car I was sure that I'd find more. I spent three hours in that joint. Verily I looked at just about every car in the place. There were plenty of hybrids. Electrics. Diesels. A ton of red cars; pretty, shiny things that will guarantee you will be pulled over every night for the next 15 years.

I almost bought food at the event until I understood that $11.00 was the starting point for most meals. That frugal bone started to twitch and I made do with a $5 frozen drink.

Back to hoofing. I saw high toned low end cars and beep-beeps that where encased in plastic walls so that no mere mortal could touch them.

I'm still hoofing for another autonomous car. I'm about to give up when I found one at the Honda area. More on that later.

Lessons Learned

I have to say I had per-conceived notions about who goes to an auto show. Now, some of those notions were correct. There were T-shirt wearing offenders like "I (heart) rim jobs. 

But really there were families, married people and not always the husband as the car junkie. There were dad's introducing sons to the car life. There were women who knew what the lingo was and comparing gears to wheel base ratio something or other.

It was Greek to me but god bless 'em. Oh, one more thing.

I was in the rest area. This married couple sat beside me. Dude was telling his wife/partner/significant other that the Ford trucks will be converted from a steel base to a composite one because of up coming EPA regulations.  He also said that the steel industry was busy trying to kill or alter the requirements so that steel would be in the trucks.

From the way he was talking, it sounded like the word environmental was a pejorative. 

Anyway, it was an experience I'm still processing. On account it took three hours to get home. 

Yeah. Another reason why I want the car.

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