Thursday, January 12, 2017

Take A Virtual Car Ride At Detroit Auto Show

It is always fun to sit behind the steering wheels of the models on display at an auto show and imagine yourself driving those vehicles down the road.  This year at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit, visitors can not only get a close up glimpse at more than 700 cars and trucks but also participate in some experiences that allow you to go on a virtual drive.  There are a variety of simulators at the auto show with scenarios that range from taking a casual cruise down Main Street to racing laps in the Detroit Grand Prix.

Auto supplier DENSO provides a virtual simulator that recreates taking a leisurely drive with prompts that highlight how its products can make your ride safer and more comfortable.

Test your racing skills as you drive the Hyundai N 2025 concept car during a game of Playstation's Gran Turismo 6.  Players don't use a video game controller to maneuver though, you actually climb into a game-pod that provides gas and brake pedals plus a steering wheel to simulate your racing around a track.  All ages are welcome to participate in the Hyundai Racing Challenge.  Can you achieve the best lap time and earn the #1 spot on the leader board?

The Ford GT that won Le Man's in 2016 is on display at NAIAS!

Plus you can take a spin in the Ford GT Le Man's Race Simulator!  This three seat ride has passengers being rotated and bounced around as it simulates racing through the Le Man's race course.  Ford is also sponsoring a dueling truck simulator in the entry concourse which challenges two participants to keep competing Ford F-150 Raptors from tipping over as they steer through a rocky course filled with hills and curves trying to reach the finish line first.

Stop by the Acura exhibit to take a virtual ride in the NSX they have displayed on the show floor.  Before you start driving through a virtual course, this simulation lets you customize your car to provide an overview of the vehicle's available options.  Which color do you want your NSX painted in? Choose and you can see it displayed in the simulation. 

Make sure to stop by the Dodge display for a chance to race a Hellcat.  Sit in the frame of an actual muscle car that sways and vibrates as you steer it through a virtual race course.

You can also slide into the frame of an Indy Car and compete in a simulated Detroit Grand Prix qualifying run.  Think you can win the pole position in this virtual racing simulation? You can see the real Indy cars racing on Detroit's Belle Isle from June 2 -4 this year during the city's annual Grand Prix weekend.

If a virtual drive isn't your thing, you can still have some high-tech fun racing a robot through a mouse maze at the Chevy Tech Studio area of the GM exhibit.

Chevrolet also has a fun virtual experience in its Design Studio section that lets you sketch a picture of a car on a pad of paper and it automatically transfers a digital image of your creation to a monitor in front of you as it is drawn.  When you are done email the picture to yourself and take home your hand drawn sketch for some nice souvenirs of your visit to the Detroit Auto Show.

The North American International Auto Show takes place at Detroit's COBO CENTER and is open for the public to attend from January 14 - 22, 2017. Visit for more information about show hours and purchasing tickets for Detroit's annual auto show.

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