NAIAS

Detroit & The Auto Show: Quite The Thrill For This Texano!

You might have noticed the first part of this week I was in Detroit for the North American International Auto Show (#FordNAIAS and #FordTX online).  The Ford Motor Company was nice enough to invite me for the second year in a row.  Last year, my first time in Detroit and the auto show, was really quite the experience so of course I was thrilled to go back and check out all of the latest models from vehicle makers the world over, especially from Ford.

Besides what better way to kick off a New Year than with a trip!?

As expected, the trip itself was a lot of fun.  We got to visit Ford’s world headquarters; drive a handful of their new cars and trucks; stop by the Henry Ford Museum; and my personal favorite, talk one on one with the very creative and quirky TechShop team.  That night was especially hands on as we got to sandblast our own beer mugs, silkscreen our own tote bags, and play with a whole bunch of other cool tools that I probably wouldn’t have otherwise ever gotten to touch.  They even had a 3D printer.  That was pretty awesome!

Here’s a quick recap of what we got to experience:

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This was me in Dallas where I had a layover both on my way to Detroit and back to Houston. I got to travel with other Texas bloggers from Dallas.

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On our first full day, we visited the VIRTTEX Driving Simulator at Ford headquarters.  Basically real people drive a vehicle inside that big bubble looking thing and the techs on the other side simulate different environments for the driver.  You can watch it all, including the driver’s reactions, on TV screens in the tech room.  The goal is to implement new safety features to Ford vehicles like what this driver was testing – a way to tug at the steering wheel when the driver is driving outside of their lane.

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Then it was time for us to test drive some of Ford’s latest models at their Product Review Center.  We didn’t get to do this last year, and boy was it a lot of fun.  I wanted to race on the test track.  We couldn’t though.  They had radios in our cars to tell us if we were going too fast or too slow.  It’s kind of lame, but I made the below video anyway to show you some of the drive. 

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These are all the cars I got to test drive.

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As you can understand, after all that driving we were pretty hungry.  For lunch on this date we were treated to a step back in time.  To January 14, 1850 to be exact at the very fun Eagle Tavern at Greenfield Village.  The food was delicious. The presentation and delivery pretty spot on.  I was ready for a siesta after lunch.

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The following morning was Ford’s big press conference at the Auto Show where among other vehicles they got unveil this beauty of a pickup, the brand new Atlas. I am so in love with this truck already.  Check out the actual full unveiling of the Atlas at the press conference in the video below.

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Back on the showroom floor, Ford had both old and new models on display. The auto maker is actually celebrating 150 years of making vehicles this year.  Not too shabby, eh?

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I did wonder off at one point to check out all of the other cool models on the floor. This little number was my absolute favorite!  It’s a concept car called the i8. ¡Ay, yo lo quiero!

ford naias fordtx north american international auto show ford motor company juanofwords

What do you all think?  Pretty snazzy no? I think this car suits me.

Bueno, there was so much more we got to experience, but this kind of gives you an idea of what I got to see, hear and touch in Detroit.  I hope you like the pictures!

I was a guest of the Ford Motor Company for their Digital Summit at NAIAS. All opinions are strictly my own.

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Odds & Ends From Detroit

Home sweet home!  I’m back in Texas now and still reveling from all of the excitement of the last couple of days.  I didn’t know whether I should post another blog about my trip or not (you know, me constantly over thinking everything again), but I decided to go ahead and do so because there were a couple of cool little things I didn’t get to show you before.  Plus it would give our trip together a conclusion :-)

So here we go:

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This is how cold it was in Detroit. The sewers were smoking.

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One of the few decent shots of downtown I was able to snap in between all of the craziness.

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Someone was nice enough to take this picture. Thank you sir!

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We didn't get to see any of these dummies crash, but they are still pretty awesome.

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Tan sufrido! I sent this pic to Anjelica to make her jealous, lol! She didn't find it as amusing as me for some reason.

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Can I say Ford's World Headquarters were pretty impressive. So many buildings. It's like a city within a city.

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The company uses natural products like hemp - yes I said hemp - to experiment with sustainable auto parts. But don't go tearing your car apart just yet, lol... most of these products are still prototypes.

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The Human Occupant Package Simulator (HOPS), one of the most interesting things we got to see at Ford's research labs. They use the same type of CG technology the film industry uses to make movies like Avatar to make decisions about driver saftey and comfort. I wanted to wear those sensors!

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And finally, everything comes together in simulated experiences like this one. We didn't have time to ride the thing otherwise I'd be in the picture luego, luego!

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At last, the sad moment came where our Ford Fantasy Camp was over. Everyone on the shuttle was exhausted, but we were very happy for the experience.

Y'all know me, if there is one thing I am, it's "bien codo", jaja! These are the tees I bought Edgar and Anjelica. Seventy five percent off! Anjelica was like "good job babe!"

Thank you to the folks at Ford for making this experience such a wonderful and exciting one for me and all of the other bloggers in Detroit the last three days.  It was really cool hanging out with people from literally every corner of the world!  Para ustedes, I hope I did a decent job of taking you all along for the adventure.  It was very fun sharing this experience with you.

My Favorites So Far at the Detroit Auto Show!

Let me get right to the point.  There are literally hundreds of cars… beautiful cars!  And even more hundreds of people from across the world.  Todavía ni recorro la mitad de este auto show and already I am overwhelmed and tired.  Me hubiera traido un par de chanclas, jajaja… ¿se imaginan?  Anyway, here are my favorites so far!  Hope you all like the pictures.

It was a little crazy after the big Ford reveal this morning!

Everyone wanted an up close view of the new Ford Fusion.

Yo estaba en relax mode... divirtiendome con la locura.

Here's a closer look at the actual model. It is actually a very nice car!

Since I'm here, pense, might as well look at other cars too... eh? This one you might recognize from the commercials with one, JLO... La Lopez, lol!

Hmm, now if I were carrying JLO out of this car, what would be the best method?

I am in LOVE with this car! So beautiful!!

Though I could also learn to live with this one...

Y yo con la carcacha que tengo en casa. I think that Selena song could now officially be about me! Look at this beauty!

Edgar would have LOVED this one. The Hot Wheels Camaro in real life!

He would have also thoroughly enjoyed seeing the KIA hamsters in actual size.

I really got a kick out of this new prototype by Toyota. It takes Facebook status updates to a whole new level. You can change it's outer appearance based on your mood... much like a wallpaper. Wow!

Equally impressive, this prototype by Chevy. Think of it as a mix between a car and a moped that opens from the front. Max speed I think is between 25 and 35 mph.

If you're more into class and elegance, this Bentley Mulsanne might be more up your alley. Gorgeous, every single last detail of this car!

I'm just digging all of the muscle cars! ¿No me regalaran uno?

Totally unrelated... this local reporter was trying to say her lines while riding this simulator and it was hilarious to watch her mess up, over and over again!

And finally, this button that I made for Edgar at the Chevy button-making booth. Very cool! Gotta go make more!

Look over there, that's Canada on the other side!

 

Day One in Detroit – Photos, Photos, Photos!

¡Ya llegue!  Here we go folks, first day in Detroit and already I’m exhausted.  Well, not really… more like utterly impressed with all of the royal treatment we’ve been getting here since we first arrived.  Courtesy of the Ford Motor Company, of course.  They wined and dined us at the beautiful Henry Ford Museum and allowed us special access to portions of their brand new exhibits that won’t be open to the general public until the end of this month.  It’s such an honor to be one of the over 140 bloggers and members of the media from across the globe who were invited to the North American International Auto Show by Ford this week.

Tomorrow our day kicks off at 5:00 a.m., but I wanted to share a little of what we’ve seen so far before going to bed with all of you.  ¡Espero les gusten las foticos! 

Riding in the town car from Detroit International Airport to The Henry Hotel. Primera vez for everything I guess, jajaja!

Ford's World Headquarters. I can see it from my hotel room.

The Henry Hotel is gorgeous! Beautiful artwork throughout.

Check out the color in these pieces.

First thing I did was jump in the bed when I got in the room. Estaba bien fastidiado del viaje.

Here we are getting ready for dinner at The Henry Ford Museum.

This was one of the most impressive displays at the museum. The actual vehicle John F. Kennedy was assassinated in... kind of morbid, I know!

The vintage billboards were bien chingones!

Beautiful classics were everywhere.

My favorites have always been the originals.

La verdad, quede bien impresionado. So many cool cars!

And dinner and drinks were very good. Open bar, my kind of pachanga!

When we got back, this stylus pen and special access card for tomorrow's auto show were awaiting us in the rooms. How very nice!

More pictures coming tomorrow.  You can also learn more about the North American International Auto Show at NAIAS.com.  Tomorrow at 8:00 a.m. EST Ford will be unveiling their brand new Ford Fusion in a live international press conference.  Tune in to watch at livestream.com/ford.

I’m going to Detroit, The D, Motown, The Motor City!

I can’t believe it!  I’m going to Detroit, Michigan next week!  I’ve always been enamored with the northern most portion of the United States, and until this summer had only read about this part of the country in books, imagining myself in the midst of all of that snow.  Now, just months after having visited New York City and Chicago for the first time in my life, the date is almost here and I can’t wait to board my plane for the The D, Motown, the Motor City, Detroit!

The Motor City - Detroit, Michigan!

Who would have thought that my stories as a young boy growing up and growing into myself would have connected with others the way they have, much less that they would be taking me all the way across the nation to Michigan.  Definitely not me!  Texas and Mexico were the only places I used to travel before, both as a kid and as an adult.  Now I’m packing for Detroit!  I am so grateful for all of the blessings I’ve received and for all of you who have made everything possible!

Thank you guys for sticking around and for continuing this journey with me!

Next week when I’m at the North American International Auto Show (NAIAS), as a guest of the Ford Motor Company, I’m going to do my best to take you all along for the adventure!  Not only will we be among the first in the world to see some of the auto industry’s newest designs, models and concepts, but I’ll also get the chance to visit Ford’s research labs and design center where all of the car making magic takes place!  I am just beyond myself with excitement.  I think we’re even going to have time to play around with our own design ideas!  Can you imagine what I’ll come up with?  I’m already thinking the ultimate Mexi-ride, jajaja!

Smiling con Ford!

Secretly, I’m also hoping there will be lots of snow all over the place.  I’ve never actually been in real snow and though I know it will probably be way too cold for me, I can’t wait to step in a couple inches… or feet of snow!

¡AJUUAA!

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