The New York International Auto Show Rocks! (and here's why)

Saturday, April 15, 2017
You don't need to be a car enthusiast to enjoy The New York International Auto Show. Contrary to what people believe, you don't have to be a car lover and it's not just for men (or 'dudes,' as I like to say). I used to visit the auto show every year as a little girl, and it became a special tradition for our family. I like cars but I don't love them. I drive an old Toyota SUV from 2007 (but I do love her and I even named her Kea Lani). You won't find posters of cars all over my room and I don't read every issue of Car and Driver (nothing against them, though, it's a great magazine). I don't know the difference between engines and models and torque. But I do know that the New York International Auto Show is just plain cool. If you've attended in the past, then you already know this, too. But if you're contemplating visiting or wondering if you should take the family, let me explain to you what makes this show so special.

First, let me add my little disclaimer. I was invited to attend an amazing event called Girls Night Out, held by the fabulous A Girls Guide to Cars (which was formerly known as She Buys Cars- please go visit their site and follow them on social media- you won't be sorry you did). This enabled me to preview the show before it opened to the public, which was honestly a dream come true for me. I am grateful to the wonderful ladies of She Buys Cars/A Girls Guide to Cars, and I thank them graciously for such a fun event, and for allowing me to share all of the cool things I saw at the show with you. But please, dear reader, know that no one paid me to write this article, and all of the opinions, goofy selfies, and enthusiastic outbursts are entirely my own.

Without further ado, here are the reasons why the NYIAS totally rocks (in case tons of sparkly, shiny cars aren't enough reasons for you, I mean).

1. Family Friendly Fun

What I've always loved about the auto show is that it's not just for adults. There's plenty for kids to see and do, and they are welcome to see and touch the cars (respectfully, kiddos!), even sit in them (unless otherwise stated). The cars are shiny and sparkly, definitely dazzling to little eyes! And if kids are not overly thrilled by each individual car brand, they are bound to fall in love with the more unique displays, like the 2017 Nissan Rogue One. The car looks like an X-Wing Fighter!

And there's even a droid in it! And a giant Death Star hanging above it!! Omg!

There are cars with treds, like this Minecraftish looking Rogue from Nissan...

and colorful Nascar racing vehicles like this M&M's car from Toyota...

And throughout the event there are areas to catch kids' eyes, like our friends from Diggerland USA, who have construction vehicles for the kids to sit in.  Jeep has a giant mountain created outside in front of the Javits Center, which is really something special. You can go on an off-road adventure in what they call 'Camp Jeep!' Or perhaps find your favorite sports team represented at Toyota, too...

Along with all of these cool, kid-enticing cars, you'll also find fun and interesting displays by:

  • NYC Police Museum
  • NCI Racing
  • NYS Police
  • Vintage Auto Museum of New Jersey
  • Vintage Ice Cream Guys
  • Department of Corrections Tank
  • Saratoga Auto Museum
  • Orange County Choppers celebrity autographs
  • Petite Retreats Tiny Houses
  • and much more!

2. Concept Cars

This was one of my favorite things to see at the auto show when I was a kid. Cars of the future! There's nothing like those robotic looking vehicles to spark your imagination and dream about what's to come. Check out the Toyota I-Road!

The Toyota FV-2 looks like something out of Tron! Can you see me reflected in the wheel? Far right- the reflection makes me look wonderfully slender...ya gotta love a vehicle that makes you look skinny, too.

Or how about the concept cars that are close to coming out on the market, like this Toyota FT4X. It apparently even comes with its own sleeping bag...

The Genesis GV80 just blew me away. It would actually come with a membership to Amazon Prime, which means your car would be linked to Alexa, so she could literally start your car for you and program it to the right interior temperature. If that wasn't enough, it even has its own set of matching luggage. Hello, gorgeous!

3. Contests, Giveaways and Freebies

As a kid I specifically remember one of the car dealers (I can't remember which) giving guests a mystery key, which you could stand on line and use to open a locked treasure chest. Well, only one key would open the chest, so we'd all stand on line to try our luck. There were free posters and magnets, keychains and pens. As a kid, I loved the free bags they would give us and the goodies we could put in them at each location.Many of the vendors offer raffles and contests (not all are open to kids, but some are). In fact, She Buys Cars/A Girls Guide to Cars was offering an awesome chance to win a Kate Spade handbag if you followed their instructions and posted a pic of yourself in your favorite car at the show, using their signature hashtag, #HandbagChallengeNYIAS (contest has ended, sorry!).  Even I won a prize at the Girls Night Out event! That's me on the far left with my portable charger (is it sad that I wanted to win that more than a handbag? It's true!).

4. Luxury and Sports Cars

Let's face it, not many of us have a chance to see fancy sports cars and luxury vehicles up close. Not all in one place, anyway. Here you'll see Ferraris, Lamborghinis, Bentleys, Maseratis and so many more. It is so much fun to sit in a sports car that you've never sat in before (especially when you're used to climbing in an SUV or if you're busy being a mom taxi- the 'unpaid Uber driver,' as one of my friends called it). I found my dream car, I think, in this gorgeous Chevy Corvette Convertible. It suits me, don't you think? Don't laugh, but I couldn't find the door handle to get out. Everything was so sleek and modern inside that my feeble mom brain couldn't locate the exit.

5.  Modern Technology

I was floored by the amount of jaw-dropping technology that I spotted at the show. Walls that turned into giant television screens, revolving platforms, talking robots, touch-screens and just the idea that you are there on the edge of everything shiny and new. When I was a kid, the cars had stickers in the windows to tell you the price and the specs. Now you can touch a screen in front of the cars, and even change the color of the vehicle right before your eyes (don't judge my lack of video skills- I know, I know, 'turn the phone sideways!' Geez)

This show is the future, honestly. All of these ideas brewing- the creativity, the inspiration- it's a great place to bring those young, aspiring builders, engineers and artistic minds! The whole motto of the show is 'What's Your Drive?' And although it's focused on cars, it's also a play on words- what drives you to create, to inspire, to move forward? When you attend the auto show and see what it has to offer, you realize, when it comes to the future, anything is possible.

The New York International Auto Show 
March 30th-April 8, 2018
Jacob Javits Convention Center
11th Avenue, New York City
Click here for tickets

Scroll below for my tips on visiting the show!

Jersey Momma Tips for The New York International Auto Show

  • wear good shoes (there's lots of walking!)
  • if you're with kids, take frequent breaks and hit up the food court if you need to
  • take advantage of mass transit- New York Waterway is a fun way to travel with kids, and they even offer discount packages for your NYIAS tickets
  • respect the cars (remember, you don't own these cars, so treat them with care, okay? You might be wondering what I mean, but if you go and see kids leaning on the cars or sitting on the bumpers, or even putting their feet up on a dashboard, you'll totally understand my point...)
  • take lots of pictures and enter the contests! Even I won something, after all.
  • get there when the show first opens, if you can, as crowds get heavier as the day progresses
  • have fun!

For more pics of our fun night out with She Buys Cars (now A Girls Guide to Cars), search your favorite social media channels for #GirlsNightOutNYIAS. Photos and info above came from the 2017 New York International Auto Show. Stay tuned for pics and fun from the 2018 show!


  1. My boys would go CRAZY for this car show!!! I even want to go. So many cool cars, freebies, and just looks like so much fun. Great review!

  2. This looks like a fun event! I would love to go to a car show like this... I love looking at concept cars they're the coolest.

  3. I'm a huge sucker for auto shows! They are so much fun!

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