I’m wrapping up 2011 with my best shots from last month’s Tampa International Auto Show. I’ve been a bit slowed up lately, because I got a new laptop and have had a lot of trouble getting the thing to color calibrate. Hopefully, this will be solved soon because as of right now, I’m unable to trust it’s color enough to do any photo editing on it. So, I’ve had to do everything on my wife’s Macbook.
Without further ado, here are my favorite shots from the annual car show last month. With the launch of the Toyota GT86 and Subaru BRZ, I wasn’t sure there would be much to see at the show this year, with most of the good stuff having been sent off to LA. Nonetheless, I got my first views of the new 2012 Lamborghini Aventador LP700-4 along with the unique new Hyundai Veloster and Fiat 500. Not to mention a few old school hotrods. And I didn’t even get stuck in any Corvettes this year.
I’ve always loved Lamborghini for their angular lines (yes, I was born in the ’80s, why do you ask?), their Countach-derived doors, and their vibrant atypical colors. This is their new halo car, the Aventaor, their latest V12 powered monster. You have to respect a car company who is so devoted to the top of their line having a V12, that they are willing to say that if environmental law ever became too stringent to allow the production of the V12, they wouldn’t soften the über bull with a smaller force fed engine, but would stop making cars altogether.
A pleasing mixture of aggression and elegance, from every angle.
There were also a few Gallardos present, two of which were Spyders. No sight of the final remaining two wheel drive offered Gallardos, the new Spyders that were recently added to the line as what I’d assume to be an entry level. Even if it is an entry model, I’d imagine it would be both fun and scary to take sideways.
I know I already posted some outdoor photos of the new 458 recently, from the Cars & Coffee that took place on the same weekend as this show, but a couple more can’t hurt! These came out more cleanly, with the more calm and flat background of the convention center floor.
There was even a 599 GTB Fiorano. This car will supposedly be replaced in late 2012 with a new GT that will be based on their successful new FF hatchback.
This is Ford’s top dog Mustang, the limited production Boss 302 Laguna Seca. It could probably use some more tasteful wheels, but other than that, this is the perfect Mustang. This car was nearly rendered non-street legal in California recently, due to a lot of back and forth with CARB. It was all sorted out last month and you can now buy an additional key for the car, called a “TracKey,” that activates a track-friendly tune with launch control, more low end torque, and better engine braking. It’s a track tune with a warranty, the best of both worlds.
I also got to see the new (not “New,” but “new”) Volkswagen Beetle. I like it, probably because it’s based on the Golf, the one car that they sell in the US that they haven’t turned into a blandmobile. I like the retro touches, the wheel covers with beauty rings. After renting the previous New Beetle, I can say that, contrary to what’s happened to the Jetta, the interior quality appears to have gotten better with the Beetle.
As far as regular production cars go, this was the hot car at the show this year, the new Hyundai Veloster. I didn’t get a chance to sit it, because there were people all over it. The unique things about this car are that it’s got one door on the driver’s side and two on the passenger’s. It’s also got extremely low weight for a car these days (only 2,584lbs. with the manual) that gives it a nice combination of efficiency and nimble handling. In my opinion, this is what car manufacturers should be doing for efficiency, rather than heavy hybrid setups. Hyundai and Mazda have the right ideas. Efficiency with driving enjoyment. If the sales and the rumors pan out, hopefully next year we’ll have a turbo version to look at.
A couple Ducati bikes that my wife and I were admiring. My wife loves these, but even a cheap one costs more than our car.
There was a nice selection of hotrods and ponycars, as usual.
I loved this T bucket. “Dead Zone”
Gotta love this Nomad!
Well, that’s it for this year. 2011 has been my most active year so far and I hope to continue increasing momentum in 2012. To be honest, I’m a little tired of only shooting shows and meets, so hopefully I’ll be able to get the finances together to purchase a Miata to turn a wrench on and take to a track day or two by the end of 2012. Until next time, happy hooning and happy new year!