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Start Your Engines! Philadelphia Auto Show Gets Rolling

By Pat Gallen, Mike DeNardo, Mark Abrams, Vittoria Woodill

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) - The 115th Philadelphia Auto Show opened this weekend at the Pennsylvania Convention Center.

The show, one of the largest in the nation, features 700 vehicles, including classic and concept cars as well as exotic vehicles.

"That's what's great about this show, there's something for everybody," says Automobile Dealers Association of Greater Philadelphia executive director Kevin Mazzucola.


car show denardo
(Credit: Mike DeNardo)


One feature at the show is cars that almost drive themselves, like the 2017 Lincoln Continental.

"People want to collaborate with their car," Mazzucola says. "It's not just transportation, they want a vehicle that can interact with them -- whether that's communication, whether that's safety, whether that's performance."

He says people look for new tech features in cars, the way they buy cell phones:

"We do know the technology in a cell phone can be drastically different in 12 to 18 months. And you're seeing that aspect to some degree in these vehicles. And that's why it's important for a show -- for people to come in and see not only what they look like, but the technology and the safety features each and every year."

Guide To The 2016 Philadelphia Auto Show

"The minivan's back," adds show chairman David Kelleher, referring to the Chrysler Pacifica, which will also be on display.

"Minivans got boring. This reinvigorates the market. Two-way passenger seating, great technology -- over 50 points of technology that's never been put in a vehicle. This vehicle is friggin' awesome!"

He says it even features a "where are we now" feature for the kids in the back where they can push their own "are we there yet" button where a cartoon will come on and tell them how far away they are from their destination.

But Kelleher says the hottest attraction at this year's show is clearly the two black Fiat 500Ls used by Pope Francis during his September visit to Philadelphia.

One of them will be on display throughout the week. He says the other is to be auctioned off Friday night during a black-tie tailgate kick-off event:

"I think it's a huge addition to the show and I think the auction at the black-tie is going to enhance the attendance to the black-tie which is great because that goes directly to Children's Hospital, but also it's going to give us the highest return on investment for the archdiocese and the Catholic charities."

The Archdiocese says it is weighing auctioning off the second Fiat, as well. Both were donated by Fiat.

The show opened Saturday and runs until February 7th. Tickets are just $14 for adults, and $7 for children and seniors.

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