Ford and Cadillac steal 2015 Chicago Auto Show

Numerous auto-makers from around the world represented themselves at the 2015 Chicago Auto Show. The event ran daily, from Feb. 14-22, and is considered to be the largest of its kind in the U.S.

Over one million square feet of floor was consumed for the show’s many exhibits. 42 car companies filled the floor with their latest pieces of production and concepts.

Companies that seemed to “stick-out” and impress during the nine-day show, include some of the more familiar names.

Mercedes-Benz was particularly “flashy,” as one would expect.

The 2016 Mercedes-Benz S-Class Maybach contains a 6.0 liter V-12. Most notably, the car is 214” long, giving the driver and passengers a comfortable ride. It has reclining seats in the front and back, along with a backseat TV screen and convenience tray.

Toyota also made their appearance worthy, especially with the 2016 Avalon.

With eight different options available, the Avalon gives the driver a delightful experience. The interior resembles a luxury car and the car’s sleek and slender design gives it a fun and sporty demeanor.

Volkswagen displayed the 2015 Golf, which has made a bit of a revamp compared to recent models. It is available with either a 1.8-liter, gas-powered, four-cylinder engine or a 2.0-liter, turbocharged, diesel engine. In either case, it puts out over 150 horsepower, yet is still relatively efficient on fuel.

Dodge gave patrons a chance to test-out numerous vehicles on their test track, giving people a chance to drive the 2015 Dart, Journey, Grand Caravan and, if you were lucky enough, the Charger.

But what made the show for Dodge, were the 2015 Challenger SRT Hellcat and the 2015 Charger SRT Hellcat. Both of these pack an American-muscle punch with over 700 horsepower out of their 6.2-liter, Hellcat-Hemi engines. Top speed is around the 205 mph mark for both vehicles.

However, companies such as Cadillac and Ford were in a league of their own.

For being generally considered as a luxury brand, Cadillac reminded everyone, with their auto show debuts, that they’re still very capable of showing off some American muscle.

The 2016 Cadillac CTS-V could be an early candidate for “Car of the Year.” It has a 6.2 liter, supercharged V8 under the hood, which outputs 640 horsepower. According to, the CTS-V can top 200 mph.

“That CTS-V is really something to see,” said Guy Katsenes, a spectator at the auto show. “I’d buy that thing right now if I could. It’d look really nice in that off-white.”

It also has a solid touch of luxury. It gives a driver plenty of leg room and Cadillac CUE system, making the ride even more enjoyable.

In addition, the 2016 ATS-V utilizes a similar engine to the CTS-V, but tops-out around the 190 mph mark, likely due to more weight.

For those looking for a more traditional vehicle out of Cadillac, the 2015 XTS may be the answer.

The XTS offers up speed, with a 410 horsepower, 4.6 liter, twin-turbo V6. But, it also offers indulgences.

On the inside, the XTS contains Cadillac’s signature wood finish and leather interior. It also has an appropriate compliment of other features, such as a sunroof, lighting across the interior, including alongside the doors, and the typical amount of leg room that makes for the comfort you’d expect from a brand like Cadillac.

When it comes the other show-stealer, Ford, performance is once again a priority.

The 2016 Ford GT made its re-launch, following a four-year hiatus. 2016 marks the 50th anniversary for the GT, and Ford is making this car’s 50th one to remember.

The car comes equipped with a twin-turbo V6 engine, which produces over 600 horsepower, by far the class of the American-brand supercars. No official top speed has been listed, but one should expect it to be north of 200 mph.

As far as its looks, the 2016 still holds that consistent sleek design that it had in 1966. It was featured in the in a high-value silver paint and dual black stripes, with solid black rims.

The GT attracted a huge crowed that circled around to snag a picture, and rightfully so. The 2016 GT will only be on showroom-display at a select number of Ford dealerships, and, in most cases, can only be purchased by way of a special order.

It’s safe to say the 2016 Ford GT was among the biggest surprises at the auto show, and will be among the finalists for numerous vehicle awards. In fact, it earned title of the Chicago Auto Show’s “Best All-New Production Vehicle.”

The 2015 Shelby GT350 Mustang also attracted some attention and earned the title of “Vehicle I’d like to have in my driveway,” from judges at the auto show.

It has a 5.2 liter V8 that rolls out 500 horsepower. It comes standard with a six-speed manual transmission, which gives it that undeniable raceway feeling.

Toning down from the muscle and performance, Ford’s 2015 Focus is among the top of the economy vehicles.

Drivers have the option of a 160-horsepower, 2.0 liter, four-cylinder engine or a 123 horsepower, 1.0 liter, three-cylinder engine. As always, the fuel mileage is impressive, ranging typically from 26-36 mpg, depending on the model.

In addition to the standard models, the Focus Electric is an all-electric option for those looking to be more ecologically efficient. A full charge, of about 3.6 hours, can deliver a 76 mile trip.
Along with the many impressive aspects of the show, were companies that seemed to be a bit a disappointing.

Chevrolet, a company that is often a pleasant piece to the show, didn’t seem to be all that exciting. They showed-off the cars you’d usually expect, along with informative videos and car-skeleton displays, but it was a lot of the “same-old-same-old.”

Outside of the 2015 Camaro: Commemorative Edition, which looked like something Barbie would drive, Chevy didn’t seem to be all that appealing.

Nissan, a company that has developed into an automobile superpower, was nearly nonexistent.

They staged the 2015 Altima, Armada and Pathfinder, which are models that have been made for years now and haven’t changed very much. The only things that were slightly exciting were the 2016 Nissan Titan XD and their conceptual racecar, the 2015 Nissan GT-R.

Overall though, the 2015 Chicago Auto Show was a success, as it always is. It should be considered amongst the most valuable traditions in the city of Chicago.

Elias Albert
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Elias Albert

Former Sports Editor of the JJC Blazer. Albert wrapped up his JJC career after the Spring 2015 semester. He is back for a short semester before hopefully transferring to UIC.