Autos: Chicago Auto Show News & Notes


Here’s a handful of news and notes from the media preview days at the 2015 Chicago Auto Show:

Nissan GT-R LM NISMO’s public debut

While it was revealed to the world on the whole during Super Bowl XLIX, this week’s Chicago Auto Show marks the first time the new Nissan GT-R LM NISMO LMP1 car has been revealed in a public setting.

The wraps came off the car during a Nissan launch event on Wednesday night, before they came off again during the Auto Show media preview itself on Thursday.

Darren Cox, NISMO’s global head of brand, marketing & sales, was on hand along with NISMO CEO Shoichi Miyatani, and three past Nissan GT Academy winners (Jann Mardenborough, confirmed to the LMP1 program, and past U.S. winners Steve Doherty and Nic Hammann).

The FIA World Endurance Championship season begins April 12 at Silverstone.

Ford GT a strong presence

After its official unveil at Detroit last month, the 2016 Ford GT – now adorned in Liquid Silver with black racing stripes – was also on hand as part of Ford’s fleet this show. Ford’s Garen Nicoghosian, (Ford GT senior designer) and Jamal Hameedi (Ford performance chief engineer) spoke Friday to give more details of the primarily carbon fiber car, which focuses on aerodynamics, efficiency and the EcoBoost powerplant.

Small racing presence outside the Nissan

While the Nissan was the star of the show among racecars, it wasn’t the only racecar on display.

Infiniti had the Red Bull Formula 1 show car at its booth, now listed with new driver Daniil Kvyat’s name alongside that of Daniel Ricciardo. The Alfa Romeo booth had some classic F1 cars as well, that were a sight to behold.

Two Andretti Autosport cars were featured. Ryan Hunter-Reay’s 2014 Indianapolis 500-winning No. 28 DHL Honda was featured in the Honda booth, and Tanner Foust’s No. 34 Rockstar VW Beetle (from Red Bull Global Rallycross) was at the VW stand. Both Foust and his Red Bull GRC teammate Scott Speed were on hand.

An early 1990s Eagle MK III Toyota GTP car, one of Carl Edwards’ No. 19 ARRIS Toyota show cars, and an NHRA Funny Car were in the Toyota booth. Additionally, the new Dallara IL15 Mazda Indy Lights chassis had prominent placing in Mazda’s booth.