#CAS2023 Chicago Auto Show Round-up: Volkswagen, Ford, Honda, Nissan, GM, Dodge, Kia, Jeep & Toyota

The Chicago Auto Show is coming this week. Here’s a round-up of what will be on display and activities for all. Automakers include Volkswagen, Ford, Honda, Nissan, GM, Dodge, Kia, Jeep and Toyota. Electrification with electric tracks is big theme.

Automakers & Electrification

  • Volkswagen will be back in the North Hall with its full lineup. They’re introducing an updated model during our media preview next Thursday. And VW will have a new interactive activity in the North Hall ticket lobby
  • Ford will display the 2024 Mustang.This all-new 7th generation comes with two new powertrains, a 2.3L EcoBoost and the most powerful 5.0L Coyote V8 ever. The Bronco will scale it’s mountain in Ford Built Wild.The Bronco track along with Ford’s Built to Electrify will be at the Ford booth.
  • Honda will be back for 2023 with the all-new Civic Type R and plenty more on display in the North Hall!
  • There will be the The Wintrust Supercar Gallery with over 20 cars on display including vehicles from Lamborghini, Bentley, Rolls Royce, McLaren, Maserati, and Aston Martin.
  • Nissan will display the new Pathfinder Rock Creek.
  • GM will show their fresh lineup of vehicles, including the 2024 Sierra AT4.
  • Dodge will exhibit the Charger Daytona SRT Concept.
  • Kia will show several models and visitors can drive Kias on the street, including the refreshed Telluride, EV6, and Niro.
  • The Chicago Drives Electric Test Track, powered by @ComEd, is bigger than ever with 5 manufactures driving on the track Plus, partners will be on-site providing crucial EV education and resources to help answer your questions about owning and driving EV.

Toyota Grand Highlander & More

Toyota intends to make a “grand” entrance, of sorts, at the upcoming Chicago Auto Show. On Feb. 8, the automaker will unveil the all-new Grand Highlander, a three-row vehicle that bolsters Toyota’s award-winning SUV lineup and paves the way for the ultimate road tripper.

The Highlander nameplate, which was first introduced in 2001, ushered in a new chapter in SUV evolution that soon became the foundation of an entire segment. Four generations later and with more than 20 years of sales success, Toyota will do it again with the sophisticated and spacious Grand Highlander. Equipped for family adventures, the Grand Highlander will be the perfect addition to the lineup.

Besides Grand Highlander, Toyota will feature 44 vehicles in its expansive exhibit at McCormick Place. The show cars range from production vehicles to NASCAR properties to SEMA specialty products, such as the recently revealed Trailhunter Concept Vehicle. A trio of all-new, production vehicles – 2023 Prius, 2023 GR Corolla and 2023 Crown – are sure to attract a lot of attention in the Windy City.

The 2023 Prius is the most fuel-efficient Prius ever, with a manufacturer-estimated 57 combined MPG, featuring a fresh new sporty exterior design and fifth gen hybrid powertrain with up to 196 horsepower. The Prius has been updated with new tech offerings for enhanced connectivity and the latest Toyota Safety Sense system. Twenty-two years after its launch, this legacy nameplate progresses forward and highlights Toyota’s diverse approach to carbon neutrality.

The first-ever 2023 GR Corolla is the newest member of TOYOTA’S GAZOO Racing sports car family. Rooted in rally, the GR Corolla was developed under the scrutiny of master driver Akio Toyoda and inspired by Toyota’s sports car lineage. The GR Corolla is powered by the lightweight, compact-yet-powerful G16E-GTS turbocharged, three-cylinder engine that pumps out an impressive 300 horsepower, and comes in three grades: Core, Circuit Edition, and the limited, track-focused, MORIZO Edition.

Engineered to stand out, the 2023 Toyota Crown breaks the traditional sedan mold and gives drivers a car that excites the senses. Available in three grades: XLE, Limited and Platinum, Toyota Crown offers a choice of two different hybrid powertrains and standard all-wheel drive.

The HYBRID MAX powertrain, exclusive to the Platinum grade, is Toyota’s all-new performance hybrid that puts out 340 net horsepower and is paired with a 2.4-liter turbocharged engine and a direct shift 6-speed automatic transmission. The XLE and Limited grades come equipped with THS IV, a highly efficient hybrid system that can achieve a manufacturer-estimated 38 MPG. Crown’s “lift-up” design features large wheels for striking style and easy ingress and egress, and an associated ride height gives drivers great road visibility. Its flowing silhouette and sculpted body lines create a fresh look that’s entirely unique for its class.

Within Toyota’s display, the automaker will also host a fully interactive Toyota Sports Festival during the auto show, with versatile events and combine-style activities for participants to show off their skills. The Toyota Sports Festival concept was born from Toyota’s mission to create meaningful experiences that energize consumers in the Olympic and Paralympic Movement, elevate Paralympians and support athletes at every level. With a variety of Olympic and Paralympic offerings, this booth activation will feature a sport court for wheelchair basketball, a skate park for skateboarding, a 40-yard dash area and photos opportunities around USA Swimming and USA Speedskating.

Also, adjacent to Toyota’s exhibit, the automaker has created “An Electrified Drive For All Seasons” ride and drive course. This four-seasons-themed demonstration area will provide passenger-only access to Toyota’s hybridized vehicles, including Prius, RAV4, Sienna, Sequoia and Tundra.

 Longtime partner of the Chicago Auto Show, Cars.com now becomes a premier sponsor of the 2023 show with a branding presence throughout the event, official map sponsorship, Chicago Drives Electric sponsor, and a digital package to promote its Best of 2023 awards. Chicago Auto Show premier partners enjoy category exclusivity and receive additional exposure to show attendees through a benefits package.

People who visit the show can experience and learn about a variety of Cars.com’s Best of Vehicle finalists. Now in its 14th year, the awards announce Cars.com experts’ top vehicle picks in six categories: luxury, electric, family, pickup truck, SUV, and the best overall vehicle. The winners and finalists for each category will be announced on Feb, 7.

Powered by Powering Chicago

Powering Chicago, the labor-management partnership between the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Local 134 and the Electrical Contractors’ Association of Chicago and Cook County (ECA), will return as premier sponsor of the 2023 Chicago Auto Show, February 11-20 at McCormick Place, and the expanded indoor EV Test Drive Track.

This year, Powering Chicago invites attendees to the all-new Powering Chicago EV Learning Center, a one-stop shop where they can learn about everything involved in switching from gas-powered to electric vehicles (EVs). Industry experts from the electrical, energy, and transportation sectors will join Powering Chicago onsite to educate businesses and consumers on critical topics such as EV charging infrastructure installation and the different types of EV chargers available, rebates and tax incentives, energy needs, safety considerations and more.

What Drives Her? Women in Power

Chicago Auto Show organizers, in partnership with A Girls Guide to Cars and Women in Automotive, are proud to announce the sixth annual What Drives Her networking event and awards program during the show’s Media Preview on Friday, Feb. 10 at McCormick Place.

Once again bringing together influential women in the automotive industry, this year’s event will focus on the ways women are leading the charge in the electric vehicle (EV) revolution. In addition, the What Drives Her awards program will recognize females and advocates within the industry.

“It has been wonderful to see this event grow over the last six years and how it continues to expand the recognition and awareness we are bringing to the powerful women who are positively shaping the auto industry,” said Kelly Webb Roberts, vice chairwomen of the Chicago Automobile Trade Association, producer of the Chicago Auto Show.

“The sheer number of award nominations and the variety of people nominated was stunning this year,” said A Girls Guide to Cars Founder and What Drives Her Co-Founder Scotty Reiss. “It shows that the effort to bring new and diverse people into the auto industry is a shared value, and that there are a lot of really great people leading our industry.”

The event will open with a panel discussion on the topic of women behind the EV revolution moderated by Cars.com’s VP, Cars Media Solutions, Julie Scott. Speakers on this panel will include Chris Feuell, Chrysler brand CEO; Kathy Gilbert, CDK Global senior director, minority dealer and women retail; Melissa Washington, ComEd SVP of customer operations; and Linda White, BMW director of government and external affairs.

Event organizers reintroduced the What Drives Her awards to recognize and applaud outstanding females and advocates in the industry. Nominations have been submitted from individuals within the industry ranging from auto manufacturers, suppliers, media and dealers. The panel of distinguished jurors are made up of female automotive journalists.

The finalists have now been selected for the following categories.

Rising Star: Employed by an automaker, auto retailer or core automotive supplier; job title no higher than vice president; works primarily in North America; she may be notable for her empowerment of others, her breaking down of barriers that allows others to follow, her pursuit of non-traditional roles or jobs, her leadership, and taking on additional roles such as leading an employee resource group or mentoring program.

Natasha Adams, mechanic, YouTube and Instagram influencer
Shauna Sichi, General Motors West Communications
Crystal Windham, executive director, global industrial design, General Motors

Other nominees include Sylvia Lopez-Navarro, national manager, brand experience, corporate events and shows, Kia America; and Shelley Pratt, director of marketing communications and media, Infiniti USA.

Best In Craft Media: Employed as a fulltime or parttime North American journalist, content creator or media with a focus on the automotive industry; demonstrate general excellence of craft; create work that illuminates the role of women in the automotive industry or, through voice and narrative, create more accessible automotive information and more inclusive automotive storytelling.

Emme Hall, freelance
Elana Scherr, Car and Driver
Kristin Shaw, freelance

Other nominees include Elizabeth Blackstock, Jalopnik, freelance writer, author; Teia Collier, Dallas Single Parent, freelance; Eileen Falkenburg-Hull, Newsweek; Lauren Fix, The Car Coach; Lillie Morales, writer, photographer, Jersey Fashionista, Femme Drive, freelance; Elizabeth St. John, TheCarMom, TheCarPool Podcast; and Dawn Thigpen-Gibson, Sassy Auto Chick, Femme Drive.

Automotive Ally: A new award for What Drives Her this year, the Automotive Ally Award recognizes an individual who offers continual support, coaching, advocacy, education and understanding, helping to create opportunities for others as they build their careers in automotive. This award is open to any executive, leader, manager or other person inside or outside the automotive industry and reflects the impact that this person has on the industry, for both individuals and organizations.

Emily Miller, founder, Rebelle Rally
Jennifer Newman, editor-in-chief, Cars.com
Wendy Orthman, executive director, marketing, Genesis

Other nominees include Nena Barlow, founder, Barlow Adventures; Elgie Bright, chair, automotive marketing and management, Northwood University; Dean Case, communications consultant, Motivo Engineering; Julie Conlin, senior content and communications specialist, Continental Tire; Deborah Grieb, market research manager, AutoPacific; Cheryl Thompson, CEO and founder, Center for Automotive Diversity, Inclusion and Advancement; Nicole Santana, account director, The Axis Agency; and Sabrina Yuan, VP strategy, Cariad by VW.

Best Retailer: Employed by a Chicago-area dealership, this person demonstrates a high level of commitment and drive to any task at hand, whether that’s in sales, service or technical support.

Gabrielle Abinion, general manager, Fox Valley Volkswagen
Soledad Romero, store manager, Romeoville Toyota
Carly Weck, finance manager, Elgin Kia

Other nominees include Christina Baker, dealer partner, Rod Baker Ford; Linda Jacobs, dealer principal, Bill Jacobs Motorsport; Tina Pade, controller, Arlington Toyota; and Danielle West, HR director/operations manager, Fox Valley Volkswagen Buick-GMC.

The awards will be presented during the Chicago Auto Show’s Media Preview during a pastry and coffee reception the morning of Friday, Feb. 10 from 8-9:30 a.m. at the main stage in the Grand Concourse lobby, just outside of the North Hall. Pre-registration for What Drives Her on Friday, Feb. 10 is required.

Runners Up

Producers of the Chicago Auto Show have partnered once again with the Chicago Area Runners Association (CARA) to host Miles Per Hour, an indoor run that guides participants through a 2.4-mile loop during the 2023 Chicago Auto Show on Sunday, Feb. 12. Sponsored by Toyota, Miles Per Hour appropriately describes the premise of the run: participants will cover as much distance as possible within a one-hour timeframe. After the race, runners will gather in the South Hall’s Toyota display for awards, photos and refreshments.

The inaugural Miles Per Hour run was held during the 2020 Chicago Auto Show and attracted hundreds of participants. Organizers hope to increase the participation this year and along with increasing interest in the show.