The Orange County Auto Show rolls into Anaheim

More than 500 new vehicles on display drove car lovers to the Anaheim Convention Center this weekend for the Orange County International Auto Show.

The show featured a wide range of makes and models from 35 different automakers including specialty dealerships and aftermarket vendors.

This year’s show provided a stage for some of the world’s largest automakers to roll out and unveil their 2014 models. Among those unveiled was Fiat’s new 500L, the Chevrolet Camaro Z/28 and Mercedes CLA class.

Looking more Ferrari than Chevy, the 2014 Chevy Corvette had fans lining up for a chance to sit behind the wheel.

“This is probably one of the best looking Corvettes they made yet and I’ve been a Corvette fan my entire life,” said Brian Gluck, a Los Alamitos resident and self-proclaimed gearhead.

Such excitement is good news for General Motors, Chevrolet’s parent company. After being forced to shut down some of its less successful brands like Pontiac, Saab and Hummer, General Motors is still attempting a major makeover, according to the New York Times.

In direct opposition to the white carpets, tailored suits and neurotically polished cars that defined most of the show, Jeep stole the attention of many showgoers with their interactive Camp Jeep display.

With an off-road test track, the American automaker offered adventurous attendees a ride around the track with professional off-road drivers. The track included a series of off-roading obstacles including a 35-degree and 25-foot hill.

“It’s just kind of surprising what Jeeps can do. When we were going through this (hill) you feel like the car’s almost about to flip but it doesn’t flip. It’s kind of cool!” Marina Lebedev, one of the workers at Camp Jeep, said.

Aside from the alluring Corvette and Jeep’s roller coaster test track, the OC Auto Show did not contain much of the glitz and glamour found in larger international shows, including next month’s LA Auto Show.

According to the Los Angeles Times, larger auto shows such as Los Angeles’ drew in a record 920,000 attendees in 2012, while the OC show attracts only a fraction of that number.

The OC show featured a hands-on experience and a number of automakers offered to test drive many of their 2014 models.

Attendees looking to buy a car in the near future enjoyed this option of the show.

“I would much rather come here and test out a bunch of cars from different makers than have to go to like five or six dealerships,” Yash Mehta, a prospective car buyer and Irvine resident, said. “No one is really trying to sell me anything here. It’s just a low stress, fun environment.”

About James Smith

James is currently the Opinion editor for the Daily Titan at Cal State University. He can paint with all the colors of the wind. He’s also heard the cry of the wolf under the blue corn moon. He wishes to know how high the sycamore grows but if you cut it down now, well he may never know.