Although right now might not be the best time economically for the city of Detroit and its struggling automakers, Detroit will always be known as the Motor City. No matter how bad things get, Detroit is the place where the newest technologies, cutting edge design, and forward thinking thrive. For almost a century now, the whole country, and even the world, have looked to Detroit for a glimpse at what the future would hold.
Regardless of how things may currently look for Detroit, it is still the place that we look to for new and cutting-edge ideas. The inspiration for cutting-edge ideas and a glimpse at the future of cars and trucks isn't just found within the Big Three, for it is also found within other places at Detroit. We as truck customizers, hot rodders, and all-around gearheads still look to Detroit every March to see what the countries finest custom car and truck builders are debuting at the Autorama as many of them are vying for the prestigious Ridler Award.
Although it has taken a few years, there are more and more '46-'47 Ford pickups showing up
This year marked the 57th annual for the Detroit Autorama and much like the years that preceded it, it was a huge success. Held in downtown Detroit at the overwhelming 700,000 square-foot hall known as Cobo Center, some of the countries finest custom cars and trucks came out to shine. This year saw almost 1,000 vehicles on the show floor along with the extreme area in the basement of Cobo, where bomber-style hot rods and tuner cars were on display.
As with every year at Detroit, the big hubbub was the Great 8 and the cars competing for the Ridler Award. Even though there wasn't a single classic truck in the Great 8 this year, that is the first time since 2002 that this has occurred. Luckily though, it is only a rare occurrence that a finely crafted truck doesn't make the "Eight." Nevertheless, just because a classic tuck was not in contention for the Ridler Award this doesn't mean that there wasn't a ton of nice trucks there. In fact, we came across a ton of cool custom pickups, panels, and restored classics.
In addition to the fabulous show field filled with a variety of trucks done in various styles, there was the ever-popular Pinstriper's Jamboree and charity auction for Leader Dogs for the Blind. A few of the other attractions included a number of the industries leading parts vendors, a scale auto area, as well as an automotive fine arts gallery. So as one would imagine there was no shortage of things to see.
The Detroit Autorama has been for a long time and continues to be a must attend for any gearhead. Although it tends to be an event that is filled with more street rods and customs than trucks, there is always a nice selection of trucks to see at the event. If you have never been to the Autorama this is definitely an event you should try to attend. So start making plans for next year to take part in one of the greatest shows in the country.
It took Michigan native Dwayne Fietzer 18 years to build this incredible drab green metall
This year marked the fifth time that some of the countries best pinstripers converged at Cobo Hall for the annual Pinstripers Jamboree and Charity Auction. The Pinstripers Jamboree is an area of the event where any pinstriper can come and stripe panels over the three-day event. The best part about the jamboree is that throughout the event the panels that the pinstripers create are auctioned off with 100 percent of the proceeds to benefit the Leader Dogs for the Blind program.
Leader Dogs is a Michigan-based nonprofit organiztion whose focus is providing well-trained dog guides for individuals who are visually impaired, at least 16 years of age, and physically/mentally capable to care for and use the dog in the manner intended.
All pinstripers are welcome to participate in the jamboree and those who participate are provided with two weekend passes, panels to paint, and all the paint they need for striping. The Pinstripers Jamboree and Charity Auction is a great addition to the event and we hope it continues to be a part of the Autorama for years to come.