THIS will be the second motor show I’ve attended this month, and although Geneva had some incredible highlights – it can’t beat the surroundings of the New York Motor Show.
Press day takes place on Wednesday and I’m here as a guest of Jaguar Land Rover to see the Brits attempt to steal the show with a host of new products.
On Tuesday evening a very special guest is set to reveal the new Range Rover Sport in a live unveiling on the streets of this amazing city. I can’t tell you who, but in a few hours you’ll find out.
We may already know what the car looks like thanks to a window tinter who couldn’t keep the pictures off the internet, but I’m still looking forward to seeing the new car up close.
New York is the single biggest market for the Range Rover Sport in the world, so it’s rather fitting the new model gets its first public drive on the city’s streets.
There will be news from Jaguar too – with a couple of rather special R models. The Americans still love their big-engined petrol models so two new R models will be exciting news. But more on all that tomorrow.
We flew into JFK airport on Monday evening. New York is a city that seems all too familiar, despite the fact I’ve never been here before. The skyline is just so recognisable from the countless films I’ve seen that were set here.
Our drive into the city – fittingly in a Discovery – was a humbling one. Our driver gave us a little insight into the areas we passed and the sites we saw on the way and one story really stood out.
As we entered the Brooklyn Battery Tunnel, just a few blocks from the Twin Towers site, he told us about a 9/11 story I’d never heard before.
Every year, thousands of runners race through the tunnel to the site of the Twin Towers in honour of fire fighter Stephen Siller who was killed in the attack.
When Siller heard the news on his scanner of the terrorist atrocity he pulled on his gear and headed to the tunnel, but when he got there he found an almighty traffic jam. So he jumped out and ran to the crash site through the tunnel instead – a run which would be his last.
Our driver told us about the annual event which now takes place in his memory as we drove through the tunnel and past the Twin Towers crash site. Building work is busy taking place there now erecting two new towers, but it’s clear that feelings still run very deep about those terrible attacks on 9/11.
The sites and sounds of this big city really are amazing. From drivers on the freeway who steer with their knees while chatting on their mobiles with one hand and smoking with the other, to the hydraulic lift stacking car parks that deposit cars into racks to save space. Oh and the horns – boy do New Yorkers like to use their horns…
Anyway, I’ll bring you more news and pictures from the show, plus the launch of Jaguar Land Rover’s new products later today and tomorrow. If you want up-to-the-minute coverage follow me on Twitter @CarDealerEd.