2016 Chicago Auto Show: What to Expect

img827444935 1454700588157 jpg

CARS.COM — The City of Big Shoulders is also the city of big auto shows. With a million square feet of floor space, the Chicago Auto Show’s favorite boast is being literally the biggest automotive exhibit in America. But as opposed to, for example, Detroit’s industry-focused North American International Auto Show, the Windy City show prides itself on keeping its emphasis squarely on consumer.

Related: More 2016 Chicago Auto Show News

What will be on the show floor this year? So far we know about a handful of debuts, including a couple SUVs and a new 1LE Performance Package for the Chevrolet Camaro.

Perhaps most exciting thus far is the planned unveiling of Kia’s concept hybrid SUV, the Niro (of course, here in’s home city, we’d pronounce it da Niro and we would indeed be talkin’ to you). According to Kia, the Niro hybrid is the first model to be based on the automaker’s new dedicated eco-car platform and will use a downsized gas-electric powertrain. The sleek, 2017 Sportage-like SUV wears high-mounted LED taillights and muscular wheel arches.

In addition, visitors to the 2016 Chicago Auto Show will likely get up close to previous debuts from the 2015 Los Angeles Auto Show, held in November, as well as January’s Detroit auto show. For example, the head-turning 467-horsepower, 5.0-liter 2017 Lexus LC 500 performance coupe unveiled in Detroit is slated to show off its sweeping curves and aggressive angles in Chicago.

The 2016 Chicago Auto Show kicks off with media and charity previews Thursday and Friday. It opens to the public Saturday and runs through Feb. 21 at Chicago’s McCormick Place, 2301 S. Lake Shore Drive. Show hours are 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday through Feb. 20, and 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Feb. 21. Admission is $12 for adults, $7 for people age 62 or older and children ages 7 to 12, free for children 6 or younger accompanied by an adult. For more info, go to

In the meantime, here’s what we know about so far, with links to our previous coverage:

Photo of Matt Schmitz
Former Assistant Managing Editor-News Matt Schmitz is a veteran Chicago journalist indulging his curiosity for all things auto while helping to inform car shoppers. Email Matt Schmitz

Latest expert reviews