Click on pictures to enlarge - Photos by Sharbel Murillo - Prestige Auto.........

By: Paul Borden - 8 November 2013

The annual auto show luncheon was a great success with more than 150 media members attending, including many from around the country brought to the Miami Beach Convention Center for the 43rd annual Miami International Auto Show.

Chevrolet sponsored the event that featured the announcement by SAMA President Jaime Florez that a new national automotive media organization had been created during meetings that morning.

The National Council of Automotive Media Associations will serve to coordinate events among regional organizations and also serve as a sounding board for common problems that often arise throughout the year.
Nik Miles, President of the Northwest Automotive Press Association (NWAPA), will serve as the first president. Kirk Bell, President of the Greater Atlanta Automotive Association (GAAMA), will serve as Vice President-Operations, and Jaime will serve as Vice President-Communications. John Vincent of NWAPA was elected secretary and Marcello Serrato of SAMA, treasurer.

Show Manager Rick Baker and Show President Mario Murgado of Brickell Motors both welcomed those in attendance, and Murgado noted media's role in the growth of the show in recent years. “The show is growing, and it’s growing because of you,” he said.

Tim Mahoney, Chief Marketing Officer for Global Chevrolet Brand, was the speaker and noted the worldwide growth of the brand. Today, he said, about 60 percent of all Chevy vehicles sold are sold outside the U.S. compared to just 20 percent 10 years ago.

Annual awards went to the Chevrolet Corvette Stingray as Star of the Show, the Land Rover Range Rover Sport as Utility Vehicle of the Show, and the new Cadillac ELR as Technology Vehicle of the Show. (For more details, see the separate link on this site.)

Ron Beasley, founder and the first president, was the recipient of the Terry Jackson Award for his continued service to the organization, including serving as the chairman and coordinator for judging committees for the auto show and Topless in Miami. Terry Jackson’s wife, Marjie Lambert, presented the plaque.

Media members also were treated to a full slate of press conferences throughout the day starting in the morning with Nissan (Rogue), Million Dollar Alley (McLaren, Aston Martin, Ferrari), Jeep (Cherokee and Grand Cherokee), Ram (1500), Cadillac (Escalade), Maserati (Ghibli). Toyota (Tundra), and Mazda (Mazda3).

The afternoon closed with presentation of the Sobre Ruedas ESPN Awards: Best Economy Car, Mazda3; Best Electric Vehicle, Fiat 500e; Best Sports Car, SRT Viper; Best Luxury Sedan, Hyundai Equus; Best Convertible, Corvette Stingray; Best Small SUV, Nissan Rogue; Best Large SUV, Hyundai Santa Fe; Best Pickup, Chevrolet Silverado; Manufacturer of the Year, Chevrolet; Car of the Year, Chevy Impala.

The busy afternoon closed with a cocktail reception hosted by Hyundai.