While we missed official coverage of both the Detroit and LA Auto Shows due to schedule conflicts, we managed to make it to the Chicago Auto Show for the 6th year in a row. Billed as the nations largest show (and arguably the largest in the world when it come to square footage) Chicago had a slightly more upbeat if not quiet atmosphere than Detroit. Gone was some of the lavish lunches and parties and in their places were straight forward press conferences and with little in the way of press swag.

Full Show Photo Gallery

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But with that said we did get a chance to talk with engineers, designers and other associated with the industry as well as of course poke, prod and play with every machine on the floor. Always well worth the visit. So with that, here ‘s our best and worst of the show:

– Best new production car: The Z4 takes it from the R57 MINI convertible if only because it truly is a totally new car rather than version of another (the R56)
– Best concept: Chevy Volt. I cannot believe how much I liked this car. Granted I ‘ll never own one and it ‘s clearly not built with an enthusiast in mind, but it ‘s such a forward thinking car and looks so much more interesting than the new Prius.
– Most disappointing: 2010 Mazda 3. What a terrible redesign. As big fans of the previous 3, we were appalled what this car has turned into. Of course a close second was the MX5 (Miata) redesigned front end.
– Manufacturer most obvious to go bankrupt: Chrysler. The lack of press interest in that part of the show floor was nothing less than erie.

Full BMW Gallery

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BMW M3 Gallery

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BMW 7 Series Gallery

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MINI Gallery

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