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The Greater Lehigh Valley Auto Show kicks off its 17th year on March 20

The show gives patrons a salesman free time to kick the tires and check out what's new for 2014
The show gives patrons a salesman free time to kick the tires and check out what's new for 2014
Nick Hromiak

If you missed the recent Philadelphia Auto Show where parking was expensive and traffic crowded, you need to stop by the Lehigh Valley Auto Show where the parking if free and traffic non-existent.

The Greater Lehigh Valley Auto Show will feature over 300 new vehicles
by Nick Hromiak

The 17th annual Lehigh Valley Auto Show kicks off Thursday, March 20 and runs through Sunday, March 23 at the uncrowded, easy to access, Lehigh University’s Goodman Campus in Hellertown.

Every year the show has a preview gala that takes place on Wed., March 19 beginning at 6 p.m. for guests to get a first look at the newest cars, trucks, vans, ATVs, RVs and motorcycles from over 25 manufacturers, while tasting the world’s best racetracks. Each year the show has an automotive theme and this year it’s racetracks with delicacies to commemorate the sport.

According to Tom Kwiatek, Executive Director of the Greater Lehigh Valley Auto Dealers Association, this moveable feast complete with entertainment will travel through three venues starting with appetizers with an international flair to celebrate Grand Prix racing at LeMans (at Stabler Arena), moving to entrees that show off the finest of Southern hospitality to please any NASCAR fan at Talladega Superspeedway (at Rausch Fieldhouse) and culminating with a desert competition by SkillsUSA students at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway (in the West Pavilion).”

Kwiatek goes on to say, “With new car sales expected to top $16 million for the first time since 2007, this is a must-attend event for everyone considering a new vehicle lease or purchase. We expect this year to be a great event as so many consumers deferred sales during the recession. In addition, over 300,000 more leased cars will be returned for new lease or purchase than in 2013. Added to this, dealers will have the highest level of inventory available in eight years and there will be terrific sales incentives to benefit the consumer.”

With all the snow we’ve had this year that discouraged folks from car shopping, the show will instill the urge to think spring and a new car or truck and without any selling pressure.

Aside from all the new vehicles on display, there will be a host of other activities for patrons to see. They include:

* A Ride and Drive Program onsite to include vehicles from Lincoln, Ford and Nissan.

* Pocono Speedway will display a “Pit Crew Challenge” for showgoers to try with ticket giveaways and the opportunity to purchase tickets and season passes.

* Muscle Beach Revisited, in conjunction with America on Wheels Museum, will feature six classic vehicles normally referred to as “Muscle Cars” on display plus a ’64 Mustang, ’66 Camaro, Challenger and GTO.

* Harley Davidson Exhibit brings new 2014 models to the show including the touring family that has been completely redesigned.

* Blackman Cycle’s exhibit will have their latest ATVs, trikes, quads and bikes on display.

* Van Dieman Formula SCCA (Mazda) Racing Car will be at the show and is owned by Dr. William Burfeind, thoracic surgeon at St. Luke’s Hospital.

New too will be expanded dining options both inside and outside plus Donley Excellence Award student winners will be on hand at 10 a.m., Thursday, March 20 to open the show at the shows’ entrance tent. The students will be recognized for academic excellence, leadership and service to the community.

The entire proceedings and show will be broadcast on WFMZ’s 6 p.m. Wednesday night newscast.
On Thursday and Friday of the show, Community Days will feature displays from a long list of local nonprofit agencies showcasing their programs and services to the community.

Last but not least, showgoers will be treated to a yet unnamed exotic car company that will open for the first time in the Lehigh Valley area. Will it be Tesla, Ferrari, Lamborghini, Lotus or Bentley? Attend the show and find out.

Show hours are from 10 a.m. – 9 p.m. Thursday through Sunday, and from 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. Sunday. Tickets are $10 for adults, $8 for seniors 55 and over and $7 for children ages 6-14. Children under five are free.

For more information on the show, gala reception and directions, check
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