Dayton Auto Show at convention center this weekend

A 2020 Corvette near Phoenix, Ariz., on Dec. 4, 2019. The 2020 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray will surely be one of the stars people come to see at the Dayton Auto Show, Feb. 20-23 at the Dayton Convention Center. The first-ever production mid-engine Corvette represents the fastest, most powerful entry-level Corvette in the vehicle’s 66-year history, General Motors says. (Adriana Zehbrauskas/The New York Times)

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A 2020 Corvette near Phoenix, Ariz., on Dec. 4, 2019. The 2020 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray will surely be one of the stars people come to see at the Dayton Auto Show, Feb. 20-23 at the Dayton Convention Center. The first-ever production mid-engine Corvette represents the fastest, most powerful entry-level Corvette in the vehicle’s 66-year history, General Motors says. (Adriana Zehbrauskas/The New York Times)

After five years of more than 17 million in sales, auto sales are expected to slow in 2020 but the market will still remain healthy.

Auto sales dropped in 2019 to 17 million, but they remain steady in an industry accustomed to cyclical swings due to changes in the economy. U.S. vehicle sales bottomed out at 10.4 million in 2009, but have remained above 16 million the past six years.

The annual Dayton Auto Show kicks off Thursday and runs through Sunday at the Dayton Convention Center. The show will have hundreds of vehicles from more than a dozen Dayton-area dealers on display.

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The Dayton Convention Center this weekend hosts the Dayton Auto Show. A task force and Dayton officials say the convention center needs millions of dollars in upgrades to remain competitive. CORNELIUS FROLIK / STAFF

The Dayton Convention Center this weekend hosts the Dayton Auto Show. A task force and Dayton officials say the convention center needs millions of dollars in upgrades to remain competitive. CORNELIUS FROLIK / STAFF

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The Dayton Convention Center this weekend hosts the Dayton Auto Show. A task force and Dayton officials say the convention center needs millions of dollars in upgrades to remain competitive. CORNELIUS FROLIK / STAFF

ExplorePHOTOS: Check out vehicles at 2019 show

“The main goal of the show is to get the consumer excited about what’s out there and what new cars are coming,” said show manager Kelly Danison.

Auto sales are an important indicator of the strength of the U.S. and local economies. Some of Ohio’s top manufacturers remain in the auto industry, including Honda, which employs more than 13,000 workers in this region.

The show is expected to have the first-ever production mid-engine Chevrolet Corvette Stingray, organizers said. The Stingray is the fastest, most powerful entry-level Corvette in the vehicle’s 66-year history, General Motors says.

It, along with the Ford Mustang Shelby GT500, were the stars of the recent Greater Toledo Auto Show. Quite often, what happens in Toledo is what will happen in Dayton, Danison said. There are no guarantees on which vehicles will be displayed, but the Toledo show serves as a good preview to Dayton’s.

Danison said people may also see the Hyundai Venue, a compact sport-utility vehicle, and Palisade, with seating for seven or eight passengers. Another “newbie” may be the Volkswagen Atlas Cross Sport SUV, she said.

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In 2019, light trucks – vans, minivans, sport-utility vehicles, and pickup trucks – continued to siphon off market share from the car segment. As of December 2019, light trucks represented 72.1 percent of all new light-vehicle sales – an increase of 2.9 percentage points compared to 2018.

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2020 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray

2020 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray

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2020 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray

By the end of 2020, NADA expects the light truck segment to gain market share – topping 75 percent, compared to an anticipated car segment market share of 25 percent.

“From what I’ve seen, people are looking for crossovers and pickups and small SUVs rather than a sedan,” Danison said. “You’ll see SUV models being introduced that fit between the largest and smallest SUVs. Those middle-sized, crossover SUVs, almost hatchbacks, are what people are gravitating toward.”

SUV affordability has become an issue, but the Dayton Auto Show offers a wide range of everything, Danison said.

“You’re going to see the new vehicles that have all the bells and whistles but the buyer can choose a lower trim level and find a vehicle within their price point.”

Luxury makes may include Audi, Porsche, Jaguar and Land Rover, Danison said. But for people without deep pockets, there will be plenty of more affordable vehicles, she pointed out.

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Auto sales

Auto sales

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Auto sales

“My guess is that you are going to be able to find a vehicle in any price point, from as low as $17,000 to more than $100,000,” Danison said.

Electric vehicles had a moment in Toledo, with the Audi e-tron. Some hybrids like the Chevrolet Bolt and the Toyota Corolla Hybrid were on hand and are possibly headed here. Show-goers may want to spend some time chatting with volunteers from Drive Electric Dayton in the lobby to learn more about electric vehicles.

Also in the lobby will be personnel from the Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles to talk about the enhanced license or identification card that complies with new federal security regulations going into effect in October.

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Other show highlights will be:

• The Miami Valley Chevrolet Dealers are once again offering a two-year lease, with a value of between $9,000 and $10,000, of a 2020 Chevy Equinox SUV to some lucky attendee. To enter, visit an area Chevy dealership between now and 1 p.m. Sunday at the show. Six finalists will be drawn from the total entries at the dealerships. One finalist will be drawn each day of the auto show, for a total of four additional finalists. Finalists will be notified by phone prior to Sunday’s drawing. All 10 finalists must attend the auto show Sunday for the final drawing which will take place in the Chevrolet display at 3 p.m.

• Military Appreciation Days, Thursday and Friday; all with military ID will gain free entry, sponsored by the Dayton Area Toyota Dealers. A U.S.-built Tacoma with a military theme will be displayed in the lobby.

• Back for a repeat, the Toyota Drive Center featuring the Camry, Prius, RAV4 and the Tundra for test-driving around downtown Dayton, located at the main entrance on Fifth Street

• Special entertainment attractions Saturday and Sunday for kids, including animals from Wild Hearts African Farm Mobile Teaching Zoo; visits from all four Cincinnati Reds mascots; and balloon and face-painting artists on Feb. 22 only

• Flying Ace Express Car Wash, with eight locations in the greater Dayton area, has come aboard to support the show. They will randomly hand out free car wash vouchers during the show, plus attendees who complete the post-show survey can enter to win a year’s worth of free car washes.

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Dayton Auto Show participants look at new vehicles Thursday. STAFF PHOTO / HOLLY SHIVELY

Dayton Auto Show participants look at new vehicles Thursday. STAFF PHOTO / HOLLY SHIVELY

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Dayton Auto Show participants look at new vehicles Thursday. STAFF PHOTO / HOLLY SHIVELY

• Photo scavenging hunt. Nine photos of certain aspects of show vehicles (make and model) will need to be identified for entry to win a Samsung 55-inch Ultra HD TV

• Selfie contest – posting a selfie with one’s favorite vehicle and the hashtag #DaytonAutoShow for the chance to win a gas gift card.

• WHIO-TV’s one-of-a-kind Storm Tracker 7 – the Miami Valley’s leading vehicle in weather technology – will be in the lobby Saturday and Sunday.


HOW TO GO to the 2020 Dayton Auto Show

WHEN: Thursday, Feb. 20, noon-9 p.m.

Friday, Feb. 21, noon-9 p.m.

Saturday, Feb. 22, 10 a.m.-9 p.m.

Sunday, Feb. 23, 10 a.m.-6 p.m.

WHERE: Dayton Convention Center, 22 E. Fifth St.

ADMISSION: $8 for adults at the door, $6 students with student ID, $6 online at https://daytonautoshow.tix123.com/. Children ages 9 and younger are free when accompanied by a paying adult.

DISCOUNTS: Feb. 20-21 – Military Appreciation Days, all with military ID will gain free admission; seniors, age 65-plus, $6 at door

PARKING: Available in the Oregon District Parking Garage (formerly named the Transportation Center Garage), one block east of the Dayton Convention Center on Fifth and Jefferson streets. A covered skywalk on Level 1 brings you to the third floor of the convention center facility. Daily rates are $2/hour or part hour with a $6 maximum.

INFORMATION: DaytonAutoShow.com; Facebook: Facebook.com/DaytonAutoShow; Twitter: @DaytonAutoShow; Instagram: @DaytonAutoShow

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