New York International 2019 Auto Show Prepares to Get Underway

The New York International Auto Show is about to get underway, with press from around the world gathering on April 17-18 to get the first glimpse at what new and exciting progress is being made in the automotive industry.

At Javits center in the Hudson Yards neighborhood of Manhattan’s west side, the New York International Auto Show is revving up, ready to open to the public on April 19.

Industry executives shared insight into what new designs and developments are taking place and emphasized the importance of the user experience.

Lincoln Sanctuary

Robert Parker, Lincoln Director of marketing, sales, and service, shared his thoughts on what makes Lincoln vehicles stand out among the other luxury brands on the market.

“Everything we did, in designing the experience from the dealership, to our online experience, to the actual physical dealerships that we built, now over a hundred strong, everything was around this client experience, and we really feel like that sets Lincoln apart,” said Parker.

Robert Parker, director at Lincoln
Robert Parker, director of marketing, sales and service at Lincoln, at the New York International Auto Show in N.Y. on April 17, 2019. (Shenghua Sung/NTD)

“For us, you know we really focus on interior quietness, and creating what we like to think of as a sanctuary,” said Parker.

Fascinating Innovation

With a shift in technology such as electric vehicles and autonomous driving, companies have been pushed to transform or risk being left behind.

“You know it’s a fascinating time in the industry,” said Parker. “I’ve been in this business about thirty years, there’s a lot going on. You have migration from cars to SUV’s here in the U.S., you have the propulsion systems that are changing dramatically around electrification, and you have autonomous vehicles which is on the horizon, and so it’s an incredibly exciting time to be in the business.”

Parker shared Lincoln’s strategy for staying competitive amidst current international trade challenges, such as a possible increase in tariffs as a result of the ongoing U.S.-China trade war.

“We’ve been following international trade for a long time, obviously we’re working closely with the [U.S.] government,” said Parker. “But the Corsair that we introduced here in New York is going to be manufactured in the United States, for sale in the Americas, but it’ll also be manufactured ultimately in China. So it gives us an opportunity to flex where we need to.”

2020 Lincoln Corsair
The 2020 Lincoln Corsair, at the New York International Auto Show in N.Y. on April 17, 2019. (Shenghua Sung/NTD)

Electric Vehicle Genesis

Executive Vice President and Global Head of Genesis group, Manfred Fitzgerald, also strongly felt that the client experience was fundamental when designing a top luxury vehicle.

“I do believe it’s all about the experience,” said Fitzgerald. “Once you have driven our cars, from the product side, is one thing where I feel very, very confident that we have definitely an answer, and an alternative to the incumbent players out there.”

Genesis unveiled its new urban friendly electric vehicle called the Genesis Mint, a sleek design with an athletic look indicative of the brand.

“The other part will be the brand, and the brand experience, and that can only be done over time,” he said. “So there is no short cut in this game. We’re here to stay, we’re here in the long run, and that means this is more a marathon for us than a sprint. So there will not be anything like a short success story.”

Brand Awareness

Fitzgerald said that from a business point of view, with the possibility of increased tariffs, his company was taking it seriously and had a plan and answers in place.

“It’s like everywhere else entering in new markets, it’s all about… I’m not worried about the products that we have to offer, it’s more about the brand awareness, it’s more about getting up across to the customers and inviting them to our brand,” said Fitzgerald. “Making them curious to engage more with this brand, to learn more about this brand, and then I believe things will fall into place.”

Manfred Fitzgerald, executive Vp at Genesis
Manfred Fitzgerald, executive vice president and global head of Genesis, at the New York International Auto Show in N.Y. on April 17, 2019. (Shenghua Sung/NTD)

The show will run for 10 days ending on April 28, with hours of 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Sundays. With close to 1,000 vehicles on display and a history of over 100 years, the auto show has a lot to offer enthusiasts.

In an evolving market where companies are fiercely competing for the favor of customers, the New York International Auto Show offers a great look into how the industries’ top automakers are adapting and innovating.