Crowd crams into Cobo: ‘We’re just looking for fun’

Charles E. Ramirez
The Detroit News

Detroit — Of all of the cars Renita Roulhac saw Sunday at the North American International Auto Show, she said the Audi S8 Plus is the one she’d like to have parked in her driveway. “So far, I’d say it’s the coolest car I’ve seen at the show,” Roulhac said as she stood next to the German luxury car, which was parked at the show’s Audi display. “I’d like to claim this one right now.”

She was joined by her husband, Thomas Roulhac, and their daughter, Renisha. The family from Belleville was among those who swarmed the auto show at the Cobo Center in downtown Detroit. The North American International Auto Show announced today that the second day of public show brought in more than 100,000 for the second consecutive day, bringing the total attendance for the first public weekend to 208,327.

On Sunday, the show looked like a shopping mall the day after Thanksgiving. Pulsating, electronic music instead of Christmas songs thumped through speakers. Large video screens presented footage of vehicles speeding along exotic landscapes. Under the center’s bright lights, four-wheeled modern marvels of technology in red, sapphire and sliver shone like fine jewelry in a store display.

Detroit News - Auto Show

Throngs of people in small packs wandered among exhibits and car to car. Many pushed children in strollers; others carried bags with the logos of car companies on them. Some stopped to snap pictures with their cameras, cell phones or tablets or posed with grid girls, or umbrella girls, in front of a race car at the Indy Cafe on the show’s floor.

More than a few climbed behind the cars’ steering wheels while food vendors hawked giant hot pretzels and roasted almonds yards away from the latest vehicle models.

Roulhac said she and her family aren’t in the market for a new car, but they wanted to check out the show.

“We’re just looking for fun,” she said.

“We’re compiling a wish list,” added her hopeful husband, Thomas.

(313) 222-2058