LAS VEGAS — Just color the limousine industry black. The universal hue of luxury vehicles, business profits and chauffeur suits takes on added luster in a comeback year for many limousine companies worldwide and their top trade show and magazine.
Thousands of limousine industry operators and vendors from around the nation and world are about to converge on the MGM Grand Hotel, Feb. 4-7, for the 2013 International LCT Show, the biggest and most dynamic industry business event in the world. With the theme of “Back In The Black,” the ILCT Show also draws more attendees from more nations than any other limousine industry trade show.
The latest numbers and trend lines indicate this year’s Show is headed toward pre-recession levels, as the widest variety ever of fleet vehicles hits the trade show floor in the MGM Grand Marquee Ballroom. Projected attendance so far is up year-over-year in double digits while the 100,000 square feet of exhibit space sold out earlier this month, with 20% more exhibitors than at last year’s show, also held at the MGM Grand.
Limousine operators will have ample comparing and buying opportunities for luxury livery vehicles from Lincoln, Cadillac, Chrysler, Toyota, Mercedes-Benz and BMW. All major limo and bus coachbuilders, custom coachbuilders, and OEM auto manufacturers plan to display vehicles. The chauffeured vehicle marketplace is on the brink of a major buying binge as operators must replace aging, retiring Lincoln Town Car sedans and Cadillac DTS sedans as well as older model stretch limousines.
- The big vehicle headliners for this year’s Show include the debut of the Lincoln MKS sedan, debuts of extended versions of the Cadillac XTS and Chrysler 300 sedans, and test drives of both the Cadillac XTS and the all-electric Tesla S sedan. Also, Toyota plans to display its newly styled and upgraded Avalon and Avalon Hybrid models.
- The National Limousine Association and the American Bus Association have arranged multiple educational tracks throughout the event geared toward many B2B topics and company owners and managers of all chauffeured transportation and charter bus fleet types and sizes.
- An enhanced component of the three-day event is the revamped LCT Magazine Awards Celebration to be held Wednesday, Feb. 6, from 6:30 p.m. to 9 p.m., followed by a Nightclub Party, from 9 p.m. to Midnight, OPEN TO ALL ATTENDEES. Tickets to the Awards Celebration are $50 per person, including dinner, drinks and entertainment, while the Nightclub Party is FREE FOR ALL ATTENDEES.
- LCT Magazine plans an exclusive first-distribution on Feb. 5 of its 30th anniversary issue, chock full of historical tidbits, timelines and insightful anecdotes on its three decades covering the luxury limousine industry.
- The National Limousine Association and Don Brown Bus Sales are partnering to launch a vehicle rebate program for bus customers that will help boost NLA membership.
- The ILCT Show hosts its first-ever PUB CRAWL on opening night, Tuesday, Feb. 5.
- LCT Magazine welcomes new East Coast Editor to the Show.
- Look for entertaining surprises, a long-lost guest and an unexpected twist.
And the vehicle/product marketplace, the networking, and the profitable educational sessions never really stop; it’s all just to be continued when the limousine industry convenes again for the LCT East Show, returning to its roots in an innovative new-generation format on Oct. 27-29 at Caesar’s in Atlantic City, N.J. More details to come.
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— Martin Romjue, LCT editor