Get inside the nation's longest running auto show

Chicago Auto Show Timeline

A quick glance at the past 104 years of the auto show.

By Glenn Marshall
|  Friday, Jan 13, 2012  |  Updated 1:41 PM CDT
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Chicago Auto Show Timeline

Charlie Wojciechowski

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For years, the auto show has graced Chicago with its presence. Here is a quick recap of some of the events that marveled visitors each year.

March 23-30, 1901: The first official Chicago Auto Show was held at the Coliseum Exposition hall that was situated between Wabash and Michigan Avenues. Prices for the attraction were only 50 cents per ticket.

1916: All cars were American-built, with 85 gasoline-powered makes and seven electric vehicles. Prices for vehicles were anywhere between $295 and $6,000.

1923: Chrysler had an exhibit in the ballroom of Congress Hotel. Chrysler management said the hotel setup "provides a deluxe showing where inspection can be made more leisurely than at the show proper," according to the Chicago Auto Show.

1932: The Willys vehicle called "Overland" was advertised as the lowest priced car in the world, according to the Chicago Auto Show.

1942: The Chicago Auto Show wasn't held this year due to World War II. Factories made vehicles, planes and small weapons for the war, according to the Chicago Auto Show.

1950: The Chicago Auto Show returned post-World War II. The event drew 478,000 visitors, according to Chicago Auto Show.

1961: The Auto Show claimed a new home at Chicago's new McCormick Place. More than 400 cars and trucks were on display. It took more than 850 hours to prepare for the nine-day event.

1979: Pontiac received rave reviews of its display of Firebirds and the Tenth-Anniversary Trans Am.

1983: The 75th year anniversary of the Chicago Auto Show marked a new beginning for Toyota, which launched the Camry that replaced the Corona.

1995: The Bugatti made a re-appearance after shutting down production in 1951. Only a handful of Bugattis were built over the next years, according to Chicago Auto Show.

2008: The Chicago Auto Show marked its 100th anniversary.

2010: New off-road exhibits were added including the 'Camp Jeep," the 25,000 square-foot exhibit demonstrating 4x4 capabilities.

2012:  This year's auto show will be held Feb. 10 until Feb. 19. For more information check the Chicago Auto Show website.

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