This show occasionally gets shafted on ultra-hot reveals simply because it falls directly between a major European auto show (either Paris or Frankfurt, depending on the year) and the North American International Auto Show in Detroit – the most important show in the United States. But that doesn't mean there isn't a whole lot of excellent metal to be seen in Los Angeles.
So, with that in mind, scroll down and have a look at what our editors have chosen as the best of the best here in LA. Be sure to leave us your own Best Of choices in Comments, too. And if you missed any of our obsessive coverage, click here to view the whole lot.
#5: 2013 Jeep Wrangler Rubicon 10th Anniversary Edition
Let's face it, we pretty much all love everything from Jeep. So when the off-roading brand decided to cook up a Wrangler Rubicon to celebrate that model's 10th anniversary and imbue it with more loads of rock-crawling toys and a signature look, there was hardly a chance that we wouldn't fall for it. A dominating stance on huge knobby tires, that winch-wielding bumper, a macho bulging hood and those red leather seats make this a Wrangler we can't wait to get our hands on, and one of our favorites from LA.
#4: 2014 Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG Black Series
This is a formula that can't fail. No matter how silly expensive it ends up being, making one of the fastest and sexiest supercars in the world even more competent is a recipe for enthusiast love. This retina-searing shade of yellow wouldn't work on lesser vehicles, but on a world-beater like the SLS AMG Black Series it wears easily. If we were ranking our show favorites based total surface area rendered in carbon fiber, the SLS would have been Number One in a walk-off. As it is though, making our five favorites list was a simple affair for the most beastly of AMG's Black Series.
#3: 2014 Ford Fiesta ST
For all of the goodness of its badass, big brother Focus ST, we think that this Fiesta ST may end up being the sweetheart of the newly dawning hot hatch world. 214 pound-feet of torque should offer near pulse-pounding off-the-line action, and suspension tuning derived from the bigger ST has us believing that the Fiesta will have lightning-quick reflexes as well. Best of show? We believe.
#2: 2014 Jaguar XFR-S
When we drove the Jaguar XKR-S Coupe (and convertible) earlier this year, we couldn't find much to complain about – aside from the fact that there are a few old bones underneath that pretty skin. But really, how can you not love a 550-horsepower, supercharged beast of a car with a demonic exhaust note and killer looks? We're now applying that same logic to the XFR-S sedan that debuted in LA, and honestly, some of us are hands-down in favor of this over the XKR-S coupe. BMW M5, take notice.
#1: 2014 Porsche Cayman
The Porsche Cayman is so, so, so much more than just a Boxster with a roof. Yeah, it looks fantastic, and it shares its mid-engined architecture with the droptop Box, but for a lot of us, the Cayman is the Porsche to buy. You heard right. Not the 911 – the Cayman. And with a choice of two new engines nestled behind those seats, better road-hugging mechanicals, and quite frankly, damn good looks, that isn't really logic one can argue with (even though people inevitably will).
With a package that's this good, how could it not be Best In Show? It's the car we've been waiting for ever since the 2013 Boxster was revealed, and it's the car we most drooled over at the Los Angeles Convention Center. We absolutely cannot wait to get behind the wheel.
So... how'd we arrive at this list? Each Autoblog editor in attendance (as well as a few of our AOL Autos colleagues) ranked their personal show favorites from one to five, and points were awarded to each – five points for the first place spot, one point for the fifth place spot, and appropriate numbers in between. Votes were tallied and cars were ranked, but if you're curious, here's how the actual voting breakdown looked:
- Cayman – 32 points
- XFR-S – 26 points
- Fiesta ST – 23 points
- SLS AMG Black Series – 22 points
- Wrangler – 16 points
Part of the fun of doing this list is seeing what each individual staff member votes for. And since this is a point-based list, there are always a good number of cars that don't quite make the Top Five cut. So in addition to listing them all below, we'll even point out who raised their hands for each car. You know, so you can make fun of us in the Comments if you see fit.
- Mercedes-Benz Ener-G-Force Concept – 13 points (Sharon Carty, George Kennedy, Michael Zak)
- 2014 Mazda6 2.2L Skyactiv-D – 11 points (Chris Paukert, Michael Harley)
- BMW i3 Coupe Concept – 8 points (Sebastian Blanco, Seyth Miersma)
- 2014 Ford Fiesta 1.0L EcoBoost – 8 points (Sebastian Blanco, Jeremy Korzeniewski)
- 2014 Audi Q5 TDI – 7 points (Michael Harley, Drew Phillips)
- 2014 Kia Forte – 6 points (Steven Ewing, Jeffrey Ross)
- 2014 Chevrolet Spark EV – 5 points (Sebastian Blanco)
- 2013 Fiat 500c Abarth – 5 points (Steven Ewing, George Kennedy, Jeremy Korzeniewski)
- 2014 Fiat 500L Trekking – 4 points (Sharon Carty)
- 2014 Audi A7 TDI – 4 points (Scott Burgess, Jeremy Korzeniewski)
- 2013 Lamborghini Aventador Roadster – 3 points (John Neff)
- Volvo S60 Polestar Concept – 3 points (Steven Ewing, George Kennedy)
- 2014 Audi A8 TDI – 3 points (Michael Harley)
- 2014 Ford Transit Connect Wagon – 3 points (Seyth Miersma)
- 2013 Fiat 500e – 3 points (Sebastian Blanco, Seyth Miersma)
- 2013 Volkswagen CC R-Line – 3 points (Scott Burgess)
- Hyundai Veloster C3 Roll Top Concept – 3 points (Sharon Carty, Michael Zak)
- 2014 Acura RLX – 2 points (Jeffrey Ross)
- 2013 Honda Civic – 1 point (Michael Harley)