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Detroit Autorama Around the Corner

Image courtesy "Big Al" Leibmann

The Detroit Autorama, one of the USA's best hot rod shows, is just around the bend. It's scheduled to take place from March 1-3, Friday through Sunday, at the Cobo Center. Drawing more than 800 customs, trucks and motorcycles to its crowded location, this event is one no devoted hot rod fan should miss.

To keep pace with the quickly-changing times, the Autorama has updated their Ridler rules. Previously, the only two major rules regarding this competition were that the vehicle must be operable and must make its first public showing at the Detroit Autorama. Now, a new clause goes further into detail on that second rule: The vehicle must not have been shown on social media, either.

One of numerous tributes to the late Burt Reynolds has been canceled for this year. A stunt jump featuring a replica of the 'Smokey and the Bandit' car was called off due to the original car's use of a license plate featuring the Confederate flag (as part of the former flag of Georgia). Although the replica car was evidently not going to use the plate, the flag is a sensitive topic due to the Autorama's location at the Cobo Center, which is set to be renamed on account of its original segregationist namesake. All other tributes to Reynolds will continue as planned.

The Autorama will feature a solid selection of guests, ranging from NASCAR legend Tony Stewart to Dave Kindig from 'Kindig It Designs.' An exciting Chop Shop demonstration featuring the great Gene Winfield will run all weekend long, as does an auto art panel jam and charity auction benefiting LeaderDogs for the Blind. The Lowrider Invitational and Toy-A-Rama offer fun for anyone into those niches of hot rod culture. And of course, there will be a full complement of awards, from Traditional Rod picks to Best of Show.

You can find more information about the 2019 Detroit Autorama, or purchase tickets, on their website here.