Top Booths from the 2024 New York International Auto Show

The 2024 New York International Auto Show featured a tight cast of brand characters as well as lessons in organizing supersized booth footprints. Approximately 20 major automotive brands exhibited on the main level of the Javits Convention Center for the 124-year-old NYIAS show, which ran March 29 through April 7. Heavy lifestyle messaging, CSR missions, family-friendly activations, and décor were front and center, along with annual attractions like screeching test drives and the legendary Camp Jeep, which marked its 20th anniversary. We explore the brand experiences that resonated most.

nyias-2018_auto-show-teaserjpgFrom the NYIAS Archives:

Subaru’s National Park

Once again, Subaru delivered a showstopping booth experience inspired by its corporate support for the National Park Foundation with new formations and features from last year. There was an official-looking National Park welcome sign, a mountainous “hiking trail” with a vehicle display at the summit, a “visitor’s center” with staff offices above, living and faux plants and trees, and a nature-inspired soundscape emanating throughout.

Moments we loved: A photo op that featured an actual vehicle on a steep incline covered in “mud” that consumers could climb into to snap “all-terrain” photos; the brand’s signature Subaru Loves Pets zone that featured pups from five different local rescues over the course of the show; park bench seating for visitors to take in the views, and a main stage electrified by projection mapping and a 180-degree curved LED screen.

Speaking of that stage: Each day the brand hosted reveals of the 2025 Forester, which included a dynamic nature-inspired multimedia presentation with flashing lights, music, twinkling firefly affects, and then a portion of the screen peeled back to unveil a huge sequoia tree structure with a large crevice that the Forester drove through before parking on a turntable. Hey, it’s what makes a Subaru booth, a Subaru booth…


Infiniti’s Multisensory Journey

This Zen footprint featured architectural accents, faux trees, neon hues, and a multisensory journey for attendees to learn about the all-new Infiniti QX80’s features. Attendees scanned a code to discover why the vehicle is “just right” for them and a microsite guided them through four moments within the activation, which included exploring personalized ambient lighting, individual audio (attendees hopped on markers on the floor to activate music from speakers hidden in greenery above), Klipsch speakers and biometric cooling (a Popbar station serving complimentary gelatos or sorbets was perfection). After completing the journey, consumers could visit the concierge for a premium branded leather key chain. (Partner: George P. Johnson)


Nissan’s KICKS Street

Following a buzzy launch of the all-new Nissan KICKS at Barclays Center on March 22 during the opening rounds NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament, Nissan brought the KICKS “Thrill Street” experience to the Javits Center. In the booth, consumers were invited to take part in activities like a scavenger hunt and trivia to earn stamps toward a spin of the digital Thrill Machine prize station. We loved the crosswalk effects on the floor, the March Madness bracket content that rotated on the extra-large LED screen, chain link fencing, and the Live Large Kicks Cam 360 video experience that had consumer stepping into a miniature street scape and showing off their moves (and their kicks) in a video clip for social media. (Partner: George P. Johnson)


Toyota’s Inclusive Sports Festival

Toyota’s massive booth space was divided into lifestyle sections, color themes and vehicle offerings that mapped to messaging like “Empower You,” a zone featuring EVs and other sustainability messaging. But it was the Toyota Sports Festival on the 2024 New York International Auto Show show floor that went above and beyond—a totally kid-friendly and focused experience spotlighting Toyota’s support for inclusive sports, including U.S. Paralympics, Challenged Athletics Foundation, USA Track & Field, and Adaptative Action Sports. There was a real track that consumers could sprint down to set a record; a full basketball court featuring adapted wheelchairs for consumers to experience; a photo op that allowed kids to dive into an inflatable against the backdrop of an Olympic pool; a miniature skate park, and more. Participants received a branded medal to wear around their necks. (Partner: Czarnowski)


Kia’s Sleek Design Elements

LED lined square frames hanging from the ceiling, a sleek black and white color scheme, and dynamic moving graphics were among some of the features that drew us into Kia’s booth. Others included a rumbling driving simulator, a second story private suite, a display area for the Kia EV9 with a chandelier-like lighted grid installation hanging above, and a Kia Connected Home display that demonstrated the vision for EV9’s Vehicle 2 Home capability. A feast for the eyes. (Partner: EWI Worldwide)


Genesis’ Hospitality for All

There were several roped off VIP lounge spaces tucked away in footprints across the show floor, but Genesis took a democratic approach with a café open to all that features complimentary beverages like hot lattes, a gift for Genesis owners, cell phone charging, and a sweepstakes. Architectural floor to ceiling “blinds” and faux trees created a natural buffer from the noise of the show floor. We loved the signage, which read, “Welcome: Relax and recharge in our lounge with these complimentary experiences.”


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Rachel Boucher
Posted by Rachel Boucher

Rachel joined Event Marketer in 2012 and today serves as the brand's head of content. Her travels covering the experiential marketing indust ry have ranged from CES in Las Vegas to Spring Break in Panama City Beach, Florida (hey, it's never too late)—and everywhere in between.
View all articles by Rachel Boucher →

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