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Morgan 3 Wheeler coming to auto show

CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- The newest feature in next weekend's West Virginia International Auto Show will roll in on three wheels.

With two wheels in the front and one in the back, Morgan Motors will make its first appearance at the annual event.

"We've really got an exciting new product," said West Virginia Auto and Truck Dealers Association president Ruth Lemmon. "I have only seen pictures of the Morgan but I'm excited to see it in person."

The show, co-sponsored by Charleston Newspapers, will run Jan. 24 to 26 at the Charleston Civic Center.

"It's a great opportunity for family entertainment," Lemmon said. "It's very exciting to see all the new trucks and venues we have there."

University Motors in Morgantown carries the legendary English sports car line. General manager Paul Knotts said they would bring a West Virginia University blue and gold Morgan model for display. Knotts said the Morgan starts at $55,000.

"It's a very expensive toy," Lemmon said of the Morgan.

Charleston will have the chance to experience ultra-high-end exotic vehicles with the DuPont registry live exotic vehicle collection.

"People will get to see multi-million dollar vehicles in addition to the luxury loft," said auto show spokeswoman DeeDee Taft.

The luxury loft will feature latest high-end imports from Audi, BMW, Jaguar, Land Rover, Lexus and Mercedes-Benz.

Mercedes-Benz is sending several products that are not normally available for the show, Lemmon said.

"There's a lot of energy," Lemmon said. "We're expecting a great show."

Every make that is sold in West Virginia will be at the show, Lemmon said.

Attendees will be able to see new models including the BMW 4 Series, Corvette Stingray Coupe, Acura RLX, Lexus IS, Mazda3, Mercedes-Benz S-Class, Nissan Rogue, Subaru Forester, Toyota Corolla and the 2015 Ford Mustang. 

Ford will offer test drives on the Fusion, Escape, F-150, Focus C-MAX and more.

Cadillac Buick GMC will also offer a ride and drive experience on its Cadillac ATS and CTS, Buick Enclave and Encore, GMC Sierra, Terrain and more.

Ride and drive hours are 10 a.m. to 5.p.m. daily.

Bobby Brantley, star of the reality television series, Lizard Lick Towing will greet fans and pose for pictures on January 25 from 11a.m. to 6.p.m. and the next day from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. 

"You will be seeing everything from the fuel efficient gas vehicles, to hybrids, to all electric vehicles," Taft said.

The all-electric Nissan Leaf will be at the show. People can also check out the Chevrolet Volt that operates as electric and hybrid.

"It's not just one answer for the future -- it's going to be options," Taft said.

Auto manufactures for years have been researching and developing and now we are seeing the fruit of their labor, Taft added.

In August 2012, the Obama administration finalized fuel efficiency standards that required automakers to almost double the average fuel economy to 54.5 miles per gallon on new cars and trucks by 2025.

The current standard of about 29 mpg follows the Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) model initiated by Congress in 1975 intended to reduce energy consumption.

"All the manufactures are looking for options," Taft said.

The show will run from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Jan. 24 and 25. Jan. 26 will be family day, running from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Admission to the show for adults is $10; for senior citizens 62 and older, $6; for children 7 to 12, $5. Kids 6 and under get in free; admission fees for children 12 and under are waived on family day. 

Reach Caitlin Cook at caitlin.cook@wvgazette.com or 304-348-5113.


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