February 12 – 22, 2015
In terms of indoor tracks, the Chicago Auto Show Camp Jeep and City Drive are the Superbowl of consumer test drive events. It is safe to say that this event has no peers when it comes to throughput , and the 2015 edition did not disappoint. Both tracks consistently maintained a 45-90 minute line from open until close each day of the show, proving that FCA is producing excellent product that people want to experience.
Camp Jeep -
This is our favorite indoor course every year. By using organic materials in conjunction with GPJ-designed modular steel obstacles, we create the atmosphere and feel of an outdoor setting, complete with live pine trees, dirt, mulch, logs and boulders. This course really gives consumers a chance to share a true off-road driving experience with us as they learn about the vehicle and it’s capabilities from our pro drivers. As an added bonus, we were thrilled to debut the 2015 Renegade Trailhawk, giving the public first crack at riding in this exciting new B-segment SUV from Jeep. As predicted, the vehicle was met with enthusiasm as it handled the course with aplomb. Both competitive vehicle owners and Jeep fanatics walked away from our course with smiles on their faces. Represented at Camp Jeep was the full Jeep lineup, including Grand Cherokee, Cherokee, Wrangler, Renegade, Patriot and Compass.
Here is a quick video produced by FCA’s social media team:
City Drive – In 2015, the SRT brand returned to the City Drive to the delight of the Chicago guests. The SRT Charger (and Challenger with Scat Pack), could be heard from anywhere in the McCormick Place when it hammered down the acceleration lane. Also represented on the City Drive track were the 2015 Doge Dart, Chrysler 300, 200, T&C, as well as the Fiat Abarth, 500L, and 500.
And here is a video of the City Drive (City Drive content starts at 4:19)
January 22-25, 2015
Located 160 miles southwest of Denver, the 19th Annual Winter X-Games took place in Aspen, CO. More than 200 of the world’s best action sports athletes competed in skiing, snowboarding and snowmobile events at Buttermilk Mountain for the premier Winter X-Games event.
Jeep offered event guests, athletes, and VIPs the opportunity experience the 2015 vehicle lineup while traveling from downtown Aspen to the mountain venue. 12 shuttle vehicles were used, consisting of a mix of Wrangler, Grand Cherokee, and Cherokee vehicles. The all-new Renegade was featured at the games, but wasn’t in the shuttle fleet.
Consumer data was collected by Gordinier Group trained drivers, who provided detailed product information during the ride.
With the big concerts (Snoop Dogg, Wiz Khalifa, Skrillex, Chromeo) moved to the mountain this year (instead of in town where the shuttles run), we were able to exceed goals and realize record numbers of participants in the Jeep shuttles.
Another great year in Aspen at the Winter X-Games – thanks Jeep!
I know what you are thinking, “tough job”.
Well, the i8 might be the coolest vehicle that I have driven. From BMWBLOG:
BMW i8 uses a plug-in hybrid system consisting of a turbocharged three-cylinder BMW TwinPower Turbo petrol engine and BMW eDrive technology in the form of an electric drive system.
“The 1.5-liter combustion engine develops 170 kW/231 hp and drives the rear wheels of the BMW i8, while the 96 kW/131 hp electric drive sends its power to the front wheels and allows an all-electric range of up to 35 kilometers (22 miles) and a top speed of 120 km/h (75 mph).”
On paper, those figures seem okay, but actually driving this space-age vehicle is a different story. Shifting the vehicle into EcoPro mode combines the 1.5L., 3-cylinder turbocharged engine and electric motor systems for optimum efficiency. The combined systems make 357 HP and 420 lb. ft. of torque. With a superlight body made mostly of aluminum and carbon fiber, this powerplant will take you from 0-60 mph in under 4.5 seconds.
All performance and driving dynamics aside, the driving experience from the cockpit is equally impressive in the i8. I needed more time to dial in all of the electric goodies, but I have to say that my favorite gadget was the onboard camera system that uses multiple cameras around the vehicle to create a bird’s-eye view of your vehicle driving down the road in real time. All of the cars and obstacles that you pass are shown around your vehicle – unreal!
I could go on and on about this car, but you can read about it elsewhere.
Did I mention that we were also given 2015 M4 and M5 cars to drive? This was a nice way to start 2015 – life is good!
Here are a few shots of our i8 assault on Las Vegas:
While the full 2015 Camp Jeep Auto Show officially kicks off at the San Diego Auto Show on New Year’s Day, the unofficial season has already begun, with big shows in Anaheim, Miami and Orlando.
If the attendance at the Camp Jeep track at these shows is indicative of what is to come in January, we will be very busy this season.
Each of those stops (Orange County 10/3-5/14, Miami 11/7-16/14, Orlando 11/27-30/14) tallied record crowds this year and guests were as excited as ever about the current Jeep lineup. We are also beginning to hear a lot of questions and anticipation about the new Renegade, which is a very positive sign for the brand.
We are looking forward to continuing this momentum into 2015 and expect for Camp Jeep to continue to set the bar for automotive experiential events!
July 19-28, 2014
Colorado State Fair
August 23 – September 2, 2014
Oklahoma State Fair
Oklahoma City, OK
September 11-21, 2014
The Ram Rodeo Test ride Series provides excellent exposure for the brand. Unlike the farm show circuit, these fairs are 10-12 days long and feature top country music acts, pro rodeo and bull riding events, carnivals, and other attractions that help to bring scads of people through the gates.
At these shows Gordinier Group/Dirt Designs has the opportunity to design and build organic off-road courses that feature, logs, rock piles, axle articulation rollers, dirt mountains, and as many other obstacles that we can pack into our footprint. While the simulated off-road courses provide an excellent medium to provide a consistent experience, we always jump at the chance to get on the heavy equipment and move some dirt around.
All 3 fairs brought us great weather and provided us a truly enormous amount of people to show off the 2014 Ram 1500 to. We really racked up the rides at these shows and were able to make a ton of positive impressions. This is easy to do when you are you are promoting the Motor Trend “Truck of the Year”, winner (for the last 2 years, thank you very much).
Wisconsin Farm Tech Days
Steven’s Point, WI
August 12-14, 2014
August 26-28, 2014
September 9-11, 2014
In the outdoor event world, when dealing with Mother Nature, you win some and you lose some. With 3 major farm shows on the schedule this summer, Gordinier Group pro drivers had to battle with some serious rain and storms to bring Ram trucks to the masses.
The farm show circuit began with Wisconsin Farm Tech Days, which featured excellent weather and mobs of Ram test riders. The simulated off-road properties and 2014 Ram 1500 and 2500 trucks were a huge hit with consumers who lined up to participate in our experience. Our job of showing off the features of these amazing trucks gets easier each year as they continue to get better and better – no convincing needed, thank you.
From Wisconsin, we moved on to Boone, Iowa, for Farm Progress Days. This is where the rain began. We arrived on the first show day to 6 inches of standing water on our track. Luckily, we brought some trucks to the entrance, put on our Product Specialist hats, and were still able to have a good number of positive guest interactions, despite being unable to drive. The rain continued throughout the show, causing an eventual morning cancellation on the last day.
When we finally dried off, the Gordinier Group crew made their way to Kearney, Nebraska for Husker Harvest. Once again we battled torrential downpours and weren’t able to drive. Back to our vehicle walk-arounds and Product Specialist duties. Not a bad gig, but our team are drivers and really like to be behind the wheel where we can demonstrate the features that we are explaining.
The weather didn’t cooperate this year, but our guys and gals are scrappy and still managed to get in front of a lot of Ram and potential Ram owners.
The farm shows provide an audience that is the perfect demographic for the brand and even with the wet weather, still an excellent series.
August 9 – 16, 2014
Gordinier Group pro drivers traveled to Whistler, British Columbia for Crankworx, the premier mountain bike free ride event in North America.
If there is a more natural backdrop for a Jeep event, we have yet to see it. Not only are the Whistler and Blackcomb mountains the ideal setting for the Jeep brand, but the Crankworx participants and fans are the right demographic as well.
This combination sets the stage for the perfect automotive experiential event, and the 2014 Crankworx did not disappoint. Great weather brought the crowds to Whistler and guests fell in love with the Jeep vehicles on our off-road course. The Wrangler seems to be the crowd favorite there, but we also had great interactions with guests in our Grand Cherokee and Cherokee Trailhawk course vehicles. We also ran a street drive, with 2014 Compass, Patriot and Cherokee vehicles.
All in all, Crankworx 2014 was a home run for Jeep. Great exposure and tons of off-road test drives, all targeted towards the right people.
Gordinier Group drivers were happy to get back into the new 2014 Ram 1500 and 2500 models and show them off to guests on the GG-built off-road course.
Drivers were equipped with Laramie and Laramie Longhorn trucks, so there was no shortage of features to brag to rodeo guests about. The 3/4 ton trucks sported Ram’s new 6.4L Hemi, which proved to be incredibly smooth and powerful on the track. The 1/2 ton trucks were powered by the proven Chrysler 5.7L Hemi, paired with the heralded 8-speed automatic TorqueFlight transmission.
With summer heating up, we look forward bringing great in-vehicle experiences to rodeo guests at the Colorado State Fair, Oklahoma State Fair, and hopefully others.
June 15 – December 24
Gordinier Group was hired by a trusted partner and client, G7 Entertainment Marketing, to help with the operation of a 6-month national tour to promote the new Harley Davidson LiveWire electric motorcycle.
With East and West Coast teams, the LiveWire tour will be blanketing the country, introducing Harley fans to this wild new bike.
Take a look at this article on theverge,com, from the last east coast tour stop in NYC: http://www.theverge.com/2014/6/24/5837642/riding-project-livewire-harley-davidson-first-electric-motorcycle
Below are a couple of pictures of Gordinier Group Road Manager, Sergio, helping event guests with the LiveWire. Pictures courtesy of TheVerge.com
May 31 – June 6
Gordinier Group continues to be an integral part of the behind-the-scenes operation of the annual shareholder’s meeting for Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.
We are responsible for the layout and logistics for the Wal-Mart store chain food vendors who are represented at the event.
GG coordinates the infrastructure for this enormous event, including tenting, generated power/AC, vendor management, and event flow. this event takes us back to some of our original core skills from the original camp Jeep days.
Guests of the event packed University of Arkansas’ Bud Walton Arena, to catch performances by Pharrell, Robin Thicke, Sarah McLachlan, and Harry Connick Jr, among others. Rob Walton joined the meeting, announcing a $473 billion sales figure for 2014. Things are good at Wal-Mart.
April 15 – 27th, 2014
The 2014 New York International Auto Show has come and gone, and with it, another incredibly successful Camp Jeep Auto Show season!
2014 marked the 10th anniversary of Camp Jeep at NYIAS, and as the program, track, and staff has evolved, we have drawn bigger crowds each year.
Although there are a handful of Camp Jeep auto shows that happen throughout the summer and fall, NYIAS is the unofficial end to the 2014 auto show season. We are very proud of our drivers and thankful to our clients George P. Johnson and the Chrysler LLC for trusting in our work.
In other NYIAS news, Jeep proudly announced their new B-segment SUV to the lineup, the 2015 Jeep Renegade. The Renegade will truly be a global vehicle, as Jeep is moving quickly into other parts of the world.
Some notable facts about the Renegade:
- In the US, there are (2) 4 cylinder engine options – 2.4L Tiger Shark w/ 9-speed auto trans and a 1.4L MultiAir turbo with a 6-speed manual transmission
- The Renegade is rumored to start at under $20,000
- All Renegade models will achieve north of 30 mpg
- There is a Trail-Rated Renegade Trailhawk, with extra ground clearance, aggressive tires, skid plates, and a full-time transfer case with Jeep Active Drive Low gearing (20:1 crawl ratio)
We definitely like the body styling and the available removable roof. While the hardcore, Wrangler wheelers will find things to criticize about the Renegade, the fact that there is a Trail-Rated Trailhawk version shows that Jeep is staying true to it’s roots. This vehicle will be a great seller for the brand (not to mention helping them to meet CAFE standards).
We are excited to put one through the paces and get a handle on its capabilities.
April 3-5, 2014
Las Vegas, NV
Gordinier Group Pro Drivers were excited to be back to he ACM event for the third consecutive year.
As luck would have it, the grand opening of the High Roller (world’s largest ferris wheel), coincided with the opening of our event.
As everyone knows, country music and Ram trucks go well together, and this event was no exception. Armed with a fleet of 2014
Ram 1500 trucks, we gave simulated off-road rides to enthusiastic guests, Ram fans, and several ACM artists, including Randy Houser, Easton Corbin and Parmalee. Mr. Corbin and Mr. Houser both spent time at the track signing autographs as well.
Another great exposure for the Ram brand and another opportunity to show consumers why the Ram 1500 won Motor Trend ‘Truck of the Year’ again in 2014!
Click here to read what Truckin’ Magazine had to say about the event.