Our Chicago Auto Show Road Trip: MPLS to CHI

We were given a Maserati Ghibli, a full tank of gas, and a hotel reservation in downtown Chicago. Our goal was to attend the press days, as guests of Mazda USA, at the 2017 Chicago International Auto Show. While the show was the end game, we did a nine hour #MorriesRoadtrip first. Since we had a Maserati, we picked out a few places that would make for a great backdrop and show off the flowing lines of the Ghibli. Some of my first impressions from behind the wheel were that the seats are hard. Not in an uncomfortable way – but rather in a way that when we hit Chicago I wasn’t really ready to fall out of the car and find the nearest Lay-Z-Boy. The more time we spent in the Ghibli, the more it grew on me from a standpoint of comfort and usability. I daily drive an old 911, so the idea of “Navigation” and “Steering Wheel Controls” were a luxury that was very welcome.


The seats hold you in place nicely, but give you enough room to move about at the same time. That is, while I was not busy shifting the automatic 8-speed transmission through the gear lever. The Apple CarPlay is something you can easily access while your iPhone is plugged in, and definitely something I could get used to having. We did average about 25-27mpg’s and had around a 500 mile range once it was filled up, which isn’t bad for an exotic car. Let’s focus more on the stops though, because while the Maserati was a treat to drive, most everyone we told was upset that it was us driving it and not them.

There is a strong chance that you’ve seen the gigantic orange moose on the side of the road in Black River Falls, but maybe never stopped for a closer look like we did. They problem was once you pulled up to the Moose, you realize that you’re just at its hind quarters, and not at the antlers like you’d hoped for. We had an idea to rectify this – and that was to stop somewhere for lunch to get our own antlers, and we had just the place. We rolled into the Wisconsin Dells around lunch time and stopped off at Moose Jaw Pizza for a quick in and out meal.

Alex volunteered to put on the antlers before we even asked

After lunch we headed toward our next destination, which was Rome. More specifically the Hotel Rome, which looked as cool in person as it sounded on paper. Not only for the picture backdrop, but the road that leads out of the hotel was quite curvy, and sport mode on the Ghibli proved itself to be amazing experience for our eardrums. We decided to tool around the Dells a bit more and found some other cool places before we headed out of Wisconsin to our next stop.



Our final stop of the day before the hotel was the Volo Auto Museum in Volo, IL. While we didn’t actually end up going inside, we’d love to get some more time to go back and see all the cool cars inside the museum. They had something called the, “Duesenberg Room” which had us leaving with more questions than answers, and for that room alone we see a return trip in our future.


A memorable experience for us all, and the three of us certainly hope to share an experience like this again in the future!


Overall, we’d say it was a success and can’t wait for our next auto show adventure, which is New York this coming April. Luckily for us we aren’t driving, but the Big Apple never disappoints when it comes to the auto show, and we can’t wait! For now though, check out our blog of all the cool cars we saw, or check out our YouTube videos on all those new models from the show.

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