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New York International Auto Show A Car Lover’s Dream

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NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Alfa Romeo is making its first appearance in 22 years at a major U.S. auto show this week.

As WCBS 880’s Jim Smith reported, the Italian high-end carmaker is using the New York International Auto Show to unveil its new 4C model.

“We’re happy that Alfa Romeo’s back,” company spokesman Jiyan Cadiz said.

The 4C brings back the romance of the company’s Italian two-seaters. As for its performance: The sports car packs “an all-aluminum engine, turbo charged, direct injection,” Cadiz described.

The annual auto show opens to the public Friday at the Javits Center in Manhattan and runs through April 27. Tickets cost $15.

There will be a thousand cars on display. Some of them, such as the Chrysler 200, can be seen before they hit dealership showrooms.

“It’s a car we poured everything into,” Chrysler’s Andy Love said of the 200. “Billion-dollar investment at the plant. So this car’s all new from the ground up.”

Those sitting in the sedan will no longer see the traditional gear shifter, just an electronic knob to get the driver from park to drive.

“So what that allows us to do is completely open up the center console,” Love said.

CBS 2’s Scott Rapoport scoured the auto show to find some of the most eye-popping, uber-expensive rides on the planet.

Among them was a Koenigsegg Agera R — a super sleek, tricked out, 1,200-horsepower sports car.

“I put in all of my love and passion into creating this car,” said Christian Von Koenigsegg, CEO of Koenigsegg Automotive.

The company makes only about a dozen Agera R’s each year. The price tag for one: $1.6 million.

“It’s one of the fastest cars in the world, with a top speed of around 250 miles per hour,” Von Koenigsegg said.

The Bugatti Veyron costs $2.5 million. (credit: Jim Smith/WCBS 880)

The Bugatti Veyron costs $2.5 million. (credit: Jim Smith/WCBS 880)

The most expensive car at the show, however, is the Bugatti Veyron. The manufacturer produces fewer than 40 of the car each year.

The Veyron, which accelerates from zero to 60 mph in less than three seconds, costs $2.5 million.

Whether they have the big bucks to afford one or not, car admirers attending the show will also be able to imagine themselves owning a Rolls-Royce.

“The ultimate exclusive is something which is unique. There is only one. And that’s what we do at Rolls-Royce,” said the company’s Richard Collar.

Besides handcrafting just 3,600 cars per year, nearly all the luxury vehicles are customized to the buyer’s every whim.

“For example, in the past, we’ve paint-matched jade from a piece of jewelry,” Collar said. “We’ve color-matched leather coats.”

But one thing that is off limits to customization is the company’s iconic hood ornaments, the Spirit of Ecstasy.

“That’s not something that we would allow our customers to change,” Collar said.

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