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As of this writing, the 2016 NBA All-Star Game is mere hours away, and among the players taking the court on behalf of the Eastern Conference is Cleveland Cavaliers' powerhouse, LeBron James. Kia Motors USA is an NBA partner, with the Kia Optima deemed the "Official Vehicle of the NBA." The NBA goodness doesn't end there, with Kia sponsoring numerous elements from the Tip-Off to the Rookie Ladder and beyond, and of course you have "King James" (also my nickname prior to "The Rock Father," funny enough) as Kia's Luxury Ambassador, rockin' the road in the K900. Last week, as part of the festivities surrounding the 2016 Chicago Auto Show, my wife and I joined our friends from Kia in a suite at the United Center to see our hometown Chicago Bulls get trounced by the Atlanta Hawks. But there, Kia gave us a pair of jerseys - specifically, the NBA Eastern Conference LeBron James adidas White 2016 All-Star Game Swingman Jersey, the same one sold at the NBA Store for $109.99 each. That got me thinking... that some of you would really like to own these.

Published in Rock Father Rides

The 2016 Chicago Auto Show is underway at McCormick Place, and with a million square feet of automotive goodness, there's a lot for enthusiasts and families to enjoy. While I'll be rolling out #CAS16 features here on THE ROCK FATHER Magazine throughout the week, today I'm highlighting seven things (with a few add-ons) to look for at the auto show - from debut vehicles, to concepts, music, tech and more.

Published in Rock Father Rides

It's no secret that I'm a fan of Kia, and over the past few years I've also made some friendships there (my wife and I went to the Chicago Bulls game the other night with some Kia Execs, disclosure and all), but we don't own a Kia just yet. When it comes to the Chicago Auto Show, they've kicked it off the past few years, and this year they pretty much perfected the art of a kick-off press conference - bringing in the young students of the School of Rock Oak Park (ages 14-18) to truly ROCK the auto show. It's stuff like this that makes me love Kia - outside of their cars, of course. On a press conference note, it's hard for some of the other automakers to follow - especially the ones with really bland presentations (up your game, gentlemen - there's several of you). With a medley of tunes that included some from QUEENS OF THE STONE AGE, LED ZEPPELIN, THE ROLLING STONES and more, the School of Rock Show Team provided the perfect soundtrack for Kia's Michael Sprague to throw down some Chicago music history (Chess Records was mentioned) before rolling out a trio of hybrids, one of which was the much-anticipated 2017 Kia Niro Hybrid Utility Vehicle (HUV). Sprague said it was designed "in the rock and roll spirit of rebellion." I can dig it.

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Until General Motors brings back the Pontiac nameplate - even if only for what I want it for, a new version of the famed Firebird Trans Am, the Chevy Camaro will rank among the top of what I dig when it comes to american muscle. For 2017, the Chevrolet Camaro 1LE performance package returns, aiming to put "attainable track performance" into the hands of the masses, and it made its debut at the 2016 Chicago Auto Show.

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The 30th Anniversary of 1985's BACK TO THE FUTURE was last year, and while much of the excitement peaked with the October 21st celebration of the actual date (the real one, not the fake ones your friends constantly meme on Facebook) that Marty McFly (Michael J. Fox) traveled to the future in 1989's BACK TO THE FUTURE II, there's still a lot coming. Take Toyota's reimagined version of Marty's dream truck - a 2016 Toyota Tacoma that's been decked-out with accessories mirroring the truck that Marty finally gets in BACK TO THE FUTURE III. Or how about the Toyota Mirai Concept - a fuel cell electric vehicle (complete with Delorean mirroring gull-wing doors) that was featured in Toyota’s “Fueled by Everything” video starring Fox and Christopher Lloyd? Both are on display in the Windy City for the very first time at the 2016 Chicago Auto Show, where families can check out just what the real future may hold. I checked them out and did a little toyography - with my Hot Wheels Retro Entertainment Toyota and Delorean, along with the Funko ReAction Figure of Marty...

Published in Rock Father Rides

#CAS16With the 2016 Chicago Auto Show rolling into McCormick Place this week, I figured it would be a good time to roll out some "Rides Revisited" features on a few vehicles that I'd driven before, but have since taken out to rock the road with my family. In this installment, it's the 2016 Kia Sorento crossover vs. the 2016 Kia Sedonamulti-purpose vehicle minivan. I had the opportunity to drive pre-release versions of both of these vehicles back in 2014, hopping behind the wheel of the Sedona out near Dana Point, California, while I had a chance to drive a pair of Sorentos through multiple climates between Lake Tahoe, California and Reno, Nevada. While I certainly had formed an opinion of both vehicles (I liked the Sedona, but loved the Sorento), sometimes having the vehicle here at Rock Father HQ for some time with the family helps re-shape things. In the case of these, that's just what we did late last year...

Published in Rock Father Rides
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