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Behind the Scenes at the New York International Auto Show

Hi all! Here's a guest blog from Marc Bertucco, who got the scoop for us at the Auto Show this week:

Every year, the New York International Auto Show is host to some of the shiniest, prettiest, newest, best cars and trucks you’ve ever seen. Parenting was there to uncover this year’s most interesting and relevant vehicles for our favorite families (that’s you!). We checked out storage cubbies, chatted up auto executives, took pictures, flipped and folded seatbacks and opened trunks over the course of two days.

After all, we had to make sure there was plenty of room for mom, dad, kids, groceries, a 1154-piece LEGO Mission 6: Mobile Command Center with working projection screen, and a Crayola Glow Station artist’s canvas with light wand and 13 stencil tracer shapes. At least.

In addition to showroom-ready cars already in production, there were tasty hints of what is to come with a virtual parking garage full of “concept cars.”

Transit Connect Family One is a rolling showcase of family-friendly high- and low-tech features that may end up in a production model Ford in the near future.

Now where did that darn stroller go?

Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) technology connects backpacks (black with the blue RFID “luggage” tag), musical instruments and sports equipment to the car’s computer. The computer learns what you need and when, and will alert you if you’ve left something behind before you drive away for the Saturday morning soccer game. No word on whether you can RFID tag your kids.

You’ll never have to worry if you’ve got that car seat properly secured again. The same computer senses for proper belt tension and position.

Despite dire forecasts, Chrysler (the company that invented the all-time people- and gear-hauling champion) continues to develop a gasoline/electric-powered hybrid Town & Country minivan that may be available by 2013.

Next up, on Monday? We’ll take a look at the best of the new family vehicles that are ready to take home today! If you have any car questions, please post in the comment section and we’ll do our best to answer you soon!