Detroit’s Auto Attractions

January 5, 2016  |   Story by Danielle Alexander  |   Photos by Edsel & Eleanor Ford House, Ford Piquette Avenue Plant, Automotive Hall of Fame

Asking car buffs to pick their favorite collector vehicle is like asking them to choose between their children: It’s virtually impossible because they love them all for different reasons.

Here in the Motor City, you can check out all of your favorites at a number of car museums — and even one of the world’s largest automotive special events. When there isn’t a Detroit auto show in town, check out one of our seven favorite car museums. Enjoy the ride!

 

1. The Henry Ford

Whether you are interested in experiencing the museum, factory, village, Giant Screen Experience or all four, The Henry Ford is known as the place of “amazing inventions, daring visionaries and living traditions that span three centuries of American life”. The Goldenrod, the Kennedy Presidential Limousine and Rosa Park’s bus are only three of many popular automobile-related exhibits.

2. Ford Rouge Factory Tour

The Ford Rouge Factory Tour is one of four options presented to visitors upon arrival at The Henry Ford. It is a self-guided, five-part experience that includes the Legacy Theater, Manufacturing Innovation Theater, Observation Deck Tour, Ford F-150 truck Assembly Plant Walking Tour and Legacy Gallery.

3. Edsel & Eleanor Ford House

Besides being the historical home of the Ford family, the Edsel & Eleanor Ford House is currently featuring the Women Who Motor exhibit, which includes films, vintage advertisements and artifacts like Clara Ford’s driver’s permit and duster. Inspired by Eleanor Ford’s request for hat room, the exhibit highlights women and their large influence to the history and industry of automobiles.

4. Ford Piquette Avenue Plant Tour

The Ford Piquette Avenue Plant, also known as the birthplace of the Model T (as well as Models B, C, F, K, R, N and S), is recognized as one of the most “significant automotive heritage sites in the world”. It is typically open for tours by appointment only; however, during the auto show dates, it is open daily from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

5. Meadow Brook Hall Tour

If you are interested in how the automotive aristocracy lived, you need to visit the Dodge-Wilson 88,000-square-foot home located at Meadow Brook Hall. For tour information, visit their website.

6. Automotive Hall of Fame

The Automotive Hall of Fame includes everything from the birth of the automobile to motorsports to tech visionaries. Located in Dearborn, it is for anyone who wants to “discover the driving spirit that accelerated our lives.”

7. Detroit Historical Museum

America’s Motor City exhibition at the Detroit Historical Museum tells the “fascinating stories of both how cars built metro Detroit and how metro Detroit built cars, as well as why Detroit became the Motor City”. Beginning with the Automotive Showplace exhibit at its entrance, it is a must-see for Detroiters, as well as those visiting. Tour information is available online.

8. Giant Uniroyal Tire

An eight-story tire gets everyone’s attention, and that is why the Giant Uniroyal Tire is a popular automobile-related attraction in metro Detroit. Now located in Allen Park, it was originally created in the ’60s as a Ferris Wheel attraction for New York World’s Fair, one on which Jacqueline Kennedy and her children rode. Even after several renovations over the years, it continues to “welcome visitors and residents back to the Motor City” since it is located near the Detroit Metro Airport.

Check out upcoming auto events in Detroit.

Read more about attractions in Detroit.

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Mentioned Attractions And Venues
  1. The Henry Ford
    20900 Oakwood Blvd., Dearborn, MI 48124313-982-6001Highlight on map | More Details
  2. Edsel & Eleanor Ford House
    1100 Lake Shore Road, Grosse Pointe Shores, MI 48236313-884-4222Highlight on map | More Details
  3. Automotive Hall of Fame
    21400 Oakwood Blvd., Dearborn, MI 48124313-240-4000Highlight on map | More Details
  4. Detroit Historical Museum
    5401 Woodward Ave., Detroit, MI 48202313-833-1805Highlight on map | More Details
  5. Detroit Metro Airport
    2500 World Gateway Place, I-94 at Merriman Road, Detroit, MI 48242734-AIR-PORT (24Highlight on map | More Details