By the time the reporting hordes arrived in Detroit on Sunday to prepare for the opening of the Detroit show - or the North American International Auto Show (NAIAS), as they insist on calling it - the local press had long ago decided the theme of this year's event. It made both a nice change from the 'responsible' direction of recent fixtures and a welcome contrast from the -10deg C weather ruling outside.
'Big and fast is back' yelled a big, red banner in the middle of page one of Sunday's Detroit Free Press, and as soon as you started looking at new models, you knew they were right - almost as though the industry had known all along the three-year cycle it requires to make new cars that petrol would be selling at just two bucks a gallon at the exact moment these creations were due to hit the highway.
Mind you, it deserves to be said that every one of this year's powerful cars was claiming enhanced efficiency, too, and with good reason.
General Motors, which grabbed what is often Ford's first Monday launch slot, dived straight into familiar zero-emissions territory with a great-looking second-generation Volt plug-in saloon (its battery-only range enhanced from 35 to 50 miles), then grabbed further plaudits by launching a pure EV concept, a hatchback sized between the Corsa and Astra that offered a 200-mile range and was tipped to cost an affordable $30,000.
GM chief Mary Barra, taking some rare time away from dealing with massive recalls and apologising for the sins of her predecessors, described the Bolt as "a daily driver", and it certainly looked feasible as one.
It looked to me as if GM had really stolen a march on the field with a well-packaged small car with such a range - but it's a comment on the eternal appeal of big and fast that by the end of day one of this Detroit show, most commentators had stopped talking about these notable achievements.