The coronavirus pandemic has not been kind to auto shows. They weren’t doing great before, either, but the virus saw organizers canceling many events throughout 2020 and 2021. This year isn’t off to a great start as CES floundered under a new surge of cases in the US, but the end of the year could be better. Organizers for the North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) are hoping for such, announcing that the next show will happen in September.
The show will run from September 14 through September 25. Press and tech days occur on September 14 and 15, with the Charity Preview on September 16. The show will be open to the public starting on September 17. The Huntington Place convention center will host indoor activities, and there will be outdoor displays around downtown Detroit, too.
Detroit hasn’t hosted the auto show since January 2019. In 2020, organizers had planned to move the show to June, introducing indoor and outdoor activities and displays, hoping that the warmer weather would attract more attendees than the state’s frigid winters, but organizers had to cancel. They then pegged September 2021 for the show’s return, but they had to cancel again. It was replaced with the six-day Motor Bella event 20 miles outside Detroit.
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September is still nine months away, but it looks as if it’s likelier than ever that the Detroit Auto Show is finally back. A lot can happen between now and then, and it will be interesting to see which automakers even attend. Before the pandemic, companies were stepping back from pricy auto show displays, opting instead for more intimate debuts with a corralled and captive press. Show organizers might be ready to throw open the convention center doors, but will automakers be there with their freshest reveals? We will have to wait and see.