After years of trying to rediscover itself as an indoor and outdoor event to fill downtown Detroit with new cars and car holidays, the North American International Auto Show is folding its tent for 2021, moving into the M1 Concourse, a small development , consisting of a racetrack surrounded by luxury garages in Pontiac.

The new show, renamed Motor Bella, will be a “bridge to the future” of the car show, according to a statement from the Detroit Association of Car Dealers, which runs the car show.

Motor Bella will have a shortened run on Sept. 21-26, significantly less than the original plan for events in downtown Detroit on Sept. 24. 9. The name “Motor Bella” would be used for a street fair with Italian and English luxury and perfect models near Detroit’s stadium district.

“This year will be as fluid with event schedules as 2020, especially as the release of the vaccine is slower and more uneven than desired,” said Cox Automotive analyst Michelle Krebs.

Sources cite fears that COVID-19 will still rage over the relocation of the smaller space, which is entirely in the open. In addition to car manufacturers’ car displays, the M1 Concourse will allow events showing the car’s performance and technology.

Charity event

The smaller event will still have a charity component to offset the cancellation of Charity Preview, one of Detroit’s hottest tickets and a multimillion-dollar group benefactor in southeastern Michigan.

“This outdoor venue, with adrenaline pumping activities and a full range of OEM and technology exhibits, will offer the sights, sounds and even the smell of everything the new world of mobility has to offer,” said DADA CEO Rod Alberts. .

This move is a significant reduction from just three months ago, when the show’s organizers announced a falling extravaganza at the TCF Center and surrounding streets, parks and public areas in downtown Detroit.

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“Although car dealerships remain an important platform for promoting new mobility innovations and helping people make basic car purchase decisions, the traditional car dealership model is changing,” said Rod Alberts. “We cannot ignore the major disruptions caused by the pandemic and the impact it has had on budgets. As such, we will provide an incredible experience for the media, the automotive industry and the public in a cost-effective way. “

In addition to the 1.5-mile track, the M1 offers a place to showcase the car’s off-road capability. Motor Bella will include 1.6 million square meters of displays and demonstrations.

This marks the second year of major US car shows to be thrown into disarray by COVID-19. The Chicago Motor Show, traditionally held in February, is seeking government approval in April. The show in Los Angeles, which announced a move from fall to spring a few months ago, may be on thin ice as Los Angeles continues to be a hotbed of viruses. The show is currently scheduled for May 21-31 in Los Angeles.

If Detroit’s decision is a guide, the 2021 New York Auto Show, scheduled for the Manhattan Javits Center on Aug. 20-29, could also be in jeopardy.

Impact on the city center

The organizers of the show will not say anything about the future or whether the name of the North American International Motor Show will continue to exist.

“We are well aware of the importance and impact of our show and our events on the state and the entire subway area in Detroit. This will always be part of our considerations for the future, “said show chairman Doug North. The showroom was a major driver for businesses in restaurants, hotels and other businesses in the center.

The show’s economic impact is estimated at up to $ 450 million a year, as hotels and restaurants are filled with visitors, including workers who build complex exhibits and journalists and car managers from around the world for weeks. It is also known that the show attracts about 800,000 customers who pay on public days.

While the M1 spans 87 acres, leaning against Woodward Avenue on the southern border of Pontiac. There is a lack of road and parking infrastructure in downtown Detroit, which effectively provides smaller crowds than previous car shows.

Dates for 2021 Motor Bella

  • Press Review, Tuesday, September 21
  • AutoMobili-D, Tuesday, September 21 to noon Thursday, September 23
  • Industry Review, Wednesday, September 22 and a half day Thursday, September 23
  • Public show, Thursday, September 23 to Sunday, September 26

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