Every January of every year, auto companies, automotive fans and enthusiasts as well as potential customers flock to Detroit to attend the highly prestigious North American International Auto Show (NAIAS). Soon enough, this major auto show – also known as Detroit Auto Show – would be held in January no more.
It turns out that this NAIAS won’t be happening in January anymore by the end of the decade or 2020, as the event’s organizers have decided to shift its schedule to another time of the year, according to a report from The Detroit News. While the Detroit Auto Dealers Association – organizer of the NAIAS – has already made up its mind about the change in schedule, it has yet to announce when the auto show would be held.
Previously, the Detroit Auto Dealers Association (DADA) had considered moving the NAIAS to October or June. Rod Alberts, executive director of the DADA, had told The Detroit News that October was being flaunted as a nice time to hold the NAIAS. However, one of the mainstays of the Detroit Auto Show, General Motors Co. wanted the event to be moved to June.
Tony Cervone, GM's senior vice president of global communications, said the carmaker wanted to reshape the NAIAS as a "massive festival of automotive" aimed at consumers, not at the news media. He remarked that the auto show would draw people to downtown venues, concerts, and the Chevrolet Detroit Grand Prix on Belle Isle.
Max Muncey, spokesman for the NAIAS, told The Detroit News that DADA has already completed a months-long assessment of a date change, with the final decision to be divulged during an announcement set on July 24.
The schedule shift is set to take effect in 2020. The 2019 Detroit Auto Show will still be held in January, the last time the event will be held in this month.
Aside from the schedule shift, DADA is planning to change the name of the show from North American International Auto Show to a moniker that highlights the fact the event is held in Detroit. Rod Alberts, executive director of the DADA, had told The Detroit News that the association had been discussing a name change for years. A person privy with the discussions told news agency that around a dozen new names are being considered, although DADA isn't likely to announce the name change on July 24.
The schedule shift comes as fewer carmakers are opting out of the NAIAS in Detroit, with many of them preferring to go to Las Vegas for the Consumer Electronics Show. While NAIAS is usually aimed at news media, CES is targeting both the press and consumers. CES is also held in January, making it a worthy yet growing rival of the NAIAS.