The Geneva Motor Show is the latest trade show to cancel over fears of the coronavirus. The Swiss auto show is one of the largest car shows in the world and is usually the venue where high-end and exotic auto makers roll out new models and wild concepts. The show, like most auto shows, is more than a trade show as its doors are open to the public.
The Geneva Motor Show joins other major canceled events such as GSMA's Mobile World Congress and Facebook's F8 conference. So far, the associations behind the upcoming New York International Auto Show have yet to announce its closure. The NYIAS runs from April 10-19 in New York City.
These auto shows are more than just an open exhibit for the public. Auto makers dump millions into massive installations and announcements. Years of work go into crafting the right message for each show and without the shows, auto makers will need to shift strategies to announce their latest models and trends.
Up until now, the Geneva Motor Show was advising attendees to avoid sick people -- which is nearly impossible in the packed halls as people push and shove to see the latest supercar concepts.
"We regret this situation, but the health of all participants is our and our exhibitors' top priority. This is a case of force majeure and a tremendous loss for the manufacturers who have invested massively in their presence in Geneva. However, we are convinced that they will understand this decision," said Maurice Turrettini, Chairman of the Foundation Board, in a released statement.
The organizations behind the Geneva Motor Show state that they are now working on dismantling the show and determining the financial consequences for all those involved. It also notes that "tickets already purchased for the event will be refunded."