Geneva Auto Show Ends After More than 100 Years

What was once one of the world’s largest and most prestigious auto shows is coming to an end after more than a century. 

“First staged in 1905, the Geneva International Motor Show has been a fixture of new vehicle launches, mainly in Europe, attracting at least 120 exhibitors at its peak,” according to Reuters. “In recent years, the Geneva event has had to compete with bigger, more popular shows.” 

The show’s organizers describe the decision to discontinue the event as "extremely regrettable.” 

"However, it has to be said that the lack of interest shown by manufacturers in the Geneva Salon in a difficult industry context, the competition from the Paris and Munich shows which are favored by their domestic industry, and the investment levels required to maintain such a show, sound the final blow for a future edition," Alexandre de Senarclens, president of the Comité permanent du Salon International de l'Automobile Foundation, said in a statement.



The show was enormously popular until very recently. 

“Only five auto brands ended up being present at the last edition in February while major carmakers like Stellantis NV, Ferrari NV and BMW AG didn’t attend,” according to Bloomberg. “The 168,000 visitors fell well short of the 200,000 expected by organizers and local authorities.”

Until five years ago (almost) no manufacturer would have dreamed of skipping the industry event.  In 2024, there were “major absences such as Volkswagen Group, Stellantis, Mercedes, BMW, Hyundai and so on,” according to Motor1. “The European old guard was represented by Renault — which in Switzerland presented important models such as the electric Renault 5 and the new Dacia Spring — flanked by some Chinese brands.”

Auto shows have been struggling to attract automakers and attendees and Geneva is hardly alone with this problem. 

“The North American International Auto Show attempted to reverse course by moving the event from Detroit’s unpredictable January to the summer to attract more people,” according to Motor1. “However, earlier this year, the NAIAS organizers announced they would move the show back to January starting in 2025, putting it back in competition with CES.”

Back to Geneva: In 2022, the 2023 edition of the show was canceled — or part of it was. 

“The original plan was to hold two Geneva shows in 2023: one in Geneva and one in Doha, Qatar, likely as a way to recover from the financial issues that had plagued the event since 2020,” according to Autoblog. “The first not-in-Geneva-Geneva-auto-show opened its doors in the tiny Middle Eastern nation in October 2023 and seemingly went well. We say ‘seemingly’ because we weren't there: The show had shrunk into a regional event that had lost its spot as a global stage for carmakers.”

An auto show will again be held in Doha in November 2025. 

"Time will tell whether carmakers will follow,” according to Autoblog. 

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