“Geneva International Motor Show” 2021 also cancelled / Strong commitments for “IAA” in Munich
Where and how will the auto industry present the mobility of the future as of 2021? (Photo: Geneva International Motor Show)
The events industry is facing major impacts from Covid-19, with some organisers now having to deal with cancellations for 2021. In Switzerland, the committee and board of foundation Salon International de l’Automobile have decided that the “Geneva International Motor Show” ( will not take place in 2021 either. This year’s event was already cancelled just days before it was due to take place in March 2020 as a result of the spread of the coronavirus (see of 02.03.2020). The organiser is doubtful whether the current pandemic even permits the organisation of an event with over 600,000 visitors, and most exhibitors said in response to a survey that they would likely not take part in a 2021 edition of the automotive show. Shaken from the coronavirus crisis (see of 03.07.2020), the auto industry is clearly stalling for time and instead requesting that the next Geneva auto event take place in 2022.

Such a postponement will cause financial problems for the foundation – the cancellation in 2020 alone entailed a loss of CHF 11m (EUR 10m) – and it has decided to offer the auto show for sale to trade fair organiser Palexpo (Grand-Saconnex / Switzerland; The sale would enable the event to survive.
“IAA” organiser forges ahead with concept for 2021
Germany’s international motor show “IAA” (, which is set to take place at its new venue in Munich from 7-12 September 2021 (see of 10.03.2020), is faced with the same question of whether the current situation will allow the organisation of a large-scale event. Hildegard Müller, president of Germany’s automotive industry association VDA (Berlin;, is opting for an optimistic approach. During the presentation of the IAA concept on 1 July 2020, she said, “The IAA will offer the most modern concept, ensuring health protection, exhibitor presentation and visitor involvement.” Müller is counting on trade fair company Messe München, which presented good concepts regarding how trade shows and other major events can take place despite the Covid-19 pandemic. However, since trade fairs and congresses in the German state of Bavaria are prohibited until 1 September 2020, it is not yet certain that the hygiene and safety measures will actually work as planned.

Regardless, the VDA still intends to establish the IAA in Munich as the “international leading platform for the mobility of the future,” supported by three event formats called “Summit”, “Open Space” and “Blue Lane”. The Summit on the trade fair grounds is for brand and product presentations as well as conferences for professionals. The Open Space is intended as a forum for interaction on mobility concepts for the future and will be spread across various inner-city locations in Munich, with stages showcasing technology as experience. The Blue Lane, finally, is a test track connecting the inner city with the exhibition grounds on which the mobility of the future becomes something you can experience first hand.

“We all hope to get through this pandemic well,” said Müller. This hope is founded on “strong commitments from exhibitors for the IAA in Munich,” which could currently be the difference between the IAA and the Geneva International Motor Show. Though the VDA spokesperson did not tell who had made the comment, they did say this much: There is approval beyond VDA members. Especially smaller exhibitors are hoping the new concept will help them emerge from the shadow of the “alpha” auto companies and draw more attention to themselves. “In this respect, we are very confident that we will be able to draw the producers and suppliers of the world to Munich,” said Müller. The date of the IAA, set about half a year later than the Geneva auto show, could be the deciding factor to make it work.
06.07.2020 [245469-0]
Published on 06.07.2020
Automobilmessen: „Genfer Autosalon“ abgesagt, starke Commitments für „IAA“German version of this article...

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