2011 North American International Auto Show
Location Name: North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) (Detroit, Michigan)
Location Type: Event (Annual Exhibition)
Year Began: 1907 (as Detroit Auto Show), 1989 (as NAIAS)
The North American International Auto Show’s roots can be traced back to 1907 when the Detroit Area Dealer Association put on the first Detroit Auto Show. The first show was held at Riverside Park (today’s Gabriel Richard Park) near the Belle Isle Bridge). Over the next few decades the annual show was held at various locations throughout the city until 1941. To help free up industrial potential for the massive war effort, the production of new passenger cars was outlawed. Since no new cars were rolling off the lines, the Detroit Auto Show ceased operations until 1953.
In the 1950s, Detroit’s automobile industry was booming. Fueled by the suburban movement, the growth of the nation’s highway systems and the unprecedented economic boom, car sales rose rapidly. Though the Auto Show, Detroit’s automobile manufacturers sought to impress the public with ever faster, sleeker, and more powerful vehicles. It was in 1957 that the first international automobile manufacturers displayed their vehicles at the Detroit Auto Show. In 1965 the Auto Show moved into the newly opened Cobo Center (part of the city’s new downtown Civic Center), where it has been held ever since.
In 1989, the Detroit Auto Show became known as the North American International Auto Show, and today it continues to be one of the largest such events in the world. Every year in January, automobile manufacturers from around the world gather to impress the crowds and the media with their newest designs. While the success of the NAIAS seems to depend greatly on the economy and the strength of the industry, the average annual attendance hovers near 750,000.Sources